San Stefano Yesilkoy Istanbul
French soldiers who were stationed here during the Crimean War built three historic lighthouses that still stand today. In 1876 the Russian Army offered support to the Bulgarians, who had declared independence from the Ottoman Empire, and when the soldier’s arrived Sultan Abdülhamid II was forced to sign the Treaty of San Stefano which went on to recognise a new Bulgaria stretching from the Danube to the Aegean. When the Treaty of Berlin was signed in 1878 the borders of Bulgaria were redrawn and became much smaller and in 1909 the “C.U.P. or Young Turks” sent Abdülhamid into exile from San Stefano to Salonica.
In 1895 an ornate war memorial was erected by the Russians in Yesilkoy that was to mark the furthest point they had reached during the Ottoman-Russian War of 1877-1878. This powerful symbol of the Ottoman defeat stood until 1914 when it was blown up by the C.U.P. and was actually filmed, which made it the first motion picture to be made in Turkey and called “The Destruction of the Russian Monument in San Stefano”.
Amadeo Preziosi, a Maltese artist born in 1816, came to Istanbul in 1842, married a Greek woman and settled in Beyoglu . In 1882 he accidently shot himself whilst out hunting in Yeşilköy forests and unfortunately died of his injuries the next day. Many of his Istanbul street life drawings can be seen in the Pera Museum and he is buried in the cemetery on Yesil Zeytin Street.
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