Reynardo the Red (reynardo) wrote in little_details,
Reynardo the Red

Travel to Athens and Alexandria, Regency (1812) - Papers and contacts - FOUND

Greetings all,

It's 1812. My MC is in Athens (Father went to try and snaffle some antiquities but instead drank himself to death). The family had a firman (authorised travel document for the Ottoman Empire), but now my MC is all that's left, and has to make their way back to the UK via Alexandria.

1) I need news (and a letter of credit) from the UK to reach my MC. As the family is impoverished and living in the almost-slums, they're not part of the dashing British Community with balls and dinners and such (although the family might occasionally be referred to with pity as "that poor woman while her husband is such a blackguard).

Who was the contact for members of the British Community in Athens? Was it the British Agent, British Resident, British Consul? Would it be someone who held another job (merchant/importer) as well as that? And is that where the mail from Britain would go? (I need to notify the family that the grandfather has died)

2) My MC is now trying to get home. Bit difficult with all the Napoleonic War stuff going on, so the travel route is Athens - Alexandria - Gibraltar - London. Upon landing in Alexandria, (which in 1812 is ruled by the Muhammad Ali Pasha dynasty), again, who are the British officials to contact regarding travel documents, advice, etc? (I'm assuming there would also be Shipping Agents who would sell tickets on boats going to Gib).

Research done: Trying to read the diaries of Byron who was in that part of the world, and various antiquities-grabbers such as Lord Elgin. Downloading documents from the Foreign Office from the Online Books at UPenn - Great site, by the way. History of Passports, history of the Post, etc.

Note: I've managed to discover that the British representative in Alexandria was the British Consul, Sir Robert Liston, although a) the main offices were in Cairo and not moved officially to Alexandria until 1822 and b) he was off in Turkey for most of 1812. I'm mainly looking for Athens now, but *any* knowledge is good!

OMG - Folks! Folks! Major piece of VERY useful information. I present to you the list of EVERY British Consular Official to Turkey and the Levant from 1581 to 1860. It's a PDF, and of COURSE I've saved myself a copy. Click here for the download.

Short answer: Alexandria - Samuel Briggs who was Pro-Consul at the same time as he was agent for the Levant company
Athens: Spyridon Logothetis (with his relative Alexandros taking over some years later).
Tags: #resources, 1810-1819, egypt: history, greece: history, uk: history: regency period, ~passports, ~postal service, ~travel (misc)

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