THE FIRST STONE
From today we can say that Houshamadyan has been born, is working and is appearing.
The first geographical region that we are dealing with in these pages is Palu, with its town and surrounding villages. Of course it is possible to ask why Palu? Why this choice?
In reality the Houshamadyan Association has no one descended from people from Palu, so there is no need to look for emotional reasons for this choice. In fact it was more that a book appearing in 1932 by Rev Harutiun Sarkisian (nom-de-plume Alevor) impressed us from the first moment with its content and wealth of information. We were convinced that based on even this one book we would succeed in great measure in giving new life to Armenian life in Palu. We don’t think we were mistaken in our judgement. We also had several other written Armenian sources at our disposal about Palu. But we weren’t aware of other publications that in the final analysis would amount to more than ten volumes about it. Some of them were published in the Unites States of America, where there was an important colony of people from Palu even before the catastrophe of 1915. During our work we encountered two new publications. The first was Bedros Alahaidoian’s book, which contained rich information about Palu’s songs. It also had two CDs which contained recordings of those same songs. The second was Arsen Yarman’s two-volume book, in which Armenian works about Palu of the 19 century had been translated into Turkish.
We don’t think that we have utilised all the Armenian books written about Palu. There might be others that we know nothing about. But this is the attractive side of Houshamadyan’s work. We will be ready to revise our website pages every time new sources appear about a given place. Such sources can be provided by our visitors and readers.
We have not completed all the subjects to do with Palu. Some are still in the composition and editorial stages. These texts will be gradually added to the website in the next few weeks. Our visitors can follow these updates through the free Houshamadyan Newsletter which can be received by writing to us at our e-mail address houshamadyan(at)googlemail.com
Our research on Palu has given us the opportunity for unforeseen, enjoyable and useful meetings. The best examples of these are the links forged with George Aghjayan and George Leylegian. These two researchers living in the USA immediately appreciated our work. Leylegian, with his rich store of information, opened great prospects concerning future work with Houshamadyan. Aghjayan, descended from people from the Palu region has, in many ways (maps, photographs, pictures, archival materials and books), assisted in the enrichment of these pages written about it.
Houshamadyan’s journey has begun, and we are hopeful that many more meetings like this will happen during our travels.