Microfilm Reel 337, File 2554, "Armenia"

All the microfilm scans from the file number 2554, "Armenia," on reel 337 from the Executive Office files of the Woodrow Wilson Papers, series 4 in the Library of Congress finding aid.



by the Turks as a pretext for a general attack upon the Armenians everywhere. In some cases by massacre, more often through torture and exile, they are being eliminated from the field; they are being put where they need no longer be considered.

"Along the track of the Russian armies toward the Persian border, from Van to Moush and Bitlis, in the cities of Eastern Turkey, such as Diarbekir, Harpoot and Mardin, and especially in Central Turkey and the region stretching to the south, this cruel, relentless persecution has been for some time under way.

Report by a British Resident.

"A British resident of Constantinople who had left that city and was temporarily at a Mediterranean port beyond the reach of the censor, writes as follows:

You have probably learned something of the sad condition of the Armenians from the papers, but probably nothing gets through that in any adequate way portrays the desperate straits in which these poor people find themselves.

You may have heard that Zeitoon has creased to exist as an Armenian town. The inhabitants have been scattered, the city occupied by Turks and the very name changed. The same is true to a large extent of Hadjin, except, I believe, the name has not been altered. The Armenians of the regions of Erzrum, Bitlis and Erzingen have, under torture, been converted to Islam. Mardin reports 1895 conditions (the year of the infamous massacre) as prevailing there. The tale is awful to the last degree.

If generous sums of money reach the missionaries in the interior soon thousands may be saved, otherwise the outlook is hopeless. The inhabitants of cities like Zeitoon and Hadjin are driven out like cattle and made to march long distances under a burning sun, hungry and thirsty. For instance, large numbers from Zeitoon have recently reached Adana utterly destitute, many having been left to die along the road.

More than a thousand families from Hadjin recently arrived in Aleppo in the last degree of misery, and yet the purpose is to send them much further. Husbands are forcibly separated from wives and sent to places long distances apart. Children are similarily separated from parents.

The board also makes the following report from persons in Northern Syria not connected with the missionary circle, but said to be of unquestioned reliability:

"Between 4,300 and 4,500 families– about 28,000 persons–are being removed by order of the Government from the districts of Zeitoon and Marash to distant places, where they are unknown, and in distinctly non-Christian communities. Thousands have already been sent to the northwest into the provinces of Konia, Cesarea, Castiamouni, &c., while others have been taken southeasterly as far as Dier-el-Zor, and reports say to the vicinity of Bagdad. The misery these people are suffering is terrible to imagine. To go into details would be useless waste of time, for all the sufferings that a great community would be subject to in such circumstances are being experienced.

No Time to Sell Property.

"Their property they are unable to sell, as they are given but a few hours to prepare for the journey; and the Government is installing Mohammedan families in their homes, who take possesion of everything as soon as the Armenians have departed. Rich and poor alike, Protestant, Gregorian, Orthodox, and Catholic are all subject to the same order; the local pastors and priests and their flocks without distinction; the old, middle-aged, young, the strong, and the sick being driven in herds to the four points of the compass to a fate of which none can predict. Few are permitted the opportunity of riding except occasionally on an ox or a donkey; the sick drop by the wayside, women in critical condition giving birth to children that, according to reports, many mothers strangle or drown because of lack of means to care for. Fathers exiled in one direction, mothers in another, and young girls and small children in still another. According to reports from reliable sources, the accompanying gendarmes are told they may do what they wish with the women and girls.

"About 300 persons, heads or prominent families, have been imprisoned in Marash, of which some fifty are from Zeitoon and about fifty from Osmanieh. From Zeitoon about 350 families, or about 2,000 persons, have been sent to Marash and from there to Aintab, and are expected to arrive in Aleppo about May 15, to be sent to Meskene, while about 230 or more families are expected to follow before May 20, to report to the Governor of Aleppo. These latter are more fortunate than the first mentioned, as there is a different opinion prevailing in the competent official circles of that city. Seventy-one families were sent to Konia about April 25. A traveler coming from Constantinople said that he met about 4,500 of these unfortunates on the way that were bound for Konia and his description of their condition was appalling. The Armenians themselves say that they would by far have preferred a massacre which would have been less disastrous to them."


Last edit 5 months ago by VBeaudry
Needs Review

TURKISH OUTRAGES CAUSED 300,000 ARMENIAN DEATHS Some Put Figure at 700,000-- Few Massacres, Victims Allowed to Starve. YOUNG WOMEN SEIZED Taken Into Harems--Plans to Save Race by Taking All to America. By John Reed. SOFIA, Sept. 15 (smuggled from Constantinople Sept. 7).--Ambassador Morgenthau has made an offer to the Turkish Government to raise $1,000,000 to transport the survivors of the Armenian people to America. He has cabled Washington, asking that a commission of prominent Americans be appointed by the President to handle the matter, and suggests five names, he won't tell who. The Turkish Government accepted the offer on Sept. 3, but Washington has not answered. In an interview Ambassador Morgenthau said: "The United States might be the Moses to lead the Armenian people out of bondage. They could be put in the unsettled region of the Western States, in parts of Washington, Eastern Oregon, Idaho, Nevada and California. They are a clean, industrious, intelligent race, the best class for immigrants, farmers and laborers, eager for education. "Two or three weeks ago I approached Enver Pasha and Talaat Bey (the Turkish Ministers of War and of the Interior and the two virtual rulers of Turkey to-day), and suggested that if the wholesale deportation of the Armenians was merely a military measure, perhaps they would not object to their deportation to America. They finally acquiesced. AN OPPORTUNITY TO SAVE A RACE. "By investigation I discovered that a million is not enough. Five hundred thousand Armenians need help--110,000 in Constantinople alone. A hundred dollars a head is needed to equip and transport them. "It is a magnificent opportunity for America to save an entire race and get a fine element of citizenship. I suggest that the States needing settlers each raise a fund to equip a ship for Asia Minor. Perhaps $5,000,000 will be the needed total." In the Armenian opposition by the Turkish Government since April it is conservatively estimated that from 300,000 to 700,000 are dead from massacres, starvation and disease. In the region bounded by Samsun, Marsivan, Sivas and Hajun, to the upon by bandits from the hills and the vilayets east to Persia and north to the Black Sea, the entire popula-

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Does the President wish to make this appointment? The Secretary WFJ.

No. W. W. October 5th.


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