C.W. Blegen 1919 Diary 10 Jan. – 17 May 1919
[Transcribed by Jack L. Davis, July-August 2007]
Friday Jan 10 1919
This afternoon I left for Kavalla – or rather should to leave with ARC party of 3 besides myself. But when we got down to Piraeus we found that the boat would • till tomorrow. So we left our baggage aborad and returned to Athens where I had a good dinner and a comfortable night’s sleep.
Today I had a letter from mother dated Nov. 9th. Also from Th of Chris Day dated Thurs Dec 27th.
Saturday Jan 11
This afternoon I set off for Kavalla again. This time the boat actually left at 4 P.M. and after 1 ½ hrs. waiting at the harbor mouth for the control we finally put to sea. The ship is the Elda formerly of the Achaean S.S. Co. and is newly painted and seems very clean. We are found for Kastro in Lemnos, then Thasos, then Kavalla. In the party are Mrs. Edwards, Mrs. Shinas and Miss Elimasi. The two latter are Greek ladies enlisted by Maj. Barnes to help in ARC work at Kavalla and in E Macedonia.
Sunday Jan 12th
Quiet uneventful day. Arr. Kastro (Lemnos) 4 P.M. Went shore and strolled through Turkish quarter. The steamer lay up here for the night. The intention seems to be to go on in the morning.
Monday Jan. 13th
Beautiful weather. We left Kastro at 6 AM. Went round west side of Thasos and arr. at port of Thasos on E. side at 1:00 P.M. Left again at 2:00 and arr. Kavalla at 4 P.M. We are all lodged at Steele’s house, the Melachrine house full, but all had dinner together. Maj. Oakley arrived about 1 hr. before we did. At dinner Maj. Oakley made a little speech explaining reorganization of work of Grk Commission into zones.
Tuesday Jan 14th
Greek New Year’s Day.
I spent most of morning at our bread line (at warehouse on the hill). Ca. 4000 people got double ration of bread.
This afternoon Maj. Oakley gave me a letter of instruction. I am to proceed to Western Macedonia and investigate conditions in the larger towns and make a report on the needs for Red Cross activity. In particular he wants to know what hospitals there are and what facilities they have. Also whether there are any free dispensaries and what they have. Also what accommodations there are to supply relief. In addition what orphan asylums exist and how they are operating. Also is there a large refugee population and how it is getting along ?
I am to start tomorrow for Serres.
Wednesday Jan. 15
Went from Kavalla to Drama this morning with Miller and Taylor. They left after lunch for Pangaeum. My train goes at 9:55 P.M. I am waiting at station. Met Gibson here, who has come with his car of supplies. Dewlinger and Strait are also said to have come back and have both gone to Kavalla today.
Dewlinger also brought with him a car of supplies so at least there is a scond car here unlocked. I went into it and noted that it contained chiefly cases of clothing with some beds and mattresses. After dinner in the town I went back to the station and found that the RTO had put both cards named above onto the train for Serres tonight in response to a wire from the RTO at Serres. I went over to the hospital where Gibson is staying and told him. He was considerably exercised to hear that his car was being shipped away from him adn rushed off at once to the RTO where after some argument he finally demanded that his car should be left on the sidiing at Drama. The RTO agred and had the car detached from the train but he left the other one on. So I climbed into it and stretched out on a mattress which had been laid across a spring and • a bed and had a comfortable night except for cold feet. The train left at 9.55 and got in to Serres at 1.00 A.M. but I stayined on my mattress till 9.00.
Thursday Jan 16
I walked up from the Serres station to the hotel Parthenon where I found Seager and Adams getting ready for breakfast. They make their own coffee in a tin coffee pot on an oil stove adn the old lady fries their bacon. It was a very respectable breakfast. The two rooms are far more comfortable than they were last December when I was here before. There is a good oil lamp now beside the two stoves. After breakfast Adams and I went down to the station in the Fiat camionette (which the Greek Gov’mt has detached to the service of the ARC at Serres and hauled up most of the miscellaneous supplies from my car. The British also sent up one lorry-load. The British traffic manager here is 2nd Lieut. Andrews. The RTO is 2nd Lieut. ?Icammelt. Both have been very helpful to Seager and Adams. In the afternoon I went to the mosque and saw the soup kitchen in operation. Everything is running smoothly here. I also went out to see the house which the nomarch is having put into shape for us. Some of the walls are being plastered and there is not a pane of glass but the • is almost all made and carpenters are busy.
Friday Jan 17
I went to the nomarch and asked for lists of those who need help (food and clothing) in the surrounding villages. He promised a list of numbers at once and by name within a few days. This morning Gibson’s car arrived with 120 bags of flour. Adams and I spent the morning geting it up to the warehouse. I was wanting to see the city engineer about the state of the house and time of completion but he is out of town. The nomarch’s list shows 4269 people in 15 villages in need of help.
Saturday Jan 18
I sent a telegram to Maj. Oakley stating that house would be ready in a week. I am to be taken to Demir Hissar in the comionette but just now there is a great shortage of gasoline. Adams has telegraphyed to Greek supply officer in Salonica asking for a new supply. Went to Adams to nomarch to secure new warehouse. There is a large fine one belonging to the Standard Commercial Trading Corporation which I think we can get.
Sunday Jan 19
Some gasoline came today – not as a result of Adam’s telegram yesterday but independently. I hoped to get off to Demir Hissar tomorrow but Miss Dragoumis of the Greek Red Cross asked for the • for tomorrow morning to carry a couple of loads of clothing from their workroom. So I plan to go tomorrow. Seager says he will go with me to Demir Hissar.
Monday Jan 20
Cold and rainy. St. John’s Day. Lt. Cobb arrived this morning from Xanthi with his car and nurse Kowloger with him. He told Seager he was ordered to take over the station at Serres but he later told me he was ordered to take charge of the work in the villages round about. I gave him the nomarch’s list of villages and needy in each. (The list of names hasn’t come yet.) This work would have to be done with a large motor truck, distributing from the truck in two or three villages each day. Seager considers he has been relieved by Cobb and plans to leave at once. He will accompany me to Demir Hissar and thence to Salonica.
Tuesday Jan 21
This morning at 9.30 Seager and I left in the camionette for Demir Hissar. It was a dark unpromising day adn we soon found that the road was very bad. We do stuck several times in the mud and finally about noon when we had gone only half the way we got badly bogged. It took nearly an hour to get out with the help of 10 • soliders working on the road nearby. We therefore decided to send the car home and go on in a cart which a Greek said he would send to us. Before we had loaded our goods into the cart a French post camion came along bound for Sofia via Demir Hissar. The messenger (who had met Seager on a boat a month ago) invited us to go along and we accepted. The Frenchcar had much more power than ours and also three men who meant to get through. So though we got deply mired once and had to have the help of twenty men for half an hour we finally got through to hard road. We left three other camions stuck in that same mire. There were some gangs of prisoners to judge from their language. Our French messenger got rather excited at one time when he thought they were soldiers and drew his revolver on them. They got pretty muddy but finally pushed us out. We reached Demir Hissar at 2.30 P.M. and went ot the office of the Mr. A. Papadatos. Who was very friendly and gave all the information he could (of p. ) about conditions at Demir Hissar and in the surrounding villages. There seem to be 7 cases of typhus here now. (and deaths a few days ago) There is no railway station of Demir Hissar at present open. We foudn we were obliged to go on to Vitraia across the Sturma or 12 kilom from Demir Hissar. The prefect gave us his Fiat camion for the trip. At Vitrina we found a large British, French and Italian encampment the railway apparently being in the hands of the British. They had been repairing the big bridge across the Struma which is now ready and open for busines. Three spans are of steel and four of wood – we expected to sit around till 3.30 A.M. and then leave for Salonica by the Constant. Sal. post just inaugurated but were informed that train would not take passengers. We were then advised to spend the night at a British Rest Camp high up on the hill in the east side of the Struma and take another train tomorrow at 7.35 A.M. We accepted the advice. Were cordially received and entertained at the Rest Camp by Maj. Faith and Lt. Chambers who gave us tea and dinner and a bed. There is a fine hot spring here which supplies an interesting Turkish bath which has been well utlized by the British.
Wednesday Jan 22
We were called at 6 and had a good breakfast. went down in a • to Vitrina station. The railway train left at 7.30 consisting of nothing but freight cars and one 3rd class coach. We were in a compartment in the latter with a British • man and a British sergeant, an Italian Lt. and 3 Greek soliders. Long tiresome ride to Salonia though it was interesting to ride around south end of Lake Doiran. Arrived Salonica at 3.15 P.M. at JSC station. No cabs. We got a heavy wagon, piled our bags on it and set on rear end with our legs dangling while the driver drove at a sharp trot or gallop over the rough cobblestone pavements. It was impsosible to make him go slowly. We were finally rescued from our misery by the Serbian ARC car which happened to pass. Capt. Franz of the Serbian ARC gave us a room at 121 Queen Olga St. We were very tired and went early to bed.
Thursday Jan 23.
Cold rain. I have a bad cold. I went to Consulate this morning and got a telegram from Maj. Black “Supplies not yet in Salonica advise when you will be there again. Black.” I went to RR station to inquire about train for Vodina and Florina. They say a station on the line has been washed out and a bridge is down and that there will be no traffic for 10 days or two weeks. So I decided to go back to Athens with Seager tonight – train leaving at 8 P.M.
Friday Jan 24
This morning we went to Governor’s office and from there were sent to govmnt transportation office where we obtained free tickets for Piraeus in SS Syira and were instructed to be aboard at 10 AM tomorrow. In the afternoon we stayed in our room. I read a novel. Seager is very much disgusted with Salonica and very gloomy. He played solitaire most of afternoon.
Saturday Jan 25
This morning we got a cab and carted our baggage downtown again. We finally got aboard the “Syria” at 10.30 A.M. It is crowded with Grk soldiers going home on leave. There are also numerous Grk officers including three generals. I had a short talk with Gen Paraskevopoulos. On board we found Lt Bedell of the ARC bound for Athens also Henderson of the YMCA. Also Manson the architect. We left at 11.30 A.M. (=2 1/2 hrs. early). Heavy winds make a rather rough passage till we got in lee of island at 10.00 P.M. Only about 5 people turned up for dinner and most of them were unhappy. Practically the whole crowd was prostrate. I never saw such havoc before. The • wasn’t particular violent but rather choppy.
Sunday Jan 26
We made Chalcis this morning at 6.30. After an hour here we proceded leisurely (the Syria is a slow boat) to Piraeus and arrived at 5 P.M. Passing Sounion I saw a crowd at the temple, which I thought to be A.R.C. people. As we approached to Piraeus an American submarine ? and passed us, confirming my guess. Indescribable confusion in landing. We finally pushed off and got ashore and with our luggage went by electric train to Athens.
I arrived safely at the school and found the whole crowd there — all except Maj. Oakley. Everybody well save the Col. who is slightly indisposed.
Monday Jan 27
Stormy rainy morning.
I wrote a letter to mother. Lunch with Seager at Grande Bretagne. In afternoon Seager came up and we looked over the water colors of vases from Korakou. Seager stayed to dinner.
Tuesday Jan 28
In the morning Seager came up again and we looked at potsherds and garden. I lunch with him and BHH at Grande Bretagne.
I have begun to assist BHH in Home Service Dept. of A.R.C.
Seager came up in P.M. and we went over mss. from 5-7 P.M.
Wednesday Jan 29
Seager lunched with me and BHH at International. The majors went out to drinks so BHH and I had a little dinner party: Seager, Wace, Omerud, Dewing, and Barnes also present.
Thursday Jan 30
George’s quarrel with the Dinsmoors is apparently serious. He has announced to us that he is leaving our service at 10 A.M. Sunday. Tea at Mrs. Dinsmoor’s.
Friday Jan 31
After lunch BHH and I drove round to ?Kampani and looked at a couple of vases Seager and I saw last Wednesday. They are very good but shockingly expensive. Tonight I played bridge with Majs. Weld and Walker and Dewing. First time I ever played for stakes.
Sat Feb 1st
Had a hair cut.
Have typed out my “Leaflet” • and article on Corinth in prehistoric times against Leaf’s views. Did this evenings. Have been working every other day in Home Service Department but not at very regular hours.
Sun Feb 2nd
Stormy and rainy. I typed all day — all ten pages of my magnum opus.
George left us this morning at 10.
Mon Feb 3rd
George came in this morning and I payed him off. He has paid the 1919 telephone bill for me (200 dr.) and gave me a receipt. I bought a small marble dish today for 12.50 dr. prehistoric from Cyclades. More bridge tonight.
Tuesday Feb 4th
Bought an embroidered pillow today from Skyros. Typical geometric border but in center with cross stitch ships.
Tonight we had a small dinner for Mr and Mrs and Miss Delta and for Maj. Barnes who expects to leave tomorrow.
Wednesday Feb 5th
Maj. Barnes did not get off today. No boat. I bought a fine Magri rug from Theodore but at a very high price.
Bridge again tonight. I haven’t lost yet but would prefer it since we are playing for stakes.
A new butler is in sight. A Cretan named John has applied for the job. Has worked in ? Is married and would bring his wife too as maid.
Thursday Feb 6th
Nothing but Home Service Dept.
Letter from Aunt Augusta
Maj Barnes departed today.
We agreed to take on the new butler and his wife beginning Saturday.
Friday Feb 7th
Maj. Oakley returned today from Kavalla for a conference with the Commission. He goes back tomorrow and asks me to go with him. I agreed.
Saturday Feb 8th
Packed this morning and after lunch left for Piraeus. The new butler arrived at the School at noon.
Maj. Oakley and I are now aboard the SS. Amphitrite. Hospital ship now — formerly King George’s yacht.
Maj Oakley wishes me to take charge of organizing village relief in district round about Drama.
Aboard the steamer there is we found the International Commission proceding to Eastern Macedonia to investigate Bulgarian atrocities and damages caused to E. Macedonia.
Prof. Vasiliou of Univ of Athens is head of the Commission and there is a Frenchman and a •. An Englishman and a Belgian representative are also expected to join the others at Drama or Kavalla. There • thirty or forty Greek judges who are to take • in the villages • before the Commission. The • party of the Commissioner from his boat • two automobiles
The Commission kindly allowed Maj. Oakley and me to dine with them at their table — a good meal.
Very stormy and sleety night. The captain decided to postpone our departure until tomorrow morning.
Sunday Feb 9
Woke up this morning and found the ship still tied up to the quay at 8.30 however we began to depart and by 9.- we were sailing out of the harbor. A very cold and cloudy day with occasional drizzles. We rounded Sunium passed close by the north end of Makrynisi and then headed for the channel Doro between Euboia and Andros. We passed through towards evening and then laid our course for the east side of Skyros. I stayed up till I saw the Skyros light ca. 8.45 P.M.
Monday Feb 10th
We ran into a violent gale last night shortly after midnight which raised a heavy sea. The Amphitrite is a good little boat and plowed along steadily, however, pitching a good deal but regularly. It looked rather stormy when I got up on deck — very cold out, flurries of snow with a dark sky and great seas.
Almost all passengers were laid low and some seemed to be suffering very much. The French representative in the Int Commission in particular was in agony. He moaned and groaned and shouted “Mon dieu, mon dieu, mon dieu” and help, help, at the top of his voice. Finally about 1 PM we got somewhat in lee of Thasos and into calmer water. The weather cleared a bit also and Thasos stood out beautifully covered with snow. We reached Kavalla at 5 PM. I went to Steele’s house whee I had dinner and got a room. In the evening there was a party at the ARC house (The Alsten House). There were almost no ARC people. 2 officers from a Subchaser and 3 tobacco men. A cheerful evening with dancing and refreshments.
Tuesday Feb 11th
A cold clear morning. I got up at 7 and had breakfast with ?cott and then went down with my baggage to catch a British army lorry for Drama. Maj. Oakley, Maj. Walker, and Gilmore also went. We got away ca. 9.30.
The road is very bad in several places and we got blocked once by a Greek truck stuck ahead of us. We also had engine trouble. Finally got to Drama Station about 2 PM. We had a light lunch at the Canteen.
Later went into town and saw the Gov. Gotsis and laid before him certain request — for a warehouse, workroom, and dispensary and pharmacy. He in the Nomarch and put it up to the latter (Ali Bey X — a Cretan Turk) who showed us a couple of buildings available — one a poor hotel and one a partly dilapidated house. We were not overly pleased with either.
Dinner in evening at the rest. Thessaloniki. We were guest of the 7 or 8 judges of the Intern Comm who arrived this afternoon.
We have 3 small but clean rooms at Hotel Volo but they are reserved for the Intnat Comm and we shall have to clear out in a few days when they come.
I met Mrs. Politarchi who apparently runs distribution of relief clothing here at Drama and its neighboring villages.
Webnesday Feb 12th
This morning the Nomarch shows us another house which is much more satisfactory. Now occupied by public Ταμείον but they will be turned out. We agreed to take the house.
In the afternoon Maj. Oakley left for Kavalla. Walker and I stay to rush preparation of house and other building for other purposes. The personnel will come on Saturday.
We have asked for two soldiers to be attached to us — one is interpreter for Walker. I began to look into • bakeries for our bread — visited two or three.
In the evening Walker and I were taken to dinner by the Governor Mr. Gatsis. Besides ourselves there were present the Nomarch Ali Bey Nadib Zade, the mayor of Drama, Mr. Diamantopoulos, and Lt. Nikolopoulos of the Gov’s ofice. The prefect of police, Mr. Mavrikakis and Mr. Goudas Agricultural Inspector for Macedonia. It was a deadly affair • of the French wine. The Gov. was very dull, started no conversation and only responded feebly. Mr. Goudas was indisposed and retired when dinner was half over. The only live person was Diamantopoulos who is a rather original character and the Cretan chief of police.
Thursday Feb 13
This morning we prepared our first requistion for Kavalla and sent it in by the contractor who will transport our supplies. Walker and I also inspected 8 or 10 bakeries. We have a capacity of more than 6-800 okes a day. One pleased us by its general cleanliness — opp. Athanasides’s house.
In the evening we bought a large amount of supplies from British canteen, some cigars and some pipe tobacco.
In the evening before dinner we had important conference with Governor, Nomarch, and Chief of Police, Major Mavrikakis.
We agree to provide bread for all needy refugees (ca. 4200) and all needs citizens of Drama (ca. 5000). The Gov. agrees to establish soup kitchen for town for citizens and we will distribute bread at same place. The soup kitchen for refugees near railway is to go on. Since the Gov. is relieved of providing bread for refugees he will give to neighboring villages. We offer to look out for some of these however. I tentatively agree to take on Yeniksoy (near Oxlar), (ca. 2000), Doxato (ca. 2000) and Tsataldja (ca. 2000) with neighboring small villages.
The Governor untakes all transportation from Kavalla here and from here to villages.
Friday Feb 14
This morning workers and I went up to the house and started. 5 gipsy women scrubbing and cleaning. The Ταμείον people are moving out with much reluctance.
A young policeman, George, was assigned to us today by Maj. Mavrikakis. He is a very intelligent and presentable youth and proved very helpful.
At noon Gilmore arrived from Kavalla and also the shipment of supplies for the house — beds, bedding, food etc. We put everything into one of the rooms and locked it up for the night. Gilmore is to stay and help me in village relief.
The warehouse which we propose to use for a workroom was evacuated by the army and swept out tonight. A good deal of glass is out and ought to be replaced. A few panes are needed in our house too.
We hope to move into the house tomorrow. Two women may come from Kavalla and Miss Stone is also expected from Serres.
Saturday Feb 15
We breakfasted in my bedroom on coffee bread pate and pineapples.
Then went up to the house where we found a carpenter putting up lights. He worked fairly rapidly. We hired a Greek worker to continue scrubbing and cleaning.
Our first issue supplies arrived today from Kavalla — 300 sacks flour, 75 sacks rice 50 of beans and 50 of dried fruit. Also 5 bales blankets. (One cart with 20 bags of flour didn’t get in by night. Reported stuck in mud.)
We unpacked the boxes of household goods and found a very generous assortment of crockery etc.
We set up 8 beds in house.
From the nomarch we learn that a last shipment 25 cases of milk, 20 cases of oil, 2 bales cloth etc. is being stored by him which he will turn over to us.
In the evening two nurses Mrs. Hart and Mrs. Martin arrived. We still remain in the Volos Hotel but will move tomorrow to the house.
Walker is much disturbed because two of the social workers he brought from France have been sent back from Kavalla to Athens instead of here. It seems to me an unfortunate misunderstanding. They ought to have come here. I lunched with Mrs. Politarchi at the hotel and met Col. Zapheiriou, commander of the Dursun??? here at Drama. And also Major Nikoletatos asst. commander of the garrison at Doxato.
Sunday Feb. 16
This morning we went to the house and made up the beds. It is a bright sunny day and the house looks very pleasant.
We were unable to get furniture today since the military governor who controls the storoom where a collection of furniture abandoned by the Bulgars has gone out of town.
The remaining sacks of flour arrived today.
Miss Stone and Mrs. ?Synos arrived today for the day.
At 2.15 P.M. we began moving from the Hotel Volos to our house which will henceforth be our headquarters.
Miss Stone adn Mrs. ?Synos left on the 6.00 train for Serres.
We engaged two servants. Chrysi cook, and Evangeli maid at 50 dr. per month and board.
We gave a sack of flour to A. Rizes today for a sample bake of bread.
Monday Feb. 17
Busy getting settled in house. We were taken by Nomarch to warehouse filled with furniture stolen by Bulgars and concentrated for shipment to Bulgaria which they did not get time to send off. We were allowed to take a table, stand, 2 sofas and 3 mirrors.
Went to canteen with Miss Hartz and bought large order of supplies for house.
In afternoon Miss ?Glenn and Miss Blakeslee came up from Kavalla. Miss ?Glenn is going to Serres then return here to organize workroom. Miss Blakeslee is to distribute clothes here.
Miss Hartz and Miss Martin gave a good deal of time to cooking too and trying to train our servants. Teh latter do very nicely. Pie for dinner.
Walker is very restless. Seems to be very much troubled by failure of Maj. Oakley to send more personnel and apparently has decided to see latter and resign.
The lists of needy in Drama wee furnished today. The Prefect now takes them to control them. To be ready for us tomorrow.
Bread baked by Rigas delivered today. Not very good. We gave a sack to another baker on corner opp. mosque. Not very good results.
Taylor came on from Pangaeon and stayed over night en route to Kavalla.
I send in a larger requisition to Kavalla today — for supplies to Doxato and Drama.
Tuesday Feb. 18
More sample bread today to two bakers.
One of them Anthropoulos and Stoulingas recommended by Djimon gave very good results. The other not so good.
List of needs of Drama returned to us today by local committee. They wish a copy however and will make one by tomorrow. They will give us a list with name of family and number of persons in each and a running number for each family.
The transportation contractor says my goods for Doxato will reach there Thursday morning so plan to meet them there.
I introduced Miss ?Glenn and Miss Blakeslee to Mrs. Kalyva of the local committee who took them in charge for the afternon.
Went with Miss Hartz to see Col. Papakostas chief medical officer here regarding establishment of our dispensary.
Taylor left for Kavalla this morning. Walker also threatens to leave tomorrow.
Miss ?Glenn and Miss Martin are to go to Serres tomorrow morning early. Sorry to lose Miss Martin.
The Prefect sent us 4 desk tables for our bedrooms today.
Wednesday Feb. 19
Two members of the local committee arrived at 9.30 this morning with the clean copy of the list of poor of Drama to whom we are to issue bread. There are 4002 persons – 1029 families. We gave them 1100 tickets to ? the names and numbers – to be ready tomorrow.
I went at 10. to military hospital with Miss Hartz where we saw Lt. Col. Papacostas chief medical officer here about our dispensary. He is very encouraging and promises us all assistance. Will also give us a doctor for an hour or two a day. The Col speaks English fairly well.
Went with Miss Hartz and bought materials for curtains for house.
Miss Hartz hemmed them in P.M. and put up curtains in living room of house.
In P.M. Walker and I signed contract with two bakers for bread — 600 to 1000 loaves per day each. 100 okes fl. for 130 bread. We issued 25 sacks flour to each baker.
We shall distribute tickets tomorrow and begin bread line Friday.
Walker decides to go Kavalla tomorrow and does not expect to return. He turned his accts over to me.
I go to Doxato tomorrow to receive Kavalla shipment and make arrangements for distribution.
Miss ?Glenn and Miss Martin left early this morning for Serres. The prefect sent us a dozen chairs today.
Thursday Feb. 20
This morning I went to Doxato in the Gov. General’s ar which was kindly put at my disposal. No carts of supplies at Doxato while I was there. That is up to 5.30 P.M. but some wee reported as being further back. However Dyünum whome I met at Doxato and who gave me lunch promised to take care of them when they come and have them put in the basement of his house. He says we may use this as distributing center for Doxato and Chataldja. After lunch Djinou and I went to a conference with the leading citizatns of Doxato where we laid the basis for an honest list of the persons in need of relief. The needy citizens number something over 700 and refugees are said to be about equally numerous. I am to have the finished list Saturday at Drama. Djimou and I also visited Chatldja where we saw the mayor and two or three distinguished citizens. I left with them the list of pool made for us by Steele’s man Cotcha – which they will copy and to which they will add and supplement. They will send me my original list and the supplement tomorrow. I returned to Drama at 6.00 P.M.
Walker finally left this morning for Kavalla. He missed the post camion again (he tried for it yesterday) and finally went in a small sousta (which he told me cost 120 drachs).
Miss Glenn came back from Serres today. Breadline tickets have been issued today by the Greek committee but I don’t know whether all were given out. Our first real bake of bread (1200 loaves) was ready today but Gilmore for some reason had the bakes keep it till tomorrow rather than deliver it to our warehouse.
Friday Feb. 21
Our breadline finally got started today in connection with a soup kitchen run by the local Drama committee. We had enough bread on hand to supply the demand at 11 A.M. The official hour for the opening but the soup kitchen had to struggle with wet wood and the rice wasn’t ready till 1.00. In the meantime I spent more than an hour organizing the mob into a line assisted by 8 policeman – one of whom really helped while the others were merely spectators. We got a very respectable line at last and the distribution began at 1.00 P.M. I went home for lunch at 2.00. At 4.30 we finished the line having food to about 3700 people.
We have more than 1300 loaves of bread for tomorrow adn shall have about 1200 more. We issued 15 bags of flour to each of the bakers.
A cart has been furnished us to bring the bread to our warehouse.
Sat Feb 22
Breadline again today – somewhat better organized. We finished at 2.30 P.M. having got started earlier than yesterday.
Late in the afternoon Major Oakley arrived from Kavalla – coming up in a machine furnished by Gen. Negropontes.
In the evening Mr. Nicolopoulos and Diamantopoulos of the Gov. General’s office came in to dinner. A Greek priest also strolled in late in teh afternoon and made himself comfortable on our sofa. He wore a priest’s hat, British officer’s tunic, breeches and high boots (and a thick fur overcoat) and was a queer sight. He was a good trencherman. Miss Blakesly though obviously bored almost to tears spent a good part of the afternoon and evening making conversaion with him in French. The priest was an uninvited guest at dinner.
After dinner we played bridge for a while – Miss Hartz, Diamantopoulos, Gilmore and I.
Washington’s birthday which we celebrated with American flags on the table.
I got my list of names from Chataldja today.
The major reports that no supplies have yet come from Piraeus and he has now run out of flour at Kavalla. A shipment of 50 sacks of flour some beans, milk and raisins was sent to Doxato for me.
Sunday Feb. 23
This morning we got the bread line off a little earlier than yesterday adn fiished in good deason shortly after 1 P.M. Major Oakley was on hand and got rather nervous over one or two details which succeeded at first in getting the local Greek committee on edge. Later however all friction was smoothed away and the major was very nice to the local organization. The bred and soup line ran off very nicely.
In the afternoon we didn’t do very much of anything.
Miss Stone came from Serres today. We all pitched in in the evening and wrote out cards for the Doxato distribution. The list came in today by the hand of And. Djimou.
Miss Blakely is ill with some sort of sever.
Monday Feb 24
The breadline today ran off very smoothly with out a hitch in the proceedings. We began about 10.30 and finished about 12.15.
Miss Glenn came up from Kavalla. Seven cases of clothing arrived from Serres today.
I sent out the Doxato cards to be given out by Djimou.
We finished writing out the cards for Chatldja tonight.
Miss Blakesly had a high fever this afternoon 103’. In the evening we called on a Doctor – Col. Papacostas who reserved opinion till tomorrow.
Tuesday Feb 25
Col Papacostas called again today and saw Miss Blakeslee. He reserved opinion but told me privately he thought it looked like a case of Spanish flue. Miss B. has a high fever.
The bread line ran off like clockwork in ca. 1 ½ hrs. 3 soup dishers were at work.
Shower in afternoon. Miss Stone left for Kavalla early this morning. The last accounts I had however were to the effect that the postal camion on which she had a seat had not gone till nearly noon.
Maj Oakley left at 6 P.M. for Serres to be gone only a day or two.
I sent off a letter to mother.
Wednesday Feb 26
Miss Blakeslee continues to have a very high fever (40º today). Col. Papacostas visited her twice. He told me privately that she had spots on her chest and abdomen and he thought she had exanthematic typhus. He thought he would know for certain tomorrow. She spent a week working among refugees in warehouse at Kavalla and has now been a week here. The Dr. is very encouraging about it however.
The bread line ran off nicely today. George, the interpreter, who came up from Kavalla with Maj. Oakley is now trained to run it and will do so tomorrow if I go to Doxato.
A shipement from Kavalla came today- 1 sack flour 4 of sugar 80 of lentils, 14 sewing machines, 1 lantern 1 sack miscellaneous supples for home.
Thursday Feb 27
Miss Blakeslee is very ill today - temperature 40º I telegraphed Maj. Oakley at noon asking him to return bringing Miss Martin to assist Miss Hartz. I also ahd a telephone message sent to Cavalla to Miss Addison.
The doctor this morning made a definite diagnosis. It is a serious case of Exanthematic Typhus.
In the evening I telegraphed Col. Capps asking him to send Dr. Walker also and to notify Miss Blakeslee’s family if he thought best. Likewise I wired Maj. Oakley giving the substance of my telegram to Col Capps.
Maj. Oakley answered my first telegram saying that he and Miss Martin will arrive tomorrow afternoon.
In the evening Felty came over from Kavalla with Miss Stone. Felty stayed only an hour and then returned to Kavalla. He reports that the ship with supplies from Piraeus has not yet arrived. Thomas is laid up in Kavalla with a serious febor not yet diagnosed and Miss Addison is almost worn out with looking after him.
Friday Feb. 28
Miss Blakeslee continues to have a very high fever and we are all very worried. Miss Hartz has risen beautifully to the emergency and is very fine but she would naturally like to have Miss Martin with her.
Today I gave out to the bakers the last of the wheat flour (except a few sacks reserved for personell). If no new supply vessels tomorrow I shall have to borrow from the Nomarch.
The Gov general sent an invitation to Miss Hartz and me to tea tomorrow. Miss Hartz can’t go but I shall.
The afternoon train from Serres was very late. Maj. Oakley and Miss Martin get in shortly before midnight.
Miss Stewart arived in the evening from Kavalla to take charge of clothes distribution.
Saturday Mar. 1. Miss Blakeslee’s condition is the same. Very high steady fever – wavering about 40º.
Miss Glenn left for Kavalla this morning – but the camion didn’t go till afternoon so she came back for lunch.
I was obliged to borrow flour from the nomarch today – 1704 okes or 24 large sacks – which will last for two days.
In the afternoon I went to a big tea given by the governor general at the Military Club. Everyone I have met in Kavalla was there and a lot more.
Miss Stone left in the morning for Serres.
Felty ? that the ship has finally come with flour etc. from Piraeus.
In the afternoon Mrs. Steward, Gilmore and I sorted out clothes in the warehouse and made up bundles for men and women.
Rainy miserable day.
I learned today that two members of the International Commission to investigate Bulgarian crimes in Eastern Macedonia are down with typhus at Kavalla. They are Mr. Vasiliou the president of the Commission and Mr. Skouloudis a judge.
Sunday March 2
Miss Blakeslee is just the same. Fever stays around 40º and ths is delirious at times. We are anxious but hope for the best.
Today I gave out the last of the white bread and a few loaves of brown. Hope the flour will be in soon.
Got a shipment from Kavalla of 100 sacks lentils, 20 of sugar, 20 cases bully beef and 3 caldrons.
Telegram from Mr. Hill. He says a telegram has come from Prof. Day in answer to mine requesting further information. BHH has forwarded this to Salonica. I suppose I shall have to go soon and see about it but I hate to leave this place now.
Capt. Gray a new man arrived this evening.
Monday March 3
Miss Blakeslee continues to be desperately ill. The Dr. gave her phenacetine today to reduce her temperature. She responde to this and today her temperature was lower than for a long time – about 38.15º C. but her general condition shows no change.
This afternoon Miss Kourogea came from Serres to take charge of the dispensary. There came also a Fiat Camionette which is to be at our disposal with two drivers.
Major Oakley planned to go to Kavalla today but couldn’t get away as there was no room in the post camion. He now intends to go tomorrow.
Tuesday March 4
Miss Blakeslee is slightly better this morning according to Dr. Papacostas – but Miss Hartz and Miss Martin could see very little change. Temperature 104º.
Major Oakley left for Kavalla in the camion this morning. Also Mrs. Stewart and Gilmore, these last two for the day only. They are coming back tonight. Mrs. Steward with more clothing for distribution and Gilmore with the motor cycle.
Bread line ran very smoothly. In the afternoon Capt. Gray and I went down to the station and saw the French RTO about getting a RR box car for our use in going to Yenikioy. He said we ought to apply to manager of road. So we telegraphed the manager asking for the car.
We also looked at a house belonging to a Protestant mision represented by a Mrs. Cooper at Salonica. It doesn’t look very good to me.
In the evening when the camion came back it brought beside Mrs. Stewart and Gilmore Maj. Walker and Mr. Hill who have come in response to my telegram of Feb. 27. We feel greatly relieved at having an American doctor here on the job. Dr. Walker thinks Miss Blakeslee’s condition is good. He says “she is pretty sick but not dangerously so.”
I had to borrow flour again today. This makes a total of 48 bags of 71 okes each.
Wednesday March 5
Dr. Walker expressed himself as satisfied with Miss Blakeslee’s condition this morning. She still has a high fever but her pulse is going down some and her general condition is good.
The Dr. reports that Lt. E. Walker who left here Feb. 20 and arrived in Athens Feb. 23 got in sick, went to a hospital Monday the 24th and on Tuesday was diagnosed with typhus. Dr. Walker says it was a very severe case adn would probably prove fatal.
The Dr. imposed a sort of quarantine on us. The upper floor of the house is to be reserved for the nurses and Miss Blakeslee (and one room for Miss Kouroyen and Mrs. Stewart to sleep in). We are to eat in the lower hall and no one is to sit in the upper half. Capt. Gray went back to Kavalla with Dr. Walker and Mr. Hill.
The first of our new flour arrived today. We got 54 sacks and sent 124 sacks on to Seres. I gave out of this flour to the bakers today. The flour comes in 100 lb sacks.
I tried to telephone to Kavalla today at noon according to agrement with Maj. Oakley but no Red Cross representative was reported at the other end of the wire.
Invitation for BHH and me to dinner at the Governor General’s tomorrow night. BHH has left but I accepted for myself.
Lt. Ashe, Intelligence Officer and the last British officer left at the station came up for lunch.
Thursday March 6
Miss Blakeslee is better this morning pulse stronger and slower. The fever is fairly high 38.6 to 39.6 but prospect now seems very good.
The rest of the shipment of flour came today making 200 sacks for us and 200 for Serres. There were some more cases of clothing. Gilmore went to the station and got a car for Serres loading the balance of the flour and the clothing.
In the evening Dr. Walker came over again from Kavalla bringing with him Lt. Koressios of the Greek army who is in the service of the ARC. He is going to Salonica for Felty.
The Greek doctor who has been helping our dispensary Papathomopoulos by name left today having been demobilized. He swiped a pretty complete assortment of drugs from our dispensary.
I tried to telephone Kavalla today with same lack of success as yesterday.
Dined with the Gov. General Mr. Gotsis. Others present were the nomarch of Serres Mr. Andreades. Maj. Kephaloyannis a judge advocate in court martial here and Diamantopoulos. It was a good simple dinner.
Friday March 7
Miss Blakeslee’s condition today was distinctly better. Dr. Pappacostas went so far as to say that she was now out of danger. Dr. Walker was well satisfied with her showing.
A new shipment of flour and clothes arrived from Kavalla today: 200 sacks flour, 28 bolts bunting for sewing room 5 cases soap and 5 boxes clothing.
Two American doctors Hodgson and Binger 1st Lts in the Reg Army arrived this morning from Athens via Salonica. They have come to help fight the typhus. Two or three more are expected tomorrow. These two men left with Maj. Walker for Kavalla after lunch. They are using our camion. I should like to get it myself for going to Doxato as soon as possible. [written in the margin: “BHH’s birthday”]
The bread line runs very nicely these days and I am giving it very little attention. George the interpreter has charge of keeping the count.
Part of a shipment of flour etc. for Serres came in. We load ca. 153 bags of flour into the car we got yesterday which has not gone yet.
I telephoned to Kavalla again today and finally got BHH on the wire.
Saturday March 8
This morning Miss Blakeslee’s better even than yesterday adn we are all feeling very much gratified.
Maj. Perkins and Lt. Vinton ARC of the Balkan Commission arrivd this morning in a Ford from Salonica. After lunch they went on to Kavalla. Two other Americans also came by train – two army doctors Capt White and Lt Clark. There was no way to get them to Kavalla so they are staying overnight in Drama and I will take them down tomorrow.
I telephoned today again to Kavalla and talked with BHH. He says Maj Oakley would like to see me tomorrow to talk things over so I will go down in the camion in the morning hoping to return in the evening. Dr. Walker didn’t come today but the camion arrived bringing Steele who will be in Drama for a day or two on business.
For the night we put the two doctors up on cots in the lower hall. The garrison ?-man also crept into the hall for the night.
Sunday March 9
Miss Blakesle is steadily improving. The fever has dropped considerably and she is now quite rational.
This morning I went to Kavalla in the camion, leaving at 8.30 and arriving there at 10.30. Road pretty bad but fair compared with what it was a week or two ago.
Had a conference call with Maj Oakley, Maj Walker and BHH. They asked me to take some medical supplies to Konitsa to hospitals there. Some of these supplies are now in Kavalla. The res will be sent up from Athens to Salonia, where I will pick them up. Maj. Black may join me for the trip which will begin in a week or few days.
The question of food supplies for distribution in Macedonia is a very seious one. They seem to have come to an end. Maj. Oakley is to go to Athens tomorrow to see if more can be secured. In the meantime he wishs the bread line at Drama run for 15 days more even at cost of shutting down Serres.
I came back to Drama in afternoon. Mrs. Stewart also went in afternoon and returned with me. Dr. White and Clark went down to Kavalla with us in the morning and stayed there.
Steele was in for dinner tonight.
Monday Mar. 10
Miss Blakeslee is now convalescing. She had no fever this morning and temperature normal.
The new list of poor in Drama now ready it includes 7131 names. I gave tickets to the committee which are to be distributed house to house by the people who made the list.
This morning I sent the camion down to Kavalla with Steele. In the afternoon it brought back Maj. Oakley with his baggage. He had only a few minutes at the house and then went down to the station where he caught at train at 6.15 P.M. for Serres. Maj. Perkins and Lt. Vinton also left on the same train wiht the Ford on a flat car. Maj. Oakley may not return to Macedonia from his trip to Athens unless the situation looks ? In that case he will come back.
Maj. Walker also arrived from Kavalla tonight and stayed over night on a cot in the upper hall.
Tuesday Mar. 11
Miss Blakeslee continues to improve. She is now out of danger according to Maj. Walker.
Felty and Miss Addison and Reirdon came up at noon today on two motor cycles. After lunch we loadd up camion with clothes for Doxato and carried them out there. The camion went on to Kavalla carrying Maj. Walker Reirdon and a Greek Lt. Koressiso who came back this morning from Salonica. Felty had sent him there to buysome boots and clothes for our personnel. Felty and Miss Addison also returned to Kavalla.
One of the motor cycles was left for us. Gilmore brought me safely in from Doxato and with a little more experience will make a good driver.
The camion is to stay at Kavalla two or three days for repairs to engine.
I sent John the mechanic to Serres for oil and gasoline.
Wednesday Mar. 12
Miss Blakeslee is coming on nicely and we hope that in a few days our quarantine will be raised.
Today we sent off 1 wagonload of clothes and 3 of lentils to Doxato. In the afternoon Gilmore and I went out to Doxato in he motor cycle and checked in the goods we had shipped out there. We plan to have a distribution tomorrow. Miss Glenn and Reirden came over from Kavalla today in a motor cycle. They went back late in the afternoon.
Thursday Mar. 13
Gilmore and I spent all day at Doxato distributing. We gave our supplies to 173 families including 1 oke of flour ½ oke of lentils 1 oke raisins for each person 1 can of milk for each child and a bunch of clothes for every member of the family according to size and sex. It was a fairly successful distribution and the recipients seemed pleased.
The breadline ran today with the new tickets we gave out 1383 loaves of bread.
Long telegram from Col. Capps referring to Day business.
Friday Mar. 14
Rainy night and morning but sun came out in afternoon.
Miss Blakeslee is steadily improving.
We had planned to go out to Doxato this morning and finish our distribution but the clutch wasn’t working and Gilmore spent the whole morning tinkering with the machine. He finally got it to work and in the afternoon we went to Doxato. by working over time we finished up our list of 316 families (except for 9 who failed to come) by 6.30 P.M.
Chaltaldja is next but we have no women’s clothes available yet.
I am winding up our contract with Rizos the bake. He has not been satisfactoy. I gave him 10 sacks of flour today and will settle up tomorrow. Anthopoulos and Co. will henceforth furnish the whole amount.
Friday Mar. 15
Stayed in Drama tody. We think of going out of quarantine tonightt and moving upstairs again.
A telegram arrived this morning from Adams saying that Miss Stone was ill and that the doctors suspcted typhus. He asked for Miss Martin. I telophoned it on to Kavalla and Maj. Walker said he would come up tomorrow and see Miss Martin before she left. Miss Martin went at 6.00 P.M. Dr. Walker arrived in side car brought over by Reirdon who left immediately again for Kavalla. Dr. Walker had time for a talk with Miss Martin.
At the house everybody for some reason or other thought it was my birthday and they gave me a dinner party. Lt. Ashe and his successor Lt. Kephala were guests. I also got a grand birthday cake from Anthopoulos and Stonling as the bakers and Miss Martin made me a very nice one. It was a very enjoyable occasion marred only by the news of Miss Stone and the absence of Miss Martin. No one would believe it was not my birthday and I finally had to say that in view of the evidence before me. dinner cakes and poem. I could no longer deny it.
Taylor also is ill at Rodolivos but not very seriously according to accounts today. I telephoned.
Sunday Mar. 16
Dr. Walker left this morning at 6.40 for Serres.
At 2.00 P.M. rec’d a telegram that Col. Capps Oakley and Dewing would arrive in afternoon. I went to station to meet them and had telegram from Maj. Walker that he wished Miss Addison to come here to Drama to take care of Miss Blakeslee and Miss Hartz to go to Serres to help look after Miss Stone.
Col. Capps and the others arrived duly. Maj. Oakley is to leave very soon again and Dewing will inherit the Macedonian zone.
Rainy afternoon. Barry arrived from Rodlivos in P.M. He says Taylor is seriously ill. In accordance with the Dr. Walker’s telegram I telephoned to Rodolivos asking Miss Addison to come here tomorrow – also telephoned to Kavalla asking to have one of American doctors sent to Rodolivos.
In evening Miss Hartz and I went to dinner given by Gov. Gen. to International Commission at the house of Mr. Kalyvos. Good dinner by rather dull affair.
Monday Mar. 17
Talked with Adams by phone today and had hard work understanding him. Miss Stone is very ill.
Barry left before lunch for Rodolivos. Capps Oakley and Dewing left after lunch for Kavalla. In afternoon Miss Addison arrived from Rodolivos. She reports that Taylor is slightly better.
Capps Oakley and I conferred a grood deal on situation. There is no more food for ARC to distribute. No more flour is to come. So in afternoon I saw local committee and them we should have to discontinue bread line soon and asked them to take whatever measures they thought bes.
Miss Hartz left at 6.00 P.M. for Serres. Sorry to have her go. She is a good capable nurse and a very pleasant woman to work with.
Tuesday Mar. 18
This morning Gilmore and I went out to Doxato and began distributing to poor people of Chataldja. We gave them a good ration – 1 oke of beans ½ oke of lentils and 1 oke of raisins each and a bundle of clothing. We did a little more than 200 families during the day. Unfortunately we have now run completely out of boys’ clothing and we had to give mens outfits to all from 8 up. There are no more worker bundles left.
Road was very bad and slushy.
In the beginning I was called to the phone and ~I talked with BHH. He gave me 3 telegrams to forward for Capps – one to Adams one to Maj. Carey and one to Weld in Athens. Serres to close up immediately and send surplus of food to Drama as well as camionette and white car.
We are to close bread line ? Sunday. But sewing room is to continue. As well as dispensary and we plan to distribute clothing and food in surrounding villages for a month or 6 weeks longer.
Capt. Gray came over from Cavalla today. He joined Gilmore and me at Doxato and in the evening we all came back in the motorcycle.
Wednesday Mar. 19
This morning I sent Gilmore and Mrs. Stewart to Doxato to finish distributing to Chataldja. They came back early in the evening having finished.
Gray and I called on the Nomarch and informed him that on account of impossibility of getting more flour we shall have to discontinue breadline Sunday. He was very friendly and thanked us warmly for all we had done.
Later we called on the Gov. General and gave him the same informatoin. He was also very pleasant and said they wee all grateful for what we had done.
I sent out 2 bags of boys clothing to Doxato by Giannoulis.
Telephoned to Dr. Walker at Serres. He says Miss Stone’s condition continues to be very serious.
I discussed with the Gov. General possibility of buying from him flour to repay what Adams and I had borrowed from local authorities. Adams owes 4413 okes and I 3408. The Gov. said he thought it could be managed but would let me know. I have enough American flour to repay what I have borrowed but would like to save that for the villages if I can buy enough to repay my borrowing.
In the evening Capt. Dewing arrived with Col. Capps in he camion. Dewing now in charge of Macedonia. Oakley leaves tonight by boat for Piraeus. BHH will come to Drama tomorrow.
Thursday Mar. 20
The camion yesterday brought up 5 cases of medical supplies which I aim to convoy to hospitals at Korytsa. Capps BHH and I are to leave tomorrow for Serres and to go by truck from there to Salonica.
The Gov. general today informed me that he would sell us all the flour we wanted at 1.40 the oke. That solves that problem and we shall now have something left for the villages.
We telephoned to Dr. Walker who says Miss Stone’s condition is the same. I closed up bank account and turned cash and keys and books etc. over to Capt. Greg who is now in charge at Drama.
BHH arrived in time for lunch. Dewing left after lunch in the camionette for Kavalla. He wants me to come back after my trip to Korytsa.
In the afternoon late Gray and I walked out past the big spring to a low hill where there is a monument. There are 9 German airmen buried here. The hill is a prehistoric mound. We picked up a good many sherds b oth plain burnished and painted also 2 fragments of figurines and a small fine celt. The site to judge from the pottery is almost identical in character with the ? of Dikeli Tash near Philippi.
Friday Mar. 21
Col. Capps, BH and I left this morning at 6.40 in a freight car for Serres. Beautiful clear morning with bright sun. I hated to go away, having become rather attached to the station at Drama. It is really my station since I have been here from the beginning and did most of the work of starting it. Everybody has been very friendly to me too.
We reached Serres at 10 A.M. Dr. Walker and Adams came down to meet us and took me up to the house. The upper floor is quarantined as we were at Drama. Miss Stone is very seriously sick but slighly better than yesterday Dr. Walker things. I saw Miss Hartz and Miss Martin who are doing the same good work here for Miss Stone that they did at Drama for Miss Blakeslee.
Poor Adams is thoroughly fed up with Serres and wants to get away. He has been here since Dec. 21 and deserves a change for his fruitful work.
We left at 1.30 for Salonica in the big lorry as the camionette has a broken spring. Arrived in town at 8.15 and were hospitably received by the Red Cross Serbian Commission. They now have 3 houses and were able to put us up comfortably.
I am rooming with a young fellow named Wright.
Saturday Mar. 22
This morning (bright and clear) we calld on the Governor Geneal Mr. Adossides who was very friendly as usual. Later we went to British Ordnance where we were allowed to buy some equipment for Capps BHH and myself. We also called on Horton at the Consulate.
At 2.15 Capps and BHH left by the express for Athens.
I am to go to Korytsa and deliver the hospital supplies. The idea was to go on the truck but it is no good on hills. So now we propose to exchange it for the camionette once that we can get enough gasoline of our own here. In the meantime I will wait a day or two expecting word from Dr. Black that he can accompany me.
In the afternoon I went to tea at Gov. Adossides. Mrs. Adossides has been a little indisposed but semed well again now.
Diamantopoulos was also there having come in from Drama on Thursday.
Telegram from Weld of this date saying Black has not yet come back from Crete.
Miss Goldman is still here in Salonica but leaves Monday night for Constantinople.
Maj. Carey left tonight for ?Pirot to be gone a week. Capt. Hargis is replacing him temporarily here.
Sunday Mar. 23
I loafed most of the day. Wrote up my diary in the morning. Also wrote a letter to Mother.
Miss Mingane and nurse from Athens arrived today en route for Serres.
Geo. Stone, brother of Miss Stone called this afternoon. He has just come from Athens and leaves for Serres tonight.
Monday Mar. 24
Today I went to the Gov. General and with his help finally got exchange of the 3 ton truck effected for a Fiat camionette. The Gov. Gen. sent ? to Greek GHQ where I saw Major Agapitos who gave me the necessary orders. The camionette will report tomorrow morning at 9 A.M. I plan to send Miss Mingane in it to Serres. For today I had a telegram from Capps that Dr. Black will leave for Salonica on Wed. Accordingly I hope to start for the west on Thursday accompanied by the Dr.
Miss Goldman left tonight for Constinople. I inherited her Ford car as being the only representative of the Greek Commission.
Tuesday Mar. 25
This morning the new camionette reported for duty. The chauffer is named John and his assistant George. I sent them to their garage to get gasoline and oil for trip to Serres. At about 11 A.M. I got Miss Mingane started for Serres. I also sent 1 pr. boots for Dewing and 1 cap for Gilmore and a note to Maj. Walker.
Late in the afternoon Miss Elmasi arrived from Serres and put herself under my protection. I got a room for her at the RC house.
Maj. Perkins and his asst. Vinton blew in from Monastir today with a dentist named Adams. Vinton asked me to give him my bed as he is a chum of Wright’s. I moved accordingly and am now rooming with Adams.
Wednesday Mar. 26
Mis Elmasi says she came down to get 2 orphans and take them to Serres. She wishes to return immediately and asked me to get her transportation.
I went to the Gov. General and asked him to help me get seats for her in any car that happened to be going. He telephoned to GHQ and we learned that there will be a chance in a postal camion today or tomorrow. They asked me to call at GHQ.
Miss Elmasi annoyed me a good deal this morning. We had gone down in the Ford to the Gov. Gen.’s office and she wished to go to the British canteen to buy a few things while I was seeing the Gov. Gen. The understanding was that she would return at once to pick me up and that we should then proceed to get to the question of transportation for her to Serres. But she never came back though I waited an hour or more and strolled down to the canteen and back once. So I was disgusted and started for the RC magazine hoping to pick up a car for home. On the way however I finally found my Ford outside the British canteen. Miss Elmasi had gone off and picked up a cousin of hers and run about to several places with him leaving me in the lurch. – We went to Greek GHQ and they promised to send a postal camion to the ARC house to pick up Miss Elmasi tomorrow at 8.30.
In the afternoon I went with Vinton to visit St. Demetrios. We met the Ephor Sotiriou who showed us through his interesting excavations. The newly discovered underground chambers were interesting.
I also laid in a stock of supplies at the canteen for our journey up country which may begin tomorrow when Maj. Black arrives.
The camionette came back from Serres tonight.
Thursday Mar. 27
Miss Elmasi left this morning in the postal camionette. She wasn’t treated exactly right by the servants in the house and was glad to go. I was glad to have her go too.
I went in the Ford to meet train from Athens which was an hour or two late. Maj. Black arrived at 11.30 A.M. With him were Maj. Hopkins and Lt. Bouyoucos on an agricultural mission to Macedonia. We all piled into the Ford and went up to the RC house where we had lunch.
Maj. Black and I decided to start immediately on our Tour to visit hospitals in Western Macedonia. We laid in an additional supply of food etc. which Miss ~Orr gave us, extracted a bed and kerosene stove and a tin of kerosene from the Serbian Commission and finally at ca. 5.30 P.M. in a drizzle left for our first stopping place which is Vodena [Edessa]. Distance 85 km mostly through a flat plain rather uninteresting except for numerous mounds. Last part of way, however, from Ver? is more pleasant and Vodena itself is charmingly situated on top of a hill which rises precipitously from plain.
We stopped for the night at hotel Parthenon in Vodena — fairly clean and comfortable. Almost everybody here in Vodena seems to speak the Macedonian dialect although its majority are no doubt bilingual.
Friday Mar. 28
This morning Major Black and I called on Mayor (George Petsios) who was out and nomarch (Stamat. Stavratiou) who was away and were taken to the military hospital which we visited. The headquarters of the [–]th division has just been transferred here from Florina and the chief medical officer is Maj. Zoras. He seems very efficient. The hospital is small but very clean and lack of materials and supplies is largely made good by ingenuity and improvisation. There is no civilian hospital but plans are on foot for the establishment of one.
We secured 4 cases of gasoline and some oil from the Grk. Transp. ? and shortly after noon we started of up country for Florina.
Route was fairly interesting and landscape pretty. Many German prisoners working along the road which is an excellent one. We stopped for a light lunch above the north shore of Lake Ostrovo. Reached Banitsas in middle of afternoon and soon after crossed the plain of Florina at mounth of deep ravine leading westward into the mountains. Florina is an attractive little town. The major was out. We visited the military hospital which is on the point of moving to Vodena. Inhabitants of Florina seem to be chiefly Macedonians.
Late in afternoon we left for Monastir 27 kilom. to the north. We wish to pay a visit fo ARC station there and at same time to try to get some tires. Our iner tubes have gone rather fast — no extra ones left.
Reached Monastir ca. 7.15 P.M. and were cordially welcomed by ARC people there.
Saturday March 29
Capt. McFarlane is in charge of station at Monastir. He is energetic efficient and enthusiastic. Miss Rogers runs the house and is starting a sewing room. There are 2 trained nurses and a social worke for clothing distribution. Also a dentist, Adams, who came back from Salonica last night bringing Maj. Hopkins and Bouyoucos.
There is also here the Amer. Womens’ Hospital run by Dr. Keyes and Dr. Flood (2 Am women doctors) and several trained nurses. It is a very well managed little hospital clean and efficient. We were shown through it by Dr. Keyes.
There is a large dispensory which treats from 100 to 200 per day. There are 3 cases of typhus at the hospital.
We visited the Macedonian quarter of Monastir with Miss Rose who was checking up food and clothing tickets. This quarter is very filthy.
Monastir must have been a fine city once. Today it is partly in ruins having been badlyt knocked about in the war.
Capt McFarlane gave su 4 tubes in exchange for 4 punctured ones and shortly after noon we departed for Konitsa. Maj. Hopkins and Lt. Bouyoucos asked to be taken along and we said certainly if they didn’t mind riding inside the camionette which is pretty well loaded. They said they didn’t mind and got in.
We went down through middle of the plain and after ca. 22 kilometers took a diagonal across to Florina. Here turned west and climbed 17 kilometers of stiff grade (average 5%) to the pass of Pisoderi. Very good scenery but heavy clouds and a continuous drizzle prevented us from seeing much of it. We stopped on the way up for a belated lunch. After the top we decended a bit and went alone through a pretty vally for more than 20 kilometers passing several small villages. Eventually we mounted a little again to another passs and then began a leisurely descent to the plain of Korytsa. By thsi timeit was dark and still drizzling. We lit our lamps and went on to a large village called Viklista. From here the road ran perfectly straight for ca. 10 kilometers then curved a little and soon after teaching the actual plain of Korytsa turned sharply to the left (south) and so to Korytsa (17 km farther). Total distance from Florina ca. 85 km.
We had a puncture on the way which delayed us. We finally got in at 10.30 PM and were soon in bed in two small rooms at the hotel Metropole.
Sunday March 30
We got up late and made our own breakfast on our kerosene stove — Maj. Black and I. Then we went out to call on the French commandant Maj. Reynard Lespinasse who is the Governor of the territory of Korytsa. He was very friendly and courteous and invited us to lunch. There we met his staff Capt. Cegarra, Lt. Olive, and Lt. Gautier. None of them speaks English save Lt. Gautier and he only a very little. So the whole burden of carrying on conversation fell on me with my feeble French. I grew bolder as I progressed however adn the conversation went alone very nicely.
After lunch Capt. Cegana escorted us to the French military hospital. The director Lt. Bourgeois showed us through it. He looks like a very capable docgtor and has plenty of enthusiasm. He has huge quantities of medical supplies of all kinds.
We next visited the civil hospital run by Dr. Notchkas. It is much smaller and not so clean. It comes under the Dept. of Health of the Territory of Korytsa and is supported by regular funds out of the annual budget.
We visited the Department of Charities which also has an allowance from the budget and met the director of it.
Next with Capt. Cegarra and Lt. Gautier we called on the Kennedys. We arrived in the middle of Sunday scool and stayed through it. The room was crowded andit seemed to be a popular service.
Dr. Black was called for a speech and responded nobly with a parable for the children which Mrs. Kennedy turned into Albanian. The Dr. unwisely asked for someone to interpret his parable and one bright lad hopped up and neatly identified the villain of the Dr’s tale as the devil (the Dr. had meant Germany).
In the evening we dined with the French commandant who was very courteous to us. He proposed that we should go tomorrow to Moskopolje in our comion to see the ruined city and the Byzantine churches with well preserved frescoes. We were glad of the chance to go especially since Lt. Gautier is to accompany us. He has for a long time been stationed at the Monastery of St. Prodromoe just above Moskopolje as sous prefect of the region.
The civil hospital like the military has an abundance of medical supplies bought out of the budget by the French Administration from the French military hospitals when they left Korytsa. Consequently there is no need for us to distribute our supplies here and the Dr. and I have decided to go to Yannina with them. But we can’t go tomorrow for there is a bridge out that will not be repaired for a day or two yet.
Late this afternoon we visited the Metropolis and old church and the large new cathedral.
Maj. Hopkins and Bouyoucos went off to the country early in the morning and stayed all day.
Monday Mar. 31
This morning we went to the military hospital where Dr. Black had promsied to look at a difficult case of osteous sarcoma with Dr. Bourgcoas through too difficult for himself to operate. Dr. Black was of the same opinion as the French Doctor — advised against an operation. I was nearly overcome by the fumes of the drugs etc. in the operating room.
Later we made a round of the town photographing very churches and scenes.
At 11.00 A.M. we had lunch with the French commandant. He seemed a little annoyed that Maj. Hopkins and Bouyoucos hadn’t called on him.
After lunch we left on the camion for Moschopolje under the guidance of Lt. Gautier. Lt. Olive also went with us and Maj. Black and Hopkins as well as Bouyoucos. Distance 21 km. of which ca ½ up a very steep hill. We had 2 tires blow out on the way out and 1 on the way in. When there were still ca. 4 km to go we got to a muddy stretch of ca. 25 meters through which the car could not pass. So we were obliged to walk which nobody minded much save Gautier who has a bullet in one foot.
Moschopolje is a very interesting ruined city. Three or four hundred years ago there wee 75000 people there according to accounts here. About 100 years ago the population was reduced to 15000. Ali Pasha then destroyed the place and it has remained in ruins ever since. A few families (100 or 200) still lived there at the beginning of the European War but there were burned out by Austrians and Albanians a couple years ago.
Two or three churches are still fairly well preserved and contain some fine frescoes. We had time to visit only one — the church of St. Nicholas. It is very well preserved and the frescoes are about the finest I have sen in any church in the Balkans. There is a fine arcade or colonade on the south side of the church. The wall and ceiling are decorated with fine painting similarly decorated. The colors are well preserved and the style looks like a mixture of Byzantine with western. The subjects are sometimes fairly crude (scenes of hell etc.) but the details are nicely executed. Some of the domes are extremely effectively painted. Inside the church a fine raised chair of carved wood covered with gilt. The screen is gone.
In a small guard house near by we saw many carved wooden ? and carvd pieces of woodwork. Also some beams with small medallions of saints etc. painted on them. Some of these are very delicately executed reminding one of Flemish miniatures. An inscription dates this church as ? 1782.
Unfortunately we had no time to visit more of the churches but Gautier told me they were in the same style as that of St. Nicolas but not so well preserved.
Afterwards we climbed in ca. 20 minutes to the monastery of St. Prodromos where Lt. Gautier lived while sous-prefect in this region. It is a fairly clean and comfortable looking small monastery which was occuped by the French (and Austrians) in their operations in this district. There is a fairly good church (date 1701 I think) which is not so interestgin as St. Nicholas. A good many icons in it have been brought up for safety from Moschopolje.
Moschopolje or Moschopoulis was a city of churches. All the neighboring cities of Albania had each its own church here and the pious made pilgrimages from time to time each to his own church.
Tuesday April 1
This was an easy day. We loafed in our room most of the morning writing up our diary etc. The temporary crossing of the river where the bridge is out is not yet passable but will be tomorrow.
We got our passports properly visad today. Also visited the Italian consul who said visa by him was not necessary and lunched with French commandant and fined with same. Played a rubber of bridge after dinner.
The French administration of Korytsa seems to me a very admirable one. The government is well organized by departments. It is managined by the French but the Albanians themselvs have a considerable share in the actual work. The police force for example is entirely Albanian save a few French officers. The Department of Chantes? is under an Albanian head controlled of course by the French. The budget systems is in use and the the govm’t is not in debt. On the contrary it has already enough funds for next year’s budget.
Wednesday April 2
Left a 8 A.M. for Yanina. First 20 km in 1 hr. then heavy grades up and down. The route scenically very interesting. Unfortunately we had bad luck with our tires and had to stop many times to change tubes. Our caings are almost worn out.
The Italian consul at Korytsa had telephoned ahead ordering lunch for us at Liaskovik but it was nearly 1 PM when we reached Ersek (47 km from Korytsa) and Liaskovik is 44 km farther. So we stopped for lunch at Ersek. The Italian officers kindly gave us lunch. We went on in afternoon on up and down over broken country with frequent tire trouble till at last at 7 PM we reached Liaskoviki 91 km from Korytsa.
We were cordially received by the Italian officers here under Col Megza who gave us dinner at their mess and provided us with nice rooms and clean beds for the night. They were very hospitable and friendly.
Liaskovik has a beautiful location at a very elevated point beneath a beetling cliff. Splendid view to snow capped mountain range to west.
Liaskovik formerly had a pop of 10000 — now only 1000. Was practically destroyed by Greeks in Epirote wars and most of town is now in ruins.
Thursday April 3
By an heroic effort we got away early today leaving ca. 6.15 A.M. We descended pretty good road with sharp curves and fine views of Perati (19 km). Here is an Italian garage where we met an American born corporal who gave us 2 casings in exchange for old ones. We spent 2 hrs here repairing the ?. Then drove on 25 km. to Kalibaki hunction of roads for Santi Quaranta Shortly after we passd the last Italian station adn continued on to Yanina which we reached at 12.30. Distance form Liaskovik = 77 km (from Korytsa 168). Bright warm day — like summer.
In P.M. Dr. Black and I visited 2 civil hospitals one private foundation “George Hadjikosta” and the other municipal. We also called on Secretary to Gov-Gen. Gov-Gen. is absent in Athens. Also looked through annex of military hosp. which now occupies building of municipal plant. There is an epidemic of flue among new recruits in army here — ca. 300 cases of a light form (only 2 deaths).
Prof. Hopkins and Bouyoucos went to the country to study soils.
We had 2 good rooms at Hotel Averoff and took our meals at restaurant across street.
Friday Apr. 4
Warm summer day.
The Sec. of the Gov.Gen put a good car at our disposal and we didn’t have to walk all day.
Dr. Black and I visited military hospital in the morning. Fine location on bluff jutting out into Lake. Many buildings and fair facilities. Fair quantity of drugs.
Later we inspected central disinfecting plant which is improvised but good.
Also one of disinfecting stations which are located on each road entering town. Every person entering has to submit to inspection and if he seems unclean he is put through the disinfecting process.
Lte int eh afternoon Dr. B. and I went across the lake in a boat and landed on the island where we saw the house in which according to tradition Ali Pasha was killed.
We all lunched today with the sec of the Gov General. The nomarch of Yannina was there also the nomarch of Preveza.
We distributed the hospital supplies we had brought with us — or rather we gave them all to the municipal hospital this afternoon.
Also called on Italian Consul here. He has a fine collection of carpets.
Saturday April 5
We left at 7.30 this morning in the Camionette on the return trip to Salonica via Korytsa. Fine clear day. We ahd one blow out just at the Italian frontier post — but no more trouble all day. We are running light now since our supplies have been given away and the tires hold up pretty well.
We reached Perati ca. 10 and stopped ¾ hr. we changed 2 damaged tubes for sound ones.
Arrived Liaskoviks at noon and had lunch with the Italian officers at their mess.
Left again at 1.30 and proceeded steadily till 6.30 when we finally pulled into Korytsa.
It was a fine run and a beautiful day.
We called on French commandant in evening. He advises us to attempt the Castoria road tomorrow — which we propose to do.
Sunday April 6
At 8 this morning we left Korytsa and in something more than an hour reached Vikelista. Here we called on the Italian OC and tried to get two new casings. He said he had more none but he gave us some gasoline and oil. Also gave us each a cup of coffee at his mess.
We went on the road until we came to the junction for Castoria.
Here we turned off and followed a narrow valley with a considerable stream for 10 km. Then the road left the valley and climbed in steep grade with many curves over the high hills bordering the lake of Castoria on the north. Road very poor almost impassable in sports. Splendid view of the lake and Castoria from the top.
Then sharply curving descent to lake and town.
The town is picturesquely sitatuated on narrow neck of land connecting a mountainous headland with the shore.
Population (ca. ) seems to be a curious mixture of Greek Turkish Macedonian and Jew.
There are no hospitals here. So Dr. Black and I had nothing to do but to stroll about. The boats on the lake are very peculiar in contruction. I got a photograph of one.
Maj. Hopkins and Lt. Bounjouros went out into the country immediately after our arrival to collect samples of soil etc. so as to be ready to leave tomorrow morning.
Dr. Black and I played some rounds of double Canfield. Each of us got them all up at once.
Maj. Hopkins and B. got in late in the evening. Very tired but ready to go on tomorrow.
Monday April 7
This was a day of travel all day long. The road South through Ohroupistacta to Kozani is closed on acct. of a bridge out. So we took an alternative route to east.
By a bad road we got round south side of lake and then continued up a long grade with numerous zigzags on the side of mountain till we came to summit (ca. 4800 ft.) near Vlacho-~Klisura. Steep descent by a badly neglected road with many sharp turns. Then eastward along S shore of Lake Rudno. At about 50 km. from Castoria we reach at right angles main Monastir-Kozani road in good condition.
We turned south and in quick time on this fine road ran down to Kozani (ca. 30 km). There are no hospitals here. Consequently we didn’t stop but pushed right on to Verria. This is a fine mountain road ca. 70 km. Very steep grade and summit is very high. Splendid views of mountainside across Haliacmon Valey — one of the finest views on our route.
We reached Verria at 6 P.M. and got a couple of rooms in a wretched Greek hotel.
After a fair dinner in a respectable restaurant we returned to our room for a game of bridge. Exaggerated reports of the number of bedbugs in the beds led us to continue our play till finally we decided to make a night of it. By economical use of candles we managed to make our light last until dawn.
The unfortunate Bonjoury was very weary and sleepy but was not allowed to discontinue playing.
We have had very fine weather for our whole trip except for a couple of days at the beginning. But it looks as if there will be a change.
Tuesday April 8
Shortly after down we ?retired from our bridge and Dr. B. cheered us with a cup of ?beef tea. We thereupon had breakfast and after some delay in getting the camionette into order we left our uncomfortable quarters at Veria for Salonica. Left at 8.00 A.M. We turned back on Monastir road and proceeded ca. 6 km. to “Alexander Spring”. Maj. Hopkins wished to spend a few hours examining soil here.
While we waited a considerable shower came on which caused a good deal of wind and made prospecting difficult for the agriculturists. We had a light lunch of jam and bread and ca. 3 P.M. left from Salonica where we arrived at 5.00 P.M.
We found Maj. Carey at the ARC house. Most of the Balkan Commission is here. They occupy the upper house. We got a small room with 4 beds at the Serbian hospital (Hersch Hospital converted).
Dinner at the British officers’s Rest House.
Wednesday April 9
Maj. Black and I saw Mr. Adossides this morning. He promised to get us transportation to Athens tomorrow (I have decided to go on to Athens.). Also invited us to dinner tonight. Mrs. Adossides is ill.
We went out this morning and looked over British Officers’ Convalescent Home at ?Chrirafelos (Asvestochori). It is beautifully situated adn planned. It is now evacuated and is prob. to be sold to the Greek army. The ARC is to supply some of the equipment.
In the evening we fined with the Gov. His sister Mrs. Calvert was there and half a dozen guests.
We had tea with the Hortons and met Mr. Koudouriotis and his daughter. Mr. K. was Greek minister at Belgrade and has now retired. Both were at the Governor’s dinner and both are to leave for Athens tomorrow. We are to go in the car.
Thursday April 10
Maj. Black had long interview with Maj. Forward of the Balkan Commission.
We met Col. Farnam of the north Serbian Commission who has just got in for a conference here “to divide the spoils” of the Balkan Commission.
At 2 P.M. we left on the Express in Mr. Koundouriotis’s car for Athens.
Lt. Welch is also aboard going to Athens to take over from young Cumberbatch.
Uneventful journey. We played bridge with the Minister.
Friday April 11
Arrived Athens ca. 1 P.M. Drove to house in cab and got a little lunch.
Found 1 letter from Mother.
Maj. James and Maj. Oakley have both left for home and the family is now somewhat reduced.
Col. Anderson and Maj. Thompson of the Balkan Commission are staying at the house.
BHH seems as well as usual.
Sun Apr. 13
Wace came over this morning and took me to the British School for lunch after which in company with ? and Ormerod and 2 British officers (Maj. Bailey of Taranto and 1 naval officer) we went out for a tramp to Mt. Hymettus – Galopoula and Kaisariani.
We had 2 YMCA men and Kendall Smith for dinner. Smith is running the YMCA in Athens.
Monday Apr. 14
I wrote a letter to Prof. Day giving him an account of our trip in Western Macedonia.
Spent considerable time typing our rest of my manuscript on Korakou.
Col. Anderson left for Salonika by aeroplane.
Tuesday Apr. 15
Today I bought some khaki cloth for a suit which I gave to a tailor on Kolokotronis St. to make up for me.
Wednesday Apr. 16
Col. Capps and Maj. Black left by the noon train for Salonika.
Thursday April 17 to Sat. Apr. 19
Nothing of importance. I worked most of the time on my prehistoric article about Korakou.
Tea Sat. afternoon for Mrs. ? and Mrs. Peroglu and her daughter.
Friday night I went down with Maj. Weld and looked at procession – Good Friday.
Sat. night I went with Maj. Weld to house of Mrs. Kyriakides and stood on balcony overlooking Metropolitan Square to watch ceremony at midnight.
Adams was there also having returned from Serres a day or two ago.
Sunday April 20
Easter Day – I typed my Korakou article all morning.
Col. Capps and Maj. Black came back at noon from Saloniki bringing Maj. Walker with them. He reports everything going well in E. Maced.
Maj. Hopkins and Lt. Benjamin came up for lunch at my invitation.
Monday April 21
This is going to be a chaser sent up to Kavalla tomorrow and the Col. suggested that I should go up in it as I had offered to go back there and do anything I could to help finish the job there. I accordingly plan to leave tomorrow afternoon at 2.
This afternoon I went to tea at Mrs. Peroglou’s. Philadelpheus was there and talked even more B.S. than usual.
Tuesday April 22
We had a farewell lunch for Wace today. He is leaving for home on 3 months leave next Thursday. Mr. and Mrs. Droppers, Gerry, and the Dinsmoors were there besides Wace, BHH, and me.
Gerry gave me a canvas rubber washbasin for the voyage to Kavalla.
At 2 P.M. a Ford came up to get me and I left for the Chaser. On the way we stopped to pick up Miss Rohe, a publicity agent for the Balkan Commission. The other passengers were Capt. Donaldson, Miss Kudge and Caprano of the ARC, all going to Kavalla for assignment.
We sailed at 3 P.M. on the U.S.S.A.128. Commander is Lt.(j.g.) Hiscock and first officer is Ensign Ball. Fine weather. The chaser is very small and rather crowded. Crew of 4 officers and 19 men. The ladies ? ? forward magazine. Donaldson, Caprano, and I took 3 vacant berths in crew’s quarters forward.
We are sailing first to Mitylene to get some gasoline stored there then to Kavalla.
I may get a chance to go to Bulgaria for Gen. Mazarakis has applied to Col. Capps for help for the Greek refugees still left around Varna and Burgas and I may be sent to investigate and report.
Wednesday April 23
After an uneventful quiet night we pulled into Mitylene ca. 10.30 A.M. this morning. I went ashore and strolled about town for a couple of hours. Lunch at the Grande Betagne.
The chaser in the meantime pulled around to the old harbor and loaded the gasoline.
At 2.30 P.M. we left for Kavalla.
several hours later however when we had rounded the northest corner of Mitylene adn passed through the straits we began to run into a heavy wind and a high sea. As our course lay we ran directly in the trough and the little chaser rolled violently.
The wind grew steadily stronger and finally to add to the excitement about 9 P.M. a fire broke out in the cook’s galley. The careless nigger cook had left some lard on a shelf over the stove and it came down with the rolling of the boat and caught fire. The fire was very speedily put out with no damage. A little later as the wind grew still more violent and the sea ? rose the captain decided to return to the north side of Mitylene for shelter. The wind blew from southwest. Once we gained the lee of Mitylene we were in quiet water again and everybody got a good sleep. During the early part of the evening however some of the crew were sick, also miss Rohe and Capranos.
The heavy sea would have made it impossible to land at Kavalla tomorrow had we gone on.
Thursday April 24
The wind did not go down at all today so we stayed all day long at anchor near Molyvos at the north end of Mitylene. Several times the gusts grew so violent that we dragged our anchor and we had to shift our anchorage.
A stormy cloudy disagreeable day.
Friday April 25
Early this morning the wind had shifted to N.W. and as it was still strong and threatened to swing us in on the shore Mr. Hiscock had up his anchor and made for Mitylene which we reached shortly after breakfast.
I went ashore with Capt. Donaldson and climbed to the top of the pass along the road leading to the Gulf of Yera. A beautiful view in both directions from the pass. A fine clear day with wind from N.W.
We lunched again at the Grande Bretagne.
At 2.15 we started again as the wind showed signs of dropping. Late in the afternoon we passed Molyvo again and headed out to sea to the N.W. The wind began to go down considerably and the pitching was not very bad.
Saturday April 26
At 7 A.M. we arrived at Kavalla in quiet water after an excellent run. We made 11 knots an hour instead of 9 as expected.
After an early breakfast Capt. Donaldson and I went ashore. We arrived at the ARC house in time for another breakfast.
Maj. Dewing has an infection at the base of a tooth which has caused his face to swell up on one side to huge proportions. Otherwise he is well and things seem to be going well. Dewing plans to close up all Macedonian work except that at Drama next Saturday. The arrival of new personnel is embarrassing; there is nothing for them to do. I have a job however, namely to investigate condition etc. of 15000 Greek refugees said to be still concentrated in Eastern Bulgaria. Gen. Mazarakis said they had no fod and were not allowed to leave for home and that Greeks could not help them. So he appealed to ARC to help. Col. Capps wrote to Dewing suggesting that I go to investigate.
Dewing says he will give me Felty to accompany me and he asks us to go to Sophia first to get in touch with Greek military mission there and then go to Eastern Bulgaria. We also have authority to go to Constantinople if the object of our mission is not frustrated thereby.
Everybody seemed glad to see me at Kavalla and it was pleasant to be back.
In the evening there was a grand party with dancing etc. Aside from the ARC crowd there were also present the tobaco men and a number of Greeks. Col. Pratouras and his ADC, Dr. Matoussis, the prefect Mr. [ ] and his Secretary Zagorissos. As a party it seemed to be a grand success but to me it was very dull as I was out of the dancing.
I was glad to see Miss Blakeslee looking pretty well. She ven took part in the dancing which I fancy would shock Dr. Walker if he knew.
Barry and Reirdon came in from Pangaeon in the afternoon.
The chase went back just after noon. Lt. Stoughton and Schmuck were passengers for Athens.
Sunday Apr. 27
Today I did nothing much in the morning but in the afternoon Felty and I left for Drama in a Ford with Mr. Zagoussis. We had previously shipped (in an ambulance) Capt. Donaldson and Miss Blakeslee – the latter going for a visit to Drama. On the way we overtook them and I exchanged places with Miss Blakeslee.
Reached Drama ca. 6.15 P.M. Everything looks the same as usual except that the bridge over the river on the way to the station is washed out.
I found the hosue in the process of preparing for a party. In the evening a British captain ~(RAMC) and 4 nurses and a British Major (R.S.C) from a stranded hospital train come up for dinner and and dance following it. Also Lt. Kephalos and Lt. Malammas of the British and Greek army.
It was a grand binge but exceedingly dull to me and Capt. Donaldson as well, I think. Thomas and Miss Porter wee in from Rodolivos.
Miss Hartz seemed as jolly as ever - quite unchanged. Miss Martin looked very pretty and somewhat distressed with the cares of housekeeping. Both are in good spirits and are together running the dispensary with a large number of patients.
Gray and Gilmore and Mrs. Stewart are the same as ever especially Mrs. Stewart who is more so.
Monday Apr. 28
This morning I alled on the Gov. Gen. and Nicolopoulos and told them what I am going to do in Bulgaria. Both were interested and glad to have the ARC take up the matter. It is going to be difficult to get through however. For the R.R. bridge over the Nestos at Buk has been washed out. there will be no train for 10 days. The carriage bridge from Kavalla to Xanthi is also destroyed. Likewise the R.R. bridge over the Struma at Demir Hissar.
Accordingly I asked the Gov. Gen. if he would give me a car to go to Sophia by motor. In the course of the day this matter was arranged and I am to have the Sunbeam tomorrow at 6 A.M.
To avoid trouble in Bulgaria Felty will drive up and we will take Gilmore to drive the car back. At the last minute Gray also decided to go to escort Gilmore safely back.
We don’t know how far it is and we know nothing of the road but it is said to be a long day’s trip.
Capt. Donaldson will stay at Drama in charge while Gray is away.
Miss Porter and Thomas went back to Rodolivos at noon. I got them horses through Nicolopoulos.
In the evening Mrs. Kalyvas and wife of the Prefect came in for a visit with Miss Hartz [
I had a little talk with the Prefect in the afternoon.
Tuesday April 29
We were a little delayed in starting this morning but finally got away at 8.15 new time (daylight savings = 7.15 old time).
The car ran very nicely and Felty drove well. We took the road north to Prosochani; then up through the hills along a picturesque route to Zirnovo.
Soon after we crossed the frontier without incident and drove on across hills till we struck the fairly wide plain of Nevrocop. Nevrocop is ca. 75 km. from Drama. We went on 8 km. farther and found that the main road is badly washed out and impassible for a car. So we went back to Nevrocop. Here some Bulgarian officers were very polite to us and suggested an alternative route by a new road via Dospot, Batak, Peshtera nd Pazardjik to Sofia. One of the offers kindly lent us a map of this region as we had none.
The new bridge just below Nevrocop is washed out but we crossed by the old one which is shaky and rotten. Then we went on mostly by a bad rough road with steep grades generally over bare hills constrantly ascending. The grade was too much for the car which developed engine trouble – weakening of the heart, apparently. For several hours we stood by the roadside doing everything possible to coax the machine to go. A number of Bulgarian peasants passed us and gave us an occasional hand in pushing the car. They were all very friendly and polite. Finally in the evening the engine started again and we crawled up to the top of a big hill. Then there was a swift descent by a steep narrow winding road through a small village (Dolian) down into a deep valley with a small river. We crossed the river and started up the other side. Here we struck a washout in the road – a pit 8 ft. dep and 6 ft. wide right across the road. There were 8 peasants, however, guarded by 2 Bulgarian soldiers, busily filling up the pit with large stones. They had heard that we were coming and were making the road passable for us. They finished about 9 P.M. and we were able to get across the washout very nicely. From here we climbed again a couple of miles; then descended into another village Satovica or Satoffcha. We decided to stop here for the night.
We were met by the Military commandant of the place and the Doctor who spoke French. They were very friendly. The Doctor (? Apostoloff) invited us to dinner at his house. We went there and spent ca. 2 hrs. eating a very satisfactory meal and drinking huge quanities of masticha and wine which he urged upon us. Some of the notables of the town came in and we had a pleasant evening. After midnight we finally got to bed. I’m in the doctor’s house and the others in 2 other private houses in town.
Satovica is 32 km. from Nevrocop.
Wednesday Apr. 30
This morning I got up about 7.30 and went round to wake up the others. Found Felty in bed and got him up and then sent a messenger to rout out Gray and Gilmore. We had hot milk served us for breakfast. About 9.30 or nearly 10 we got started – the engine seemed to be working better than yesterday. The road still very rough and has very heavy grades. Peasants had been sent out to chop away a couple of trees that had fallen across the way and we found the road clear. The route is very interesting chiefly over rather open hills with fine views but sometimes running through pine woods. After a long descent with steep grades and sharp curves we crossed a small river and climbed to the village of Dospat just beyond it. Here the commandant and various dignitaries were waiting to receive us. None of them spoke any language we could understand but they invited us by signs to lunch with them. We declined and said we had to push on.
We left Dospat (26 km. from Satovica, 58 from Nevrocop, 133 from Drama) shortly after noon adn for the next 50 km. travelled over the Rhodope Mts. without striking a village. Ths was one of the finest motor rides I have ever taken. For most of the way we must have been at an elevation of 4000 to 5000 ft. above sea level or more. The road is very good and winds about through beautiful pine woods (Balsams) and then as we descend to Batak passes through a narrow valley with heavy woods of beech. It was very cold and we had a chilly shower of rain on the way. Along the road near the summit we passd between banks of snow and there was a good deal of snow under the pines. The ground was full of crocuses and lower (near Dospat) I saw great numbers of yellow primroses! It was a lovely ride – scenery like that in Switzerland.
From Batak which looked like a lumbering town the road wound down in sharp curves through a narrow little gorge following a river till we came to Pestera. Here we drove across low hills till we came to the plain. After a short run across the plain we crossed the RR line and came to the large town of Pazardjik at ca. 4.30 P.M. Here we had a few drinks of masticha with the Bulgarian commandant and pulled out again for Sofia.
Pazardjik is 87 km from Dospat, 145 from Nevrocop, and 220 from Drama.
The commandant told us that Sofia is 120 km. away on a good road.
We left at 5 P.M. and went along beautifully for 15 km. Then the engine stalled and we couldn’t start it again for perhaps 1 ½ hrs.
We couldn’t discover the trouble at all. Finally we got a team of oxen to haul us a little way and by slipping in the clutch got started at last. We began to climb over a low pass and the road soon became wretched. Full of holes and badly worn by rain.
Felty drove admirablly hwoever and we went spinning along over the bad road crossing several low passs in succession.
After stopping ca. ¾ hr. to get the lights going we finally crossed the last pass and came down into a valley. At last ca. 11 P.M. we came to a big town which we found to be Ichtiman and here we stopped for the night. We found a small hotel where we secured rooms and where we put the car into the courtyard and after a cold lunch in our room we turned in in our beds tired and cold.
Thursday May 1
We got up late on a cold rainy looking day It is May day and a big holiday. Most of the people of the town are wearing a red ribbon in their button hole which they say stands for the Bolsheviks. We had a good breakfast in the hotel of eggs and meatballs.
At 10.30 we finally got away. The engine started very nicely and for a while ran well. We crossed another low pass and after going through a small village at last struck a fine smooth road. The first post said 45 km. to Sofia. We also ran into a blinding freezing rain-storm which later turned to snow. It was cold wintry weather.
We followed the good road for about 35 km. through a beautiful deep gorge with a roaring river below us. The scenery was splendid and would have been finer still in a good day. In spite of the cold this was an enjoyable ride. Once we stalled and had to wait ca. ½ hour more for a passing ox team to drag us 50 yards till the engine got startd again.
When we emerged from the gorge we had only 10 or 12 km. to go to Sofia through open country. Here we stalled again however for more then an hour in a blinding snow storm. At last another ox team came along and pulled us out and after a fast run we got to Sofia ca. 3.00 ~P.M. in an icey drizzle and snowstorm.
We got rooms of sorts at the Grand Hotel “Bulgaria” whee we also had a simple lunch.
Afterwards we called on the American minister but he was out.
We did nothing more then except to change into dry clothes until diner time. After dinner we took to our beds and had a good sleep.
This afternoon we got the car taken into a British garage where we hope it may be put into good shape for the run back to Drama.
Sofia is a very respectable looking modern town built somewhat on the German plan. There are a good many large substantial buildings. Some of the streets are paved with good bricks. Others with cobblestones. The streets are fairly clean.
Friday May 2
Still cold and rainy. In the morning Felty and I called on the American Minister Mr. Wilson. Then we went to the Greek Legation and saw the Greek Military Mission. I asked them to telegraph Mr. Gotsis that we had arrived safely. Capt. Iatrides confirmed in general what Gen. Mazarakis had said about 15000 Greek refugees being still in Eastern Bulgaria. I told him we would leave tomorrow if possible for Varna and Burgas to investigate. He said he would telegraph to the Greek representatives there to help us. He said there were nwo only ca. 1300 refugees left from Eastern Macedonia but many thousands of Greeks from Thrace – total now ca. 15000. These are chiefly at Burgas adn along the RR from Burgas. to Stara Zagora and to Adrianople.
Afterwards we strolled about town before and after lunch. We exchanged some Greek money for Bulgar at the startling rate of 400 levs for 100 drachs. Everbody consequently felt so rich that there was a plural desire to spend money. Felty bought a camera for 1200 levs. Gilmore a pair of field glasss for 650. I bought 10 rolls of film and a good knife. Only Gray resisted the temptation to buy.
In the evening we went to the Bulgarian opera and heard Faust sung in Bulgarian by local artists. It was a creditable performance but not extremely good. Mephistopheles was by no means as good as [ ] who used to sing in Athens and the tenor Faust was a disappointment. Likewise Magarita. None of the singers seemed to have pwoer to fill the room. The chorus was also weak. The theater is a very nice one with a good stage of great depth.
Saturday May 3
This morning Felty and I again went to see the Greek mission and got a list of places in Eastern Bulgaria at which they say refugees are concentrated. Also the name of the Greek representative in Varna. Afterwards we went on another shopping tour in the course of which I bought a large knife for use at excavations if I ever dig again.
We tried yesterday to secure accommodations on the train for Varna today but last night were informed that there were no seats to be had in the sleeping car. So we had resigned ourselves to the idea of spending an extra day here in Sofia and leaving town tomorrow. But this afternoon at 3 the hall porter or hotel clerk appeared and said the reservation had actually been made and that we wee due to leave at 5 for Varna. So we hastily packed up and departed from the hotel shortly after 4 - Felty and I. On the way we met Gray and Gimore who accompanied us ot the station.
The English RTO gave us an order entitling us to transportation and at 5 P.M. in a heavy rain shower we started for Varna. We had a small compartment with 2 berths in a sleeping car and were very comfortable.
Leaving Sofia we followed a small river and passed down through a fine gorge for a long time. This was apparently while passing through the Balkan Mts. Very fine scenery – very much like that we had Thursday when coming down to Sofia.
We spent a very comfortable nightin the sleeping car.
Sunday May 4
We were waked at 5.30 by the porter to change cars at Gorna. For the sleeper was to go through to Rustchuk while we were bound for Varna. We soon regretted that we hadn’t stayd in the sleeoper to Rustchuk adn continued on from there to Varna.
We got accommodations and a 2nd class compartment (no other available) one of which was reserved for us. Large number of people travelling. The train went slowly – stopping a long time at each station –through a prosperous looking agricultural country. Condiderable woods from time to time. We spent most of the day travelling in this way. Ca. 12.20 we passed Shuman a large town at which I understood one fo the internment camps for Greeks etc. had been.
Sometime later we passed along a lake and sand hills began to indicate that we were approaching the sea. About 4 or 4.30 P.M. we finally pulled into ?Taruc.
We went to the Hotel London now commandeered by the British and got a small double room. There are a good many British still here in the remnants of the 26th Division but all expect to leave very soon.
After washing up we went to look up the Greek doctor in Varna who looks after the refugees. We soon found him – Capt. Kitanos and his assistant Lt. Germanos.
They greeted me very cordially and soon took us in a cab to see the refugees still living in freight cars. there are 43 here. The cars look clean and the refugees seem in good shape though naturally they are eager to get back to their homes in Eastern Macedonia. A good many of them I noticed spoke Macedonian nad only a few words of Greek.
In the town of Varna (pop 45000) there are baout 250 more refugees from E. Macedonia scattered about in houses.
Dr. Kitanos gives them food regularly and has supplied some clothing. He said he had ample supplies for 20 days more and I judge he has for a longer time still. All of his refugees are waiting impatiently for a boat to take them home.
We called on the French naval commandant and asked about means of transport to Burgas. He said there was a small Bulgarian steamer sailing tomorrow at 5 under French flag which was at our service if we want to use it. We asked if the sailing could be postponed till 9 so that we might see some of the refugees in the town tomorrow morning before departure. Tbe commandant very kindly arranged this for us.
Dr. Kitanos then took us out to a park on a hill above the sea and we heard a Bulgarian band play a number of pieces of good music.
The Dr. then took us to dinner at a Greek restaurant which was our first square meal of the day. This restaurant was formerly very popular here but now being patronized by the Greek officers and their dozen or more men it has been almost completely boycotted by the Bulgars and has very little business left.
I had developed a headache during the slow run on the train and after dinner went back to the hotel and to bed directly.
Monday May 5
I got up at 6 A.M. and Felty a little later. We went out with a Greek corporal who called for us and after having a glass of tea we met Dr. Kitanos. He took us to see some of the refugees, ca. 50 or 60 who had gathered for our inspection. They all looked pretty well fed though short of clothing and shoes. Most of these I noticed spoke Greek and looked thoroughly Hellenic. They appealed clamorously for help in getting a steamer sent to take them home.
According to my judgement there is no need for action by the ARC here at Varna (save possibly by speeding up the dispatch of a boat to get these people). The Greeks have food enough and some clothes – I know they have blankets and seem to be handling the situation adequately.
At 9 A.M. we embarked in a small Bulgarian boat and cast loose from Varna. Varna is a prosperous looking city with many substantial buildings and some fine houses. The location sems to me extraordinarily good. There is a good harbor partly natural and partly enclosed by a high breakwater. Large ships can enter and tie up by the quay.
Some distance east of Varna is a point on which stands a castle with an imposing tower. This was, I am told, a palace belonging to King Ferdinand.
We were nicely treated aboard the boat – the Sophia. The captain is a Bulgar who speaks a little English. He had his 4 year old daughter with him a very lively and friendly little girl. The crew are all Bulgars. There is one Frenchman aboard a naval petty officer as commissioner of the French Govm’t and the captain is really subject to him. He is very friendly to us.
At noon they gave us a very sumptuous dinner in the Bulgarian style with wine supplied by the Frenchman and now, feeling very sleepy after a big feed am writing these lines in the small dining saloon.
There are 2 or 3 Greek business men on board as passengers. One of them has invited me to stop for the night with him at Anchialos near Burgas and offers to take me in a cab tomorrow but I have declined with thanks.
Shortly before 6 we arrived at Burgas. The steamer Sophia was really bound for Anchialos for a cargo of salt but made the extra journey of an hour and ½ 9ca. 12 miles) solely on our account. We paid nothing on the boat being as the French Commissionaire said guests of the French Government.
As Burgas we got a room in the Continental Hotel. Here we met a French officer stationed at Burgas - Lt. Guyet. Capt. Antoniadis (M.D.) the Greek representative is not here having gone to Philippopolis. Lt. Guyet was very helpful to us. He told us that there are still about 1000 refugees from Eastern Macedonia in this region. Perhaps 30 of these are here in Burgas. The remainder are scattered about in the villages between Burgas and Philippopolis. Lt. Guyet told us it would take 8 days to gather them all together which he did not propose to do until he had means to transport them to Macedonia either by rail or by boat. Dr. Antoniades has given money to many of them to buy food. It is not possible to feed them with rations since they are too widely scattered. It is not possible to see them either unless they are rounded up by a general order which would be a considerable job. Lt. Guyet thinks the only thing that can be done is to distribute money to the most needy until it becomes possible to ship them home. That is out of the question by rail for the time being given the rail between Adrianople and Dedeagatch is out of commission ca. 20 km. – having been washed away by the last rain storm (acc. to Lt. Guyet).
There is another class of refugees in this region – namely those from Turkish Thrace. Guyet thinks there may be as many as 100000 between Burgas and Philippopolis and Adrianople. Most of these came over from Thrace in 1912-13 and have become more or les permanently established by this time. Guyet has received orders not to repatriate any of these until after peace is signed. They are by no means in so wretched a condition as the newer refugees from Macedonia though it is probably true that most of them would like to return to their homes.
The Greek estimate for these Thracian refugees was ca. 15000 which is very far short of Guyet’s figure. The Greek estimate no doubt represents the Greek element among these refugees. The balance then would be Turks Bulgars etc.
We met a young man named John Bezi who is carrying on for Dr. Antoniades in the latter’s absence. He introduced us to his friends and gave us a big dinner at a small cookshop. It was a very good meal set off by two bottles of good Italian wine and two bottles of acceptable Italian champagne. Bezi comfirmed in general what Lt. Guyet told me.
Tuesday May 6
St. George’s Day.
As we had obtained all the information we could last night and it was evident that in view of the great dispersal of the refugees we could not see any great number of them we decided to push on by the morning train for Philippoulos.
Accordingly at 7.40 A.M. we set out enconsced in fairly comfortable 1st class compartment which bore a • prepared by Lt. Guyet informing the public that this compartment ans was occupied by the mission of the Am.R.C. The label proved very effectual as a matter of fact and we were not disturbed by any one till when we were practically in sight of Phillipolis two bold sirens invaded our precinct.
It was a pleasnat ride through a beautiful agricultural and grazing country. We saw enormous numbers of sheep and cattle. I suppose some of these must be booty carried away from East Macedonia.
All along the route and especially as we approach Phillipolis the country is dotted with small conical mounds resembling those about Salonica. I noticed similar mounds about Pazgardjik and some in neighborhood of Sofia a few days ago. None that I saw appeared to have been excavated. I have no doubt however that they are tumuli.
I saw one or two low mounds that looked as though they might be prehistoric sites but had no chance to examine them.
We arrived at Phillipopoulos at 5 P.M. It is an interesting looking prosperous town of ca. 50000 pop. (Much larger than Burgas which has only 17000) built on the lopes of around 2 abrupt elevations of rock which stand up curiously in the middle of the broad plain between the Rhodope and the Balkan ranges.
We got a room 4th floor of Hotel Molle. A typical German establishment in the center of the town. Cafe and restaurant attached with a good orchestra. The restaurant is inferior to the cafe.
We were tired adn I didn’t look up Dr. Antoniades. But I met a British intelligence officer stationed here Capt. Evans who told me Antoniades was seriously ill with pneumonia.
The Intelligence officer was violent in his condemnation of Gen. Mazarakis (agreeing in this with our Minister in Sofia) and said he was barred from the country now. He said he wouldn’t believe anything Mazarakis said.
Monday May 7
Cloudy but no rain.
We got up late. After a light breakfast I went to look up Dr. Antoniades and Mr. Pappadatis his cousin. The latter seems to have 2 houses. I went to both but failed to find him. At one of these the Dr. (Antoniades) is laid up with pneumonia (flue with complications) but the women said he was too ill to see me. They were very curious to know what I came for .
I next went to Mr. Pappadatis’s office but he wasn’t there. About noon he turned up at the hotel however and I had a talk with him.
He says there are from 60 to 70 refugees from Eastern Macedonia hee adn ca. 300 from Thrace. Those from Thrace are not in so serious a condition as those from Macedonia. The latter are now awaiting transportation to their homes.
Later we went to see Dr. Antoniades who was very angry with the women for not letting me see him this morning. He seemed to be suffering somewhat and had a little difficulty in talking but showed himself very much interested in his job of looking after the refugees. According to him there are two pressing problems: 1) to get the refugees from E. Macedonia home was soon as possible (ca. 300 from Varna ca. 1000 from Burgas) preferably by boat. They are in very needy condition.
2) To do something to help the Thracian refugees in Burgas (ca. 1000 in no.) get bread until after the peace is signed they may be able to go home. These 1000 or more have left the villages whee they were reasonably well settled and are now at Burgas hoping for a chance to go to Thrace. But the Allies will not allow them till after peace is signed. In the meantime the Bulgars officially will not allow them to buy bread or supply them with bread. The Bulgars say that if they go back to the village where they were provisionally establishd they can get bread but not at Burgas.
So Dr. Antoniades wants pressure put on Bulg. Govmt. to make them supply bread to these refugees or preferably a small cargo of flour sent to Bulgars to feed these 1000 or more.
In the latter case the same ship that brings the flour could also carry back the refugees from Macedonia to their homes. I will try to get the ARC to urge this on the Greek govmt when I go back.
This morning while running about looking for Mr. Pappadatis I ran into a boy I had met in Drama. He is the brother of the girl named Oraia whom I met with her mother in Drama the first time I went there with Steele. She had gone there with her fiance (Giorgiades) who had met her while a hostage in Phillipople. They are married now. The boy draggd me off to his home where I had a talk with his mother. She gave me a drink and a cigar.
After lunch we resumed our travels since there was nothing further to be done in Philippople. We decided to go on to Adrianople and have a look at the situation there. The train left at 2.40 and the French RTO kindly arranged for our transportation. There was a sleeping car on the train and we got a compartment in it. We were so comfortably established here that we speedily decided not to stop at Adrianople but to go right on to Constantinople. Dewing told us we might and gave us a travel order to this effect.
Very pleasant green country we travelled through – dotted with conical mounds. Slow train stopping a long time at each station. We stayed ca. 14 hr. at Trnovo Siemen – leaving there at 8.30 A.M.
Thursday May 8
This morning at 6.30 we started from ?Kuteli Burgas whee we had been lying for 3-4 hours. I didn’t get up till nearly 9. We got breakfast and lunch in a dining car.
The road ran through interesting rolling country green everywhere and very fair to look upon. Our train went amazingly slowly and gave us all the opportunity in the world to enjoy the scenery.
We finally got in to Constantinople at 7.30 P.M. The next hour we spent in a cab driving about from one hotel to another looking for a room. We had almost given up in despair when we found a room at last in the 4th floor of a small Grek hotel – the Prince’s hotel (but no princes ever came here). It costs us 3 Turkish Pounds per day (= 21 drachs). I changed 100 drachs for 14 L.T.
Friday May 9
We spent most of the morning looking up the British canteen and the ordnance where Felty wanted to buy some clothing. He was unable to buy any but they gave him an overcoat.
In the afternoon we walked over to Stamboul and visited St. Sophia after which we went to the Bazaar. Felty bought some embroidery and some furs to take home to his wife. I picked up one bit of embroidery. Had a look round the bazaar for rugs especially. ? but was unable to find any of the latter that would compare with my own in Athens. Prices of rugs are high compared with what they were before the war but not high compared with prices in Athens. It seemed to me there were a good many rugs in the bazaar but a good many were of poor quality.
prices are very high in general especially of food. A fair meal in a restaurant costs ca. 2 L.T per person which at the present rate of exchange amounts to ca. 14 drachmae.
Saturday May 10
This morning we climbed the Galata tower and I took a good many pictures of the fine panorama of Constantinopel. This is the first day of clear sunny weather since we left Drama.
We strolled on across to Samboul and visited the Bayazid or Pigeon mosque. There was not a single pigeon to be seen.
Next we went to the Suleimaniyeh or mosque of Suleiman the Magnificent. It is a very impressive place – more so than I remember from my former visit for Constantinople 6 yrs. ago.
We went back to the Bazaar and had lunch wat the Tokatlian restaurant there. Then we spent most of the afternoon prowling about the Bazaar. I bought a fine pair of German field glasss (zins) for 22 Turkish pounds from a hawker. Also a couple of cigarette holders and a couple of bits of embroidery – Turkish towels.
Sunday May 11
This morning I went to the Imp. Ottoman Museum and spent some time looking at the wonderful sarcophagi from Sidon. I suppose the so-called Alexander Sacrophagus is the masterpiece – but for beauty I prefer the smaller one in the form of an Ionic temple with mourning maidens in the intercolumniations.
Felty didn’t go with me to the museum. He is a queer bird – seems tired of sight-seeing already. He is a pretty good fellow but makes a very unsatisfactory travelling companion for me. Very uncongenial – isn’t educated enough to be much interested in anything we see. We haven’t very much in common.
From the museum I went to the Bazaar where I was to meet Felty for lunch at the Tokathian. The Tok. was closed today so we were obliged to go down to the Bridge to a small restaurant there.
After lunch I had thought of going up the Bosporus for an excursion but Felty wanted to go to the Bazaar again to try to trade in his old American field glasses. So we went to the Bazaar and spent most of the afternoon
Monday May 12
We spent the morning getting ready for departing tomorrow – that is laying in supplies at the canteen etc.
At noon we caught a boat from the Galata Bridge for an excursion up the Bosporus. Bright sunny weather made it a very fine trip. We criss-crossed a good many times and finally got to Anatoli Kavak ca. 3 P.M. The boat stopped an hour there and then turned about came back to Constantinople. Arr. ca. 7.00 P.M.
Tuesday May 13
We left this morning at 8.52 A.M. returning to Macedonia. Warm day. Nothing unusual on the train. We met an American captain (artillary) Muir on the train who was an interesting good fellow. He was bound for Sofia and Bucarest.
We went to bed in the sleeping car to get a few hrs. sleep before getting up and changing cars at the junction of Kulesi Burgas.
Wednesday May 14
We got up at 3 A.M. and transferred into a 2nd cl. car bound for Xanthi. It started at 4.12 A.M. Spent the whole day travelling leisurely through Bulgarian Thrace. The train usually stopped from ½ to 1 ½ hours at each station.
Ca. 2 P.M. we reached Gunuldina. Here we met Col. Smyth and Lt. Tucker who were bound for Drama going in a private car as far as Buk.
They invited us to join them in their car which we did with pleasure.
Reached Xanthi ca. 4.15 P.M. Gilmore is said to be here with the Sunbeam car still – having been here several days. He has a man with him who apparently came from Drama with gasoline. No sign of Gilmore at the station.
At 5 we went on. From Oxilar to Buk beautiful ride up the gorge of the Nestor.
We stopped for the night at Buk where the bridge is washed away. We slept in the car.
Thursday May 15
This morning bout 10 we walked to the brige and were hauled across a wide gap in the bridge high above the river on a swaying platform suspended from a cable. Got a slow train and went to Drama arriving ca. 12.45.
All personnel at station absent in Prosochani except Miss Kelly. She is gossipy and told us much news. There have been many incidents, quarrels and dissensions since we left and the personnel is all changed.
Miss Hartz and Miss Martin are in Serres nursing Dr. Hodgson now convalescent from typhus. Mrs. Stewart was sent back to Athens after many stormy scenes and after stirring up the Greeks as much as possible against Donaldson and Dewing in her behalf. Gray has been sent back to Athens for absenting himself from station without permission.
Donaldson now in charge with Miss Glenn. Blakeslee and Kelly here. Thomas has gone to rescue Gilmore.
One party of ARC went to Constant. yesterday.
Miss Kelly gave us lunch and in P.M. we went to Kavalla in a camion we found in the square conveying Greek officers.
Friday May 16
I stayed in Kavalla today. In the morning wrote up a report of my trip to Bulgaria which Dewing very kindly typed out for me.
In the afternoon I worked through the records of the early distributions on Mt. Pangeon with myself and Miller and made them up into the form of a table. The grand total of clothing distributed amounts to ca. 5500 pieces.
In the evening Gilmore and Thomas arrived in the Gov. General’s car from Xanthi.
Saturday May 17
This morning most of us went to Drama – Maj. Dewing, Miss Addison, Capt. White, Thomas, Gilmore and I.
Dewing, Miss Addison and Miss Glenn went back to Kavalla tonight. Donaldson Miss Blakesless and Miss Kelley are still at Drama.
I am bound for Athens. There is a telegram from Hill asking me to come back for the Corinth job.
White is also gone to Athens but has to stop to visit Taylor at Rodolivos and for 1 day at Serres. He wants me to go with him.
I have got to stay over here tomorrow because I forgot my watch at Kavalla this morning. Miss Kelley is going down tomorrow and will bring it back in the evening.
Sunday May 18
[last paginated page is p. 125; various notes follow on unpaginated pages, clustered at the back of the diary.]
Varna pop. 45000
Refugees 43 in freight cars
ca. 250 in town
waiting for steamer to go home.
[list of personal expenses not transcribed]
For Red Cross
4th Regt. of Bulg. prisoners
Bulg. prisoner held by Serbs
new of him desired by
who gave us diner and put us up for the night Apr. 29
[list of films shot; not transcribed]
[list of personal and business expenses not transcribed]
Demir Hissar 6000 pop. (formerly 3000 inhabitants)
Jan. 21 incl. chiefly refugees from neighboring villages
Hospitals 2 military
1 civilian organized by Brit. Red Cross 12 beds
Lack of medicines (The British Red Cross gave them disinfectants)
No free dispensaries.
Two civilian doctors give prescriptions to poor and if signed by governor they present them at drug store and get drugs free.
No orphan asylum. 10 or 2 children sent to asylum at Serres.
Railway station now used is that of Vetrina 12 kilom. distant.
Soup kitchen serves daily (noon only ) 1600 to 1800 (chiefly natives of Demir Hissar)
There are a few cases of typhus also some grippe and malaria.
Refugees from E. Macedonia 60 to 70
Refugees from Thrace ca. 300
deportation began Sep. 1917 5000 to 6000 men
Circular (#14027) of general staff of 10th division (Drama) of the garrison commanders of Kavalla etc. etc.
orders deportation of Greek population of occupied part of Macedonia beginning nearest frontiers.
No. 14027 July 10, 1917.
In Drama deporatation began in July.
[business accounts; not transcribed]
[various figures, some scratched out; not transcribed]
[In back pocket; not transcribed: receipts for train tickets; catalogue of villages and populations in area of Demir Hissar; list of expenses; calling card of Achilles Papadatos; hotel receipt from Bulgaria; address of contact in Varna]