Gaziantep
Gaziantep is one of the largest and developed cities in Eastern Turkey, it has a long history and has had several name changes over the centuries.

Gaziantep is situated near the Syrian border and has close ties with Aleppo another town with a unique history which also has a lot to recommend it in terms of history and good cheap shopping.

This is GAP territory, where large dams have been constructed harnessing the energy from the river Fırat/Euphrates which crosses through Syria and İraq and empties into the Persian Gulf.
his is the area known in history as Mesopotamia..the land between the river Euphrates and Tigris where early civilisations sprang up. TheTigris/Dicle river also starts its journey in Eastern Turkey.
(And especially for our Bobtheknob im sure he will be interested to know that these two rivers were named in the book of Genesis as coming out of the Garden of Eden)


This is the area where pistachio nuts come from...you might know them as Antep Fıstığı..they're a bit smaller than Italian pistachio nuts but just as nice.

Gaziantep is also famous as having the second largest mosaic museum in the world..this is a recent acquisition as previously that claim belonged to neighbouring Antakya.

The city is also famous for its coppersmiths,and exquisite hand beaten copper artifacts of every shape and size can be had for a fraction of what you would pay back in the UK.
However we now have a member who lives in Gaziantep and maybe he can fill in the gaps that ive left out....
So over to Ali Karabulut..if he feels he would like to say a bit more...or put me right if ive gone wrong
 

AndreaS

New Member
Gaziantep
Thank you for that brief synopsis of Gaziantep. I am soon to marry my Turkish partner and I will be off to Gaziantep in January to meet my 'new family'. As it is off the main tourist trail it is difficult to find out a great deal about the city online. My partner has assured me I will love it. I am really looking forward to exploring the 'real' Turkey as he describes it. Upon my return I will post a thread on my experiences. Thanks again. Andrea
 

KKOB

Completely Chillaxed
Gaziantep
My grandfather was Corporal of Horse in the 13th Hussars and took part in the battles in Mesopotamia. He was the troop's sniper.


From Wikipedia
In July 1916, the brigade left the division and moved to Mesopotamia where, together with the 13th Lancers and the 14th Lancers, it formed part of the 7th Indian Cavalry Brigade. The regiments battle honours include Kut al Amara 1917 and the capture of Baghdad in March 1917. The 13th Hussars also saw action at the last battle of the Mesopotamian front, the Battle of Sharqat, where they made a mounted charge against Turkish guns across a flat plain to the foot of the hill the guns were on and making a further dismounted bayonet charge to take them. The action saw the British regional Commander-in-Chief Sir William Marshall secure control of the Mosul oilfields north of Baghdad.
 

geordie_nev

Member
Gaziantep
I’ve never been to the South East of Turkey, its the only part of Turkey I haven’t been to, Adana is as far south east as I’ve got (although I’ve been to Erzurum and Artvin in the north east a few times), Hopefully one day I’ll get to put that right. Harran and Mardin look really fascinating and the more pics I see of Aleppo the more I want to go and visit – maybe one day.

My grand father died in Gaziantep and I presume he is buried there; he worked as a customs officer. Following his death my family moved back to Istanbul.

My Cousins husband was born and bred in a small village in between Iskenderun and the Syrian border. His family are big land owners/cotton farmers and he used to tell me some great stories of community spirit there in his village.

We live in a Turkish community in here in London and most of the Turks here who work on our high street are from Gaziantep and Diyarbakir, they’ve certainly added to London’s cosmopolitan atmosphere and community.
 
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Gaziantep
hi Geordie-nev..
thats a really interesting post. you will have to follow it up with more..both about the village in Hatay..and also how Turks feel and compare their lives in England and Turkey.
 

geordie_nev

Member
Gaziantep
Well apparently his family were big land owners, which in that part of the world doesn’t mean you are necessarily rich, in fact quite the opposite, just that they used to organise the cotton fields.

He used to tell me that his mother would cook a huge pot of food in the morning to feed a constant stream of visitors which would call in every day, most days they would receive up 50 - 60 guests calling in for a chat / catch up on the local gossip etc. I got the impression that the whole cotton crops/harvest was very much a real village co-operative industry, everyone would have some sort of share in it. When I used to spend time with my cousin in Istanbul she would tell me how they would send money to his family to invest in the cotton harvest, their summer holidays where dependant on a good cotton harvest. I think this was common practise back then, hence the bank name Pamuk Bankasi (cotton bank). If someone on here knows more I love to hear.

Back in London, at the height of the troubles in south east Turkey many Turks came to settle in London during late 80’s early 90’s, they are were housed in very poor / high crime areas, but because they brought a much needed sense of community spirit the local economies picked up and crime has come down sharply. The famous Broadwater farm estate is a good example of this – largely transformed by the Turkish community living there now.

I think most of the Turks here are very homesick but they just want to get on with there lives, its funny most are here because of the trouble back home, whether they be Turkish Kurds, Turkish Cypriots, or Greek Cypriots etc. but they all manage to get on together here, I guess they’re out of the “office politics” of back home. I remember once even seeing both Turkish and Greek Cypriot refugee centres sharing the same building. Lol

Sorry gone a bit off topic, anyway I would love to know more about the area, sadly my cousin’s husband died about 5 years ago so its unlikely I’ll ever get to meet his family. My cousin was never that close to his family, as she said they were simply completely different people to her and just didn’t understand each other (she was born and breed in Istanbul and was very much part of the academic set of the 60’s and 70’s)

ps. I'm I allowed to post urls? they does seem to work for me.
 
Gaziantep
great post,..ive heard of Broadwater Estate..but i didnt know it had a large Turkish community there...i wonder how many turkish people are now living in the UK.

Cotton picking is really hard work,and i would think the stories of all those people would be right...there are machines now but in many areas its still picked by hand. there are huge fields near Tarsus as well as the other side of İskenderun. this area is rich in all sorts of stuff,the soil is so fertile.
 
B

basils mum

Guest
Gaziantep
Thanks for the information guys. I love reading about recent family histories and would like to know more about turkish population settlements in the UK
 

RIK

Member
Gaziantep
Just as an aside, my wife and I got married in Manchester and held the reception in a Turkish Restaurant. There are many Turkish business's in Manchester along with the people.The food in the many restaurants there is super.

Ian
 

Bubskar

Member
Gaziantep
Thanks for that post Shirleyanntr - you portray a very descriptive picture of that area. As me and the P try to tour parts of Turkey say every other year, last year decided not to go too far towards the East . Unfortunately we have never visited Gaziantep but would dearly love to go as well as Erzurum and Nemrut In actual fact after reading Ali's story I looked at our map of Turkey just to see and get an idea of distance and route we could plan to take all that area in. It could be a good trip for us say in October. Also I believe that Gaziantep is reknown for their baclava?? delicious.
 
Gaziantep
they have the best baclava in Turkey..and also really good food..very much like neighbouring Hatay..its more spicey and hotter than Western Turkey's regional dishes...such as McDonalds..ahah. just joking..a little..!!
 

aysel

Member
Gaziantep
YUMMMYYYY I have eaten the best BAKLAVA in my life in Gaziantep. I have never forgotten the taste of it.
 

geordie_nev

Member
Gaziantep
Theres was an little article on Gaziantep cuisine in TDN a few months ago, and there was a great Rick Stein cookery programme featuring Gaziantep last year, anyone see it (was hoping to find a link to some video but couldn't seem to find any).

I remember my cousin looking at me in horror when I told him i use tinned tomatoes in my cooking, he said whenever they have a surplus they would use them to feed the horses and cows.

Theres a great Turkish supermarket next to me, I think the owner is from Gaziantep, definitely from south east Turkey. When it first opened everyone thought it would never last because it's located right next to Tescos, but it's been so popular, its open 24/7 sells fresh turkish style bread, has a great olive - feta cheese bar, all the turkish brand names and you can get all the really hard to find Turkish ingredients like Pomegranate molasses/juice. They've been so popular they've now opened two new stores.

basils mum said:
Thanks for the information guys. I love reading about recent family histories and would like to know more about turkish population settlements in the UK

Heres a nice little story, I can across once about the Turkish community near me. The bottom end of green lanes has some really good fish resturants and a "Trabzon spor" coffee house so I guess he lives at the bottom end.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/talking_point/6306329.stm

I work as a web designer and I've noticed a big increase in Turkish designers working here over the past year or so, mainly graduates from Istanbul/Izmir.
 

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