Fig Tree

My Grandpa Sinodis immigrated to the U.S. from Marmara Island, Greece (now Turkey) in 1914. He arrived at Ellis Island with no money, no knowledge of English, and at the age of 14. His father had to say he was 18 to get him onto a ship. He left his entire family behind in Greece, escaping the draft placed on the Island by the Turkish army. He worked in kitchens throughout the city, eventually moving to North Carolina, where he married my Grandma Katie. He even opened up his own restaurant. While he never returned to Greece, his heart always stayed with the family that he was forced to leave behind. In the backyard in North Carolina he planted fig trees that reminded him of home. He would sit all of the kids at a table, talking about Greece and sharing his memories while he peeled the figs.

Place(s): Greece, Marmara Island, New York City, North Carolina
Year: 1914

– Alexandra

Relationship:  Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more