Massachusetts legislators have recognized the Armenian Genocide on the state and local level. Gubernatorial proclamations as well as state and local legislation are provided below since 1965.  If you know of other documents to be added to this list – old or new – please send a note to elizabeth@anca.org. We look forward to showcasing them.

Massachusetts citizens also played an active role in assisting Armenian Genocide survivors through the Congressionally mandated Near East Foundation, during the years 1915 – 1930.  Learn more about their efforts below, through research prepared by the ANCA Western Region’s “America We Thank You” program.

And finally, review our snapshot of news coverage of the Armenian Genocide in Massachusetts press, as we spotlight three articles, prepared as part of the ANCA’s “Genocide Diary” project.  Check back to the Genocide Diary’s Massachusetts page for new articles added on a monthly basis.

Massachusetts Gubernatorial Proclamations

MASS. GOV. VOTLPE IN PROCLAMATION
Boston, Massachusetts
March 13, 1965

A Proclamation issued by His Excellency John A. Volpe, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

WHEREAS, Following April 24, 1915, when three hundred prominent Armenian citizens were forcefully deported from Constantinople, more than two and one half million Armenians were ordered to abandon their homes and their belongings to join caravans bound for unknown destinations; and

WHEREAS, More than one and one-half million of these unfortunate people perished on the journey, from starvation, exposure, ruthless mistreatment and mass murder; and

WHEREAS, This martyrdom brought about by the Armenian adherence to Christianity, their cultural and educational advancement and their accomplishment in the arts and sciences and progressive endeavors, forced the survivors to exist on American and European charity, in the face of starvation, disease and illness; and

WHEREAS, American citizens of Armenian descent join in spirit with Armenians throughout the world in observance of the fiftieth Anniversary of that massacre, paying tribute to the memory of those who gave their lives in the cause of religious freedom and Christianity; and

NOW, therefore , I, JOHN A. VOLPE, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim the period of April 24-May 31, 1965 as 

FIFTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF THE ARMENIAN MASSACRES

and urges all citizens of the Commonwealth to join with those of Armenian descent in commemoration of this event

GIVEN at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this thirtieth day of March, in the year of our Lord, one thousand nine hundred and sixty-five, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the one hundred and eighty-ninth.

JOHN A. VOLPE.

A Proclamation by Governor Sargent
State of Massachusetts
April 22, 1971

WHEREAS, Fifty-six years ago, on April 24, 1915, the Ottoman government ordered the massacre of the Armenian people resulting in the death of 1,500,000 Armenians and leaving another 500,000 destitute; and

WHEREAS, The Armenian Martyrdom marked the opening of many important contributions to the Al-lied World War I effort by the Armenian people winning the praise of President Woodrow Wilson who affectionately termed the Armenian nation ‘The Little Ally of the United States”; and

WHEREAS, The sacrifices of the Armenian people in the cause of freedom, justice and human rights serve to remind us that mankind is ready (SEE PAGE 89 COL. 1)

(FROM PAGE 3, COL. 4) to perish in the interest of noble causes; and

WHEREAS, On the occasion of Armenian Martyrs’ Day it is significant to remember those men, women and children who were victims of violence, and to remember their memory, and to pay tribute to their sacrifice, and to vow that the tragedy of genocide will not occur again among mankind; and

Now, therefore, I, Francis W. Sargent, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim April 24 as ARMENIAN MARTYRS DAY and urge all citizens to take cognizance of this event…”

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
By His Excellency Michael S. Dukakis
Governor
A PROCLAMATION
Boston, Massachusetts
April 7, 1975

WHEREAS, April 24, 1915 marks the date on which the Turks arrested and killed 250 Armenian community leaders and intellectuals — an act which signaled the terrible events that follows; and

WHEREAS, The year 1915 also calls to mind hundred of thousands of Armenians fleeing in terror from their ancient homeland where one and a half million of their brothers and sisters were massacred; and

WHEREAS, Two hundred years ago, our nation committed itself to oppose tyranny and oppression and that commitment has become the very heartbeat of our national existence, and its persistent throb has given hope and inspiration to millions of victims of persecution and oppression all over the world, many of whom have found refuge in our country; and

WHEREAS, The citizens of the Commonwealth should be aware that they should honor the memory of those victims of a precedental act of Genocide, in the hope that the conscience of the world can bring a halt to all human suffering, and the beginning of an era of justice for all people, including the Armenians; and

NOW, THEREFORE, I, MICHAEL S. DUKAKIS, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim as

ARMENIAN GENOCIDE COMMEMORATIVE DAY
April 24, 1975

and urge the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and to participate fittingly in its observance.

GIVEN at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this seventh day of April, in the year of of our Lord, one thousand nine hundred seventy-five, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the one hundred and ninety-ninth.

By His Excellency the Governor,

(SIGNED)

MICHAEL S. DUKAKIS
PAUL GUZZI
Secretary of the Commonwealth

GOD SAVE THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS
THE PROCLAMATION OF GOVERNOR MICHAEL DUKAKIS

A Proclamation by the Governor and Secretary of the Commonwealth
State of Massachusetts
April 24, 1986

WHEREAS : April 24 of every year is indelibly imprinted in the memory of the Armenian people, worldwide, since the year 1915, when the mass genocide of the Armenian people began in the Ottoman Turkish Empire, this being the first genocide of the twentieth century; and

WHEREAS: The Armenian citizens of our Commonwealth are dedicated to perpetuating the memory of the martyrs of this genocide that began with the arrest and murder of Armenian community leaders and members of the national parliament; and

WHEREAS: The Armenian families were uprooted from their ancestral homeland, brutally exposed to all kinds of indignities, and slain by the hundreds of thousands so that more than half the Armenian people perished; and

WHEREAS: We consider all atrocities, perpetrated by individuals or governments to be repulsive and abhorrent in civilized societies; and

WHEREAS: In our democracy the principles of humanity and the dignity of man constitute the indestructible foundation for life, liberty, freedom and equality for the pursuit of happiness; and

WHEREAS: In our Commonwealth, Americans of Armenian ancestry have contributed to the good of our Commonwealth in the best traditions of our State and Nation, in war as in peace; and

WHEREAS: Our prayers in the Commonwealth, offered in memory of the Armenian martyrs of 1915, will serve to remind government of the world that man’s inhumanity to man must cease forever; and

NOW, THEREFORE, I,MICHAEL S. DUKAKIS, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, in accordance with Chapter 185 of the Acts of 1978, do hereby proclaim April 24th 1986, as ARMENIAN MARTYRS’ DAY and urge the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and to participate fittingly in ta observance.

Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this nineteenth day of February, one thousand nine hundred and eighty-six, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and tenth.

(SIGNED)

Michael S. Dukakis, Governor
Michael Joseph Connolly, Secretary of the commonwealth

GOD SAVE THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS

A Proclamation by the Governor and the Secretary of the Commonwealth
State of Massachusetts
March 23, 1990

THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS BY HIS EXCELLENCY

MICHAEL S. DUKAKIS GOVERNOR

WHEREAS: Since 1915, April 24th of every year has been imprinted in the memory of the Armenian people worldwide. It was then that the mass genocide of the Armenian people began in the Ottoman Turkish Empire, this being the first genocide of the twentieth century; and

WHEREAS: The Armenian citizens of our Commonwealth are dedicated to honoring the memory of the brave men and women who died in this Holocaust; and

WHEREAS: Armenian families were uprooted from their ancestral homeland, brutally exposed to all kinds of indignities, and hundreds of thousands slain, resulting in more than half of all Armenian people killed; and

WHEREAS: We consider all atrocities perpetrated by individuals or governments to be repulsive and abhorrent in civilized societies; and

WHEREAS: In our democracy, the principles of humanity and respect for the dignity of humans constitute the indestructible foundation for life, liberty, freedom, equality and the pursuit of happiness; and

WHEREAS: In our Commonwealth, Americans of Armenian ancestry have contributed to the good of our Commonwealth in the best traditions of our State and Nation, in war as in peace; and

WHEREAS: Our prayers in the Commonwealth, offered in memory of the Armenian martyrs of 1915, will serve to remind governments of the world that persecution, torture, and killing must cease forever; and

WHEREAS: Even natural tragedies, such as the earthquake of 1988, which killed thousands of Armenians, shall serve only as a continued challenge to the resolve and resiliency of the Armenian spirit; and

NOW, THEREFORE, I, MICHAEL S. DUKAKIS, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, in accordance with Chapter 185 of the Acts of 1978, do hereby proclaim April 24, 1990, as

ARMENIAN MARTYRS’ DAY

and urge the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and to participate fittingly in its observance.

Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this twenty-third day of March, one thousand nine hundred and ninety, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and fifteenth.

(SIGNED)

By His Excellency the Governor MICHAEL S. DUKAKIS

MICHAEL JOSEPH CONNOLLY

Secretary of the Commonwealth

A Proclamation By His Excellency Governor Mitt Romney
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
2004

WHEREAS: Since 1915, April 24th of each year has been recognized in the memory of the Armenian people worldwide. Be it was then that the mass genocide of the Armenian people began in the Ottoman Turkish Empire. The first such genocide in the twentieth century, and 2004 marks the 89th Anniversary of the historic tragic; and

WHEREAS:  The Armenian view of the Commonwealth are dedicated to the memory of the brave men and who died in the holocaust, and;

WHEREAS:  We consider all ancestors perpetrated by individuals or governments to be repulsive not allowed in civilized society; and

WHEREAS: In our democracy, the principles of humanity and respect for the dignity of humans contribute the indestructible for life, liberty, freedom, equality, and the pursuit of happiness; and

WHEREAS: Americans of Armenia descend have contributed to the quality of life in Massachusetts to the best nation of our same and nation in times of war and peace; and

WHEREAS: Even natural tragedies such as the earthquake of 1933, which was responsible for  the deaths of thousands of Armenians, shall saw only continued; and

NOW, THEREFORE, I, MITT ROMNEY, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to hereby proclaim April 24th, 2004, to be ARMENIAN MARTYRS DAY and urge all the people of the Commonwealth to recognize this event and participate in the observance.

Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this seventh day of April in the year of Lord two thousand and four, And of the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and seventy eighth

(SIGNED)

Mitt Romney, His Excellency the Governor
William M Galvin, Secretary of the Commonwealth

GOD SAVE THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS

A Proclamation by Governor and Secretary of Commonwealth
State of Massachusetts
April 24, 2010

Whereas, Since 1915, April 24th of each year has been imprinted upon the memory of the Armenian people worldwide. On this day the mass genocide of the Armenian people began in the Ottoman Turkish Empire, the first such genocide in the twentieth century; and

Whereas The Armenian citizens of the Commonwealth are dedicated to honoring the memory of the brave men and women who died; and

Whereas Armenian families were uprooted from their ancestral homeland, brutally exposed to all kinds of indignities with hundreds of thousands slain, resulting in more than half of the Armenian people killed; and

Whereas We consider all atrocities perpetrated by individuals or governments to be repulsive and abhorrent in civilized society; and

Whereas Americans of Armenian decent have contributed to the quality of life in Massachusetts in the best traditions of our state and nation, in times of war and peace; and

Whereas Our thoughts, offered in memory of the Armenian martyrs of 1915, will serve to remind everyone that persecution, torture, and killing must cease forever; and

Now, Therefore, I, Deval L. Patrick, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim April 24th, 2010, to be,

ARMENIAN MARTYRS DAY

And urge all the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and participate fittingly in its observance.

Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this twenty-fourth day of April, in the year two thousand and ten, and on the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and thirty-third.

By His Excellency

Deval L. Patrick, Governor of the Commonwealth
William Francis Galvin, Secretary of the Commonwealth

God Save The Commonwealth Of Massachusetts

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
A Proclamation

Whereas on April 24, 1915 a mass genocide of the Armenian population began in the Ottoman Turkish empire, the first genocide in the twentieth century; and

Whereas Armenian families were uprooted from their ancestral homeland and brutally exposed to varied indignities, resulting in more than half of the Armenian population killed; and

Whereas we consider these atrocities against the Armenian people to be repulsive and abhorrent in civilized society; and

Whereas Americans of Armenian descent have contributed to the quality of life in the United States and Massachusetts in the best traditions of our nation and state, in times of war and peace; and

Whereas the Armenian citizens around the world and of the Commonwealth are dedicated to honoring the memory of the brave men and women who died; and

Whereas our thoughts, offered in memory of the Armenian martyrs of 1915, will serve to remind everyone that persecution, torture, and killing must cease forever,

Now, Therefore, I, Charles D. Baker, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim April 24th, 2015, to be,

ARMENIAN MARTYRS DAY

And urge all the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and participate fittingly in its observance.

Given the Executive Chamber in Boston, this Seventeenth day of April, in the year two thousand and fifteen, and of the independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and thirty-eighth.

BY HIS EXCELLENCY,

(SIGNED)

CHARLES D. BAKER, GOVERNOR OF THE COMMONWEALTH
KARYN E. POLITO, LT. GOVERNOR OF THE COMMONWEALTH
WILLIAM FRANCIS GALVIS, SECRETARY OF THE COMMONWEALTH

GOD SAVE THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS

Commonwealth of Massachusetts
A Proclamation
His Excellency Governor Charles D. Baker

WHEREAS On April 24, 1915 a mass genocide of the Armenian population began in the Ottoman Turkish Empire, the first genocide in the twentieth century; and

WHEREAS Armenian families were uprooted from their ancestral homeland and brutally exposed to varied indignities, resulting in more than half of the Armenian population killed; and

WHEREAS We consider these atrocities against the Armenian people to be repulsive and abhorrent in civilized society; and

WHEREAS Americans of Armenian descent have contributed to the quality of life in the United States and Massachusetts in the best traditions of our nation and state, in times of war and peace; and

WHEREAS The Armenian citizens around the world and of the Commonwealth are dedicated to honoring the memory of the brave men and women who died; and

WHEREAS Our thoughts, offered in memory of the Armenian martyrs of 1915, will serve to remind everyone that persecution, torture, and killing must cease forever,

Now, Therefore, I, Charles D. Baker, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim April 24th, 2017, to be,

Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day

And urge all the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and participate fittingly in its observance.

Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this first day of April, in the year two thousand and seventeen, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and forty-first.

By His Excellency

Charles D. Baker, Governor of the Commonwealth

Karyn E. Polito, Lt. Governor of the Commonwealth

William Francis Galvin, Secretary of the Commonwealth

State Senate Resolutions

RESOLUTIONS ON THE OCCASION OF A DAY OF REMEMBRANCE FOR THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE OF NINETEEN HUNDRED AND FIFTEEN TO NINETEEN HUNDRED AND TWENTY-THREE
THE COMMONWEALTH 0F MASSACHUSETTS
APRIL 11 1996

WHEREAS, THE EXTERMINATION OF MORE THAN ONE AND ONE-HALF MILLION ARMENIANS BY THE OTTOMAN TURKS ANO THE FORCED DEPORTATION OF COUNTLESS OTHERS HAS BEEN REMEMBERED EVERY YEAR ON APRIL TWENTY-FOURTH SINCE NINETEEN HUNDRED AND FIFTEEN AS ARMENIAN MARTYRS DAY; AND

WHEREAS, EIGHTY-ONE YEARS AGO ARMENIANS WERE FORCED TO WITNESS THE SLAUGHTER OF THEIR RELATIVES AND THE LOSS OF THEIR ANCESTRAL HOMELAND; AND

WHEREAS, MODERN TURKEY CONTINUES TO DENY AND DISTORT THE FACTS OF THE GENOCIDE AND HONORS THE PERPETRATORS OF THESE CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY AS NATIONAL HEROES; AND

WHEREAS, THE CONTINUOUS DENIAL OF ARMENIAN GENOCIDE BY THE PRESENT-DAY TURKISH GOVERNMENT DEPRIVES THE ARMENIAN PEOPLE OF THE RIGHT TO THEIR OWN HISTORY: AND

WHEREAS, ANCESTRAL ARMENIAN LANDS HAVE NOT BEEN RETURNED TO THE ARMENIAN PEOPLE; NOW THEREFORE BE IT

RESOLVED, THAT THE MASSACHUSETTS SENATE ACKNOWLEDGES THE CONTRIBUTIONS MADE TO OR COMMONWEALTH AND COUNTRY BY THE CITIZENS OF ARMENIAN ORIGIN ON THE. OCCASION OF THE E1Gr.TY-FIRST ANNIVERSARY OF THE ARMENIA. GENOCIDE OF NINETEEN HUNDRED AND FIFTEEN TO NINETEEN HUNDRED AND TWENTY-THREE, ANO IT CALLS UPON THE CITIZENS OF THE COMMONWEALTH TO REMEMBER THE ONE MILLION FIVE

HUNDRED THOUSAND PEOPLE OF ARMENIAN  ANCESTRY  WHO  LOST THEIR LIVES IN THE GENOCIDE of NINETEEN

HUNDRED AND FIFTEEN TO NINETEEN HUNDRED AND TWENTY-THREE; AND BE IT FURTHER

RESOLVED, THAT A COPY OF THESE RESOLUTIONS BE TRANSMITTED FORTHWITH BY THE CLERK OF THE

SENATE TO THE ARMENIAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE OF CENTRAL MASSACHESTER.

SENATE ADOPTED APRIL 11 1996

(SIGNED)

PRESIDENT OF SENATE
CLERK OF THE SENATE

OFFERED BY

(SIGNED)

SENATOR MATTHEW J. AMORELLO
SENATOR ROBERT A. BERNSTEIN

Massachusetts House

RESOLUTIONS MEMORIALIZING THE UNITED STATES SENATE TO RATIFY THE GENOCIDE CONVENTION OF 1948
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
MAY 25, 1965

The House committee on Rules, to whom were referred the resolutions (filed by Messrs. Ohanian of Watertown, Khachadoorian
of Arlington, Bohigian of Worcester and Menton of Watertown) memorializing the United States Senate to ratify the Genocide
Convention of 1948 (House, No. 3975), report that the same ought to be adopted.
For the committee,
Robert H. Quinn.

HOUSE— No. 3975. [May 1965]

WHEREAS, In this year of nineteen hundredand sixty-five, our fellow citizens of Armenian extraction join their brothers throughout the world in commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of the initiation by the Turkish Government of a plan to destroy the Armenian minority in Turkey; and

WHEREAS, This first modern genocide was to result in the massacre of over one million innocent Armenian men, women, and children in the brief period of several months and was to leave another million displaced, ill, maimed, and starving, torn forcibly from their homes; and

WHEREAS, The massacres and deportations of the Armenians were accompanied by enormous cruelties, by torture, and by the abduction and forced conversion to Islam of countless children; and

WHEREAS, The failure of the world to provide either justice for the Armenians or punishment for the Turkish war criminals provided encouragement to other would-be mass-murderers; and

WHEREAS, Adolph Hitler himself, in ordering massacres in Poland in nineteen hundred and thirty-ninty, remarked, “Who speaks nowadays of the extermination of the Armenians”: and thereby embarked upon the systematic mass murder of some six million Jews, shocking again the conscience of civilized men throughout the world; and

WHEREAS, The absence of justice for the Armenians motivated Professor Rafael Lemkin to coin the term “Genocide” and to work towards the development of an international treaty outlawing mass destruction of a minority; and

WHEREAS, American leadership and encouragement did in 1948 result in the adoption by the United Nations of the Genocide Convention, with the United States as a signatory: and

WHEREAS, the Genocide Convention declares that genocide- murder with intent to destroy a national, ethnic, racial, or religious group; causing the group’s members serious bodily or mental harm; creating conditions calculated to bring about the group’s destruction in whole or part; imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group: forcibly transferring children of the group to another group–is a crime in international law; and

WHEREAS, President Harry S. Truman transmitted the Genocide Convention to the United States Senate in nineteen hundred and forty-nine, asking for its consent on ratification: and

WHEREAS, Today–after almost sixteen years — the Genocide Convention still remains in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee with three other human rights conventions–on forced labor, slavery, and women’s political rights–transmitted to the Senate by the late President John F. Kennedy.

WHEREAS, American failure to ratify the Genocide Convention, when sixty-seven other nations — including even West Germany and Turkey — have done so, contradicts the United States’ role as a champion of human rights, and as a leader in fostering the principle of rule of law and contradicts especially the United States’ role as a leader and signatory in relation to the Convention itself: and

WHEREAS, Thousands of Armenians, as well as Greeks, Jews, and others, have found in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts a refuge from the horrors of genocide; therefore be it

Resolved, That the Massachusetts house of representatives respectfully urges the Senate of the United States to give evidence of Armenian commitment to the principles of universal human rights and justice by ratifying the Genocide Convention in this commemorative year of nineteen hundred and sixty-five; and be it further

Resolved, That a copy of these resolutions be sent by the secretary of the commonwealth to the President of the United States, the Ambassador to the United Nations, the Secretary of State of the United States, and the members of the Senate of the United States.

Adopted.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, MAY 25, 1965.

WILLIAM C. MAIERS,
Clerk.

ACTS, 1976
Chap. 92.
AN ACT AUTHORIZING THE ARMENIAN BICENTENNIAL COMMITTEE OF MASSACHUSETTS TO ERECT A PLAQUE IN THE STATE HOUSE.
May 4, 1976

Be it enacted, etc., as follows:

The Armenian Bicentennial Committee of Massachusetts is hereby authorized, subject to approval of the art commission as to size and content, to erect a plaque in an area of the state house to be designated by the art commission, in tribute to America and the commonwealth of Massachusetts for accepting the thousands of Armenians escaping the Turkish Genocide sixty-one years ago. The cost of said plaque shall be borne by said Armenian Bicentennial Committee of Massachusetts.

Approved May 4, 1976

RESOLUTIONS ON THE OCCASION OF A DAY OF REMEMBRANCE FOR THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE OF 1915-1923
THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS
1990

RESOLUTIONS ON THE OCCASION OF A DAY OF REMEMBRANCE FOR THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE OF 1915-1923

WHEREAS, April 24, 1990 is being observed as a day of remembrance of the seventy fifth anniversary of the Armenian Genocide of 1915-1923; and

WHEREAS, one million five hundred thousand people of Armenian ancestry were victims of genocide perpetrated by the governments of the ottoman empire from 1915-1923; and

WHEREAS at the outbreak of world war I, the Young Turk regime decided to deport the entire Armenian population of over two million to Syria and Mesopotamia; and

WHEREAS, Talaat Pahsa, leader of the Young Turk movement was principal author of the plan to exterminate the Armenians; and

WHEREAS, the plan of genocide consisted of deporting all Armenian of whatever age or condition of health to the totally barren deserts of what is now Syria; and

WHEREAS the Armenians were deported on foot, a death march in which more than one million died of starvation or were killed; and

WHEREAS, Armenians were rounded up and brutally driven from their homes and their land, separated from families, robbed of everything they owned and stripped of all they carried with them; and

WHEREAS thousands of Christian Armenians were tortured and murdered for refusing to accept Islam as their religion; and

WHEREAS, the atrocities inflicted on Armenians on the death marches to the Syrian desert has been viewed as the prototype for the holocaust of World War II; and

WHEREAS, the present day Turkish government has undertaken a policy of denial and distortion of the historical truth about the Armenian Genocide; and

WHEREAS the Turkish government’s denial prevents an atonement by the Turkish people; and

WHEREAS the Turkish Government’s denial makes it an accessory to the Young Turks’ crime against humanity, whose legacy Turkey today enjoys; and

WHEREAS, the massacre of Armenians who escaped deportation and remained in Turkey was called the “Most colossal crime of all ages” by the examining American military mission’s report to the United States Congress’ and

WHEREAS, in a telegram sent by United States Ambassador Henry Morgenthau to the Secretary of State, Morgenthau warned that “A campaign of race extermination is in progress under a pretext of reprisal against rebellion”; Therefore be it

Resolved, that the Massachusetts general court acknowledges the contribution to our commonwealth and country by the citizens of Armenian origin on the occasion of the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Armenian Genocide of 1915-1923 and it calls upon the citizens of the commonwealth to observe April 24, 1990, by remembering the one million five hundred thousand people of Armenian ancestry who lost their lives in the genocide of 1915-1923; and be it further

Resolved, that a copy of these resolutions be forwarded by the clerk of the House of Representatives to the Armenian National Committee of Eastern Massachusetts and the Armenian Rights Council

MASSACHUSETTS 181ST GENERAL COURT — 1997 REGULAR SESSION HOUSE BILL 3629
THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS
January 1, 1997

VERSION: Introduced

SYNOPSIS: AN ACT RELATIVE TO THE INSTRUCTION OF THE GREAT HUNGER PERIOD IN IRELAND, THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE AND THE HOLOCAUST.

TEXT: Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

Chapter 69, Section 1D of the General Laws is hereby amended by inserting after the second sentence of the third paragraph, “The standards must provide for instruction in the Great Hunger period in Ireland from 1845-1850, the Armenian Genocide from 1915-1923 and the Holocaust of 1933-1945.”

SPONSOR:

Tolman

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES RESOLUTION ADOPTED
MASSACHUSETTS
APRIL 23, 2009

CALLING UPON THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS TO APPROVE HOUSE RESOLUTION 252 AND TO RECOGNIZE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE

WHEREAS, THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE WAS CONCEIVED AND CARRIED OUT BY THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE FROM 1915 TO 1923, RESULTING IN THE DEPORTATION OF NEARLY 2,000,000 ARMENIANS, OF WHOM 1,500,000 MEN, WOMEN, AND CHILDREN WERE KILLED, 500,000 SURVIVORS WERE EXPELLED FROM THEIR HOMES, AND WHICH SUCCEEDED IN THE ELIMINATION OF THE OVER 2,500-YEAR PRESENCE OF ARMENIANS IN THEIR HISTORIC HOMELAND; AND

WHEREAS, ON MAY 24, 1915, THE ALLIED POWERS, ENGLAND, FRANCE, AND RUSSIA, JOINTLY ISSUED A STATEMENT EXPLICITLY CHARGING FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER ANOTHER GOVERNMENT OF COMMITTING A CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY; AND

WHEREAS, HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION 148, ADOPTED ON APRIL 8, 1975, RESOLVED:[T]THAT APRIL 24, 1975, IS HEREBY DESIGNATED AS “NATIONAL DAY OF REMEMBRANCE OF MAN’S INHUMANITY TO MAN”, AND THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES IS AUTHORIZED AND REQUESTED TO ISSUE A PROCLAMATION CALLING UPON THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES TO OBSERVE SUCH DAY AS A DAY OF REMEMBRANCE FOR ALL THE VICTIMS OF GENOCIDE, ESPECIALLY THOSE OF ARMENIAN ANCESTRY….; AND

WHEREAS, PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN IN PROCLAMATION NUMBER 4838, DATED APRIL 22, 1981, STATED IN PART “LIKE THE GENOCIDE OF THE ARMENIANS BEFORE IT, AND THE GENOCIDE OF THE CAMBODIANS, WHICH FOLLOWED IT—AND LIKE TOO MANY OTHER PERSECUTIONS OF TOO MANY OTHER PEOPLE—THE LESSONS OF THE HOLOCAUST MUST NEVER BE FORGOTTEN”; AND

WHEREAS, HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION 247, ADOPTED ON SEPTEMBER 10, 1984, RESOLVED [T]THAT APRIL 24, 1985, IS HEREBY DESIGNATED AS “NATIONAL DAY OF REMEMBRANCE OF MAN’S INHUMANITY TO MAN”, AND THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES IS AUTHORIZED AND REQUESTED TO ISSUE A PROCLAMATION CALLING UPON THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES TO OBSERVE SUCH DAY AS A DAY OF REMEMBRANCE FOR ALL THE VICTIMS OF GENOCIDE, ESPECIALLY THE ONE AND ONE-HALF MILLION PEOPLE OF ARMENIAN ANCESTRY….; AND

WHEREAS, PRESIDENT WILLIAM JEFFERSON CLINTON, ON APRIL 1998, STATED: “THIS YEAR, AS IN THE PAST, WE JOIN WITH ARMENIAN-AMERICANS THROUGHOUT THE NATION IN COMMEMORATING ONE OF THE SADDEST CHAPTERS IN THE HISTORY OF THIS CENTURY, THE DEPORTATIONS AND MASSACRES OF A MILLION AND A HALF ARMENIANS IN THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE IN THE YEARS 1915-1923; AND

WHEREAS, PRESIDENT GEORGE BUSH, ON APRIL 24, 2004, STATED: “ON THIS DAY, WE PAUSE IN REMEMBRANCE OF ONE OF THE MOST HORRIBLE TRAGEDIES OF THE 20TH CENTURY, THE ANNIHILATION OF AS MANY AS 1,500,000 ARMENIANS THROUGH FORCED EXILE AND MURDER AT THE END OF THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE”; AND

WHEREAS, THE COUNTRIES OF ARGENTINA, ARMENIA, BELGIUM, CANADA, CHILE, CYPRUS, FRANCE, GERMANY, GREECE, ITALY, LITHUANIA, LEBANON, NETHERLANDS, POLAND, RUSSIA, SLOVAKIA, SWEDEN, SWITZERLAND, URUGUAY, VENEZUELA HAVE RECOGNIZED THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE; AND

WHEREAS, 42 STATES OF THE UNITED STATES HAVE RECOGNIZED THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE; AND

WHEREAS, HOUSE RESOLUTION 252 FILED ON MARCH 17, 2009 FOR THE 1ST SESSION OF THE 111TH CONGRESS IS CALLING UPON THE PRESIDENT TO ENSURE THAT THE FOREIGN POLICY OF THE UNITED STATES REFLECTS APPROPRIATE UNDERSTANDING AND SENSITIVITY CONCERNING ISSUES RELATED TO HUMAN RIGHTS, ETHNIC CLEANSING, AND GENOCIDE DOCUMENTED IN THE UNITED STATES RECORD RELATING TO THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE; AND

RESOLVED, THAT THE MASSACHUSETTS HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES URGES THE CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES APPROVE HOUSE RESOLUTION 252 AND RECOGNIZE THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE; AND BE IT FURTHER

RESOLVED, THAT A COPY OF THESE RESOLUTIONS BE FORWARDED BY THE CLERK OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES TO THE PRESIDING OFFICER OF EACH BRANCH OF CONGRESS AND TO THE MEMBERS THEREOF FROM THE COMMONWEALTH.

COSPONSOR LISTING:

Geraldo Alicea James Arciero Cory Atkins
Demetrius J. Atsalis Ruth B. Balser
John J. Binienda
Daniel E. Bosley Bill Bowles Garrett J. Bradley Michael Brady
Jennifer M. Callahan Thomas J. Calter
Linda Dean Campbell Christine E. Canavan James Cantwell Katherine Clark Geraldine Creedon Sean Curran
Steven D’Amico Robert A. DeLeo
Viriato Manuel deMacedo Brian S. Dempsey Stephen DiNatale
Paul J. Donato Christopher J. Donelan Mark V. Falzone Robert F. Fennell
Ann-Margaret Ferrante Barry R. Finegold David L. Flynn
John P. Fresolo William C. Galvin Sean Garballey Thomas A. Golden, Jr. Mary E. Grant William G. Greene, Jr. Danielle Gregoire Patricia A. Haddad Jonathan Hecht Bradford Hill
Kevin G. Honan Bradley H. Jones Jr Michael F. Kane Jay R. Kaufman John D. Keenan Kay Khan
Peter V. Kocot Robert M. Koczera Peter J. Koutoujian Paul Kujawski William Lantigua Jason Lewis Barbara A. L’Italien Timothy Madden Ronald Mariano Allen McCarthy James R. Miceli Charles A. Murphy Kevin J. Murphy
David M. Nangle Robert J. Nyman James J. O’Day Matthew Patrick Jeffrey D. Perry George N. Peterson, Jr. Elizabeth A. Poirier Denise Provost
Angelo Puppolo Kathi-Anne Reinstein Robert L. Rice, Jr.
Jeffrey Sánchez Rosemary Sandlin John W. Scibak Carl Sciortino Stephen Smith Frank Israel Smizik Thomas M. Stanley Ellen Story William M. Straus David B. Sullivan Walter F. Timilty
Timothy J. Toomey, Jr. Alice K. Wolf

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
PRESENTED BY:

Jeffrey N. Roy and Karen E. Spilka

To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General Court assembled:  

The undersigned legislators and/or citizens respectfully petition for the adoption of the accompanying bill:

An Act concerning genocide education.

PETITION OF:

NAME: DISTRICT/ADDRESS:
Jeffrey N. Roy 10th Norfolk
Jonathan Hecht 29th Middlesex
David M. Rogers 24th Middlesex
Shawn Dooley 9th Norfolk
Paul McMurtry 11th Norfolk
Lori A. Ehrlich 8th Essex
David K. Muradian, Jr. 9th Worcester
Steven Ultrino 33rd Middlesex
Jason M. Lewis Fifth Middlesex

By Representative Roy of Franklin and Senator Spilka, a joint petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 473) of Jeffrey N. Roy and others relative to the teaching of genocide education in the public schools. Education.

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts

In the One Hundred and Eighty-Ninth General Court (2015-2016)

An Act concerning genocide education. 

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows: 

Section 1. Chapter 15 of the General Laws is hereby Amended by adding the following

section:-

Section 67. Acts of genocide across the globe shall be included in the Massachusetts history and social science curriculum frameworks for United States and world history to address the notion that national, ethic, racial, or religious hatred can overtake any nation or society, leading to calamitous consequences. To reinforce that lesson, such curriculum unit shall include, but not be limited to, the Nazi atrocities of 1933 to 1945 known as the Holocaust, the Famine- Genocide in Ukraine known as Holodomor, the Armenian Genocide, the Pontian Greek Genocide, and more recent atrocities in Cambodia, Bosnia, Rwanda, and Sudan. The studying of this material is a reaffirmation of the commitment of free peoples from all nations to never again permit the occurrence of another genocide and a recognition that crimes of genocide continue to be perpetrated across the globe as they have been in the past, and to deter indifference to crimes against humanity and human suffering wherever they may

The department shall recommend curricular materials detailing the underlying causes, international reaction, progression and aftermath of the aforementioned genocides, including those recommendations established by chapter 276 of the acts of The department may provide trainings, seminars, conferences and materials for educators to use in the teaching of genocide

Massachusetts Municipal

Watertown Town Meeting Resolution
Watertown, Massachusetts
March 22, 1965

On motion of Aram Kaloosdian, Pct. 2 town meeting member

WHEREAS, Fifty years ago, on April 24, 1915, the Government of Turkey ordered the commencement of a systematic plan of massacre of the Armenian nation which before its termination was to take the toll of 1,000,000 lives, with an additional 1,000,000 displaced, ill and in want, marked forever by the terrible experiences of the first modern genocide, and

WHEREAS, The beginning of the Armenian Martyrdom marked at the same time the opening of the many important contributions to the Allied war effort in World War I by the Armenian nation, affectionately termed “The Little Ally” by Woodrow Wilson, President of the United States of America, and

WHEREAS, The awful sacrifice of the Armenian nation in the cause of virtuous government, freedom, justice and human rights the enormous proportions of which are reflected in the fact that Armenia, although one of the smallest Allies of the Western alliance, suffered more casualties than any other member of that alliance, and

WHEREAS, In this the Fiftieth Anniversary Year of the 1915 Turkish genocide of the Armenian Nation it would behoove all citizens of this town to remember those innocent men, women and children who perished to the sword of violence, to honor their memory and pay tribute to their self-sacrifice, while at the same time minding those who would in our day indulge in mass murder that Americans indeed do remember the genocide of 1915 and, in remembering signify their readiness to raise a powerful voice against those forces which would unleash the terrible weapon of genocide and

NOW, THEREFORE, This annual Town Meeting of the Town of Watertown, urges that proper recognition be accorded to this grievous and solemn occasion.

PROCLAMATION BY MAYOR  RAYMOND  V. MARIANO
WORCESTER, MASSACHUSETTS
April 24, 1996

WHEREAS: The extermination  of more than one and one-half  million Armenians by the Ottoman Turks and the forced deportation of countless others is remembered every year on April 24 since 1915 as Armenian Martyrs Day; and

WHEREAS: Eighty-one years ago Armenians were forced to witness the slaughter  of their  relatives  and the loss of their ancestral  homeland; and

WHEREAS: Modern Turkey continues to deny or distort the facts of the Armenian Genocide and honors the perpetrators of that crime against humanity as national heroes; and

WHEREAS: The continuous denial of the Armenian Genocide by the present-day Turkish government deprives the Armenian people of the right to their own  history; and

WHEREAS: The Armenian  people have not received  reparations  for their losses;  and

WHEREAS: Ancestral Armenian lands have not been returned to the Armenian people;

NOW, THEREFORE I, Raymond V. Mariano, Mayor of the city of Worcester, in honor of this solemn occasion, do hereby proclaim   April 24, 1996 to   be:

A DAY OF REMEMBRANCE ON THE 81’ST ANNIVERSARY OF THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE

in Worcester, Massachusetts  and urge all citizens to take  note

of this special anniversary.

Armenian Proclamation
Massachusetts
April 27th, 2015

Whereas, from 1915 to 1923, the government of the Ottoman Empire systematically planned  and  carried out the murders of an estimated 1.5 million  Armenians  living  in Asia  Minor  and  historic  West Armenia, and

Whereas, by 1923, this mass extermination and the accompanying atrocities  had  resulted  in  the  virtual elimination of the Armenian population and  culture  in  historic  Asia  Minor  and  West Armenia,  which  has   become  known as the Armenian Genocide, and

Whereas, the first mass murders began on the night  of  April  24,  1915,  when  the  Turkish  government arrested more than 250 Armenian community leaders in Constantinople, the Ottoman Empire’s  capital  city, and

Whereas, most of the prominent educators, clergy, writers, lawyers, intellectuals, and other public figures  of   the Armenian  community  were  summarily executed, and

Whereas, most of the adult males were  either  conscripted  into  the  Turkish  army  to  fight  on  the  side  of  the   country that was killing their people  or were murdered  on the spot, and

Whereas, large numbers of Armenian old  men,  women,  and  children,  including  babies  in  arms  were either killed or forcibly depo1ted to the  Syrian  desert,  during which  depo1tation  many  died either en route, at  the  hands  of government-aligned  gangs,  or  from  dehydration  and  starvation  in the dese1t, and

Whereas, in May 1915, the Allied Powers of France, Great Britain, and  Russia  issued  a Joint  statement charging the government in  Constantinople  with  committing  crimes  “against  humanity and  civilization,” and

Whereas, Raphael Lemkin, the initial drafter of the United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide and the originator of the term “genocide,” recognized  the Armenian Genocide as the type of crime the United Nations should prevent through the establishment of international  standards, and

Whereas, historians cite the Armenian Genocide  as  a  forerunner  of  later  genocidal  massacres,  including the Holocaust, the Cambodian Killing Fields,  Bosnia, Rwanda,  and Darfur, now therefore be it

Resolved, that we, the Select Board of the Town of Amherst do hereby urge all residents to mark this occasion and to participate fittingly in its observance  by  honoring  the memories  of  the victims and the courage and resilience of the survivors beginning with a ceremony to be held in  front of Town Hall on April 30, 2015

And further, by taking to hea1i the lessons of this tragedy as we commit ourselves to upholding the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, throughout this centennial year and beyond.

Finally, be it resolved that the Town of Amherst be directed to send a copy of this resolution to Governor Charlie Baker, State Senators Edward Markey and Elizabeth Warren. U.S. Representative James McGovern, President Barack Obama, the Armenian National Committee of America and the Armenian Assembly of America.

(SIGNED)

Alisa Brewer, Chair
James Wald, Vice Chair
Andrew Steinberg, Clerk
Constance Kruger
Douglas Slaughter

Massachusetts Support for Survivors of the Armenian Genocide

Massachusetts was a staunch supporter of Near East Relief (NER), the American-led campaign that quickly sparked an international response with its unprecedented humanitarian endeavor, mobilizing all segments of American citizenry including elected officials, celebrities and laypersons alike, to help rescue victims of the Armenian Genocide in Ottoman Turkey from 1915-1930.

Massachusetts facilitated its NER efforts from its state headquarters located at 1218 Little Building in Boston.

In December 1920 alone, the residents of Massachusetts raised an incredible sum of $43,628.70 in response to NER’s Annual Christmas Giving Appeal.

Read the complete fact sheet prepared by America We Thank You.

The Armenian Genocide in Massachusetts Press