Cummings Foundation Grant Recipient
Eliza: A Memoir of Love and Resistance
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Eliza: A Memoir of Love and Resistance

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By Eliza Aharon (Der Melkonian) Sachaklian, Translated by Arpena Sachaklian Mesrobian, with Introduction by Marian Mesrobian MacCurdy

Eliza was born in the Ottoman Empire to a family of merchants and parish priests. They lost their ancestral home in Aintab during the Hamidian Massacres of 1895-96 and resist the Turkish mobs at the siege of Dortyol during the Adana massacres of 1909. These life-and-death struggles began the family's lifelong affiliation with the Armenian Revolutionary Federation.

After her marriage to Aharon Sachaklian, who had become a naturalized American citizen, Eliza and her husband left their families in Cilicia and emigrated to the United States where they raised their three children and became active participants in Armenian community affairs. After World War I Aharon became the finance and logistics officer for Operation Nemesis, a secret campaign to assassinate the Turkish leaders responsible for the Armenian Genocide of 1915. If Eliza knew of his involvement she never let on.

This work is based on Eliza's original memoir and includes a biography of Aharon Sachalkian. It was prepared for publication by her daughter and grand-daughter, Arpena Sachaklian Mesrobian and Marian Mesrobian MacCurdy.

Gomidas Institute (2021)