The Historical Archive Museum of Hydra, is an important Bearer of Culture, Tradition and History not only for the island of Hydra but for all of Greece. It has been offering for over a 100 years, a very important and multifaceted cultural work. The Historical Archive Museum of Hydra is a purely Public Service, regional service of the General State Archives and under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education, Research and Religious Affairs. The Historical Archive Museum of Hydra houses many items donated to the museum by the descendants of the families who dominated the social structure of the island in the 1800's and were instrumental in the launch of the Greek War of Independence. The museum has a distinctive nautical theme which reflects the strategic importance that Hydra held during that time as a safe harbor from which to launch the Greek fleet. It is active in a variety of ways and in addition to the scientific museum and archival work, it presents a series of quality cultural events including conferences, workshops, lectures, book presentations, art exhibitions, educational programs for young people, musical concerts, theatrical and dance performances etc. For the last 30 years, IAMH has been in constant dialogue and cooperation with cultural institutions inside and outside Greece, contributing greatly to the promotion of Greek and world cultural heritage! Dimitris Maras was born in Athens in 1944. He studied at the School of Physics and Mathematics in the University of Athens and then traveled to the U.S.A., where he studied at the University of Illinois, Chicago on a scholarship, graduating with a M.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering. He worked for chemical industries, shipyards, and construction and shipping companies, both in Greece and abroad. His love for the sea and the Greek maritime tradition was the impetus for his 40-year systematic research and study of Greek traditional shipbuilding, visiting maritime museums in Greece and abroad, libraries and, especially, shipbuilding centers. Following his research and collection of data, armed with the gift of patience and taking advantage of his natural handcraft ability, he started making models, to scale, of historical wooden sailing vessels, which no longer sail in the Mediterranean. Several of the boats that he was able to record and construct no longer exist, thus making them unique. When constructing his models, Maras strictly follows the traditional building techniques used by shipwrights through the centuries. He uses authentic building materials, exactly those used by the builders of the originals and all models are built to scale. The construction can be characterized as of museum quality. Maras’ collection comprises more than 150 different models, forming the traditional shipbuilding history of the eastern Mediterranean, including the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea. It covers the prehistoric and Minoan eras, the periods of the battle of Salamis and of Alexander the Great, the Byzantine Empire, the Greek Revolution of 1821 and the first half of the 20th century. Part of his collection is on permanent exhibit at the Maritime Museum of Litochoro, the Natural History Museum of the Goulandris Foundation, in Nea Apolonia of Thessaloniki and the cultural multispace “FABRIKA” in Leonidio. Dimitris Maras aims to build as many models as possible and to awaken an interest, particularly among young people, in Greek traditional shipbuilding and model making.
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On the occasion of the celebration of 200 years since the Greek Revolution of 1821, PAN Art Connections, Inc. presents the exhibition: “THE NAVAL STRUGGLE OF THE GREEKS DURING THE REVOLUTION OF 1821”. This unique exhibition consists of 55 exhibits and national treasures dating from the Revolution of 1821 that belong to the collection of the Historical Archive-Museum of Hydra (HAMH), plus 20 handmade models representing ships that were used during the naval operations of 1821 from the collection of Mr.Dimitris Maras, Mechanical-Engineer M.Sc, Microshipbuilder.
The Bicentennial of the Revolution of 1821, which also marks the founding of the Modern Greek State, is of highest historical importance to all Greeks around the world. The aim of the exhibition is its presentation in countries abroad, creating a unique opportunity to promote the contribution of the Greek Revolution to the history of Europe through its multi-thematic levels that will be of interest not only to Greek Diaspora, but to the global community as well.