LOS ANGELES—In commemoration of the 125th anniversary of his birth, the Shahan Natalie Family Foundation invites the public to attend a tribute to the living memory of the internationally known intrepid Armenian thinker, writer, orator, and activist. The event will take place on Saturday, April 10, 2010, from 2 to 4 p.m. in the Los Angeles Public Library’s Mark Taper Auditorium, 630 West Fifth Street, in downtown Los Angeles. Preceding the afternoon program, from 10am-noon, Sylva Natalie Manoogian will lead a Hye (Armenian) Treasures tour of the Central Library’s resources.
Born in the village of Husenik, province of Kharberd, Historic Armenia, Shahan Natalie (born Hagop Der Hagopian) was orphaned at the age of 11, during the 1895 Hamidian massacres of the Armenians. He was sent to Istanbul and was accepted by the famed Berberian Academy, where his literary career and community activism were launched. At the age of 16, he returned to his native village to join the teaching staff of the school at the Church of St. Varvara. Four years later, in 1904, he immigrated to the United States. Fated to be spared from the atrocities of the 1915-1923 Armenian Genocide by order of the Turkish government, he fulfilled his boyhood vow to devote his entire life to defending the rights of his people world-wide.
Over a period of more than six decades, he wrote under the nom de plume Shahan Natalie, published numerous Armenian language newspapers and books, and traveled to his homeland and Armenian communities throughout the Diaspora. Shahan Natalie’s literary legacy embodies his love, devotion, and pride in the Armenian culture,language and literature, as well as his admiration and respect for the languages and literatures of the world. He transmitted these feelings to his family and others whose lives he touched. In December 1998, the Los Angeles Public Library’s International Languages Department Armenian Language & Literature collection was dedicated in Shahan Natalie’s name.
The event is free and open to the public. Parking is available in the lot beneath the Library, with its entrance at 524 South Flower Street for a $1.00 flat rate, with validation for Los Angeles Public Library cardholders.
Visit the Library’s website, www.lapl.org for further information, or e-mail Sylva Natalie Manoogian at [email protected] for reservations.