To me, being able to hear other people’s stories has been a precious gift. Founding the Museum, being accepted and giving back. EMT is the product of human relations and social bonds, that give life new meaning. These still act as an incentive for the Museum to continue to supply society and be supplied with memories and knowledge. Every day we open the glass door by holding the beaten iron door knob, a gift from an exquisite craftsman and fellow citizen, whilst the wooden 1900 Cross, used for the sanctification of the Museum, has been a generous donation of Ortakio (Ivailograd) minister. These two objects, symbolic and true, mark the philosophy and relationship of the Museum with the local community that it belongs to and is open to each and every calling it makes.
I would like to thank all those marked by the bitter memories of leavign their homes for the unknown, those who strived to cultivate their land, people I have met during my endless walks at the villages in Thrace. I would like to thank these people for our discussions regarding both yesterday and today, their lost fortunes (bereketia) and immigration. Thank them for our endless chats, for educating me, leading me to a
conclusion that defined me. I would like to thank from the bottom of my heart everyone who has shared their own individual story or the big picture, references, memories, sometimes with no hesitation, or while staring silent at the horizon beyond the river. I would like to say thank you to all those who rely on the work of the Museum and help enrich its collection by donating books, clothes, costumes, weaponry,
jewelry, tools, utensils and evidence, justifying and legalizing their choices. I am grateful to everyone who has gifted us with little things, mementos brought to their new homes, carrying trivial stories, personal or collective, smells, sounds, images of their birth place.
All those who gifted us with every day, modest and luxurious objects, both of the same value, hiding stories about eyes that have seen a lot, bosoms tenderly holding babies and warming up cocoons, about hands that ploughed and sowed, harvested, pruned, weaved; processes and techniques where we can recognize our civilization archetypes.
I wish to thank all those who have provided us with stories of patience and devotion written on hand-woven textiles and embroideries, but also with dreams on costumes, depicting a different way of life. I could not forget those who have parted with their old, forgotten objects,
faded, yellow, disregarded, half-eaten by pain and grief, rusty pins of no importance, yet, recorded, conserved and told their own story in the Museum.
Thank you to everyone who trusted us with their family or commemorative photos, either tenderly placed in leather-bound albums or tin boxes.
Photographic evidence of collective memory or mementos of a particular moment in time, telling forgotten stories from fairs, songs, fairytales and romances. Photographic records, like that of Mr. Daides, bringing memories to life, recalling past experiences and events that stand the test of time.
I wish to thank my family from the bottom of my heart and everyone who has been and continues to be a source of support (Aggeliki Giannkidou).
Metropolitan Anthimos of Alexandroupolis and Traianoupolis
Metropolitan Panteleimon of Xanthi and Peritheorio
Father Athanasios Christoforides, Minister of Makris
Aidine Kale Ioanna
Ververi Krause Maria
Ioannidou Gkiourtsidou Elli
Katsiardi Hering Olga
Kritou Karanasiou Aggeliki
Mazarakis Ainian Ioannis
Melidou Kefala Nelly
Mparmpa Limperis Vafeio
Nouri Oztzan Houssein
Rigopoulou Eva TAsmali
Sarkisian Katsiki Fouli
Skouteri Didaskalou Eleonora