The first Armenians settled here in 1835 as silk merchants. By 1862, it's estimated there were 30 Armenian businesses in the city. The Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church of Manchester was consecrated in 1870. It is the oldest Armenian church in the UK.
Joan George 'Merchants in Exile: the Armenians in Manchester, England, 1835-1935' is the definitive book for this community. There is also an article by B. Jenazian entitled 'The Armenian Merchants and Armenian Community in Manchester' (f301.45 Je1). This includes a list of Armenian merchants in Manchester 1838 to 1964.
In addition, we hold the records of Simpad Arabian, a shipping merchant (exporter of textiles, mainly to Egypt and Abyssinia). The records include despatch book (section for 1939 to 1947 relates to the firm of Sukassian), order books, out letter books (some in Armenian) and correspondence, and personal papers 1894 to 1978 (ref GB127.M263). There is also a translation of the Constitution of the Armenian Ladies Association (established 1908), and a photocopy of a booklet recording the first 25 years of the Association (in Armenian) (ref GB127.MISC/835/1-2). Archives+ volunteers have written some blog posts about Manchester's Armenian merchants.
How to access
Materials marked with GB are available in the search room at Central Library, please make an appointment.
Library members can find and reserve the other resources mentioned by following the links to our library catalogue.
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