写真

Photographer's Note

ENG:Serifos is a Greek island municipality in the Aegean Sea, located in the western Cyclades, south of Kythnos and northwest of Sifnos. It is part of the Milos regional unit. The area is 75.207 kmイ and the population was 1,414 at the 2001 census. It is located about 170 km ESE of Piraeus.In Greek mythology, Serifos is where Dana and her infant son Perseus washed ashore after her father Acrisius, in response to an oracle that his own grandson would kill him, set them adrift at sea in a wooden chest. When Perseus returned to Serifos with the head of the Gorgon Medusa, he turned Polydektes, the king of Serifos, and his retainers into stone as punishment for the king's attempt to marry his mother by force.In antiquity the island was proverbial for its insignificance and for the alleged muteness of its frogs.During the Roman imperial period, Serifos was a place of exile. After 1204 it became a minor dependency of the Venetian dukes of the Archipelago. In the late 19th century Serifos experienced a modest economic boom from exploitation of the island's extensive iron ore deposits. The mines closed in the 1960s, and Serifos now depends on tourism and small-scale agriculture. the 20th century, the mines of Serifos were exploited by the mining company "Societe des mines Seriphos-Spiliazeza," under the direction of German mineralogist A. Grohmann. In the summer of 1916, in response to low pay, excessive working hours, poor safety conditions, and the company's refusal to rehire workers who had been drafted into the Greek army and recently demobilized, the 460 miners formed a union and organized a strike. Their leader was Constantinos Speras, a Serifos native educated in Egypt, who was an anarchosyndicalist with long experience of labour struggles on the Greek mainland. In response to the strike, Grohman asked for the help of Greek authorities, who sent a 30-man gendarmerie detachment from nearby Kea. After detaining Speras and the strike committee, the gendarmerie lieutenant ordered his men to fire on the workers, who had gathered at the ore loading dock at Megalo Livadi and refused to permit a cargo ship to be loaded. Four workers were killed and a dozen wounded. The workers, supported by their wives, attacked the gendarmes with stones, killing three of them and routing the others. The freed leadership took control of island institutions and send a message placing Serifos under protection of the French fleet at Milos. This effort at collective proletarian self-organisation was cut short by the refusal of the French navy to intervene, and by the arrival of a Greek warship. Speras was arrested and charged with high treason, but released a few months later when the royalist government was ousted. Grohmann was given once again the control of the mines, after granting improved working conditions and an 8 hour workday. Speras would return to Athens and resumed his labor activities, but was assassinated in 1943, allegedly by Communist Party maximalists.

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Additional Photos by Chris Vekris (chrisvek) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 793 W: 11 N: 1384] (7003)
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