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RAVISHED ARMENIA

would bid against each other. The Turks went back to the city disappointed.

That night, just after sundown, these same Turks came out again and opened the sluices that held the artificial lake, allowing the water to spread over the plain and flood our camp. We had to run as fast as we could to scramble to safety, and there was great confusion. Even the zaptiehs were caught by surprise.

In this confusion the Turks rushed in among us and helped themselves to our youngest girls—the prettiest children they could seize. We were powerless to save them, as each of the Turks carried a heavy stick, with which they beat down the mothers or relatives who tried to rescue their little ones. By the time we had escaped the water and assembled again, and the zaptiehs were recovered from their own panic, the Turks were gone—and with them fifteen or twenty beautiful little girls.

Later I learned what was the immediate fate of the children stolen when the lake was opened on us. Haidar Pasha had seized the ancient Catholic Armenian monastery there, and had transformed it into a “government school for refugee children.” Since I have come to America I have learned that when complaints were made to the Sultan at Constantinople by foreign ambassadors of the stealing of children the Sultan’s officials replied that they were taken as a