ArmenianHouse.org - Armenian Literature, History, Religion
ArmenianHouse.org in ArmenianArmenianHouse.org in Russian
Clara Barton

AMERICA'S RELIEF EXPEDITION TO ASIA MINOR UNDER THE RED CROSS


Note from the administration of ArmenianHouse.org: the page numbering is preserved, so the book can be used for quoting. Also we did our best to keep the layout as close to the original as possible.


[page 59]

REPORT OF J. B. HUBBELL, M. D.
GENERAL FIELD AGENT IN CHARGE OF EXPEDITIONS IN THE INTERIOR OF ANATOLIA.

___________

To Miss CLARA BARTON, President:

In speaking of the relief work in Asia Minor, may I be allowed to begin at Constantinople, at which place, while waiting for the necessary official papers for our work, we were all busy selecting and purchasing relief supplies, camping outfit, cooking utensils, and making other preparations for interior travel; and also securing competent interpreters and dragomen. Although the Irade of the Sultan granting permission to enter Asia Minor had not yet been received, it naturally fell to me to follow the first shipment of supplies purchased and sent by steamer to the port of Alexandretta as the safest route, to be forwarded again by camels under guard to different places in the interior ; and with our own men to follow and attend to the work of distribution. Accordingly, accompanied by interpreter Mason, I left Constantinople on the 10th of March, touching at Smyrna, Latakea, Mersina and Tripoli, reaching Alexandretta on the 18th, and by the kind help of our Consular Agent, Mr. Daniel Walker, and Mr. John Falanga, began making up the caravans for shipment to Aintab, as a central point for the southern field. By the time the caravans were ready and horses for travel selected, Mr. Wistar and Mr. Wood, with dragomen, arrived by steamer from Constantinople. Rev. Dr. Fuller, president of the Aintab (American) College, had also just come through with friends from Aintab to take steamer, himself to return again immediately, and together we all set out under soldier escort the next morning. Alexandretta was in a state of fear while we were there, notwithstanding the fact that the war ships of England, France, Turkev, and the United States lay in her harbor. Kirk Khan, the first stopping place on our journey inland, was threatened with plunder and destruction on the night before our arrival there. At Killis we

[page 60] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

found the town in a state of fear from the recent massacres. Here, with Dr. Fuller we visited the wounded who were under the good care of a young physician just from the college at Aintab, but without medicine, surgical dressings and appliances. These with other needed things we arranged to send back to him from the supplies that had gone ahead.

Aintab, with its American School, College, Seminary and Hospital buildings standing out in relief and contrast from the native buildings, was a welcome reminder of home; and the greeting of the hundreds of pupils as they came hurrying down the road to welcome back their own loved President, became a welcome for the Red Cross. We were most cordially offered the hospitality of Dr. Fuller's house and home, but as we were still strangers in a strange land, it seemed best to place ourselves in a khan where we could have better opportunity to make an acquaintance with the people to obtain the varied information necessary to accomplish best results in the disposition of our relief. Here we remained long enough to learn the needs of the place and surrounding country, to obtain carefully prepared lists of those artisans needing tools and implements for their various trades and callings. Supplies were left, clothing, new goods for working up, thread, needles, thimbles, medicines, and surgical stores. Aintab is favored with its Mission Hospital; with its surgeon and physician, Dr. Shepard and Dr. Hamilton, and a strong American colony of missionary teachers, besides the Franciscan Brothers, who are doing excellent select work. The Father Superior was killed near Zeitoun. Supplies were selected and made up for Oorfa, Aintab, Marash and other points, while a quantity of supplies, by the kindness of Dr. Fuller, was left in storage in the college building to be forwarded as our inquiries should discover the need. To Oorfa, where the industrial work had been so successfully established by Miss Shattuck, we sent material and implements for working, needles, thread, thimbles, cotton and woolen goods for making up. To Marash and Zeitoun, ready-made goods in addition to new, with surgical appliances and medicines.

From Aintab, Mr. Wood and Mr. Wistar started by way of the most distressed points needing help eastward, and then north to Harpoot; and because of your telegram of the report of typhus and dysentery at Marash and Zeitoun, we started in that direction, with Rev. L. O. Lee, who was returning home. After facing rain, snow and mud for three days we came to Marash. Here we remained until our caravan of goods came on. Typhus, dysentery and small-pox were spreading as a result of the crowded state of the city ; Marash had been filled with refugees since the November massacres, notwithstanding a large part of its own dwelling houses had been burned and plundered. The surrounding country had also been pillaged, people killed and villages destroyed, and the frightened remnant of people

[page 61] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

had crowded in here for protection, and up to this time had feared to return. With insufficient drainage and warm weather coming on, typhus, dysentery and small-pox already in the prisons, an epidemic was becoming general. True, the preachers requested mothers not to bring children with small-pox to church, nevertheless the typhus and small-pox spread, and rendered medical supervision a necessity. By the efforts of Mrs. Lee and Mrs. Macallum, wives of the missionaries of the Marash station, a hospital had been established with plenty of patients, but they had no funds for physicians or medicines. Medicines were left and funds furnished for a native doctor educated in America (who himself had just recovered from typhus) and was placed in charge of the hospital and out-of-door service, and was doing efficient work before we left Marash. Arrangements were made with Rev. Mr. Macallum to have tools and implements made and distributed to artisans and villagers ; and we left with him to begin this work the sum which you had sent for our own use, 500 liras. By this time Dr. Ira Harris, whom you had called from Tripoli, Syria, with his assistants, arrived for the Zeitoun field. Dr. Harris had his well-filled medical chests and surgical supplies in a mule caravan, and being more needed at other places, we left immediately for Adioman via Besnia, passing through Bazzarjik and Kumaklejercle, a three days' mountain journey. Our officer kindly told us, when we stopped at a Kourdish village for the night, to "order what we want and not pay if we do not want to." But we made it clear to him, that while we are not extravagant in our wants, we always pay for what we take. It is customary in this country for villages to entertain soldiers free of charge. At Bazarjik when we inquired concerning the health of the place, an official said they had no sickness except a few cases of small-pox, and this was confined to children—that his little girl had it, and she was brought in as a proof.

Besnia was saved from pillage and massacre by the efforts of Pasha Youcab, Osman Zade, Mahund Bey, and several other Turkish Beys, but the surrounding villages were attacked and suffered more or less severely. Some of the women escaped and found protection in Besnia, where they were still living. We did some medical work here and left, in good hands, a moderate sum for emergencies. Our reception by the officials at Besnia, as indeed at every place we have been, large or small, was most cordial and friendly. With only an exception or two, no more considerate treatment could have been expected or asked from any people. Before reaching the city we had heard that there was a feudal war in progress ahead of us, and when the military commander learned that we were intending to go to Adioman, he interposed, saying he could take no responsibility in sending us there; that he had just sent a hundred soldiers out on that road to quell a riot; that it was dangerous, but he would give us a good officer and

[page 62] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

soldiers for another road to Malatia. This we accepted and four days more of mountain travel, via Paverly, Soorgoo, and Guzena, brought us to the fruit and garden city of Malatia, which formerly had a population of 45,000. It is reported that about 1,500 houses were plundered and 375 were burned, and some thousands of persons killed. The people of all classes were still in fear. A sum of money from friends in America had been received by the missionaries, but its distribution had been delayed several weeks through some formality in the post office, and was but just being made the day we arrived We left here a sum for special cases and typhus patients, and with a promise to return, pressed on to our objective point, two days' journey more across the Euphrates at Isli to Harpoot, when the limit of our time would be out for meeting the second expedition which arrived only two hours ahead of us. Here the people turned out en masse to welcome the Red Cross; the road was lined, the streets and windows filled, and house roofs covered, and all had words of welcome on their lips. We were told by the Rev. Dr. Wheeler, the founder of the Mission and American College of Central Turkey, that we were the second party of Americans, not missionaries, that they had seen in Harpoot in forty years. We were most cordially met by the mission people. Although they, too, had been plundered, and most of their buildings and their homes had gone in the flames, we were offered, most kindly, the shelter of the remaining roofs and seats at their table as long as we would stay. We felt at home again, though startled, too, when we stopped to think we were 8,000 miles away and fifteen days by horseback to the nearest steamer that might start us on a homeward trip or that could carry a letter for us to the outside world. We had been told from the first that Harpoot was suffering more than any other part of the interior, and here we prepared to begin systematic work; Mr. Wistar taking the Char-Sanjak with Peri as a center, the Harpoot plain, and later the Aghan villages. Mr. Wood took the Palou district with two hundred villages, and Silouan in the Vilayet of Diarbekir with one hundred and sixty villages, with the town of Palou and the city of Farkin as centers. While making these arrangements we received your telegram of May 1st: "Typhus and dysentery raging at Arabkir. Can you send doctors with medicines from Harpoot ? Please investigate." Upon inquiry we found reported one thousand sick and many dying. This naturally would be my field.

After telegraphing to the various centers for additional medical help without success, we found a native physician, educated in America, Dr. Hintlian, at Harpoot, who was ready to go. Miss Caroline Bush and Miss Seymour of the Mission, with unassumed bravery, volunteered to accompany the expedition. As only one could leave, the choice fell upon Miss Bush. When one reflects that this was a slight little body, never coming

[page 63] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

up to the majesty of a hundred pounds, with sensitive nature, delicate organization, educated and refined conditions of early life, fears might well be felt for the weight of the lot assumed ; but every day's contact convinced us that the springs were of the best of steel, tempered by the glowing fires of experience, thus teaching us how far mind may be superior to matter.

On our first night out, as is frequently the custom in this country, we slept in the stable with our horses—and smaller animals. On the second day in crossing the Euphrates at Gabin Madin, the big wooden scoop-shovel ferryboat struck a rock in the swift current mid-stream, and came very near capsizing with its load of luggage, horses and human beings. The boatmen lost their chance of making the opposite shore, and we were in the swift current fast making for the gorge and rapids below. I looked as unconcerned as I could at Miss Bush, only to see that she was as calm as if this was an every-day occurrence or that she had been from childhood accustomed to such experiences. We knew she had not, only she had lived long enough in the interior not to be frightened at anything that might happen. However, another rock was reached near the bluff and we unloaded. Each leading his horse and the pack animals following, we climbed up over the edge of a precipice, over loose stones, slippery earth and ragged rocks, back to the landing we should have made had we gone directly across. Our next day's travel was through a cold, pouring rain, into the ruined city of Arabkir, but notvvithstanding the rain, hundreds of people stood in the streets as we passed to make their '' salaams " and to say their word of welcome to those who had come to bring the gifts of an other land to the suffering, the sick and needy of their own. Passing through the rain, we arrived at the native pastor's house, which had been saved by a Turkish military officer and cleared of refugees and typhus patients for our installation.

Nearly the entire city of Arabkir was in ruins ; only heaps of stones where houses had been. Out of 1,800 homes but few remained ; the markets as well as the dwellings were destroyed, and the people, plundered and destitute, were crowded into the few remaining houses, down with the typhus. We were told that six hundred had already died of the disease, and the people's physician, the only one in that part of the country, was in prison. Later, we were told that the arrival of help changed the character of the disease the moment it was known that we had come. Miss Bush went with us directly into the sick-rooms, and the presence of a woman gave cheer and strength. A hundred patients were seen daily. After the first wants of the typhus patients had been met, the long neglected surgical cases were looked after, and many lives and limbs were saved. The medical and surgical efforts gave gratifying results, of which Dr. Hiutlian will make a special report from his daily record.

[page 64] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

Immediately upon our arrival, the Gregorian Church and school buildings which escaped destruction, were offered for our use as a hospital. These rooms were admirably adapted for this purpose, but by selecting and employing persons already in need of help as assistants and nurses, we found that we could better care for the sick in their own quarters than to attempt to remove them to a hospital, where the congregation of sick would only be increased. To give employment was the one thing needed for the well, therefore we made no hospitals but employed competent, healthy women in need, instructed and put them to care for sick families, also in need but of another kind. The piaster a woman earned for a day's work gave food for herself and for her own family, and gave the sick family the services necessary to save their lives. The necessary beds for the patients were furnished.

A sheep or a goat given where there was a helpless babe or mother would give food for both, and be a permanent property that would grow by the increase of its own young. A small sum for fowls would be a gift that would furnish more than its value in eggs for food for present use. It would prove a small investment that must multiply in kind and value as chicks were hatched. While medical work was going on other forms of relief were also in progress. A supply of tools had been ordered from Harpoot directly upon our arrival, for blacksmiths, carpenters, tinkers, masons, stone workers, etc. The blacksmiths were set to work making sickles for cutting grass and reaping grain, shovels, plows, and other implements for farmers. Others were put at making spinning-wheels for the destitute women, who with these could earn their own living; others made weaving looms. Out of the 1,200 hand looms formerly in the city it was said only forty remained. Arabkir was the chief manufacturing center for native cotton cloth, and if a man had a loom which would cost three medjidieh (about $2.50) he could earn his own family's living. Field and garden seeds were bought in quantity and distributed. For the villages which had no cattle we gave oxen for plowing the fields. Sometimes with the oxen, cows were given, with instructions that in this stress of need the cows should be made to work with the oxen, even while they were giving milk for the family. Thus they would secure a double service for one outlay. Melkon Miranshahian, the druggist, kindly offered his services, and we arranged with him to take up special cases and to continue to. care for them after we would no longer be able to remain on the field. Then, feeling that we might safely leave this work in the hands of Dr. Hintlian, we went to Egin to arrange for distribution in the Aghan villages, Miss Bush accompanying.

The inquiry will naturally be made as to how relief was received. The gratitude of the people was almost overwhelming at times. If you could

[ To face page 64 ]

MARASH.

[caption] MARASH.

 

A TURKISH VILLAGE.

[caption] A TURKISH VILLAGE.

[ To face page 65 ]

SINNAMOD, SUBURB OF HARPOOT.

[caption] SINNAMOD, SUBURB OF HARPOOT.

 

 

[page 65] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

only have heard the blessings that were poured out upon you, the Red Cross, and the good people everywhere who have aided, you would realize that deep as the need, so fervent and sincere have been the thankful prayers and blessings that the unfortunate people who survive the massacre could alone render to all who help them. To you and your name especially were they responsive. Of all this, I would say we often had most gratifying evidence and expression on the lonely roads, in the stricken homes, and through personal letters from many sources.

When we were some six miles out on the road to Egin, we met the leading men of the village of Shepik coming to town; they had heard that we were going away soon, and the villagers had sent this committee to Arabkir to express their gratitude for what they had received and for all that had been done for them. This was five or six weeks after we had made a distribution of seeds, and as we came in sight of their village we saw gardens green with onions, potatoes, beans, cucumbers, melons, squash, pumpkins, etc., from the seeds we had given. Here too, the women were in the fields cutting the grass and grain with the sickles which the blacksmiths had made from the iron and steel we had furnished. The men were plowing with the plows and oxen we had supplied and, notwithstanding they had been plundered of every movable thing and their houses burned or destroyed, there was an air of prosperity in the fields that banished thoughts of want or suffering. We rode on past the little room where the school was kept and every child rose to his feet and made a most profound, though youthful bow to our passing company.

Egin is an old, strangely beautiful city, inhabited by the descendants of the noble families of Mosul (NINEVEH) who fled to this mountain stronghold on the Euphrates during the Persian invasion, many years ago, and they are still a royal and gentle people. At Egin the officials declared it unsafe for us to go to the villages as we had proposed. Accordingly we made purchases in this market and sent them to the needy points. Egin had bought the Kourds off with 1,500 liras, and consequently it had remained up to the date of our arrival unharmed through all the destruction about it. We also left a sum of money with a responsible committee for eight unfortunate villages, and did what medical work we could in our short stay. We then returned to Harpoot.

On our road back, Miss Bush had with her a young girl whom we were taking to Harpoot for safety (we had frequent charges of this kind), and she wanted me to stop at her favorite beautiful village of Bervan, for a pleasant picture to carry back in memory to America. We had a long day's journey at best to reach our village, and had met with delays; four hours in the morning waiting for a zaptieh. Our muleteer left us at the ferry some twelve miles back, in order to stop over night at his own village;

[page 66] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

and the second zaptieh was two hours late, but having started we must keep on through the mountain pass, and it was ten o'clock at night when we reached the village. Our zaptieh took us to the house of the "Village-man" (each village is provided with such a personage whose duty it is to see that shelter is provided for travellers). We rode up together and the zaptieh pounded on the door. The dog on the roof barked viciously, then all the dogs in the village barked. A woman on another roof above this one raised herself and talked, then shouted down the chimney-hole (the roof is the sleeping place in warm weather), after a time she pointed with her hand and the zaptieh started off in the direction indicated ; the moon had gone down and it was too dark to see anything distinctly. He came to a small pile, poked it with his foot, punched it with his gun, kicked it. After a time a part of the pile raised itself in a sort of surprised astonishment, mystified, uncertain, complicated attitude—evidently looking at the "poker." Then the pile expressed itself emphatically, the zaptieh did the same more emphatically, each in turn louder and louder, all with necessary and unnecessary gesticulation. Then the pile got up and began on our servants for having the pack mules and animals on his roof. After these had been led off the house, he wanted to know what we came there for anyway, at that time of night, to wake him up when there were six other villages we could have gone to; why didn't we go to one of them? Then our zaptieh changed his tone and attitude and in the most polite, persuasive, pleading voice and manner, tried to explain that he himself was not to blame for all this trouble, he was under orders and had to come with these people ; he couldn't help doing his duty. But this made no impression, and we were told there was no place for us. None could be found at this time of night; besides there was no barley for the horses, and nothing was to be done unless it was to go on and try another village. Our zaptiah seemed to have exhausted his resources and said no more. Other villagers had come and were standing around the "village-man," who still insisted that he could do nothing. Miss Bush quietly suggested "Argentum." We got down from our horse, went around carelessly, and slipped a "cherek" (a five piaster piece) into his fingers. He took and felt of it, and then went away without a word. After about ten minutes he returned with a light, a door was opened close beside us, and we unloaded our animals, put them all in, took in the luggage, went in ourselves, got our supper, spread our blankets, drove away our audience of villagers, fastened the stable door and announced to ourselves that we were one hour into the '' next day," and went to sleep. We were off again the next morning before the sun was up. This is a sample incident of what happened in frequent variation during interior travel.

[page 67] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

At Harpoot we arranged for supplying tools and cattle to the remaining villages which we failed to reach from Egin. Here, too, we found Mr. Wistar busy supplying harvesting and threshing implements, and cattle for plowing in the Harpoot plain and villages. In this vilayet there are upwards of two hundred villages either plundered or wholly destroyed, and from these many persons of all classes came for medical or surgical help.

Preparations were made to work in Malatia, where, some weeks before, we had ordered supplies and medicines sent to be ready for our arrival, but owing to the unsettled conditions there, no such work could be done to advantage. The time for our return to Constantinople was drawing near and on the 27th of June we were ready to start for the Black Sea. We called to pay our respects to the Governor of Harpoot and found him as cordial as he had always been. Inquiries were made and explanations given, so that he might more thoroughly understand the character and purposes of the Red Cross. His Excellency remarked that it gave to those engaged in the work great opportunities to become acquainted with different countries, and that we must have found Turkey the most difficult of them all to work in. He regretted that he himself had been of so little assistance to our efforts, etc., but we took pleasure in saying that he had done at all times all that we had asked and ofttimes more. Speaking for those associated with our work I could safely say that all the recollections of our personal relations with the vali of Harpoot will remain with us as pleasant and satisfactory.

The principal food and the main crop of the interior is wheat, and this year's growth wherever we have been is reported to be unusually good. If the wheat can be distributed where the destitution will be this coming winter, many lives may be saved; if not, many must inevitabty be lost for want of food. When we left the Harpoot valley harvesting had well begun, and was even more briskly going on as we neared the Euphrates, which we crossed for the last time at Isli on the 29th of June. The usual Euphrates ferry-boat is twenty-four to thirty feet long, eight feet wide, and two feet high at one end and eight at the other where a rudder, or sweep, forty feet long is hung. An American frequently sees methods of work and management that lead him sometimes, when first traveling, to make suggestions. After seeing the ferrymen upon many occasions putting loaded wagons on the boat, lifting them by main force some two or three feet with much awkwardness over the edge of the craft, we ventured to suggest that two planks laid on the bank and end of the boat so as to roll the wagons in or out would save much trouble and time and extra help and labor. We were met with this unanswerable reply: "Who would pay for them?"

[page 68] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

To Malatia we carried money to the people from their relatives in America which had been intrusted to Dr. Barnum at Harpoot. We also left in the hands of a responsible committee a fund for artisans' tools, and a smaller sum for food and supplies in special needy cases. The state of prosperity and feeling of security in Malatia was not nearly so propitious as in Harpoot. We saw few people here, nor could we remain long enough to attempt the relief work that was probably more needed than in many other districts. The accompanying letter received since our return to the United States, from the Rev. Dr. Gates, president of the Harpoot American College, gives, as will be seen on reading, a most interesting account of the work done and the money distributed after our departure by himself and Miss Bush:

HARPOOT, TURKEY, Aug. 19, 1896.

MISS CLARA BARTON:
Dear Friend: Having recently received a telegram from Dr. Hubbell saying that the balance of funds left in our hands might be used as I suggested in a letter to him, that is, for Chemisligusek and Malatia regions, Miss Bush, Prof. Teuikejian and I, accompanied by Mrs. Harris, went to Malatia July 31st, and remained there two weeks. The time was most opportune. The Reform Commissioner, Marshall Shakir Pasha, had just arrived in Malatia and our English Vice Consul, Mr. Fontana, had gone on to meet him, so we were able to avail ourselves of their presence in our efforts to start business and set the people on their feet.

Malatia depends largely on trade with the Kourdish villages. It is the centre of trade for some 250 of these. The Christian population go to them for business. Some sow grain, others do carpenter work, shoemaking and the like. A very large proportion of the Christian population have their business in the villages. Since the events of last November all intercourse has been stopped because of the hostile attitude of these villagers towards Christians. Hence artisans and tradesmen were idle and in danger of losing all means of employment.

I at once applied myself to induce the government to insure protection to Christians in going to the villages and collecting their dues. The consul worked splendidly on this and other lines. The government issued a strong proclamation to the Kourdish Aghas, the local governor called them, and placed them under bonds to keep the peace, and before we left the artisans had begun to go out to the villages.

Then we made careful lists of the people according to their trades and occupations, and gave them aid to use in purchasing tools and starting themselves in work by which to earn their own living.

We found 1883 orphans and 630 widows. The widows we supplied with spinning wheels by which they can earn something, though not enough to

[page 69] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

support a family. Mrs. Harris has taken samples of embroideries for which she hopes to find a market in Europe. This will be a great help to women if successful.

Of houses there were 567 burned, and the people are now living in the gardens, but the Armenian Relief Committee in Constantinople has given . funds to aid in rebuilding, and soon houses will go up all over the city.

Artisans have been supplied with tools, and they can now go to the villages and use them, and to one village we gave twenty-three oxen with which to gather their harvest and sow for another year.

A better state of feeling has begun to be manifested between Turks and Christians. Eleven prisoners were released, and the people spoke with joy and gratitude of their improved condition. We have received several touching letters of thanks from them.

I hope and trust this visit will go far towards relieving the distress in that city, though some will need help this coming winter. There will be great need of bedding and clothing when cold weather sets in, not only in Malatia but in many other places. With sincere thanks for your aid,

I remain yours truly,
C. F. GATES.

The sun is extremely hot during the interior summer season, hence, when the moon was favorable we traveled by night, leaving the saddle long enough to sleep in the "Araba," (a sort of small, springless, covered wagon used where there are roads) so as to have the day to work in while our horses rested. When we could do so in our journey we left funds for specified purposes, but frequently the sufferers felt safer without such assistance and declined to receive it. At Sivas we gave a fund for farmers' tools. Here the grain crop was later than in the valleys further south. We also left here with the Rev. Messrs. Perry and Hubbard, a horse, in order to facilitate their relief work. From Malatia several families and individuals placed themselves under the protection of the Red Cross and its guards in order to go in safety to the coast. A portion of this road is infested with brigands and a strong guard is necessary, in fact it is needed throughout the whole region. The Government took particular care of us by giving us a brigand as a special guard through the dangerous part of the road, saying that we should be safer with him than with the regular military guard. A few weeks before a rich caravan was robbed on this road, and when we passed we had the interesting pleasure of taking tea and journeying for a while with the chief of these brigands who had two days before been enlisted in Government service. With the ample Government protection we have at all times had, we seldom felt concern for our personal safety, notwithstanding that in places where we visited there was

[page 70] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

often a great deal of anxiety and fear on the part of the people for their own safety and that of their friends, or their property if they had any.

Tokat and Amasia were on our homeward route—the latter place being the site of the ancient castle of Mithridates, King of Pontus.

At Samsoun we had two saddle-horses to dispose of, and our Consular Agent, Mr. Stephapopale, having a stable, kindly offered to sell them to the best profit for us, and to see that the proceeds were used in aiding the refugees who crowd to the coast in the hope of getting farther on, but only find themselves stranded and unable to return, becoming thereby veritable sufferers.

On the 16th of July we reached the Bosphorus, four months and six days from the time we started out from Constantinople for the interior, glad of the privilege and power we have enjoyed as messengers to carry some of the gifts that have been entrusted to your care by the people of the world, for the innocent, unfortunate sufferers of Anatolia.

Wherever we have met the Missionaries, Protestant or Catholic, we have found them devoting most, if not all, of their time to the work of relieving the suffering about them, regardless of sect or nationality ; but in all cases their fields of work have been greater than their strength or their means. With them we have worked always harmoniously and without consciousness of difference of place or creed ; and to them and to many others we are indebted for courtesies and for hospitalities that will always be remembered with gratitude.

The real work of the relief expedition was greatly aided by the hearty co-operation of every European and American resident with whom we came in contact. Each did all in his power for our aid. At Alexandretta, for every courtesy and assistance, we are indebted to our U. S. Consular agent, Mr. Daniel Walker, and likewise to his business agent, Mr. John Falanga, in the forwarding of our supplies and caravans to the interior.

Rev. Dr. Fuller, president of Central Turkey Armenian College, together with his brave, practical, accomplished wife, who gave us much information and arranged for us in the college buildings a warehouse and shipping station for goods and supplies. To the Franciscan brothers, also of Aintab, we are indebted for aid and courtesies. Here also, we had the good fortune to meet the English Vice Consul Fitzmaurice, whose recently acquired knowledge of the country and conditions, gained from his official travels in the distressed districts, was cordially given and most gratefully received.

At Marash we shall long remember with gratitude the brave people in the American and European missions, nearly all of whom lost property and friends in the general disturbance (massacre). Especially do we remember Rev. and Mrs. Macallum, Rev. and Mrs. L. O. Lee, Miss Hess and Miss Blakley. We are particularly indebted to the Italian Consul just

[page 71] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

from Zeitoun and making a temporary stop in Marash, for courtesies and information, and likewise to the Catholic Archbishop Monsignor Avadian Curkian and the Franciscan Brothers of Marash, each and all for courtesies on the lines of our work. Many others here also we remember with gratitude, but space forbids our attempting to name all. At Bazarjik, Ahemet Zade Mahomet Bey, and at Malatia, to Aziz Zada Mustafa Aga, to each for great courtesies and hospitalities.

Harpoot American Mission became our home in every sense of the American word, while we were in Central Turkey, notwithstanding the fact that nearly all its property and buildings had been lost by plunder and fire.

Rev. C. F. Gates, D. D., President of the American Mission College, a genial scholar and practical business man, possessing a wide knowledge of the country, the people and conditions, made his counsels of greatest service as so large a part of our work was performed in this section. He was our banker and advisor. Rev. Dr. H. A. and Mrs. Barnum's home was ours every day that we were there.

Miss C. E. Bush, earnest, experienced, cultivated and refined, who joined our expedition and remained through the Arabkir typhus epidemic, and later went with us to Egin, we shall ever remember with gratitude for her help and cheer among the disconsolate sick and suffering.

The English Vice Consul, R. A. Fontana, proved an untiring friend, genial and ready at all times to assist officially and personally.

To the Franciscan Brothers we are indebted for hospitalities. To Dr. H. Hintlian, whose successful work among the sick, both at Arabkir and at Harpoot, made his service felt, so are we grateful.

In Arabkir we are indebted to Bodville Bedrose, whose home was ours while we remained in our work there; no less for his ever cheerful and ready help in every emergency or delicate undertaking. The Protestant, Gregorian, Catholic and Turkish friends, too many to name, we remember with friendship and gratitude for their many deeds of kindness.

At Egin we will ever remember the generous hospitality during our, short stay with the families of 'Nicoghos Agha Jangochyan and Alexander Effendi Kasabyan, noblemen, who by their energy and liberality saved the city and people from destruction, while the country around about was being plundered and burned, and who gave us great assistance in furnishing tools and implements to this section of the country.*

Rev. and Mrs. Perry, Rev. A. B. and Mrs. Hubbard, and Messrs. Brewer, of Sivas, we hold in grateful remembrance for hospitalities and

_____________________________________________________________________
*NOTE. Since we left Egin we learn that these gentlemen with nearly two thousand others have been killed. These families were the center of a large community, among the most charming and cultivated people we were privileged to meet during our absence from home.

[page 72] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

their cheerful acceptance of the task imposed in the distribution of additional agricultural tools and implements for this district.

To Dr. Milo A. Jewett, our Consul, and to Major Bullman, the English Consul, we are indebted for courtesies and hospitalities, and to our Consular Agent at Samsoun for kind relief services in the furtherance of our work.

To the Turkish officials everywhere we are grateful for their careful supervision of our personal safety, and for the general personal freedom allowed ourselves wherever we worked. To the officers and guards who always accompanied us in our journeys through cold and heat, on the road by night or day, over desolate plain or mountain trail, for bringing us

RED CROSS EXPEDITIONS PASSING THROUGH THE VALLEY

[caption] RED CROSS EXPEDITIONS PASSING THROUGH THE VALLEY
OF CATCH BEARD.

safely through from sea to sea without a scratch or harm of any kind, for all this we are most assuredly grateful, and oft recall the cheerful vigilant service and special courtesies we enjoyed at their hands which could only be prompted by the most friendly feelings and consideration.

But we do not forget, dear Miss Barton, that the success of this expedition is due to your careful and constant oversight and direction of all our movements, from the seat of government at Constantinople, from first to last, and to the conviction which you had impressed upon the Sublime Porte of ypur own and your officers' honesty, integrity and singleness of purpose. Hence for your statesmanship and generalship and constant oversight, we would express our warmest gratitude.

[ To face page 72 ]

MISS CAROLINE E. BUSH.

[caption] MISS CAROLINE E. BUSH.

FIRST EXPEDITION EMBARKING ON FERRYBOAT, EUPHRATES RIVER.

[caption] FIRST EXPEDITION EMBARKING ON FERRYBOAT, EUPHRATES RIVER.

[ To face page 73 ]

REV. H. N. HARNUM, D. D.

[caption] REV. H. N. HARNUM, D. D.

REV. C. F. GATES, D. D.

[caption] REV. C. F. GATES, D. D.

[page 73] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

We are grateful for the gratitude of the people we tried to relieve. It was universal and sincere. The kindness with which we were everywhere welcomed, and the assistance so cordially rendered by all the noble men and women with whom it has been my good fortune to become personally acquainted. Surrounded as they were with desolation, dangers and misery, they will be remembered for their worth and devotion to duty.

J. B. HUBBELL.

Constantinople, August 1, 1896.

_______________

SUB-REPORT OF DR. HINTLIAN.

___________

To J. B. HUBBELL, M. D., GENERAL FIELD AGENT:
In reply to your request for a report of the medical work in connection with the relief of Arabkir and Harpoot, I hand a list of the patients treated and the following summary:

Typhus in Arabkir, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Typhus in Amberga (suburb), . . . . . . . . . . . .
Cases of malarial fever, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
General diseases, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Eye cases, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Surgical cases, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Skin diseases, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Typhus cases in Todem . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Typhus cases and general diseases in Harpoot,
Partial paralysis, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

966
29
41
205
178
25
65
50
63
8
____
1,611

Deaths from typhus,
Death from chronic pleurisy,
9
1
____
10

Nine deaths out of nine hundred cases gives less than one per cent. of mortality among the typhus patients under our care in Arabkir, where before we began our treatment the mortality had been twenty-six per cent.

Our treatment of the typhus cases was simple as you know. First, to ventilate the room; second, to furnish a bed or beds where there were none and this was a frequent symptom; third, when the entire family was down or when the sick were without proper attention, to furnish a person to take the cases until recovery; and fourth, to see that food of a proper kind was on hand, and our prescription cards frequently read: "Bed, one bushel of wheat, or----piasters for broth,----drops of hydrochloric acid, for drink.

[page 74] REPORT OF DR. HUBBELL.

During our medical work in Arabkir from May 13 to June 23, we kept a record of cases treated, together with the treatment used. In this time we either treated or gave treatment to 1561 patients. Of these 966 were typhus cases out of which we lost nine by death. From the best sources of information we could reach we learned that about 500 had died of this disease before we arrived. The remaining 586 cases were of general disease, surgical, chronic, ordinary fever, &c. Out of this number we lost one case by death. In our medical work here we met with quite a number of cases, as elsewhere, of semi-paralysis brought on by fright or fear. These yielded under mild treatment, and before we came away nearly all these cases gave promise for a complete recovery in a short time.

Most of the surgical cases were gunshot or other wounds that had been without treatment since last November. The conditions were often deplorable but they responded marvelously to our treatment.

A peculiar disease of the skin had been frequently observed. The symptoms were excessive nervous itching, sometimes with eruptions. It seemed to be the result of excessive fear. These cases usually required, in addition to the treatment of similar skin diseases, some nerve tonic in order to obtain most satisfactory results.

The typhus in this country is an eruptive fever, induced by unhygienic conditions, as living in over-crowded rooms without ventilation, and using impure water. It spreads by contagion; while it proves fatal in a large degree when neglected, we have found it to yield readily to simple treatment and good nursing combined with fresh air. My medication has been usually but little more than acid drinks.

I have not attempted to make a detailed report nor to enumerate the most distressing condition of these suffering people, but merely to give results of my work.

Before leaving the city of Arabkir the druggist, Melkon Miranshahian, who was the first ready to assist, joined in our work during the last days there, and made himself familiar with the surgical and other cases and with our methods of treatment, for the purpose of continuing the work of relief himself as a Red Cross worker as long as his services might be needed after we left.

You know better than I can repeat it the good work done in this city and villages—no less among the well than among the sick—and as you also know, among every race and sect of people needing help. But their unbounded' gratitude, their blessings on you and Miss Barton, the Red Cross, and the American people, spoken in strange tongues, it is my privilege to know better than you, and I too, am deeply grateful for the privilege and the honor of working with the Red Cross, and shall always remain

Yours most truly,
HAGOP HINTLIAN.

Harpoot, August 20, 1896.


Contents  |  Pages 1, 2  |  Executive Report by Miss Clara Barton
Financial Report by George H. Pullman  |  Financial Balance Sheet  |  Map Of Asia Minor
Pages 57, 58  |  1st Expedition Report  |  2nd Expedition Report  |  3rd Expediton Report
4th Expedition Report  |  Telegrams  |  Red Cross Principles  |  In Memoriam
Contents (as in the book)  |  Illustrations

Acknowledgements:

Source: Clara Barton. America's relief expedition to Asia Minor under the Red Cross. Journal Publishing Company, Meriden, Conn. 1896.

Provided by: Sona Tumanyan
Scanned by: Nerses Zurabyan
OCR: Irina Minasyan

See also:
Design & Content © Anna & Karen Vrtanesyan, unless otherwise stated.  Legal Notice