EGY.COM - VICTORIA COLLEGE
I have just found your article on Alexander Ruppa and found it very interesting. Alexander was my Grandfathers' uncle, as the family is now living in Australia I have been attempting to trace ancestors. I was wondering if you had any further information on Alexander , any photo's or anything or if you knew of anyone who does, it would be greatly appreciated, if you could provide contact details so I may contact them.
Thanking you in advance
Subject: Old Collegian [Alex]
Date: Sun, 20 Apr 2003 21:26:34 +1000
From: Nicolas \"Sam\" Sampson
I am an old Collegian going back to 1944-1950. I am thrilled to have found so much info on the 'Old VC' - actually it has brought back very many fond memories thanks to a very, very recent contact with my [then] best friend in the form of Nicholas Placotaris. We were in class together. I actually still have my cap and [moth-eaten] VC tie!!!
To add to that, I am looking at an event that took place on 14 May 1949.......Can anyone remember what it was? The production of 2 plays "The Highwaymen & the Cakes" and "The Pied Piper of Hamelin" [Nicholas P. was in the first one, and I was in the second]. I still have that programme and hope to scan it for 'posterity'. It contains a multitude of names so if it 'scans' clearly, I could e-mail you a copy, if you like.
My name was [until I arrived in Australia in 1963] Nicholas Ernest Samsonakis, but due to the difficulty of 'getting it across' over the phone etc., I decided to abbreviate it.
Thought I would make contact with you and hope to be more 'active' in the future.
Take care and keep well.
Nicolas "Sam" Sampson
Mackay, Queensland, Australia.
Date Sent: Monday, May 13, 2002 2:30 PM
From: J.L. TAMVACO Paris
These were the years where the first school play performed in the real theatre in the casino was The Merchant of Venice, with Youssef Shahine as Shylock.
The following year, the school play was less traditional: it consisted in a parody of musical nuùbers, comedy sketches and songs. This time, Shahine appeared in one of the numbers disguised as Carmen Miranda! The kids same the adults just loved it! I attended the first and repeat performance, both were a great success with the public.
So now that I know you have opened a site on VC, I will send you all the documents and give you memories I can recollect. For a start here as attachment I am sending you a few photos I have on hand before I scan the others I have in store, for you to add on your site.
The greek Tamvaco family settled in Alexandria since the first years of the 19th century when my ancestor George Tamvaco, from Chios, was made hostage by the Turks and executed in Constantinople in 1823. If you want to learn all about the massacres of Chios, you can look up Christopher Long's site on the web (www.ChristopherLong.co.uk) Christopher is now preparing a new section to be included in his site, completely dealing with the Tamvaco family in Alexandria. Namely, the presently so called L'Atelier of rue Fouad, Alexandria used to be the residence of my great grandfather who had it built by an italian architect in circa 1874-5. It was known as the Palais Tamvaco before it was sold to the Karam family before the First World War.
About myself: I have been living in Paris since the early 50's and was supposed to become a painter, but finally took a safer job in the IMB European Corp. in Paris. I am now retired and have lately published a book "Les Cancans de l'Opéra" dealing with the French Romantic Opera -- opera has been my passion since my early childhood!
I feel I would like to share a story with you and others who may remember J.R.G.Price, our then Headmaster at Shubra.
In 1950, I was around 15 years old and the whole family, my parents and younger brothe , went on a European vacation ending in England, where my parents had friends and acquaintances. It was then decided that I should finish my schooling in England, go to University, and return to Egypt to continue the family business. We happened to be in Kent and the school chosen for me was obviously unknown to us and turned out to be none other than St. Edmund's in Canterbury, a most distinguished English Public School in a most delightful City, but not of the Eton / Harrow caliber.
My parents returned to Egypt and asked me to write to Mr. Price and tell him of my surmize. I did, and soon thereafter I received a letter from Mr. Price (wish I had kept it) to go to the School Hall where high on the walls were names of Scholars and Exhibitioners to Oxford and Cambridge and check a particular year, I forget which, where he was listed as an Exhibitioner to Christ Church, Cambridge. He then added and said " look from the Chapel east window and have a good glimpse of "Canterbury Chathedral for me". It was an awesome feeling . This was the man who had whipped me on "mon derriere" once for some reason or other!!
Incidentally, in an English Public School there was a system called "Fagging " which means toiling for someone , where the young boys would work for the school Captains. Two of them grabbed me the first week and asked me to polish their shoes. "Moi" polish shoes!!, the "Khadam" did those chore , so I rebelled. I got a beating like you would not believe. I polished shoes. Of course my turn came when my shoes were polished.
To end it, I then went to University but could not, go to Oxbridge
since in those days it was mandatory for anyone from an Public School in
England to have Latin and Greek. I had neither, but told them I had
Arabic and French, but to no avail and alas it did not help. I did go
to London University and presently reside in the United States .I have
six annual House photos of Kitchener with Mr.Gately as Housmaster and
another teacher whose name I forget They are from 1943 onwards up to
1950, the year I left.
Thank you again for the joy your websites gives me.
My wife and I remember our years in Maadi with much pleasure. We arrived in 1952 as newly marrieds and, as no accommodation was available we spent the first two weeks as guests of the Headmaster and his wife, Mr and Mrs Elliot Smith - a terrifying experience but they became lifelong friends. I taught history, was in charge of tennis and started a sailing club.
In my last year I was Housemaster of Gatley House. During those years we made many friends and having seen your website on my son’s computer I am wondering if it might be possible to contact some of them. One who I have been in touch with is Gabriel Josipovici who came to England, went to Oxford and had a distinguished academic career as Professor of English at Sussex University. But there are others who I used to teach who I would love to hear from if that is possible through your channels. Some names I particularly remember, mainly in connection with Gatley House, the Sailing Club or tennis are - Negad Salah el Din, Ibrahim Sadek, Ahmed Bahgat, Armand Arcache, Robert Tembek, Peter Kroger, Garbis Kehaian, and a boy called Ragab.
I would love to hear from any of the above, or indeed from any other Old Victorians who may remember that era. Contact can be made via my son’s email address: He is Gavin David and was born in Victoria Hospital, Cairo in 1954. Some of the above may well have been the senior boys who broke bounds to go and visit him and my wife in the hospital. He still has some of the presents those boys gave him!
I have one small remark: The district which you refer to as "Mazarita" is actually called "Lazarita". As I am sure you know, each of the stations along the Ramleh Tram line was named after an official in the tram company such as Laurens, Fleming, Glymonopoulou, Schutz and Lazaret. (For this information I am quoting the 1914 edition of the well-known Baedeker's Guidebook of Egypt). "Lazaret" was first distorted to "Lazarita" and later on "Mazarita." Keep up the good work!!
Subject: Letter from Montevideo
Date: Sun, 27 Aug 2000 20:56:37 -0600
From: Favy Moubayed
I love visiting your site egy.com and getting in touch with Egypt and everything Egyptian in it. Congratulations, Samir, keep it up.
The Alexandria Victoria College site and the photos attached therein was excellent. I saw many friends and teachers of my years there. It was really touching seeing some of them 55 years after leaving VC.
My last visit to Egypt was in October 1998. I organized, together with my ex sister-in-law, Sylvia Tambay, herself an "Old EGC-Alexandria" girl, a trip to Cairo-Luxor-Aswan-Abu Simbel (Nile cruise). We were 13 friends (from Uruguay, Argentina, and Italy) including my two daughters (one of them born in Alexandria but had never gone back to Egypt since she left it in 1962). Some of the group went to Sharm El Sheikh, St. Catherine's Monastery and Alexandria. They all loved it and want a "ditto". One has already gone back there on her own. I, myself, am looking forward to my next trip soon, "Inshaq Allah"! An amusing coincidence: One of the group is a Cikurel (spelled with a K because his father was born in Turkey) and I gave him a copy of the Cicurel murder I found in your site!!
One interesting page is about forgotten &/or ignorance of modern history and origin of some names and sayings.
Could you, or some of your readers, refresh my memory about
1) history: "Shagaret El Dorr", and
2) the saying "Hokm Quaraquosh"
Thanks & kind regards
Subject: Article on King Tut
Date: Sat, 1 Apr 2000 21:55:48 EST
From: Moreen Le Fleming Ehly
Enjoyed your article very much. Interesting to note that you state Amenhotep III is boy king's father. I would like to point out that none other than John Romer mentions Princess Sitamoun as being King Tutankhamoun's sister. I don't think he realised that this would make the boy king the son of Amenhotep III, as well as his chief consort,Queen Tey, and, of course, the brother of Akhnaton, the so-called heretic Pharoah, which I believe to be the case. I am writing a book (semi-fictional), about the murder of Nebkheprure Tutankhamoun, and the Theban chief of police whose life is destroyed by his subsequent investigation.
I also enjoy your Victoria College section. I used to teach there fifty four years ago.
Subject: R.R. Parkhouse
Date: Wed, 23 Feb 2000 11:11:23 -0800
From: Max Tchiprout
I am an Old Victorian i attended from 1947 to 1952. If my memory serves me right my last year was in upper V-1. Some of my classmates were Toussoun, Arditi, M. Gabbay. Simeon Rilsky(ex king of Bulgaria) Damirji and of course King Husein of Jordan. There were of course a lot more, but these are the only names that come to my mind. I would appreciate whatever information you may have to refresh my memory.
Parkhouse was quite the character from being a soccer coach to susbstitute math teacher (my knowledge) to--from your article--head of a house. We used to call him RIP (rest in peace) Parkhouse. Why, I dont remember! Reading all of this brought long forgotten memories. I used to live At Campo Cesare and remember that at lucnh time some of my friends would make a race, get off the tram run home eat lunch run back to the station and catch the same tram on its way back to school.
Max Tchiprout 1947-1951 lower IV 2 - Lower V1
Subject: A history of Victoria College
Date: Sun, 7 Nov 1999 20:54:09 EST
From: Alain A. Silvera
I'm writing a history of our alma mater and would welcome any historical information on this major subject. I am a graduate of VC, Alex, 1937- 49, then a Harvard PhD and now History professor emeritus, Bryn Mawr College, Bryn Mawr, PA 19010
Samir Raafat, I've followed your miscallaneous writings on Egypt with the greatest pleasure. i am myself a former alexandrian who graduated from Victoria College in Alex in 1947. Now a professor emeritus of history at bryn mawr college in Pennsylvania i am researching a history of our alma mater.
I gather that Awad, also an Old Victorian, is also embarked on the same endeavour. I would be grateful if you could tell me how to get in touch.
Subject: old pictures
Date: Sun, 16 Jan 2000 23:51:21 +0200
From: Samir Kassem
Hi I am samir kassem an old victorian from 1963-1976 I have a lot of class pictures if u r interested I can send them to put in victoria’s page
Subject: Copy of Victoria College School Certificate 1943
Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 18:18:54 +0300
From: Youssef Zaidan
I received a copy of your article on Victoria College from Henry Zaidan. This was fascinating reading. A piece of history that means so much to us, and that we knew so little about. I graduated from VC Shubra in 1943 or 1944. My School Certificate ( including 8 credits) remained with my papers in Maadi after we were sequestrated. I now have no document showing that I got this certificate. Is there any way you know off that I can get a copy of this? This is important as it is a requisite for my application to obtain an Egyptian Import registration. Any information or help you can give me will be very appreciated
Suject: Old Victorian
Date: Thu, 15 Jul 1999 20:51:35 EDT
I was just browsing through the net and stumbled across this site. I am the son of Mr Nicholas Stamboulieh who was at Victoria College Alexandria. We are now living in the USA. I will be visiting my father in Houston TX tomorrow. I was just very excited to see some of the old pictures of the VC. I would be very interested to know if you know my father
Subject: Egyptian Society of Chest Diseases Annual Conference in Alexandria 30th of June thru 2nd of July 1999
Date: Thu, 29 Apr 1999 15:44:41 -0700
If you are a physician and interseted, contact Old Victorian Dr Mahmoud Ibrahim Mahmoud, Lecturer of Chest Diseases, at firstname.lastname@example.org or at email@example.com. Invitations including registration and fuull board accomodations in Montazah Sheraton during the conference are available.
Subject: Passed away
Date: Wed, 28 Apr 1999 15:58:28 +1000
From: Bill Naim
Genny Abdel Sayed Housekeeper in charge of the Kitchen at Victoria College between 1950-1962 passed away in July 1988 in Melbourne Australia. I am sure that the numerous boarders during that period would be interested to know. This is written by her son who also worked at Victoria College between 1958-1962 in the Headmaster's office with Ms. Timmins and also looked after the School Cinema. (William (Naim) Abdel Sayed.
Subject: San Stefano/Victoria College
Date: Tue, 23 Mar 1999 10:29:57 -0600
From: LEVON K. TOPOUZIAN
I read with interest your article about San Stefano. Although you mentioned Victoria College, I think that it would have been of interest to elaborate the role of VC during the war and its becoming the 64th General Hospital and the transfer of students to San Stefano.
As an old Victorian I would have loved to see pictures of both school premises and I am sure that many Alexandrians in the Diaspora would be delighted.
Levon K. Topouzian M.D.
Emeritus Assistant Professor
University of Illinois
Subject: Vitoria College Article - Luigi Steinschneider
Date: Fri, 12 Mar 1999 08:49:49 -0500
From: Philippe Steinschneider
Mr. Raafat, I read your March 30, 1996 article on Victoria College with great interest today. I am particularly fascinated by your reference to a Luigi Steinschneider, the "maverick hotelier". Do you have any additional information on Mr. Steinschneider as I am presently gathering as much data as possible on the Steinschneider families. Any information would be greatly appreciated. I'm not sure if Luigi is a relative yet. However, most likely, he is. The article is the first time I heard mention of a Steinschneider with the name Luigi. At least now, when I eventually stumble on our relationship, I'll have some fascinating information on him.
Subject: VC reunion 1983
Date: Tue, 23 Feb 1999 00:25:08 -0500
From: peter lewin
Samir, You may be interested in a scanned copy of the letter I wrote to President Mubarak in 1982, which initiated the 1983 reunion Best regards Peter
From: THE HOSPITAL FOR SICK CHILDREN
555 UNlVERSITY AVENUE TORONTO,
CANADA M5G 1X8
March 31, 1982
President Mohamed Hosni Mubarak,
Dear President Mubarak:
I spent the happiest years of my life while a student at Victoria College in Alexandria from 1940 to 1953. This superb school which trained so many leaders of the Middle East, including some of your honoured colleagues, is happily still active as Victory College both in Alexandria and Cairo.
Last year we held one of the few reunions of our school in the Middle East, alas not in Egypt but in Amman as guests of His Highness King Hussein, one of our illustrious Victoria College school graduates. The reunion was a magnificent affair. However Jordan is not Egypt, and I am sure many missed the old familiar surroundings of our school in Alexandria.
In 1983 Victoria College will celebrate its 80th anniversary. I wonder whether that year could be a suitable occasion for your Excellency to initiate a program for Victoria College to organize a reunion of all its former pupils. This I feel would not only be a unique opportunity to many of the "Old Victorians" to revisit Egypt and their old school, but also an opportunity for renewing old ties and friendships, so important for the furtherance of co-operation and tolerance in the region. It may also be a suitable occasion to re-establish the school as Egypt1s unique international primary and secondary educational center.
With best regards,
Peter K Lewin,
C.D.,M. D. , M.Sc., F.R.C.P.(C)
c.c. : H.E., The Egyptian Ambassador to Canada
Mounir Chalaby, President, Victoria College Association,London
Richard Safadi, Victoria College Co-ordinator, U.S.
Samir J. Zalzal, Victoria College Co-ordinator, Canada
Subject: Italians in Egypt
Date: Wed, 07 Oct 1998 19:42:48 -0700
From: Joseph Wahed
Samir, I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoy your articles. One of my dear neighbours in Heliopolis---Paul Sabbagh---had an Italian father and a Palestinian mother. One day, the authorities took his father away. We were very young, and therefore, never spoke about these things. For us, life went on as usual, so we thought. Paul now lives in Brazil, and doing quite well. He visited me some years ago, for old times sake, and only then did I realize how deeply he was affected by his father's internment. Its funny how life is. We talked about as adults, each having suffered at the hands of political forces more powerful than us. A graduate of EMC and VCC (1952), I now live in San Francisco, and have never forgotten the terrific time I spent in Egypt, terrific, until that fateful day when its foreign minorities began to be expelled, slowly at first, then more aggressively later on. In early 1994, however, I returned after an absence of over 40 years. I had an absolutely wonderful time. All the beautiful memories of my youth in Heliopolis came back to me: my friends, neighbours, the street sellers, grocers, Ras el Bar, and most of all, the hospitable and friendly people and the music. We plan to return to continue this unfinished saga. Keep writing your articles, and make us all happy.
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