BAGHDAD in the light of Ottoman Archive Documents
This is a collection of historical documents, maps and photographs concerning Baghdad selected from the Ottoman Archives in Istanbul affiliated with the General Directorate of State Archives, Prime Ministry of Turkey. It was prepared by Dr. Fadil Bayat, expert at IRCICA, and launched during the congress on ?Baghdad in Islamic Civilisation? which was organised jointly by Marmara University and IRCICA with the cooperation of Umraniye Municipality and held in Istanbul on 7-9 November 2008. The documents and other materials contained in the book reflect part of the history of Baghdad during the last couple of centuries in the Ottoman period and will serve as a useful reference for researchers. The Preface by Dr. Halit Eren explains the reasons for emphasising the Ottoman archive documents as primary sources reflecting the facts and events, the features and particularities of the Ottoman period as reflected in Baghdad at that time.
The book begins by Dr. Bayat?s introductory article on the «Characteristics of the History of Baghdad during the Ottoman Era» which is a glimpse at the history of the city from the beginning of Ottoman administration in 1534 until the British occupation in 1917. The documents which are reproduced and translated in the book were chosen from the Mühimme registers contained in the Ottoman Archives; these registers comprise the decrees issued by the Divan-? Hümayun (corresponding to the Prime Ministry) under the chairmanship of the Sadrazam (Grand Vizir), which were then submitted to the Sultan?s approval and circulated on his behalf to the parties concerned for implementation. A second group of documents were selected from various collections of the Archives and include statistical tables copied from the Devlet-i Osmaniye Salnamesi (Almanach of the Ottoman State) the Nazaret-i Maarif Salnamesi (Almanac of the Ministry of Education), the Ba?dat Vilayeti Salnamesi (Almanac of Baghdad Province). Photographs taken during the Ottoman period and reflecting various features of the city are also included, together with various maps of the city.
The documents do not cover any specific aspect of the city but general themes about its history in various periods. These themes constitute the titles of the chapters. The statistical tables included in the book were compiled from the Almanac of Baghdad Province for the year 1897 reflecting the administrative, judicial, social and financial organisation of the city, and from the Almanac of the Ministry of Education concerning the educational establishments of Baghdad at the beginning of 20th century.