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Ottoman Greeks of the United States (OGUS)

The Ottoman Greeks of the United States project (OGUS) is a multifaceted endeavor to preserve and promote the history of immigrants from the Ottoman Empire to the United States. The OGUS project focuses on the chronological period of 1904 – 1924 in order to illuminate the peak in immigration from specific regions of the Ottoman Empire to the United States during that time. Those regions were Asia Minor, Eastern Thrace, Imbros, Tenedos, the Marmara and Princes’ Islands.


 

Archival Collections

There are four archival components that are all currently held by the project’s founder, George Topalidis. The first archival component is an oral history archive that currently contains over 100 interviews. Next is a photograph archive that currently contains over 500 photographs. Furthermore, the project contains a three-dimensional object digital archive with over 50 objects. And finally, the document archive contains over 250 documents. This information will be used to generate academic publications and presentations, social media publications and presentations, blog articles, op-eds, podcasts, documentaries.

Ongoing Research

The following locations will be visited by OGUS researchers for interviews during the 2019 – 2020 academic year: 

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 

Chicago, Illinois

Detroit, Michigan

Jersey City, New Jersey

Austin, Dallas, Gavelston, and Houston, Texas

 

Ottoman Greeks of the United States Events and Research News

Presentations

Topalidis, George. Mapping Heritage: Identity Label Negotiation Through Space And Time, at the Fifteenth International Conference on Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Kapodistrian University – Athens, Greece (Postponed – TBD). 

Topalidis, George. Residential Discrimination against Southeast Europeans in the early 20th century, at the Southern Sociological Society’s annual conference (Postponed – TBD). 

Matthews, Denise. 2019. Invisible Differences: Children of Ottoman Greek Immigrants in the US, Modern Greek Studies Association Conference. 

Topalidis, George. 2019. The Impact of Space and Time on Identity Claims of Immigrants from the Ottoman Empire to the U.S. between 1904 – 1923. Modern Greek Studies Association Conference. 

Publications

Topalidis, George. The Impact of Space and Time on Identity Claims of Immigrants from the Ottoman Empire to the U.S. between 1904 – 1923.               Journal of Historical Sociology (Under Review)

Topalidis, George. 2017. Expulsion of Refugees has Historic Parallels. Gainesville Sun.

    Ottoman Greeks of the United States (OGUS): The Acropolis and the Madonna – A Case Study of Refugee Deportation from the United States

    This is our first podcast in the Ottoman Greeks of the United States (1904-1924) podcast series. It tells the story of the S.S. Acropolis, a ship that transferred Armenian and Greek refugees from the city of Smyrna to Ellis Island in the winter of 1922. Modern Syrian refugees are experiencing similar trials and tribulations as the Armenian and Greek refugees from Smyrna. This podcast highlights those similarities. It transports its listeners back to the early 20th century, and weaves together newspaper accounts of the Smyrna refugees’ story with recollections of descendants of immigrants from the Ottoman Empire.

    Contact the Ottoman Greeks of the United States Project

    • George Topalidis

    If you or anyone you know would like to be interviewed, please contact OGUS coordinators at ogus0424@gmail.com.

    Follow the Ottoman Greeks of the US Project on Facebook here. Above photo from NYC Public Library, <Ethnikos Kēryx<, “Oi Ellēnes tēs Amerikēs Enischyontes to Ethnikon Komma,” October 17, 1916.