Asia Minor refugees and Synikismos (Corinth Settlement)
The refugees from Asia Minor arrived in the new city of Corinth, some since the persecution of 1914. Initially they stayed in shacks and tents, mainly around the Corinth railway station and the central market (Periandrou Street).
The Refugee Rehabilitation Organization, in 1928, expropriated the area of the small hill northeast of the city, the state granted plots and built “Baghdad” houses with two arches and a basement.
The people of Asia Minor together took care to build the Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary of Corinth to continue the Liturgical and Worship life. The late Father Nektarios Marmarinos was ordained in this church in 1943, who offered a great spiritual work in the Corinth Settlement.
The cafes next to the Temple were the meeting place of the refugees from Asia Minor. A big party was held on the big holidays, as well as in the Homeland. The “Easter of Summer” is celebrated with great joy until today, on the 15th of August, where the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary is celebrated.
The Corinth Asia Minor Home is an active association that has been operating officially since 1992, with the aim of promoting the origin and culture of the inhabitants of the district.
The earthquake of 1928 that leveled the whole of Corinth
The devastating earthquake of April 28, 1928 leveled the city of Corinth, but fortunately the pre-earthquake tremors had disturbed the residents who managed to leave their homes …. and so there were only 20 dead and 30 injured.
The weather was the first omen. From the morning there was an unjustified heat throughout the city. Around 9 o’clock in the evening the successive vibrations started, which were accompanied by a loud roar coming from the earth. Earthquake. Almost all the buildings of Corinth were destroyed. The final blow came at 22:00 at night, when the big earthquake of 6.3 Richter took place. The vibrations that continued for the next two days, left nothing standing.
The quake, which had warned the Corinthians, reduced the death toll to 20 dead and 30 injured. However, almost 2,000 buildings in the city were destroyed and great damage was done in Loutraki. Help was immediately sent from the surrounding areas. Tents were set up to house the quake victims and food was sent. Also an English and two Italian warships sailed the area and offered supplies to the earthquake victims.
On April 28, 1928, five days after the catastrophic earthquake and the successive micro-vibrations, the demolition of the ruins began to start the reconstruction of the city from scratch. The crews began to demolish the remains of the houses, to clean the streets, to gather the materials to start the preparations for the foundation of “Nea Korinthos” on a new plan and design.
Companies, individuals and public institutions sent money to help earthquake victims. The amount of 4.5 million drachmas was raised from the fundraiser. In addition to the money, boxes of food, drinks and clothes were sent to Corinth. Part of the Red Cross organized three meals a day with plenty of food.
For the reconstruction of Corinth and Loutraki, the Autonomous Organization of Earthquake Victims of Corinth (AOSK) was created, headed by Metropolitan Damaskinos. Gradually the city was rebuilt and grew with the help of refugees and thousands of Peloponnesians who came down from the barren mountains to find work in the developing city.