The Ararat-Eskijian Museum was established in 1985 by Mr. Luther Eskijian, a survivor of the Armenian Genocide of 1915. His vision, first of all, was to create an Armenian museum telling the Armenian story in artifacts, art, maps, books, coins, and other items, starting with his own private collection, and opening the door for others to donate as well.
The second part of his vision was to design a church in ancient Armenian architectural style that could be used by all denominations, (Apostolic, Protestant, and Catholic), enlisting the help of Mr. John Sheen, another Genocide survivor. That church became the Sheen Memorial Chapel and is located above the Museum.
Finally, and importantly, his vision was to create a place where the history of the Genocide could be told and displayed. This included the long-held family record of his father, Rev. Hovhannes Eskijian, a pastor in the city of Aleppo during the Genocide, who also perished at that time. Rev. Eskijian is credited with saving the lives of thousands of Armenians.
Mr. Eskijian raised the funds for the construction of the church and the Museum, supervised the project even into his late 70’s, and was involved in much of the growth of the Museum for many years.
Under the direction of Mrs. Maggie Mangassarian-Goschin, the Museum has now become a world-class institution, a sponsor and location of events, symposiums and exhibits, and a repository of artifacts, coins, including an extensive library and digital library, that has a global reputation with scholars, clergy, artists, historians and dignitaries. The Ararat-Eskijian Museum collaborates with Armenian institutions world-wide, and is the sister museum of the Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute Foundation, in Yerevan, Armenia.
At the entrance to the Ararat-Eskijian Museum is a sculpture designed by Mr. Eskijian, “Mother Armenia Rising from the Ashes,” which is dedicated to those who perished and those who survived in the Genocide. The statue of “Mother Armenia” has been reproduced in Yerevan, Armenia and is adjacent to their Genocide monument.
To learn more about Luther Eskijian, the founder of the Ararat-Eskijian Museum and his parents, Hovhaness and Gulenia Eskijian, click on their images below: