Frank Watterson Jackson was born in Fayette County, Pennsylvania USA in 1874. He was an attorney in general practice. From 1895-1898 he studied Greek history and literature at the Chicago University and received an M.A degree in 1898. He then taught Greek at the Mount Pleasant Preparatory School from 1898-1901.1 It was his proficiency in Greek that led in 1901 to his appointment as Consul to Greece with residency at Patras. He served as Consul to Greece until 1903, when he resigned.
Between 1917-21 he served as chairman of the Relief Committee for Greeks of Asia Minor, also known as the Greek Relief Committee (GRC), a New York based organisation whose aim was to provide relief to the Greeks of the Ottoman Empire.2 On October of 1917, as chairman of the GRC, Jackson made a statement which was published in various newspapers describing the plight of the Ottoman Greeks. He said:
The story of the Greek deportation is not yet generally known. Quietly and gradually the same treatment is being meted out to the Greeks as to the Armenians. Although closely guarded, certain echoes of these horrors come out from time to time. There were some two to three million Greeks in Asia Minor at the outbreak of the war in 1914, subject to Turkish rule. According to the latest reliable and authorative accounts some seven to eight hundred thousand have been deported, mainly from the coast regions into the interior of Asia Minor. Along with the Armenians most of the Greeks of the Marmora regions and Thrace have been deported on the pretext that they gave information to the enemy. Along the Aegean Coast Ayvalik stands out as the worst sufferer. According to one report some 70,000 Greeks there have been deported toward Konia [Konya] and beyond. At least 7,000 have been slaughtered. The Greek Bishop of Ayvalik committed suicide in despair.3
The remainder of Jackson's statement can be viewed here.
On the 8th of December 1919, Frank W. Jackson along with five other GRC members, were awarded the Royal Order of George the First by the United States Greek Ambassador George Roussos on behalf of King Alexander of Greece. The award was a mark of appreciation by the Greek Government for their work in providing aid to Greeks who suffered as a result of Turkish deportations.4
He died in Montclair, Essex County, New Jersey USA in 1955, aged 81.
- Encyclopedia of Pennsylvania biography (Volume v.4) online
- Hlamides, Nikolaos "The Greek Relief Committee: America's Response to the Greek Genocide (A Research Note)," Genocide Studies and Prevention: An International Journal: Vol. 3: Iss. 3, Article 9. 375.
- Turks Turned Against Greek; 700,000 SUFFER. The Evening Independent, 17 October 1917.
- Greek Honors for Board. New York Times, 8 December 1919.
Photo source: Empire state notables, 1914. Hartwell Stafford Publisher Inc, New York, p. 529.