Melkonian Alumni and Friends
Melkonian Timeline

Official Website
Melkonian Timeline

The following is an approximate time-line representing the history of the Melkonian Educational Institute. I have tried to collect the information from different resources and websites. If any boby can add to and or correct this information, please email us at and we will make the necessary changes. Also, some of the pictures that we have here are copied from flickr and other websites without the permission of the legal owners. This is not a commercial website and the picture are only used as a reference and/or historical representation. If the owners of this pictures object to our usage of these images please email us at and we will remove them promptly. Thank you for your cooperation.


Ottoman Empire

Armenian Genocide
July 1921 Turkey and Egypt

On or about July 25, 1921, Garabed Melkonian, a wealthy Armenian businessman, residing in Turkey and then Egypt, conveyed a gift to Zaven Der Yeghyayan, in his official capacity as the Patriarch of the ARMENIAN PATRIARCHATE OF CONSTANTINOPLE of real and personal property then valued in the approximate amount of four hundred thousand Egyptian pounds but worth at that time least $3,500,000 U.S. dollars. He asked that the ARMENIAN PATRIARCHATE OF CONSTANTINOPLE use his gift to establish and maintain schools for Armenian children and perform other works of charity for the Armenian people.

February 15, 1924 Nicosia, Cyprus

Zaven Der Yeghyayan, in his official capacity as the Patriarch of the ARMENIAN PATRIARCHATE OF CONSTANTINOPLE, using the proceeds of Garabed's gift, established a school and orphanage in Nicosia, Cyprus, in 1924, named it the Melkonian Educational Institute, in honor of Garabed Melkonian. The foundational stone was laid and the construction of Melkonian Establishments began in Nicosia, Cyprus on February 15, 1924.

December 25, 1925 Alexandria, Egypt

The Armenian Patriarch of Constantinople with Mr. Melkonian’s concurrence conveyed the Melkonian Educational Institute, in trust to the Armenian General Benevolent Union, with the express direction and expectation that the Union would maintain the Institute in Cyprus and continue to educate Armenian youth long into the future.

1926 Nicosia, Cyprus

Krikor Melkonian and Garabed Melkonian opened the Melkonan Establishment as an orphanage.

1926 Nicosia, Cyprus

In April 1926 a over 300 orphans, boys and girls that survived the Ottoman Atrocities attended the Melkonian Establishment.

1942 to 1946 During the World War II the school was temporarily closed from 1942 to 1946.
1974 Nicosia, Cyprus During the Turkish invasion of Cyprus several bombs struck the buildings and the grounds of the school.
1986 Nicosia, Cyprus

Part of the Melkonian estate was sold by the AGBU to invest the proceeds in a new Boarding House, a closed sports complex and a commercial center.
The Melkonian Commercial Center was built on Melkonian grounds. The generated income was to be used to help the school finances.

1990 Nicosia, Cyprus

The new boarding house, was finished. With a boys, a girls wing and a cafeteria in between. It could accommodate 400 boarding students.

2003 United Kingdom An Alumni led campaign to resist the closure of Melkonian began, was established.
November 2003  

Rumors in the public regarding the closure and sale of the school by the AGBU Central Board, which the AGBU publicly denies in the media.

AGBU Statement
March 14.2004 New York, USA AGBU Central Board voted unanimously in favor of closing the school.

Louise Manoogian Simone, Chairman
Nazar Nazarian, Vice Chairman, Treasurer
Berge Setrakian, President
Sarkis Demirdjian, Vice President
Arshavir Gundjian, Vice President
Joseph Basralian, Secretary
M. Michael Ansour
Carol B. Aslanian
Edouard Jakhian
Levon Kebabdjian
Richard Manoogian
Benon Sevan
Sam Simonian
Sinan Sinanian
Dickran Tevrizian
Karnig Yacoubian

March 16, 2004 USA Official decision of closing the school was published. AGBU Statement
2004 USA Melkonian Alumni and Friends was formed.
January 13, 2005 California, USA

On behalf of Melkonian alumni, around the world, the Patriarch of the Armenian Patriarchate of Turkey, Mesrob Mutafyan, as the original trustee of the Melkonian gift, filed a lawsuit on January 13, 2005, against The Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU) seeking to continue the Institute as the premier Armenian educational facility in the world and enforce the terms of the Garabed Melkonian Trust. The suit will be prosecuted by MacCarley & Rosen, PLC of Los Angeles, California.

April 19, 2005 L.A., CA, USA The Los Angeles, California case by the Armenian Patriarch of Turkey in the Superior Court of California in Los Angeles against AGBU was dismissed in April 19, 2005.
May 17, 2006 L.A., CA, USA The Los Angeles, California case by the Armenian Patriarch of Turkey in the Superior Court of California in Los Angeles against AGBU was appealed on May 17, 2005, to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth
Circuit, in Los Angeles. The briefs are due in September 2 and October 3, 2005.
June 2005 Nicosia, Cyprus Melkonian Educational Institute closed its doors.  
April 2007 Nicosia, Cyprus Conservation order to declare most of Melkonian Estate as a historic monument to be preserved was passed. The Cyprus cabinet has confirmed the past decision of  Melkonian Properties to be considered as national heritage, with the new decision they have added the new buildings as well, 60% of the Melkonian properties. The only  areas left  for sale or  for use is , AGBU club, football playgrounds, and  farm areas.  
June 2007 Nicosia, Cyprus

Ministry of Education & Culture of the Republic of Cyprus and AGBU agreed to temporarily house over 400 Cypriot students during the 2007/08 academic year at Melkonian Institute.

March 2010   Switzerland, Armenia, Russia, Cyprus AYB Foundation representatives of Yeravan Armenia, met with World MEI Alumni and Friends to discuss possible plans to convince the central board of the AGBU organization and stop the sale and re-open the historic Melkonian Educational Insitute in Nicosia, Cyprus.