Remembering 1922: Twelve Memories of Migration from the Late Ottoman Empire to the US

Yiorgo  Topalidis's picture

Between 1907-1924, a wave of Ottoman Greek migrants from the Ottoman Empire arrived in the US. Each carried a unique set of experiences from their respective communities and gained new ones at their points of departure and arrival, during their journey, at their new settlements throughout the US, and in some cases during their return migration. Through transgenerational memory transfer and archival research, the migrants’ descendants preserved these experiences.

Over the next twelve months, researchers of the OGUS project will present these experiences in a series of online videos entitled, Remembering 1922: Twelve Memories of Migration from the Late Ottoman Empire to the US. Each video will feature one of twelve communities from the late Ottoman Empire’s regions that overlap with contemporary Turkey. In addition, the videos will present a variety of migration experiences between 1907-1924, from economic migration during periods of relative peace and stability, to refugeedom, to transnational migration and return migration. Finally, as this year marks the hundred-year commemoration of the destruction of Smyrna (Trk. Izmir), many of the presentations will emphasize the resulting refugee wave from first-hand accounts provided by descendants of Ottoman Greek immigrants and refugees to the US.

Through this online series, researchers at the University of Florida’s Samuel Proctor Oral History Program who maintain the Ottoman Greeks of the United States Digital History Project, join the hundreds of thousands of descendants of Ottoman Greeks in Turkey, Greece, and throughout the diaspora who raise their voices this and every year in commemoration of their ancestors.

May their memory be eternal.

Click here to access upcoming episodes