Remember WW I in Istanbul

The military cemetery in Tarabya in Istanbul – a well-maintenanced and amply planted space overseeing the Bosporus – has since its formation in 1916 (on the compound formerly used as the German ambassador’s summer home) been a graveyard for soldiers who have fallen in World War I, first only for the ones who died during the Battle of Gallipoli in 1915, with the majority of them working for the imperial navy on ships like the SMS Goeben and SMS Breslau. As the war went on it has become the permanent site for German soldiers from all over the Middle East.

 

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This year marks the 100th anniversary of the beginning of World War l, and on that occasion, the German culture- and press consultant Harald Schindler welcomed high school students from Gelsenkirchen in Germany and from Büyükçekmece in Istanbul, as well as teachers from both schools, the mayor of Büyükçekmece, and representatives of the Turkish ministry for culture for a commemoration ceremony arranged by the students, and held on the grounds of the cemetery in Tarabya.

The students presented some of the results of their historic research about the two fallen soldiers Fritz Hilgendorff and Ludwig Preußner, whose graves are located on that very graveyard, as part of their school’s peace project, and honored their legacy 100 years after they went to war, with the soldier’s relatives – family Johnson and family von Maltzahn – as special guests.

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