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Located in North London, the Colindale library is part of the British Library and holds an extensive and global collection of archival newspapers some in hard copies and others copied to microfilm. The following document summarises my finding after a day spent at the library viewing the various newspapers from Istanbul and Smyrna. The languages range from English, French, Greek, Russian, Ladino (Spanish Jewish) etc. though not all the newspapers are available on demand. One of these to be ordered 2 days in advance from their out-storage is the ‘Smyrna Mail’, a newspaper I hadn’t come across in previous investigations, and I have particularly concentrated on.
The ‘Smyrna Mail’ is kept in a single bound volume covering the period Tuesday 23 September 1862 to 21 May 1864, published once a week.
The first date is clearly the first edition as it is V1, no1, and though not indicated the last date probably represented the last edition. The period covered is a time of intense British investment in the Railways, whose effect probably dramatically raised the potential British readership and precipitated the development of one of the first English language papers of the Levant.
Compared to modern newspapers articles tend to be of local interest, while trade notices and adverts tend to cover most of the paper. However on a historical basis these adverts and trade notices help indicate the economic activity of the city at the time, the part played by Levantines in various sectors, as well as services offered to an increasingly prosperous Levantine community. Newspapers listed, reviewed in no particular order.

1- Smyrna Mail: (FMSC 248)
Adverts from v1 no1 (often repeated in later editions)
* Notice that ‘Ottoman Railway Point Station warehouses now ready for merchants…W.F. Fergusson, S.J. Cooke Secretary
* For Liverpool calling at Malta and Gibraltar, the powerful steamer Olymphus, F. Honisher – agent
For London direct – The new and powerful screw steamer Windermere, apply to E.J. Davee – Honisher’s passage – Marina.

1- F. Honisher is almost certainly A. Frederick Honisher 1798-1864, buried in the Buca cemetery, and his name clearly outlived him as the 1905 Goad map records his name on some warehouses.
2- E.J. Davee is probably Ezra Johnson D., whose wife is buried in Buca cemetery as Elizabeth Davee and whose headstone records the name of her husband.

Picnic at Ephesus
On Wednesday a picnic was given at Ephesus by Mr Fergusson and Mr Clarke in celebration of the opening. A special train conveyed the guests to Aya Solook, where abundant refreshments were provided by Mr Thomas Silvey, steward of the English club, Frank St…The following were those present Mr Whittall Chairman of the Smyrna committee and Mr James Whittall, Miss Whittall…Ottoman Railway Company…Mr John Dalessio, C.E. Browning C.E., Mr Stephen Joly H.B.M. Acting V.C. & Cancellier

1- It appears the son and daughter of J.S. John D’Alessio are buried in Buca and he himself may be one of the ‘invisibles’, Anthony John, who died in 1864.
2- Stephen Joly is buried in the Bornova Anglican cemetery, died 1886.

Stranger’s diary
* British and Smyrna Club Coffee house, Marina
* M. Svoboda’s photographic gallery – Frank Street
* Excursion to Boudjah Paradise Station, Homer’s cave, the Park and Shrine of St Elias by Railway and Omnibus.
* English club, 158 Frank St. (Strangers admitted by Members).
* Smyrna Literary and Scientific Institution, News Room, Library, Lectures, Chess room etc. 19 Frank St.
* Circle Levantine – News Room – Cramer’s passage
* Turkey Carpets, Mr James Gout, Lower Frank St.
* Crimean officers cemetery outside the Turk town
* English hospital, hospital street
* English pharmacy, Frank St., opposite the English consulate
Physicians in attendance Dr Wood
Dr Macraith
Dr Chassaud
* Post offices, (5 nations, no English at the time)
* Telegraph offices (13 nations, English – Frank Street)
* Boudjah and Great Paradise – The omnibuses of Francis Villedieu leave Boudjah every morning at 6½ and 7 am, and Smyrna from the Armenian church every afternoon at 5½ and 6. Fare One Beshlick.
* Smyrna Beer, German brewery, near the Smyrna and Aidin railway station. Price 2½ piastres per bottle.

1- There is an air of London gentleman’s clubs of the societies listed above and though clearly some had an intellectual agenda, membership probably also had a snob value attached to it.
2- Of the various excursions offered to the public, many locations are today difficult or impossible to trace as they are usually referred to in their old names and some such as ‘Homer’s cave’ and ‘Shrine of St. Elias’ were probably ancient Greek sites of pilgrimage all destroyed by the calamitous events of 1922. I know from local Greek sources that both the tomb of St Polycarp on Mount Pagus and the tower of ‘Aya Photini’ in Alsancak were dynamited by troops in that period.
3- The British post office was located near the old British Consulate, but as can be seen here was established sometime after 1862.
4- The German brewery is probably the same as mentioned in the Internet site for the Buca émigré Alex Issigonis, ‘his father was a naturalised British subject of Greek descent who had married the daughter of a wealthy Bavarian brewer with a branch brewery in Smyrna’.

The opening of the English club took place yesterday, Monday. It is in Frank Street next door to Mr Paterson’s and was formally the house of the late Mr John Maltass.

Note: Probably the same John Maltass buried in Buca cemetery, died 1842. The Paterson house belonged almost certainly to John Borthwick Paterson, died 1889. He would have been 44 at the time and this was probably his ‘bachelor’ home as opposed to his family house in Bornova.

The anatomical exhibition, opposite the Impartial newspaper office is now closed.

Note: From the De Jongh family records, we know that this probably English language paper established by John de Jongh in 1840 outlived its founder who died in 1854, as is confirmed here (1862). 7-Oct-1862
Aidin or Tralles, by Frederick Turrell of the English College Bournabat.

Note: One of the longer atypical articles dealing in detail of the neighbouring region in terms of history, scenery, and activities. Mr Turrell (1827-1894) is buried in Bornova, and the above informs us of his profession and a minimum date for the establishment to the ‘English College’.

On Thursday the Imperial Cotton Commission met in the council room of Konak, Mr Hyde Clarke, Vice President of the chair, with Mr Whittall, Mr Paterson, Mr La Fontaine, Mr Peter Gout, Divan Effendi and Mr Rees.

Note: The Imperial Cotton Commission may have been a loose organisation to avoid price cutting between rival and wealthy Levantine traders. The Clarke family clearly were in an influential position at the time, and from testimonies we know were one of the few families to stay on in Izmir post 1922, still highly involved in the life of the city from horse racing to football, and trading in figs till the 1990s.

Messr P.F. Roboly and Co.’s freight list for U.K.
Bones 35 per ton
Barley 5 per ton.
Cotton120 per ton weight per steamer, etc.

Note: From Rose-Marie Caporal’s testimony we know that the Roboly family first came from France for the ORC railways but it seems other members of the family were involved in freight transport. The bones advertised in transport costs may have been used for fertiliser purposes. The differing costs may have to do with the bulkiness of the materials concerned.

Ephesus, six photographic views, by A. Svoboda.

Note:A rare case of a ‘Polish (?) Levantine’, a member of whose family seems to be buried in Buca (only son of Albert Svoboda). The announcement shows that in the early days of photography, photos were viewed in an artistic light and were traded as such.

Academy of Anatolia for Archaeology and Geology. Gentlemen desirous of taking part in this society are requested to apply to the Honorary Secretary at the Literary Institution.
Hyde Clarke, President
Charlton Whittall, grandson, Hon. Sec.

Note: The above society is probably a good indicator of the intellectual awareness of the Levantines, who seemed to afford the time for their pursuits as is seen in the wide travels shown in the photo albums of Hugh Whittall (~1976), David Forbes (~late 1940s) etc, the botanical work of Edward Whittall (1851-1917), the zoological work of James Whittall (1838-1910) and the numismatic collection of James Whittall (1819-1883).

Smyrna Jockey club.
Notice is hereby given that the meetings of the above club will continue to be held until further notice at the Literary and Scientific Institution no 19, Frank Street, every Monday afternoon at 4 o’clock pm.

Note: This club is probably the precursor of the ‘Türkiye Jokey Klubü’ based in Şirinyer (Paradise), that still continues to operate.

G. Watkins, clothier begs to inform the public that he has just received from London an excellent assortment of winter goods of superior quality…

Smyrna Races. Stewards…E. Purser.

Mr Richard Abbott, H.B.M. Vice Consul at Gallipoli.
We are glad to see that the Ottoman Gas shares are better.

1- A contemporary Abbott, E.F. in 1867 established a corundum mine
2- This date places a minimum date for the running of the Ottoman Gas Company.

Smyrna College
The want of a public school for the education of the European children in the Levant, particularly of the large populations established in Smyrna, Constantinople, Alexandria and other towns has long been felt, likewise of an institution for the study of oriental languages.
The first object proposed of the founder of the Smyrna college is to give a thorough education…
It is estimated that the sum of £T 3000 would be sufficient to build the college; a considerable part of this sum has already been raised by the submissions.
All communications addressed to Fred Turrell
Miss Whittall £150, J.B. Paterson £350, T.B. Rees £100, Stephen Maltass £100, F. Turrell £300, J. Gout £50, Mr Forbes £50, E. Purser £20, J. Filipuci £25, B. Filipuci £12 etc.

2- La Réforme – French paper of Smyrna - only 5-Nov-1878 edition available and through pre-order (not viewed)

3- Le Levant - French paper of Smyrna (owner Mehmet Sırrı, editor in chief Michel Camberes) - not in stock at this library, but from dates of those provided by contributors, established 1918, published till at least May 1937.

4- Impartial - French and possibly also English 1840? - 1905+? (editor early days Anthony Edwards, later Simon Rue?).

Constantinople newspapers

1- Levant Herald and its derivatives: Istanbul based English newspapers published with interruptions and frequently changing names under the banner of ‘the late Levant Herald est. 1856’. All these are viewable in microfilm only.

The Levant Times & Shipping Gazette: (MF 767)
Istanbul 16-Nov to 31-Dec 1868, English and French text divided by a central column.
The Levant Times and Shipping Gazette is intended to be essentially a newspaper. In addition to records of all local occurrences of interest to the British and other colonies of the Levant, and the most important news from every part of the world, it will devote itself specially to matters connected with trade and shipping, and will aim at becoming a reliable means of information and guidance to Western Europe in regard to the industrial resources of the East.

Robert & John Abbott have run an extensive business at Salonica for many years under the style ‘Abbott Brothers’, a family quarrel occasioned a breach between them some time ago.

Note: The Abbotts feature also in the Smyrna mercantile community and also in corundum mining. They seem to have quickly become the principal merchants of the then Ottoman backwater of Salonica, owning large vineyards, complete with villages within. The obviously complex trial involved dividing these assets between these brothers who also disagreed on the proportions of the split.

A local committee has been formed to concert measures for completing the interior of this edifice, which was consecrated on Thursday Oct 22, by the Hon. and Right Rev. the Bishop of Gibraltar.
A portion only of the fittings of the Church has been provided and there still remain the Pulpit, the Reredos, the Organ, the Bells, the apparatus for Warming and Lighting, and other minor deficiencies to supply.
The estimate for these projects is about £1,000 of which, thanks to the liberality of the Bishop of Gibraltar and a few friends, the sum of £200 necessary for the Pulpit (of which one half was contributed by his Lordship), has been subscribed.
Towards the cost of the Organ also, estimated at £250, eighty pounds have been promised. A further sum of little more than one hundred pounds is in hand, for general expenses; but in order to provide the £170 for the Lighting and Warming apparatus, the £130 for the Bells and about £50 for other accessories, it is necessary to appeal to the public.
The Committee feel confident that this appeal will not be made in vain, and that not only the British communities in the Levant will cheerfully aid in completing this memorial of those who fell in the Crimean campaign, but that in England also many will be found ready to aid in the work.
They beg therefore to announce that subscribers will be received as under:-
At Constantinople, by the Imperial Ottoman Bank; Messrs C.S. Hanson and Co,; and Mr.G. Laurie. At Smyrna, Beyrout, and Alexandria, at the Imperial Ottoman bank. In London, at the offices of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, 5 Park place, St. James’s street; and at the Imperial Ottoman Bank, 4 Bank buildings, Lothbury.
Subscribers who desire to apply their contribution to any special object, are requested to intimate that desire at the time of subscribing.
Committee:- The Rev. C.G.Curtis; E. Gilbert-son, G. Laurie; R. Sarell, M.D.; F.W. Smythe.

Note: The above announcement represents the late stages of the building of the Christ church, detailed in issue 25 (first of 2002) of the cultural magazine ‘Cornucopia’ is the article ‘The Crimean church, Istanbul – Geoffrey Tyack’, detailing the considerable difficulties and human drama that went on before, during and after the construction of Christ church. I know little of the personalities involved in the committee, safe for the Sarell family whose history is now well established through contributions.

Reuters telegram company limited
Notice is hereby given that the Constantinople branch of the above company is now open at no:11 Rue Tom-tom opposite the Austrian embassy. The regular telegraphic service commenced on the 1st day of January 1869.

...M. Dalessio, the railway [Smyrna-Aidin] company’s solicitor...

 Note: Members of this family are buried in Buca cemetery.

A cricket match between Eleven of Constantinople cricket club and Eleven of Ariadne is arranged to take place on Thursday at the Ok-Meydan, Haskeui.

The following is a copy of an Address which has been forwarded to the Prince of Wales through Halil Pasha by the English foremen employed in the Imperial factories at Tophaneh:-
To his Royal Highness the Prince of Wales:
We the undersigned Englishmen, the majority of whom were formerly employed in the Royal Arsenal Woolwich, and now in the Imperial factories, Tophaneh, desire most humbly to express to your Royal Highness our loyal and devoted attachment...
Foremen               Department
George Walters     Smithing and forging,
Alexander McConnachie Turning and Fitting,
Joseph Reilly         Carriage and Wheel,
John Douglas        Shot and shell,
Matthew Bailey     Cartridge machinery,
Louis Blair            Gun Boring,
James Frost         Fuze making,
Frederick Clark    Cartridge making.

The Constantinople cricket club v. HMS “Ariadne”
Thursday was the day fixed for this interesting match, and no more convinient spot could have been found than the one chosen by the Committee. Easily accessible to equestrians from Pera and Pancaldi, no less so to pedestrians from Galata by following the course of Arsenal wall, and to visitors by water who patronized caïques and the above-bridge steamers, it is no wonder that a very large concourse of spectators of both sexes assembled early on the ground, not only in the expectation of seeing a good match but in the hope of again beholding their R.H.H. the Prince and Princess of Wales.
The love of the navy is bred in the bone of every Englishman, and there is always an increased attendance at our local cricket-matches whenever blue-jackets put in an appearance. Their great activity, rollicking gait, and love of fun, not to be subdued by wind or weather....

List of agents for the Levant Times and Shipping gazette
...Gallipoli Mr. M. Pasquali
Dardanelles Mr. E. Grech
Smyrna Mr Michel Decipris - Librarie Internationale 11 Rue Franque

Printed and published at the office of the paper Ipsick Khan, Perchembé-Bazar, Galata
Responsible editor, J. Laffan Hanly - Residence: Maison Camondo, Rue Yazedji.

2- Eastern Express: daily edition 1882-1886
Showing similar content and style to the above paper where bilingualism is mirrored in the advertisements.

The above listing is not intended to be inclusive but merely give an impression of Levantine newspaper coverage of the time.

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