The Institute holds a large quantity of reference and archival material, including monographs, periodicals, microfilm, photographs, memoirs, personal correspondence, official documents, etc. There is also a collection of audio and video tapes containing carefully prepared oral history interviews with over 700 survivors of the Armenian Genocide. Catalogueing of the archives are still in progress.
Stanley Kerr, an American Near East Relief official, gives an eye-witness account of the tragic events which resulted in the annihilation of the Armenian population of Marash, in Central Anatolia, following World War I
In 1983, the Zoryan Institute undertook a major oral history program aimed at documenting on videotape the memoirs of the survivors of the Armenian Genocide. Interviews were conducted in Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, Montreal, New Jersey, New York, Paris, Providence, San Francisco, Toronto, Washington, and Yerevan. There are about 780 interviews in the entire collection making it the largest video collection to date...
In 1997, the Zoryan Institute acquired the much sought after Cole Collection. This collection consists of some 9,100 densely hand-written pages, plus 900 photographs, taken by the Rev. Royal Cole, an American Protestant missionary stationed in Erzerum and Bitlis from 1868 to 1908. It provides extensive records of missionary work, the beginnings of famine relief work, correspondence with numerous Western missionaries and Armenian clergy, daily entries chronicling the events of the Russo-Turkish War, including the siege of Erzeroum, chronicles of Kurdish life and social organization, and much, much more. Preliminary research makes clear that this material contains a wealth of information on the Armenians and Kurds in the Ottoman Empire, the Protestant missionary movement in Turkey, and that persecution of the Armenians was an ongoing government policy since the 1880s. A detailed descriptive catalogue will be made available soon.
The Collection includes correspondence, published and unpublished creative writings, water colors and drawings, reviews, Armenian newspapers and magazines, nineteenth centiry British consular papers from Diarbekir and photographs all belonging to Ms. Zabelle C. Boyajian.
Boyajian was born in Diarbekir in 1873. Her father was an Armenian clergyman who served as British vice-consul in Diarbekir and her mother was English. During the Hamidian massacres, Boyajian was sent to Cyprus by a relief committee to help organize an industrial home for Armenian widows and orphans and nurse the wounded and sick. In 1896, she traveled to England and enrolled at the Slade School where she studied art. She loved language as well; she was fluent in Armenian, English, Italian, Greek, Turkish, French, Russian, and German. She became an accomplished writer, artist and poet. She is probably most remembered for Armenian Legends and Poems , an anthology she compiled, translated and illustrated. She rated Gilgamesh: A Dream of Eternal Quest as her best literary work. Her art work was exhibited in galleries all around the world. Boyajian died in 1957.