& Tornado Alley
The Economy and Economic History|
Throughout the recorded history of Europe and the Middle East Armenians have been there,
often far afield of their homeland. They have been a distinct but not too alien ethnic group
in many societies. Armenians were among the earliest traders in central Europe. When the
British established a trading post at Calcutta there were already Armenian traders living
The area of the Republic of Armenia is about thirty thousand square kilometers, somewhat
smaller than the American state of Maryland. The population population is roughly 3.5 million, roughly
equal to that of the state of Connecticut. There is an approximately equal number of Armenians
living outside of the Republic.
In reviewing the history of Armenia and the Armenians one is struck with the thought of
how could such a relatively small population have suffered so much sorrow and hardship. And yet the
Armenians have persevered. At the early development of the petroleum industry in the Midle
East there was Calouste Gulbenkian, a key figure. The Armenian-American William Saroyan was not only a famous
author and playwright (Teahouse of the August Moon), but also wrote a popular American song of the
1950's (Come-on-a My House) sung by Rosemary Clooney.
Synopsis of the History of Armenia and the Armenians
- The eighth to sixth centuries B.C.: Migration of ancestors of the Armenians into
the Armenian Plateau from the west. The region had been previously controlled by the
Kingdom of Urartu until its conquest by the Assyrians.
- 95-55 BC: The establishment of an Armenian Empire by Tigran the Great
- 30 BC: The conquest of the Armenian Empire by the Romans
- 310 AD: The Christianization of Armenia
- 653 AD: The Byzantine Empire surrenders Armenia to the Arabs
- 806 AD: The Arab rulers of Armenia put Armenia under the rule of a member of the Armenian
Bagrationi family, thereby initiating the Bagratid dynasty that was to rule Armenia and
Georgia off-and-on for a millenium.
- 1400's: Armenia conquered by the Ottoman Turks
- 1828: Treaty of Turkmanchay grants area around Erevan and Nakhichevan to the Russian Empire.
- 1895: The massacre of three hundred thousand Armenian subjects of the Ottoman Empire by
- 1915: The new government of the Ottoman Empire, called the Young Turks, carries out
genocide of Armenian subjects in Anatolia. The toll is uncertain but estimates range from
one half million to two million Armenians killed.
- 1920: Red Army of Russia imposes a government on Armenia dominated by Bolsheviks
- 1922: Armenia combined with Azerbaijan and Georgia to form the Transcaucasian Federated
Socialist Republic of the Soviet Union.
- 1936: The Transcaucasian Federated
Socialist Republic disbanded and the component republics become members
of Soviet Union.
- 1937-38: Purges of the Communist Party leadership by Lavrentia Beria.
(To be continued.)