VOLOS – NEA IONIA: SO FAR, SO CLOSE

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VOLOS – NEA IONIA: SO FAR, SO CLOSE

1840-1922: The newly founded city of Volos is rapidly transforming from a suburb of merchants into one of the most important industrial Greek city. In 1922, 13.000 refugees from Asia Minor are settling in Volos.

1924-1947: The refugee’s settlement, Nea Ionia, becomes a municipality with its own economic and social life. The people of the two municipalities, Volos and Nea Ionia, divided by both physical and cultural borders, learn to coexist and share life and labor.

2014: 4 years after the unification of the two municipalities in one, the Museum of the City of Volos opens and invites visitors to explore the history of the city and its people.

The Museum of the City of Volos opens to the public with the exhibition “Volos – Nea Ionia :  so Faraway, so Close”. The exhibition, dedicating in the 90 years since the foundation of the Asia Minor refugees settlement (naming Nea Ionia) in the area of Volos, tells the story of the coexistence of people of different origins and cultural background into the same city.

Exploring themes such as ‘urban space’, ‘labor’, ‘housing’, ‘dress’, ‘entertainment’, ‘football’, ‘period of crisis’, through unique photos and objects from the museum’s collections, the exhibition offers insight into the history of Volos and its people. One of the strengths of the display is that it is based on oral testimonies from the museum’s digital archive of oral history. Product of the cooperation between the Museum of the City of Volos and the Department of History, Archaeology and Social Anthropology, the digital archive of oral history, under the direction of Riki van Boeschoten, professor of Social Anthropology, is the source of unique testimonies about the multicultural past and present of the city.

The first exhibition of the City Museum of Volos reveals the goals of the newly established museum: it aspires to be a place where both life stories of its people and material evidence of their activity will be displayed.

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