Cow Bell, Marash
Belonged to Elmasd Gemiksizian, who lived in Marash until 1920. She was a young girl who worked in the Kerlakian family household. The bell was her play toy. In 1920, like thousands of other Armenians, Elmasd and her family left Marash and found their way to Lebanon. Today, the bell is in the possession of her grandson, Garo Derounian, in Lebanon.
These materials were provided to us by Hasmig Khanigian in July of 2012 during an event organized by Houshamadyan (in collaboration with Haigazian University) in Bourdj Hamoud, Lebanon. The event was attended by scores of people who brought family heirlooms and old photographs related to the life of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire. Hasmig’s arrival at the event was quite a sight – she arrived in a taxi, with the trunk full of papers, items, deeds, and photographs from the 19th century that had been kept in pristine condition. She also had a family tree reaching back to 1654, a bridal gown from Harput, a skirt, a scarf, and many other items that had once belonged to her ancestors, who hailed from Harput/Kharpert.
Wedding costume (Harput/Kharpert region)
The dress belonged to Veronica Tembekidjian (née Missakian), who lived in Mezire (Mamuretül-Aziz, present-day Elazığ). Veronica wore it at her wedding in the second half of the 19th century. In 1915, Veronica and her family were deported, but survived due to a bribe. Until the end of WWI, they lived as Muslims in the region of Harput. Later, one part of the family settled down in Lebanon. The wedding dress is currently in Beirut in the possession of Hasmig Khanigian, Veronica’s great-grandchild.
Mezire, 1904. Seated, left to right: Diruhi Khanigian (nee Tembekidjian, Veronica’s daughter), Veronica Tembekidjian (nee Misakian), the child Nubar Khanigian, Avedis Khanigian’s mother (name unknown), Kayane Tembekidjian (nee Fabrikatorian). Standing, left to right: Avedis Khanigian (the child Nubar’s father), Maranig Tembekidjian (Veronica’s daughter), Khosrov Tembekidjian (Veronica’s son)
A woven Cashmere shawl that belonged to the Khanigian family, Mezire (Mamuretül-Aziz). Now kept by Hasmig Khanigian, Beirut.
The family tree of the Misakian family from Harput and Mezire from 1654 until the 1930s, published in Cairo in 1947. Only the male family members’ names are shown.
Carpet samples - Kayseri/Gesaria : Sahag Halladjian was a master carpet maker in Kayseri/Gesaria. He continued to live in this city with his wife Filor Halladjian (born Babaoghlanian) until 1931. He ran the carpet factory with a Turkish partner, who somehow managed to take over the factory, as such, Sahag had to work there as an employee. Later, Sahag and his family took refuge in Lebanon. He took carpet samples with him, but earned his living as carpenter. He never worked in carpet making again. Today, the samples are in the keeping of Sahag's granddaughter, Simoneh Khatchadourian in Lebanon.
Kayseri/Gesaria, date unknown. Standing (from left): Filor Halladjian (née Babaoghlanian) and Sahag Halladjian. Seated: Rebeka Halladjian (Sahag's mother). The young child standing to the left is Hripsimeh Halladjian (Simone Khatchadourian's mother).