19th February, 2014 is the 145th birth anniversary of renowned poet, writer, literary, and national public figure Hovhannes Tumanyan. In the years of Armenian Genocide he couldn’t be indifferent to the fate of his nation.
On 1915 he together with his daughter Nvard moved from Tiflis to Echmiadzin, where the Armenian refugees were sheltered, and most of them where homeless orphans. Here, with the direct supervision and control of H. Tumanyan an orphanage was opened, where about 3000 children were sheltered.
Tumanyan treated the sick orphans with special concern. Five hospitals with 500 beds were opened in Echmiadzin by his efforts. The heartaches he experienced during the two months that he spent with the orphans had their affect on his health. The historian Leo, referring to that period of poet’s biography, tells: “Hovannes Tumanyan is working in a hell; fortunately he is not losing his mind”.
Tumanyan played a big role in recording the human and material losses as a result of the Armenian Genocide too. In November 1918 “Investigator Committee of the losses of the Armenians in World War” was created, which was headed by the chairman of the Armenian Compatriotic Unions, Hovannes Tumanyan. As a result of functional activities of the investigator commission serious documentary materials were gathered about the human and material losses of the Armenian Genocide survivors.