Unpublished photos of modern Turkey founder Atatürk revealed from drawer
Never-before-seen photographs of modern Turkey founder Mustafa Kemal Atatürk have been unearthed by chance from a drawer belonging to the daughter of Osman Şevki Uludağ, a famous Turkish medical historian.
Photographs belong to the personal archive of Ela Uludağ, who died in November. Her second-generation granddaughter, İrem Ela Yıldızeli spoke about the details of the revelation and the story of the old photographs.
“There is a buffet specially made for a wedding gift of Nebile İrdelp, Atatürk’s adoptive daughter. Mrs. Nebile is also the neighbor of my great grandparents in Nişantaşı. My grandfather Osman Şevki Bey later owned this memory of Atatürk,” Yıldızeli said.
Stating that the photographs came out by chance in a drawer of the buffet, Yıldızeli said that the photos of Atatürk were taken with Osman Şevki Uludağ’s own camera.
“My grandfather was also interested in the art of photography. He took these photos while Atatürk came to Ankara by train. My grandfather made works on almost every subject he was an expert of,” Yıldızeli said.
“My grandmother protected the photos like her eyes and fortunately she did. As I get to know the world of my grandfather, I travel to new places with full of surprises,” she added.
Osman Şevki, who named Mt Uludağ
Osman Şevki Uludağ went to Anatolia in 1919 and worked as a military doctor during the Turkish War of Independence.
He was the first to suggest that this name be given to the Uludağ mountain in Bursa, formerly known as Keşişdağı.
Osman Şevki participated in a tour of teachers from Istanbul, as he was working at Eyüp Tuberculosis Dispensary.
While on the road, the mountain looked empyreal to Osman Şevki, and he murmured, “What an almighty mountain it is!”
And at the end of his report to the chief of General Staff at the time on the way back, he wrote, “Let’s give this a suitable name for the mountain and say Uludağ [Almighty Mount].”
Osman Şevki also managed to climb the summit of the mountain. It is believed to be the first climb in the history of the republic.
He later naturally adopted the last name “Uludağ” when a surname law was adopted in 1934.
He also composed about 120 compositions in the field of Turkish music.