[Greek Orthodox priest conducting services for children being evacuated from the village of Promahi]

[Greek Orthodox priest conducting services for children being evacuated from the village of Promahi]

Photograph

Chim (David Seymour)

Maker
Polish, 1911–1956

[Greek Orthodox priest conducting services for children being evacuated from the village of Promahi]

From Orphans of the Greek War


1948
Gelatin silver print
Image: 21.8 x 19 cm
Gift of Dr. Stephen Nicholas
2005.0922.0003
Inscriptions verso (typed label): [series title and description)

verso (typed label):File Greece Children

verso (stamp): Used 14 Aug 1948 Illustrated

verso (stamp): Property of the Periodicals Art Library / 191, High Holborn, W.C.1 / Must be returned undamaged

verso (stamp): Please Credit / David Seymour - Magnum / Magnum Photos Inc. / 22 Rue de Pointoise / Paris 5e

verso (pencil): 3500/DS DS-18
TextFinally the authorities decided that the children should be evacuated. When the morning set for the evacuation dawned, almost all the people of Promahi gathered silently in the pouring rain at 8 A.M. in the village square where an altar had been set up for the village priest to conduct a children's service. Some parents who had intended sending their children away became dubious and others who had decided not to were just as doubtful....thus the schoolmaster was kept busy scratching and entering and re-entering names.

There are still wars today in the world: little wars, far off wars, echoes and eddies of the wider conflict that convulses our planet. Our children play and laugh without fear. In some lands, children rarely smile. They have little cause for laughter in Greece where civil war is now in its fourth year. These pages tell a story of a journey of children from Promahi (mountain war zone) to a place of refuge near Athens. They are but a few of the two hundred thousand Greek children who are refugees in their own country, whose parents have sadly renounced their care to prevent abduction to hostile lands.

At the foot of the mountains on the Greek-Yugoslav border above Edessa is the small (2000 inhabitants) village of Promahi. Small and primitive like the 30 odd other villages around it, Promahi is different in one respect; whereas the other village inhabitants had fled as soon as the war came close, the inhabitants of Promahi had refused to leave. They wanted to protect their homes. Finally the authorities decided to evacuate the children. From Promahi they are taken to Ardea where they board trucks and travel to Salonika. Here they board LST and travel to Athens.
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