The Armenian presence within the geographical area of the Ottoman Empire is a very ancient one. In reality the area that eventually became the Ottoman Empire contained the lands of ancient Armenian royal dynasties, from antiquity to the Middle Ages. These regions are mostly included in present-day Turkey’s eastern provinces – and today’s Republic of Armenia – where a dense population of Armenians lived. For this reason the Ottoman government, for a long time, in its turn gave these areas the unofficial name of Ermenistan, used until at least the 18th century.
Since my ancestors are also from the old West-Armenia (Trabzond and Erzrum), I’d like to share some pictures of the Armenian communities of these old towns, before the Genocide has been perpetrated by the infamous nationalist Young Turk party.