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    Grade 6 Field Trip to the Balkan Wars Museum of Thessaloniki in Gefyra

    22 September 2017 09:11

    Grade 6 Host Country Studies Trip to the Balkan Wars Museum of Thessaloniki in Gefyra

    Tuesday, September 19, 2017

     

    The Balkan Wars Museum is located in the village of Gefyra and housed in the country villa where the Greek Crown Prince Constantine negotiated the surrender of Thessaloniki by the Ottomans in October 1912.

    The museum occupies the two-story villa, built by the Modiano family and known as Villa Topsin, in 1906. It is furnished with authentic furniture, used by the Modiano family and the Greek Army negotiators in 1912. The bedroom, in particular, Crown Prince Constantine used the three nights before Thessaloniki’s surrender, is exactly as it was, back in 1912.

    The exhibits consist of photographs and lithographs of the Balkan Wars of 1912-13. Of particular interest are four paintings by Kenan Messare, son of the Ottoman Commander Hasan Tahsin Pasha who surrendered the city to the Greeks.

    Our students were especially interested in the military decorations awarded by the Greek, Turkish, and Bulgarian armies, the medals, the most important of which is an extremely rare Bulgarian medal depicting the heads of the four kings of the Balkan states, and the exhibited army uniforms.

    Amalia Spiliakou, Host Country Studies Coordinator

    The Grade 6 students worked in small groups and used their own mobile digital devices (smart phones and tablets) to craft digital stories about the liberation of Thessaloniki, 26 October 1912. They became acquainted with the history, the people serving in the army and singing the treaty as well as with the daily life during the Balkan Wars. During the museum visit, the students took photographs, recorded audio and video, watched a documentary, read and took notes to collect information and develop narrations for their digital stories. They showed great enthusiasm and curiosity in the content of the exhibitions.

    Zoi Tsiviltidou, PhD Student
    School of Museum Studies, University of Leicester