A Survivor of the Armenian Genocide,” Mariam Baidarian honors her father, who survived the 1915 massacre
“It Must Not Be Forgotten: Memoirs of Pedro Baidarian – A Survivor of the Armenian Genocide” (ISBN 1477668985) by Mariam Baidarian retells the history of the 1915 massacre of over one million Armenians by the Ottoman Empire, a country now known as Turkey. This tragic historical event that took place during World War I remains unknown to much of the larger world. In this deeply affecting memoir, Baidarian recreates the epoch through the memories of her father, who survived the carnage.
Baidarian begins by describing the atmosphere of ethnic hatred and government persecution under which Armenians lived in the former Ottoman Empire. She describes the hostile nature to transport readers to a time they might not have ever experienced or realized occurred. “The Turks started by persecuting the Armenians. They levied heavy taxes and demanded all their animals and their wagons. Then they began to plunder the textile stores, saying they needed material for army uniforms,” writes the author. “The Armenians were simply dragged from their homes and led to certain death. They gave the final farewell to the house where they were born and where they grew, as had their children and parents.”
“It Must Not be Forgotten” includes an instructive history of how the Armenians were conquered by the Ottoman Empire in the Middle Ages yet continued to preserve their unique culture, language and customs. Baidarian describes the successive waves of repression and deportation that Turks waged against Armenians, fearing that the despised minority would unite to take their ancestral homelands back. She shows how the massacres of Armenians began in the late 19th century, culminating in the genocidal events of World War I that would end up killing over one million of her family’s people.
Above all, she shows how her proud father survived the horrendous ordeal to continue on the family line against the threats of bigotry and intolerance. Profound, moving and deeply educational, “It Must Not Be Forgotten” is a highly personal introduction to one of the major, if underreported, events of 20th century history.
“It Must Not Be Forgotten: Memoirs of Pedro Baidarian – A Survivor of the Armenian Genocide” is available for sale online at Amazon.com and other channels.
Like many other Armenians, Mariam Baidarian’s family moved to Brazil in 1926 to escape persecution. Her work has appeared in the book “We Women of the 21st Century – Challenges and Achievements of Modern Times,” and she has also received an award from Euro American Women Writers, Inc.