The kaza of Arapgir (in the sandjak of Mamuretül-Aziz) with its Armenian-populated towns and villages at the beginning of the 20th century


The new challenge faced by Houshamadyan is to reconstruct the Armenian life and history of Arapgir, through articles, song recordings, memory objects, maps, diaries and other means.

The heritage of Arapgir and its neighboring villages stood out due to its multi-faceted nature. Of note was its agriculture, school and cultural life, musical tradition, the rich local history, crafts, centuries-old religious holidays and customs, folklore, waves of emigration and dialect. Certainly, as we describe all this, the reader will note similarities with other Ottoman Armenian communities. But Arapgir and its environs had peculiarities that were born from the local environment and geography, from the demographic and cultural conditions. These are the differences that make any study of the Arapgir region all the more fascinating. Following this path, a diverse Armenian heritage that once flourished on Ottoman lands opens before us.

Launching a study of Arapgir we come face to face with the difficulty of locating primary sources. This challenge looms large when we study any other Armenian community within the Ottoman Empire. Books, press articles, old photos, unpublished diaries, and letters – all can shed light on the Armenian life of Arapgir and facilitate our work of reconstructing it. Thus, we call on our friends to collaborate with us by sending copies of such materials in their possession.