UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN UNVEILS ARCHIVE OF HUNCHAKIAN LEADER HAMPARZOUM ARZOUMANIAN (Pressemitteilung) sity-of-michigan-unveils-archive-of-hunchaki-r9265 49.htm
Nov 20 2008

Armenian Studies Program and Special collections of the University
of Michigan unveiled the archive of Hamparzoum Arzoumanian, a leader
of the Hunchakian Party from 1891 to 1909.

ANN ARBOR, MI -- At a special event organized on October 31, the
The Arzoumanian Archive, consisting of some 1200 pages of party
related and personal correspondence, Hunchakian Center circulars
and related materials, mostly in Armenian, had been donated to the
University of Michigan by the granddaughter of the Hunchakian leader,
Mrs. Marguerite Harms, and University of Michigan Unveils Archive of
Hunchakian Leader Hamparzoum Arzoumanian the Arzoumanian family, some
time ago. The archive was organized and documents classified recently.

Hamparzoum Arzoumanian was born in historic Gantzak; he started his
political activities in Tabriz, Iran, as a field worker for the party
and continued as organizer, propagandist and ideologue in Russia,
Europe, and the United States until his death in New York in 1909,
where his life ended at age 43 as a factory worker. His archive
spreads light on a variety of issues, including the battles within the
Hunchakian Party, the organization of chapters in places like Baku,
Novorossisk and cities in the US.

Throughout his life he remained a staunch believer in socialism and
its relevance to the Armenian struggle for liberation. Throughout
his career Arzoumanian had the full support of his wife Sona. More
than 60 faculty members, students, administrators and members of the
family participated in the presentation of the archives. Fifteen
grandchildren and their offspring had traveled to Ann Arbor from
California, Pennsylvania and other states to attend the event and
learn about theArzoumanians.

The program was initiated by Prof. Gerard Libaridian, Alex Manoogian
Chair in Modern Armenian History and Director of the Armenian
Studies Program, giving an overview of the history of the Arzoumanian
Archives. It was followed by remarks from Margaret McKinley, Director
of Development (The Value of Special Collections and Archives) and
Peggy Daub, Director of Special Collections Library (The Arzoumanian
Archive and the Special Collections). Dr. Nora Nercessian (Consultant
on the Arzoumanian Archive) gave an eloquent presentation titled 'The
Contents of the Arzoumanian Archive' and Prof. Libaridian evaluated the
Archive in the context of history 'The Significance of the Arzoumanian
Archive for modern Armenian History'. The event was concluded with
a reception and an exhibit of some samples of the archival material.

The Arzoumanian Archive is currently being digitized and
placed on the website of the University Special Collections
gradually. Information regarding the Arzoumanian papers
and the documents themselves can be accessed on the web
( c=sclead&idno=umich
..) or through the University Special Collections (History) and
Armenian Studies Program websites; the archive is also open to
researchers who wish to access them at the Special Collections.

'One reason we wanted to organize this event and present the
Arzoumanian Archive is to encourage others to preserve family papers
and prod organizations to open their archives to researchers,' stated
Prof. Libaridian. 'The Armenian Studies Program and the Special
Collections at the University of Michigan are ready to assist in
achieving these goals, including receiving papers, organizing them
and making them available to researchers in a safe and professional
environment.' The presentation of the Hampartzoum Arzoumanian Archives
is a significant step forward towards the efforts exerted since the
independence of the Republic of Armenia in collecting the dispersed
archives of the Hunchakian party. It is unfortunate that a lot has
been lost due to persecutions and wars, specially the Lebanese civil
war of 1975-1990. However, every attempt is being made to collect and
recover as much as possible and every step in that direction is truly
appreciated. In this context, Mrs. Marguerite Harms and the Armenian
Studies Program, under the directorship of Prof. Gerard Libaridian
have extended an invaluable help. Their efforts are truly commendable
and their services highly appreciated.