My family in Kuzguncuk

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  • Photo taken in:
    Istanbul
    Country name at time of photo:
    Turkey
    Country name today:
    Turkey

This photo was developed at a photo shop that was located in Taksim. [a district in the European side of Istanbul] The shop was called Foto Cumhuriyet [turkish for Photo Republic].

On the right of the picture you can see my mother-in-law, Rebeka Akkoen, my wife Suzan is standing behind her. My father-in-law, Stefenya Akkoen is standing beside my wife with my elder son, Selim in front of him and my younger son is standing in front of his grandmother. On the very left, a neighbor of ours is standing beside my father-in-law. This photo was taken in the garden of my in-law’s house in Kuzguncuk [a distict in the Asian side of Istanbul].

My wife’s father Stefanya Akkoen, married Mme. Rebeka in 1905. ( I don't know my mother-in-law's maiden name). They had settled down in Kuzguncuk, and had always raised their families there. [Jewish district on the Asian side]

Her father was a hard-working and a very clever man. He was engaged in the customs business. During those times most of the customs officers were non-Muslims [they typically knew trade and languages better]. Later on my father-in-law rented a hall on the Kuzguncuk pier, and ran a club operating as a casino during weekdays, and a cinema on weekends. My father-in-law was also a skilled enough bridge player to become the Bridge Champion of the times. Unfortunately, he was poisoned by something he ate, became sick, and lost his ability to speak. Naturally, we closed down these businesses slowly when he got sick.

Her mother, Rebeka was a very good housewife. They had four children, including my wife Suzan. They educated them very well.

We lived together with my mother-in-law for long years. When my wife's siblings emigrated to Israel, she also went to stay with them, during certain periods of the year. And she died when she was with them in Israel, and was buried there.

After we got married, Suzan always gave her family what she earned. Her family came to live with us when her father got sick. Later on, when the financial situation of Moiz, Suzan's elder brother, improved, he took care of his parents. When my father-in-law died, my mother-in-law started living with us. Later on in 1957, she went to Israel with her younger son, Moiz, and died there in 1967.

Interview details

Interviewee: Moiz Isman
Interviewer:
Meri Schild
Month of interview:
June
Year of interview:
2004
Istanbul, Turkey

KEY PERSON

Rebeka Akkoen
Decade of birth:
1890
City of birth:
Istanbul
Country name at time of birth:
Ottoman Empire
Year of death:
1967
City of death:
Tel Aviv
Country of death:
Israel
Occupation
before WW II:
Housewife

Other Person

Suzan Isman
Year of birth:
1914
City of birth:
Istanbul
Country name at time of birth:
Ottoman Empire
Year of death:
1988
City of death:
Istanbul
Country of death:
Turkey
Occupation
before WW II:
Housewife
after WW II:
Housewife
  • Previous family name: 
    Akkoen
    Year of changing: 
    1935
    Reason for changing: 
    Marriage

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