Adrienne G. Alexanian, Editor of Forced into Genocide: Memoirs of an Armenian Soldier in the Ottoman Turkish Army, will present her father’s Memoirs on Sunday, March 18, at Holy Trinity Armenian Church in the Charles and Nevart Talanian Cultural Hall at 12:30 p.m. A Book Signing and Reception will follow the Book Presentation. Books will be available for purchase.
Forced into Genocide is the riveting memoir of Yervant Edward Alexanian, an eye-witness to the massacre and dislocation of his family and countrymen in Ottoman Turkey during World War I. Incredibly, Alexanian experienced the Armenian Genocide as a conscript in the Turkish Army. His memoir is a one-of-a-kind “insider’s account,” documenting the Genocide’s astonishing cruelty – but also its rare, unexpected acts of humanity. No comparable account exists in the literature of the Armenian Genocide. This edition, translated from Alexanian’s hand-written chronicle, includes rare documents and photos that the author preserved, a scholarly introduction, translator’s note and other supportive matter.
Born in Silvas, Turkey, Yervant Alexanian survived the Hamidian massacres as an infant to later fight for survival as a conscript in the Ottoman Turkish Army during the Armenian Genocide of 1915. He fled to America in 1920, where he spent his life advocating justice for his people.
Fr. Vasken A. Kouzouian, Pastor of Holy Trinity Armenian Church, states: “Our grandparents’ first-hand memories filled family gatherings with messages we were to embrace and pass on to the generations of tomorrow. They shared from the pain in their hearts about the darkest days surrounding the Armenian families and villages of 1915. The Armenian Genocide survivors are few and far between now. And so, we become their voice. And we retell their stories, our greater family stories. We have an opportunity to turn back time on March 18, and once again hear the words of a survivor. Yervant Alexanian quietly kept his memoirs as an Armenian soldier in the Ottoman Turkish Army. His handwritten diaries and notes tell his story in his voice. His daughter, Adrienne Alexanian, brings those notes and her father’s voice back to us in a very real way. I encourage everyone to join us on Sunday, March 18, at 12:30 p.m., to hear a voice from the generation of our grandparents. The more we hear their voice, the more we will be able to pass on their story, our greater family story.”
Adrienne G. Alexanian, Yervant’s daughter, spent years preparing her father’s manuscript for publication. She is an educator and a 2010 recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.