The famous Grachis family from Chicago

And an unexpected email !

Decoding the Grachis workshop photograph circa 1910 Chicago

For more than a week I was trying desperately to collect further information regarding the boy holding the violin at the Grachis workshop photo, without any luck.

I had contacted once again all my friends and resources, and I had done an intense internet research , in an attempt to locate a photograph of George Grachis in a younger age, than the one provided to me by my friend John Pappas. 
My last attempt would have been to compare the facial characteristics of the boy in debate to a photograph of a younger George Grachis and extract some conclusions
I still could not explain why the facial characteristics of Dimitrios Grachis ,in the photograph of the Chicago workshop, were so similar to the characteristics of the boy with the violin.
Both of them ( Dimitrios and the boy) had the  same big almond-shape eyes, with a distinguished higher right eye brow, and  a similar facial structure.

I was loosing my faith when an unexpected email reached my inbox from the most valuable resource!

" Dear Mr. Dimis:

(I am writing as a request from my brother, Dimitri Grachis, after he received your comments to his website.  I am the family historian and know more about our father’s history in this country.) 

My name is Mary Grachis Metropulos and I have been enjoying your blog on The Grachis Family.  Needless to say, I was a bit overwhelmed by seeing the photos of all the beautiful instruments created by my father and grandfather, and to read all you have written. 

I do want to make a correction that I noticed right away on the first page of your blog regarding the family photo taken in the Music Shop where my grandfather and grandmother are at the back of the photo.  
The young man you have identified as my father (the young boy holding the violin) is not George Grachis.  It is his brother, Vasili Grachis (Bill).  My father was not in that photo, who by the time this photo was taken,  was a grown man.  He was about 20 years older than his brother, Vasili.
My father had gone  back and forth from Chicago to Greece several times and when he had raised enough money he brought his whole family;  father, Dimitrios, mother, Angeliki, 2 sisters, Stavroula and Katina,  and his young brother, Vasili,  over to the USA and settled in Chicago.  
The young child my grandmother is holding is her grandson, Nick Loukas (Varthaloukas).  I believe the two men to the left are either friends or my grandfather’s sons-in-law.  I am not sure about that tough.

I am sorry to say that we no longer have any violins left from my father and grandfather.  The last one was repaired and given to my brother’s grandson a few years ago."

Have you ever heard of Sotirios Chianis?  He visited my father in the 1960s when we were living in San Mateo, CA., and he recorded an extensive interview with him.  Years later Mr. Chianis, who now lives in Florida, came out to visit me, as I am now the family historian. I shared articles and photos with him at that time.  Sotirios is a wonderful man and has devoted his life to cataloguing songs from the villages  in Greece and so much more. 
I talked with him this morning and we talked about your blog and he told me he would write to you by email soon.  I am sure you both will have plenty to talk about.  

Best regards,
Mary Grachis Metropulos

To be continued...


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