Save the Survivors
- Alternate Title:
- Save the Survivors - 3,950,000 Starving People Where the Victims Are: Campaign for $30,000,000
- Save the Survivors
- Persuasive Maps: PJ Mode Collection
- Betts, Ethel Franklin
- Other Creators:
- American Committee for Relief in the Near East
- Posted Date:
- ID Number:
- File Name:
- 1900 - 1919
- 48 x 66 (centimeters, height x width)
- The Armenian genocide - the systematic extermination of Armenians by the Ottoman Empire - began in the Spring of 1915. In September, the American Ambassador to Constantinople, Henry Morgenthau, cabled that "The destruction of the Armenian race in Turkey is rapidly progressing," and urged the formation of a committee to raise money for relief (Barton 1930, 3-4). Under the leadership of Cleveland Dodge, the American Committee for Armenian and Syrian Relief (renamed by 1916 the American Committee for Relief in the Near East) was promptly formed. Its members "represented the major American educational, religious and philanthropic activities in Persia, Armenia, Syria, turkey and Arabia." (Ibid. 8). The Committee worked energetically throughout the war to raise funds and provide relief.
The final defeat of Turkey in October 1918 changed the relief picture dramatically. On the one hand, Armenians who had fled might have new opportunities for repatriation and rehabilitation. On the other, the Committee's staff members could expand their work because they were no longer constrained by war. "As soon as word was received of the Turkish armistice and assurance was obtained that at least a part of the territory was accessible, a special campaign was launched in American for $30,000,000, to meet the rehabilitation refugee and child needs in the near East." (Ibid. 107-09, 208-09). This poster is part of the Committee's special campaign. With dramatic text in black and red overlayed on a map of the Near East, it illustrates "Where the Victims Are" and issues a call to "Save the Survivors." The reference to "3,950,000 Starving People" shows that the Committee was focusing not only on the Armenian population of Turkey, but on the greater number of "victims" in the Near East.
The campaign achieved its goals
by its fifth anniversary in 1920, the Committee had raised and distributed more than $30 million (Ibid. 378) - the equivalent of some $400 million current dollars. As a result of its work, the Committee was granted a Congressional charter in August 1919, and continued as "Near East Relief." Through 1930, the Committee had spent over $100 million in its work, and estimated "conservatively" that it had saved more than one million lives, the majority women and children. Ibid. 418, 342. In 1930, the Committee became the Near East Foundation, and continues its work today (http://www.neareast.org/, accessed January 26, 2015).
For other examples of cartographic posters addressing the issues of refugees, see ID #2249.01, 38,000,000 Escaped - 10,000,000 Died (1943)
ID #2229.01, World Refugees (1979).
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- Private Collection of PJ Mode
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