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by Archaeology Newsroom

General Thomas Gordon’s house in Argos

Colonel Th. Gordon, from Cairness, Aberdeenshire, in Scotland, was among the military philhellenes who came to Greece with the outbreak of the Greek War of Independence in 1821. He actively participated in organising a regular Greek army and stayed in Greece for many years , almost until his death in 1841.It is scarcely known, however, that he had his house built in the town of Argos in the Peloponnese -soon after the end of the War of Independence — This is because relevant information came from indirect references or from the local tradition of Argos, as published in a newspaper of the town in 1928, when his grandson visited Argos and the house itself.

For the first time,Vassilis Dorovinis, the author of this article, brings to light archive sources and connects them with existing information and oral tradition, thus presenting a full record of the history of the house from the time of its construction to the present.

In his study he has taken into consideration documents from the Historic Archive of the National Bank of Greece, the Mortgage Registry of Argos and Nauplion, the General Archives of the State, the archives of the British School of Athens and those of the Gordon family from the University of Aberdeen. Other relevant information derives from the press of Argolis (1821-1980),from the families that have lived in the house, as well as from foreign travellers who visited Argos in the nineteenth century. Finally, the efforts for keeping the building from collapsing and its purchasing and restoration by the French Archaeological School (1987-1993) are presented, while unknown activities of Gordon, such as the purchasing of land in Argos, are thoroughly looked into.