The primary purpose the Annapolis Greek Heritage Project is to preserve the story of Greek immigration to Annapolis, by documenting and providing historical and educational information to serve as a living testimony to Greek immigrants who settled in Annapolis in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries. These immigrants, who came to Annapolis with no wealth and few belongings, to seek a better life, escaping Turkish oppression, the Balkan Wars, World War 1, ethnic cleansing, and other turmoil. These early immigrants were primarily entrepreneurs who eventually opened restaurants, taverns, and candy stores; although many came with little skill, but with exceptional work ethic and desire to achieve. These establishments became focal points for commercial, civic, community and cultural discussions. They developed a community which provided a significant segment of of the heart of Annapolis’ commerce, as well as its cultural diversity, in the early 20th Century. This small group of original Greek immigrants created a community of first born Greek-Americans who have subsequently contributed to economic, cultural, political, and social successes of the Annapolis area in the 20th and 21st Centuries.
Our immediate objective will be focusing to create a professional website to provide articles about immigrants, their personal lives in their homeland, their descendant families, the Greek-American community and its social fabric, Greek businesses, sects within Greek community, and old Greek customs still being practiced.
Future objectives include gathering artifacts related to Greek immigration to Annapolis for public display, expanding the scope of the project to include travel, food, culture and other broadly appealing subjects, and possible expansion beyond the Annapolis area.
The Annapolis Greek Heritage Project d raise public awareness of the role that Greek immigrant community played in the social, economic political, and cultural development of Annapolis. Its goal of producing a first-class interactive and user-friendly website should benefit preserving of Annapolis’ Greek-American history. Oral and written stories, pictures, digitized old films, and contemporary oral history via videos will be produced for enjoyment and education of our children and adults.
The Annapolis Greek Heritage website is provided by Annapolis Greek Heritage, Ltd., which is a Maryland non-stock company and IRS section 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization. All revenues derived from this web-site are planned to be re-invested into advancement of our mission statement, or otherwise donated to related charities. Annapolis Greek Area Heritage, Ltd. has no employees, and its Directors and volunteers are not compensated.
Board of Directors:
- Joanne Siomporas Brew – Chair and Acting Executive Director
- Ted Siomporas – Secretary/Treasurer
- John Pantelides – Fundraising and Public Relations
Web-site development and management team:
- Priya Ramachandran – website development
- Oona Taper – videography
- Lana Adler – genealogical research
- Jennifer Shotto – private photo editor
- Allen Alexopulos (volunteer) – videos
- Diana Liakos (volunteer) – interviews
- Dr. Anastasia Samaras (volunteer) – community and culture sections principal writer
- Sophia Stern (volunteer) – website and Annapolis Greek Area Heritage, Ltd. administrator
- Over 50 Annapolis Greek-American community volunteers who prepared family history and community articles.