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Publications - Prize Competition Publications

"Reactions to British Influence in Ottoman Iraq: Project to Grant Privilege for a Transport Company on the Dicle and Fırat Rivers (1909-1913)", Burcu Kurt.

""The Zonguldak Coal Basin as the Site of Contest (1920-1947)", Nurşen Gürboğa.

"International Capital and Ottoman Public Finances, 1820-1875", Hüseyin Al.

"The Activities of the Régie des Tabacs de l’Empire Ottoman in the Black Sea Region", Filiz Dığıroğlu.

"European Department Stores and Middle Eastern Consumers. The Orosdi-Back Saga", Uri M. Kupferschmidt.

"Women, War and Work in the Ottoman Empire: Society for the Employment of Ottoman Muslim Women (1916-1923)", Yavuz Selim Karakisla.

"Tezyid-i Varidat ve Tenkih-i Masarifat, Financial Administration under Abdülhamid II", Ö. Faruk Bölükbasi.

"Trade Letters as Instances of Economy, Ideology and Subjectivity", Aliye F. Mataracı.

"The Portrait of a Galata Banker: George Zarifi, 1806-1884", Murat Hulkiender

"Ottoman Foreign Debts and the Commissions of the Guarantor Powers", Sevket K. Akar, Hüseyin Al

"The Imperial Ottoman Bank in Salonica: the First 25 Years, 1864-1890", John Karatzoglou

Osmanlı Irak’ında İngiliz Nüfuzuna Tepkiler
Dicle ve Fırat’ta Seyr-i Sefain İmtiyazı Teşebbüsü (1909-1913)
Burcu Kurt

İstanbul, 2009
ISBN 978-9944-731-17-1

Reactions to British Influence in Ottoman Iraq: Project to Grant Privilege for a Transport Company on the Dicle and Fırat Rivers (1909-1913)

Winner of the 2006-2007 Scientific Paper Prize in the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre's biannual competition for Research on the History of Banking and Finance, organized with the collaboration of the European Association for Banking and Financial History and the History Foundation of Turkey.

This work addresses the attempts to establish an Ottoman-British transport company in Ottoman Iraq and the consequent large-scale protest demonstrations, led essentially by local merchants, which erupted against British influence. While the levels of participation of local merchants, especially in Bagdad and its vicinity where protest activity was concentrated, shed light on the center-periphery relationships of the period, the book also reveals that both the merchants and the people they led resorted to pro-Ottoman protest discourses rather than the prevalent Arab nationalist discourse of the time. Led by local notables, large sections of the population from the provinces of Bagdad and Basra rose up, overriding all religious and sectarian distinctions, to participate in widespread reactions against British authority in the region.

Based largely on archival sources, this study attempts to offer an alternative viewpoint to previous approaches, which, until now, restricted political activism in the region within the context of Arab nationalism.

Sayfa Başı

Mine Workers, the Single Party Rule, and War
The Zonguldak Coal Basin as the Site of Contest (1920-1947)
Nurşen Gürboğa

İstanbul, 2009
ISBN 978-9944-731-19-5

Winner of the 2006-2007 Doctoral Dissertation Prize in the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Center's biannual competition for Research on the History of Banking and Finance, organized with the collaboration of the European Association for Banking and Financial History and the History Foundation of Turkey.

The Ereğli-Zonguldak coal basin has been Turkey's source of hard coal since the second half of the nineteenth century. The region emerged as a coalfield over the last quarter of the nineteenth century and became one of the biggest industrial centers of Turkey in the early Republican era.  The male population of the basin, who formed the main source of underground labor power in the pits, allocated their working time between mining and agriculture sometimes by force, sometimes willingly. Although these workers witnessed many political, economic, and social changes in the history of Ottoman Empire and Republican Turkey, their part-time work patterns remained unchanged.
The “national economy” policy and state-led industrialization attempts of the single-party rule compelled the government to restructure the capital and labor aspects of coal mining, which resulted in the nationalization of coal mining under state ownership and the adoption of the compulsory labor system in 1940. The compulsory labor system, in turn, caused difficulties in the relationship between the state and the residents of the coalfield.
The Ereğli-Zonguldak coal basin was a microcosm of the labor-capital-state relations during the single-party era. The study at hand offers a comprehensive analysis of this microcosm, by focusing on the contentious relations between mine workers, private and public coal mining enterprises and the single-party rule during the period between 1920 and 1947. It aims to uncover the historical agency of the mine workers in making their own history.

Sayfa Başı

Uluslararası Sermaye ve Osmanlı Maliyesi, 1820-1875
Hüseyin Al

İstanbul, 2007
ISBN 978-9944-5518-7-8

International Capital and Ottoman Public Finances, 1820-1875

Winner of the 2004-2005 Best Doctoral Dissertation Prize in the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre’s biannual competition, Unveiling the History of Turkish Banking and Finance, organized with the collaboration of the European Banking History Association and the History Foundation of Turkey.

Considered the ‘golden age’ of international capital markets, the 19th century coincides with a period during which Western European capital began to expand out of Europe into other parts of the world. Heading the list of regions that this capital started to move into were those countries that had newly acquired their independence or had no previous loan history. More specifically, when, at the beginning of the 19th century, newly independent Latin American countries – formerly Spanish colonies – entered international markets to seek loans, a process was set off, which despite short-lived breaks due to financial crises, lasted until the end of the century.

The study at hand offers a comparative analysis of the borrowing attempts of countries outside Western Europe in 19th century international capital markets, and of the varying conditions for these loans. At the same time, it highlights the similarities and differences that existed between the foreign debt incurred by the Ottoman Empire and that of other countries, as well as the difficulties that the Ottoman state experienced with foreign bondholders.

Sayfa Başı

Memalik-i Osmaniye Duhanları Müşterekü’l-Menfaa Reji Şirketi. Trabzon Reji İdaresi"
Filiz Dığıroğlu

İstanbul, 2007
ISBN 978-9944-5518-8-5

The Activities of the Régie des Tabacs de l’Empire Ottoman in the Black Sea Region

Winner of the 2004-2005 Best Master’s Thesis Prize in the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre’s biannual competition, Unveiling the History of Turkish Banking and Finance, organized with the collaboration of the European Banking History Association and the History Foundation of Turkey.

The Régie des Tabacs, which held the monopoly on tobacco in the Ottoman Empire, is an upshot of the period of foreign borrowing that began for the Ottoman State with the Crimean War. Since the Administration of the Public Debt (Düyun-ı Umumiye), founded to deal with the state’s debts, had handed over the administration of Ottoman tobacco to the Régie, the activities of that company are, to some extent, relevant to any socio-economic research of the late Ottoman period; by surrendering the administration of tobacco production to a consortium of three established with foreign capital, the Ottoman State seems to have resorted to a kind of privatization model with its own particular characteristics.

Founded in 1883, the Régie Company organized rapidly and, in order to control tobacco farming, began its operations in such major tobacco centers as Salonica, Izmir, Aleppo and Samsun. After the Régie took over the tobacco monopoly in Trabzon, a complex socio-economic web of relations emerged consisting of, in the first place, the Samsun Tobacco Factory,  and then of the Samsun Tobacco Dock and markets, warehouses, depots, tobacco factories, local producers, merchants, the tobacco stock market, tobacco smugglers, guards, and the other Régie organizations.

Based largely on archival materials and periodicals, this work aims to provide a comprehensive analysis and evaluation of the activities of the Régie Administration in Trabzon and Samsun between 1883 and 1914.

Sayfa Başı

European Department Stores and Middle Eastern Consumers. The Orosdi-Back Saga
Uri M. Kupferschmidt

İstanbul, 2007
ISBN 978-9944-5518-9-2

Winner of the 2004-2005 Best Scientific Paper Prize in the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre’s biannual competition, Unveiling the History of Turkish Banking and Finance, organized with the collaboration of the European Banking History Association and the History Foundation of Turkey.

In "another age of globalization", the Ets.Orosdi-Back were a trading company which stepped into the new business opportunities of the Middle East from the mid-19th century on. The Ets.Orosdi-Back became best known for their department stores in Istanbul, Cairo, Beirut, Tunis and Baghdad.

Adolf Orosdi, a Hungarian army officer, who had found refuge in the Ottoman Empire, opened a first clothing store in Galata in 1855. With the Back family, equally of Jewish Austro-Hungarian descent, Orosdi and his sons began establishing similar stores elsewhere.

In 1888, when their siège social was registered in Paris, they already had outlets in Philippopoli , Bucharest, Salonica, Izmir, Cairo, Alexandria, Tanta, and Tunis, as well as purchasing missions in industrial and commercial centers in Europe. 

Their business gradually evolved from wholesale to retailing, in particular through grands magasins, which differed from the bazaar. This study aims to make an original contribution to the history of department stores in the Middle East.

Advertising nouveautés and articles de Paris, Orosdi-Back sold fashionable clothing and bonneterie, but also travel and household goods, toys etc. For decades they also had a large share in the marketing of fezzes. The consumption of foreign commodities gradually began to trickle down to the middle classes. Most etatist regimes therefore did not liquidate this class of foreign stores but nationalized them for their own economic purposes. In Egypt, the Omar Effendi chain, which carries the name of its origin in Istanbul, was recently re-privatised and purchased by a Saudi firm. 

Sayfa Başı


Women, War and Work in the Ottoman Empire: Society for the Employment of Ottoman Muslim Women (1916-1923)
Yavuz Selim Karakisla

Istanbul, 2005
ISBN 975-98125-6-8

Winner of the 2002-2003 Doctoral Dissertation Prize in the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre’s biannual competition, Unveiling the History of Turkish Banking and Finance, organized with the collaboration of the European Banking History Association and the History Foundation of Turkey.

On 14 August 1916, the Committee of Union and Progress, the ruling party of the Ottoman Empire established a new society under the leadership of one of its leading figures: Vice-Commander and Minister of War, Enver Pasha. The Society for the Employment of Ottoman Muslim Women (Kadınları Çalıştırma Cemiyet-i İslamiyesi) was a Unionist organization created to find employment for Muslim women in urgent economic need. Within a matter of months, it received more than 14,000 applications and was soon employing 8,194 destitute Muslim Ottoman women in its own branches and in the related state and military institutions. In time, it would offer jobs to an aggregate number of 20,000 women workers and become the leading employer of Muslim women in the Ottoman Empire. This comprehensive work constitutes both a case study of Muslim Ottoman women during World War I, and a detailed analysis of the Foundation, organization and activities of the society created to find employment for them.

Sayfa Baþý


Tezyid-i Varidat ve Tenkih-i Masarifat, II. Abdülhamid Döneminde Mali İdare
Ö. Faruk Bölükbaşı

Istanbul, 2005
ISBN 975-98125-4-1

Financial Administration under Abdülhamid II

Winner of the 2002-2003 Master’s Thesis Prize in the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre’s biannual competition, Unveiling the History of Turkish Banking and Finance, organized with the collaboration of the European Banking History Association and the History Foundation of Turkey.

Sultan Abdülhamid II was the last powerful Ottoman ruler. The political legacy of his predecessors made it necessary for him to personally oversee every area of state governance. To this purpose, he developed a regimented administrative system headquartered in Yıldız Palace. Finance was one of the areas he concentrated on most, since he believed that financial administration was too crucial a matter to leave to finance officials. He thus controlled and supervised financial administration through a number of committees founded under his direction or under the direction of men he trusted. These financial committees placed the keys of the treasury in his hands and allowed him to keep track of every piaster that entered or left it.,

Basing his work on primary sources, Ö. Faruk Bölükbaşı focuses on the said committees to examine the functioning of financial administration under Abdülhamid II and the role played by the committees, while simultaneously offering the reader a more general financial overview of the last years of the Ottoman Empire.

Sayfa Baþý


Trade Letters as Instances of Economy, Ideology and Subjectivity
Aliye F. Mataraci

Istanbul, 2005
ISBN 975-98125-5-X

Winner of the 2002-2003 honorary mention on the monograph in the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre’s biannual competition, Unveiling the History of Turkish Banking and Finance, organized with the collaboration of the European Banking History Association and the History Foundation of Turkey.

This fascinating account of the business activities of the Mataraci family at the turn of the twentieth century can be read both as a case study of early Muslim Ottoman “entrepreneurship” and a depiction of the broader socio-economic context under the 1908-1918 Young Turk government. Based on family trade stories, revealed to her through interviews held with the Mataraci family elders, and an analysis of the 400 trade letters which were turned over to her, Aliye Mataraci, herself a descendant of the same family, retraces the evolution of the trade business founded by Hajji Ahmed Efendi and passed on to his three sons, and investigates the emergence of a new way of life and new identities in Ottoman Turkey.

Sayfa Baþý

Bir Galata Bankerinin Portresi: George Zarifi, 1806-1884
Murat Hulkiender

Istanbul, 2003
ISBN 975-93692-4-9

The Portrait of a Galata Banker: George Zarifi, 1806-1884

Winner of the first prize in the master's thesis category granted by the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre's Competition unveiling the history of Turkish banking and finance organized in 2000 with the collaboration of the European Association of Banking and Financial History e.V. and the History Foundation of Turkey.

This work of Murat Hulkiender, based on a vast archival material, reconstructs the different phases of the career of George Zarifi acting as a Galata banker in the 1850's after the liquidation of the Bank of Constantinople until his decay in 1880. Zarifi played a key role from the reign of Sultan Abdulaziz in the financing of the state as the founder and the partner of many societies such as the Société Générale. The political instability, which reigns after the deposition of Abdulaziz, marks a turning point in the career of Zarifi. His close relationship with Sultan Abdulhamid even before his arrival to the throne enabled him to become the most important banker of Galata. Murat Hulkiender clarifies also one of the most critical periodes of the Ottoman financial history throughout his career of 30 years.

Sayfa Baþý

Osmanli Dis Borclari ve Gözetim Komisyonlari, 1854-1856
Sevket K. Akar, Hüseyin Al

Istanbul, 2003
975-93692-3-0

Ottoman Foreign Debts and the Commissions of the Guarantor Powers

Winner of the first prize in the scientific article category granted by the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre's Competition unveiling the history of Turkish banking and finance organized in 2000 with the collaboration of the European Association of Banking and Financial History e.V. and the History Foundation of Turkey.

This joint work of Sevket Kamil Akar and Hüseyin Al studies the first attempts of the Ottoman Empire to foreign borrowing just before the establishment of the Ottoman Public Debt Administration. The emphasis is especially put on the commissions of the guarantor powers established with the task of looking into the Ottoman finances and the use of the loan in war expenses, their function and the manner in which the Ottoman bureaucracy opposed to the existence of these institutions. The process of domination of the Ottoman finance by the international markets is reconstructed through the function of the commissions founded insistently by the guarantor powers between 1854-55 and the political context of the period.

Sayfa Baþý

The Imperial Ottoman Bank in Salonica:
the First 25 Years, 1864-1890
John Karatzoglou

Istanbul, 2003
975-93692-5-7

Winner of the Jury Special Prize granted by the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre's Competition unveiling the history of Turkish banking and finance organized in 2000 with the collaboration of the European Association of Banking and Financial History e.V. and the History Foundation of Turkey.

This work of John Karatzoglou reconstructs the atmosphere in this branch of the bank in the late nineteenth century. The second largest Ottoman city in the European part of the empire, Salonica was a vibrant city where Muslims, Christians and Jews lived and worked together. Like the city, the local branch of the Ottoman Bank reflected the cosmopolitan atmosphere of the empire. Based on data from the Ottoman Bank's personnel archives from the Salonica branch, Karatzoglou has pieced together profiles of the employees, their positions and their experiences in the bank. He produces the flavor of a local society on the eve of momentous change.

Sayfa Baþý