Home Map E-mail
 
Eng |  Հայ |  Türk |   Рус  |  Fr  

Home
Main
Delegations
Site map
Feedback
Contacts
Links
Pre-Genocide Armenia
History of Armenia
Pre-Genocide photos
Armenian Genocide
What is Genocide
Armenian Genocide
Chronology
Photos of Armenian Genocide
100 photographic stories
Mapping Armenian Genocide
Cultural Genocide
Remember
Documents
American
British
German
Russian
French
Austrian
Turkish

Research
Bibliography
Survivors Stories
Eye-Witnesses
Media
Quotations
Public Lectures
Recognition
States
International organizations
Provincial governments
Public petitions
Mission Statement
Director`s message
Press-releases
Museum G-Brief
Interviews
News
Conferences
Events of AGMI
Year of Book 
Lemkin scholarship 
Meet the Alumni 
Most Read 
   Museum
Museum Info
Plan a visit
Permanent exhibition
Temporary exhibition
Online exhibition  
Memorial postcards  
   Institute
Goals & Endeavors
Publications
AGMI Journals  
Library
AGMI collection
   Tsitsernakaberd Complex
Description and History
Memorial complex photos
Remembrance day
Friends of AGMI Foundation
 

Armenian General Benevolent Union
All Armenian Fund
National Academy of Sciences of Armenia
Public Radio of Armenia
Armenian News Agency
ARMEDIA  Information, Analytical Agency
Inhomage
armin
armin
armin
armin
armin
1000000lives




International organisations

THE STORY OF THE NEAR EAST RELIEF


In early September 1915 a cable came to the Department of State at Washington from the American Ambassador Henry Morgenthau at Constantinople, urging the formation of a committee to raise funds and provide ways and means for saving some of the Armenians. In his report Morgenthau was stating that the annihilation of the Armenian race in Turkey is rapidly progressing.

near

"They shall not perish"
The contribution poster of Near East Relief, 1918
This massage was transmitted to James L. Barton, Foreign Secretary of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Mission in Boston. On September 14 Barton wrote to Cleveland H. Dodge, the long time friend of the benevolent and missionary organizations working in the Near East in New York and offered him to convene a comprehensive conference on Armenian matters.

On September 16 a group of affluent people agreed to organize a committee for the purpose of raising funds for suffering Armenians and to send aid to Constantinople for relief purposes.

Since October the 1st of 1915 Armenian Relief Committee started contributing to this project. There were two more committees operating in the Near East: Syrian and Palestinian Relief Committee and Persian War Relief Foundation. In November, 1915, these two committees united with Armenian Relief Committee functioning as Armenian and Syrian Relief Committee, later known as the American Committee for Relief in the Near East. On August 6, 1919, the U.S. Congress issued a Charter signed by the U.S. President incorporating the Near East Relief.
near

American president W. Wilson’s proclamation to the
American society for contributing
Armenians and Syrians


Among the founders and members of The Near East Relief were Cleveland H. Dodge, Woodrow Wilson’s friend and the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Robert College at Constantinople, James L. Barton, Charles R. Crane, President of the Board of Trustees of the Constantinople College for Women, Samuel T. Dutton, Treasurer of the Constantinople College for Women and the Secretary of World Peace Foundation, Stanley White, Edwin M. Bulkley, William I. Chamberlain, Charles Vickrey and many other prominent individuals.

During the meeting a question was raised about the amount of money the Committee should aim to raise. Various opinions were expressed and the sum of $100.000 was affirmed. Cleveland H. Dodge took the responsibility to meet all the expenses of the office. The Chairman and the Treasurer of the Committee proceeded to Washington and established connections with the Department of State. The entire files of the Department were placed at their disposal. They were given permission to read and use any and all dispatches and documents stating religious, social and physical conditions in the disturbed areas. The situation far surpassed anything that had been imagined in terms of the conditions among the native non-Moslem populations in Ottoman Empire.

A few months after the formation the Committee had more than 50 centers in Constantinople, Izmir, Marzvan, Aintab, Diarbekir, Urfa, Kharberd, Erzerum, Trabzond, Bitlis, Van, Tavriz, Urmia, Aleppo, Beirut, Damask.

The President of the United States, Woodrow Wilson, was keenly aware of the situation in the Near East and firmly believed that America should do its part in humanitarian effort to relieve the distress among the war-stricken people overseas. Through his personal friendship with Mr. Dodge and Mr. Crane he assured the Committee on the Near East issue was formed and acting.

near

"Your bit saves a life"
Armenian and Syrian Relief Campaign
On July 10, 1916, the Congress passed a joint resolution requesting the President to authorize a special day for a nation-wide consideration of the critical condition of the Armenian people and ask the citizens of the country to show generosity and support the relief project. On August 31, 1916, President Wilson declared Saturday, October 21, and Sunday, October 22, as joint days upon which the people of the United States may make contributions for to support the stricken Syrian and Armenian people.

Hundred thousands of Armenian refugees from Ottoman Empire were reaching Armenia.

In order to help them American Consul in Tiflis, Willoughby Smith, turned to the Committee for help. As a response the Rockefeller Foundation made large contribution.

near

"Lest we perish"
American Committee for Relief in The Near East
In 1916 the operation of the Committee extended. The cables sent by American Consul J. Jackson informed about approximately 150.000 refugees in Aleppo, Deir-ez-Zor and Damask. More than 2000 orphans were situated in the churches and other Aleppo institutions.

Although The U.S. broke diplomatic relations with Turkey in 1917, when America entered the war, it did not affect the attitude of the Turkish government towards the relief work. Diplomatic representatives returned to America, but most of other Americans remained at their stations.

Soon after the Turkish settlement, relief projects were summoned not only in Caucasus, Syria and Lebanon, but also in inner regions of Ottoman Empire. The contributions went to the relief of more than 12.000 Armenian orphans in Kharberd, Sivas, Trabzond, Samsun, Marzvan, Gonia, Izmit, and Caesarea, Brusa, Partizak, Adana and many others.

In 1919, in Alexandropol thousands of Armenian orphans were taken off the streets, given a thorough medical examination and later placed either to orphanages or hospitals as needed. In some orphanages the number of children was exceeding 25.000. Despite of that the children in Caucasus were fed three times a day. The orphanage of Alexandropol probably was the largest one in the history and it was called “Orphan City”.

near

"Give or we perish"
American Committee for Relief in The Near East
Although in November, 1920, Armenia passed under Soviet rule, the Near East Relief was allowed to continue its efforts as it had no political objectives, motives or purpose.
near

Children taken in by Near East Relief
Tessa Hofmann & Gerayer Koutcharian
Armenian Review, Spring/Summer, 1992, Vol. 45, No. 1-2/177-178, p. 119, Fig. 56
Governmental as well as international support was essential to provide shelter and feed hundreds of thousands of refugees. In 1922 American Red Cross provided $3.000.000 to the Near East Relief. Later this sum increased up to $6.000.000.

The Committee organized relief in more than 300 centers in the Near East, and 100 more in Eastern Armenia.

The orphanages of Kharberd, Malatya, Diarbekir, Mardin, Urfa, Marash and Adana were replaced to Syria, where there was room neither in orphanages nor in schools. It was vital to organize a new relief campaign for 12.000 Armenian orphans in Syria.

1923 was announced the “Golden Rule Sunday”. November 10 and 11 were considered to be special days for organization of relief among all the citizens of United States. This initiative had great success; therefore, December 6, 1925 was announced a “Golden Rule Sunday”.

During this year huge amounts of donations were made and the sum reached $4.265.322. Later this campaign became an international one and included 51 more countries.
near

"400.000 orphans starving"
American Committee for Relief in The Near East
The Near East Relief took not only the responsibility of the vocational education of orphans but also of finding a work place for them, allocating them to proper families, and supporting them by any other means necessary.
near

Group of Near East Relief orphan girls at summer camp
Polygon orphanage massed drill, October, 1925
“Story of Near East Relief” by James L. Barton, New York, 1930, p. 21


The releasing of orphans from the orphanages started in 1925 and continued till 1929-1930, when orphanages were closed down. No orphan with disputable status left the orphanage. They were under control of the organization for some period. The adults were working and creating Armenian families. But this part of the job was controlled by a new organization - Near East Foundation - the descendant of the Near East Relief.

Founded as a temporary committee Near East Relief became a large organization which put a goal to meet $100.000, but raised $110 million for refugees and orphans in the Near East. That humanitarian aid was contributed by American missionaries, 30 of whom fell victims to various diseases and accidents.

Due to the efforts of the Near East Relief and humanitarian aid of American government and Americans hundreds of thousands of Armenians and thousands of other nationalities of the Near East were rescued from extermination. The activities of the Near East Relief became one of the glorious pages of the history of the humanitarian movement.





FOLLOW US



VIRTUAL MUSEUM

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE

genocide
The Comparative Analysis of the 20th Century Genocides
International Association of Genocide Scholars
The twelfth meeting
8-12 July 2015, Yerevan

LEMKIN SCHOLARSHIP

Lemkin
AGMI ANNOUNCES 2018
LEMKIN SCHOLARSHIP FOR FOREIGN STUDENTS

SPECIAL PROJECT

100photo
100 PHOTO STORIES ABOUT THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE


TEMPORARY EXHIBITIONS

brand book
Temporary exhibitions dedicated to the Armenian Genocide

During 2015, within the framework of the events dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, the AGMI plans to organize nearly twenty different multilingual exhibitions of new scientific scholarship using modern technologies and design in different countries simultaneously. There will be accompanying exhibition leaflets, catalogues and booklets in Armenian and foreign languages. In parallel, the AGMI plans to publish memoirs and monographs in Armenian and foreign languages.

REMEMBER

remember
Murad Kyurikyan - one of the famous figures of Hunchak party from Sebastia. He was arrested in 1915. After being subjected to unimaginable sufferings for 40 days,he was violently killed. Victim of Armenian Genocide.

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARMENIAN GENOCIDE STUDIES  

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ARMENIAN GENOCIDE STUDIES
RA, Armenia Yerevan 0028
Tsitsernakaberd memorial complex
Tel: (374 10) 39 09 81
Fax: (374 10) 39 10 41
    2007-2016 © The Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute     E-mail: info@genocide-museum.am