Recently, I had the occasion of visiting with the family of Berge Panosyan. Berge was the driving force behind the digitization of the Hairenik newspapers until his untimely death last year. This visit was bittersweet and jarring as well. The last time I had met with Berge was by chance at the Armenian Embassy in Washington, DC, in the immediate aftermath of the 2020 Artsakh War.
As we looked through his files, I saw his handwritten notes regarding the various issues of the Hairenik Amsakir, a monthly magazine published from 1922 through the 1960s and a quarterly for the last few years of its run. Berge had been working on adding digital copies of the Amsakir to the Hairenik Digital Archives at the time of his passing.
Still resting on the tray to his printer was an envelope addressed to me. With the help of his son, we were able to locate the files, and now this incredibly important publication has been added to the online archives. The images are crisp and searchable, supplying easy access for the first time to the Amsakir.
The value of this collection is evident from the very first issue which contained articles written by such luminaries as Simon Vratsian, Armen Garo and Ashod Armen. Coincidentally, we have recently begun cataloging a section of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) Archives which includes correspondence and original manuscripts of those submitting for publication in the Amsakir. I am certain this collection will be equally useful for scholars and Hairenik readers alike.
Thank you George for a very heartwarming article. Berge, Denis, and Armen are our best friends and there is not a day we do not remember Berg and his good nature.