Remembering Our Ancestors: Maps and Genealogy Resources for Armenian-Americans | The New York Public Library

As an Armenian-American keenly aware of the devotion to lost homeland of my ethnic compatriots, I’ve always been on the lookout for Armenians among the researchers from many large ethnic groups who have found their way to the Map Division. April 24 is the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the Armenian Genocide, and one way to honor those who were not able to find refuge is to learn all we can about them and celebrate our link to them.

Petition for Naturalization of Arshile Gorky, indicating his place of birth, courtesy of U.S. National Archives, via Ancestry Library Edition

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Source: Remembering Our Ancestors: Maps and Genealogy Resources for Armenian-Americans | The New York Public Library

Armenian genocide survivors’ stories: ‘My dreams cannot mourn’| The Guardian

To mark the centenary of the massacre, we asked readers to tell us how a legacy of mass killings and deportations has affected the way Armenians live now

The Ghazikian family on a picnic in Erzerum, known to Armenians as Garin, in 1915. Photograph: Melissa Selverian

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Source: Armenian genocide survivors’ stories: ‘My dreams cannot mourn’ | World news | The Guardian

Meet Ralph Yirikian – General Director of VivaCell in Armenia.

Ralph Yirikian is a descendant of a family from #WesternArmenia. His father – Cesar – was born in #Lebanon, but his grandfather came to #Lebanon from #Adana, #Cilicia. His grandfather, Mardiros, was an #orphan who was raised as a Christian in an Arab environment. He was still young when he joined the #French Army and once his military service was complete, he married a local #Lebanese woman, with whom he had three children: Sirun, Georgette and Cesar. Cesar also grew up among Christians in an Arab environment, but unlike his father, he did not know how to speak #Armenian. He would read #ArmenianHistory in #Arabic and was always curious about his culture. In #Lebanon, he married Emily Yusufi Salameh with whom they had four children: Ralph, twin brothers Pierre and Paul, and their youngest girl Mireille. To uphold his #Armenian heritage, Cesar sent his children to an #Armenian school in #Beirut: Chatalbashian High School where the children learned #Armenian, #Arabic, #English and #French. After his graduate studies at the American University of #Beirut, Ralph Yirikian continued his professional career, ending up in #Karabakh (in 2001) then in #Armenia as the General Director of #VivaCell as of 2005 where he decided to raise his own #Armenian family with Armig – his wife – and two children: Sareen and Nareg.​ #AG#AG100#AG1915#ArmenianGenocide

A photo posted by AG_Campaign (@ag_campaign) on

Meet Alejandro. 100% #Mexican. Born on #April24.

Open Letter by Genocide Scholars


President: Robert Melson (USA)
Vice-President: Israel Charny (Israel)
Secretary-Treasurer: Steven Jacobs (USA)

Respond to: Robert Melson, Professor of Political Science Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907 USA

April 6, 2005

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan
TC Easbakanlik
Ankara, Turkey
FAX: 90 312 417 0476

Dear Prime Minister Erdogan:

We are writing you this open letter in response to your call for an “impartial study by historians” concerning the fate of the Armenian people in the Ottoman Empire during World War I.

We represent the major body of scholars who study genocide in North America and Europe. We are concerned that in calling for an impartial study of the Armenian Genocide you may not be fully aware of the extent of the scholarly and intellectual record on the Armenian Genocide and how this event conforms to the definition of the United Nations Genocide Convention. We want to underscore that it is not just Armenians who are affirming the Armenian Genocide but it is hundreds of independent scholars, who have no affiliations with governments, and whose work spans many countries and nationalities and the course of decades. The scholarly evidence reveals the following:

On April 24, 1915, under cover of World War I, the Young Turk government of the Ottoman Empire began a systematic genocide of its Armenian citizens – an unarmed Christian minority population. More than a million Armenians were exterminated through direct killing, starvation, torture, and forced death marches. Another million fled into permanent exile. Thus an ancient civilization was expunged from its homeland of 2,500 years.

The Armenian Genocide was the most well-known human rights issue of its time and was reported regularly in newspapers across the United States and Europe. The Armenian Genocide is abundantly documented by thousands of official records of the United States and nations around the world including Turkey’s wartime allies Germany, Austria and Hungary, by Ottoman court-martial records, by eyewitness accounts of missionaries and diplomats, by the testimony of survivors, and by decades of historical scholarship.

The Armenian Genocide is corroborated by the international scholarly, legal, and human rights community:

1) Polish jurist Raphael Lemkin, when he coined the term genocide in 1944, cited the Turkish extermination of the Armenians and the Nazi extermination of the Jews as defining examples of what he meant by genocide.

2) The killings of the Armenians is genocide as defined by the 1948 United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

3) In 1997 the International Association of Genocide Scholars, an organization of the world’s foremost experts on genocide, unanimously passed a formal resolution affirming the Armenian Genocide.

4) 126 leading scholars of the Holocaust including Elie Wiesel and Yehuda Bauer placed a statement in the New York Times in June 2000 declaring the “incontestable fact of the Armenian Genocide” and urging western democracies to acknowledge it.

5) The Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide (Jerusalem), the Institute for the Study of Genocide (NYC) have affirmed the historical fact of the Armenian Genocide.

6) Leading texts in the international law of genocide such as William A. Schabas’s Genocide in International Law (Cambridge University Press, 2000) cite the Armenian Genocide as a precursor to the Holocaust and as a precedent for the law on crimes against humanity.

We note that there may be differing interpretations of genocide – how and why the Armenian Genocide happened, but to deny its factual and moral reality as genocide is not to engage in scholarship but in propaganda and efforts to absolve the perpetrator, blame the victims, and erase the ethical meaning of this history.

We would also note that scholars who advise your government and who are affiliated in other ways with your state-controlled institutions are not impartial. Such so-called “scholars” work to serve the agenda of historical and moral obfuscation when they advise you and the Turkish Parliament on how to deny the Armenian Genocide.

We believe that it is clearly in the interest of the Turkish people and their future as a proud and equal participant in international, democratic discourse to acknowledge the responsibility of a previous government for the genocide of the Armenian people, just as the German government and people have done in the case of the Holocaust.


Robert Melson
Professor of Political Science
President, International Association of Genocide Scholars

Israel Charny
Vice President, International Association of Genocide Scholars
Editor in Chief, Encyclopedia of Genocide

Peter Balakian
Donald M. and Constance H. Rebar Professor of the Humanities
Colgate University


CodeFights startup has bright future

A startup launched by Tigran Sloyan and Aram Shatakhtsyan in 2014, CodeFights let’s individuals challenge each other in solving computer programming problems. The winner of each game, or “code battle”, earns points and moves on to more advanced levels and stiffer competition. It’s a great way for programmers to test their coding skills against one another, and it looks very addicting from the comments we’ve read from players. Based in San Francisco, CodeFights has just scored $2.4 million in seed funding. A notable backer of the startup is Raffi Krikorian, former VP at Twitter. The company even has several job opportunities in Armenia. Check out this video of co-founder Tigran Sloyan describing the concept of CodeFights.