Surnames on the population map of Heraklion (1863-1913)
In the half-century prior to the Union of Crete with Greece (1913), population mobility in the largest urban centre of the island, due to the successive risings and Autonomy, and the political changes they set in motion, transformed the city from an Ottoman into a Christian stronghold.
This paper aims to present surname data documenting population fluidity in all the various ethnic and religious groups (Christians, Muslims, Jews, Armenians, Franco-Levantines, etc.) and subgroups (Greek citizens, Greeks of the diaspora, Kurds, Benghazis). The statistical data clearly depict the multicultural character of the city, and its power as an urbanisation magnet for rural inhabitants and an inviting port of the wider East. The pictures thus formed, fluid and changeable during the period in question, show the trends of the communicating population vessels among the Great Island, the Ottoman territories, the Kingdom of Greece and the Mediterranean as a whole.
Archival sources are also used to monitor the process of surname establishment in Crete due to the spread of bureaucracy in public administration and, of course, the ideology expressed by naming choices.
The sources used comprise archival material of all kinds, such as tax, census, educational and other records, loose documents of the Demogerontia Archive and the Municipal Archive of Heraklion, and the contemporary press.