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Robert Elsie

Texts and Documents of Albanian History


1000 — 1799

1800 — 1899

1900 — 1919

1920 — 1944

1945 —


Albanian History
1920 — 1944

Sejfi Vllamasi:
Political Confrontation in Albania

The political memoirs of Sejfi Vllamasi, from which the following excerpts covering the period 1912-1920 are taken, contain many interesting first-hand observations on political life in Albania at the time.


Ismail Kemal bey Vlora:

The final chapter of the memoirs of the father of Albanian independence, in which he describes the event for which he is best remembered.


Syreja bey Vlora:
The Age of Albanian Independence

An Albanian nobleman recounts his activities at the time of Albanian independence.


Rexhep Mitrovica & Bedri Pejani:
A Kosovar Protest

A letter to the Great Powers from two Kosovar intellectuals to appeal for assistance against the Serbian annexation of Kosovo.


Mufid Bey Libohova:
My Policies in Albania, 1916-1920

Memoirs of the wealthy southern Albanian political figure, Mufid bey Libohova, concerning turbulent years in Albanian history.


Hasan Bey Prishtina:
Brief Memoir on the Albanian Uprising of 1912

Kosovo Albanian political leader Hasan bey Prishtina describes his efforts to organise an uprising against Ottoman rule in 1912.


Carl Buchberger:
Memoirs of My Years in Albania, 1911 - 1914

A young Austrian diplomat experiences at first hand the rise and fall of Prince Wied as Albania’s ephemeral monarch in 1914.


Franz Conrad von Hötzendorf:
Austro-Hungarian Relations with Albania in 1914

The Chief of Staff of the Austro-Hungarian armed forces in the First World War gives an account here of what motivated Austro-Hungarian policies towards Albania during the chaotic events that took place there in 1914.


Rose Wilder Lane:
A Power Struggle in Albania’s New Capital

The American writer Rose Wilder Lane is caught up in a political power struggle during her visit to Tirana in 1921.


League of Nations:
The Sederholm Enquiry in Southern Albania

Report of a League of Nations commission of inquiry into conditions in southern Albania in 1922-1923.


Franz Babinger:
Among the Dervishes in Kruja

A German historian visits Kruja and the famed Bektashi teqe (monastery) of Fushë Kruja, Albania.


Petition of Hasan Prishtina

Petition from Hasan Prishtina received by the Secretariat of the League of Nations on 2 March 1929, protesting against the oppression of Albanian minority in Yugoslavia, and the response of J. Shumenkovich, Permanent Delegate of the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, dated 11 July 1929, rejecting the said petition.


Franz Baron Nopcsa:
Reisen in den Balkan

Präsentation der Memoiren des österreichisch-ungarischen Albanien­forschers, Baron Nopcsa.


Gjon Bisaku, Shtjefën Kurti & Luigj Gashi:
Albanian Minority in Yugoslavia

Three Catholic priests in Kosovo present a memorandum to the League of Nations on the desperate plight of their people under Serbian rule.


The Balkans in the Operngasse

A newspaper account of an attempt to assassinate Albanian King Zog as he left the opera house in Vienna on 20 February 1931.


Ahmed Zogu:
King Zog Tells his Story

A short autobiography of Albanian King Zog, taken down by the United States Ambassador in Tirana, Herman Bernstein.


Herman Bernstein:
Little Albania is the Pawn in a Great Diplomatic Game

Article published in ‘The New York Times’ by Herman Bernstein, the United States Ambassador to Albania in 1930-1933, that throws light on Albania’s predicament in juggling her relations between Italy, Yugoslavia and Greece.


Georg Stadtmüller:
Research in Early Albanian History

Stadtmüller's theory that the original homeland of the Albanians was in the northern Albanian district of Mat.


Reimer Schulz:
Burial and the Cult of the Dead
among the Northern Albanian Highlanders

A German anthropologist travels to Theth in Dukagjin in 1937 and attends a funeral, with rites and customs that have long disappeared.


Reimer Schulz:
Leichenbegängnis und Totenkult bei den Malisoren

Ein deutscher Anthropologe reist im Jahre 1937 nach Theth in Dukagjin und nimmt an einem zeremoniellen Begräbnis teil.


Vaso Cubrilovic:
The Expulsion of the Albanians

The text of a memorandum drafted by Bosnian Serb scholar and political figure Vaso Cubrilovic calling for nothing less than the expulsion of the whole Albanian population of Kosovo.


Vaso Cubrilovic:
L'expulsion des Albanais

Académicien serbe Vaso Cubrilovic réclame l’expulsion de toute la population albanaise du Kosovo.


Regulating the Emigration of the Turkish Population ...

An international treaty between the governments of Yugoslavia and Turkey for formalise the start of the expulsion of the Albanians and Turks from Kosovo, Macedonia and southern Serbia.


Ivo Andric:
Draft on Albania

Bosnian Serb writer and Nobel Prize recipient calls for the partition of Albania between Yugoslavia and Italy.


Faik Bey Konitza:
Albania's Position

Faik Bey Konitza, head of the Albanian legation to the United States, reacts to the Italian invasion of his country at Easter 1939.


Chatin Sarachi:
King Zog of the Albanians: the Inside Story

An Albanian diplomat and former friend of King Zog attacks the Albanian monarch and exposes his corruption.


Vandeleur Robinson:
Corruptio ad Absurdum

British writer exposes corruption in the public service under King Zog, an article with possible parallels to modern-day Albania.


Edith Durham:

An overview of Albanian history and a plea for justice following the Italian invasion of Albania.


Balli Kombëtar:
The Ten-Point Programme

Balli Kombëtar, the non-communist resistance movement in the Second World War, presented this political platform after its creation in November 1942.


August Schmidhuber:
Summary Report on the Formation and State of the
21st ‘Skanderbeg’ Armed Mountain Division of the SS

A report on the SS Skanderbeg Division written by its German commander in October 1944.


The Resolution of Bujan

The 1944 resolution of the Conference of Bujan, that promised the right to self-determination and even secession for Kosovo, was a document of great significance to the Kosovo Albanian population, but was subsequently ignored and forgotten.


Bedri Pejani:
Letter to Heinrich Himmler

In a last-ditch appeal, Bedri Pejani writes to Heinrich Himmler seeking support for an "Albanian army" to oppose the communists advancing in Kosovo.


Prisoners of the Nazis in Kosovo

Lists of the people arrested by the Nazis in Kosovo in 1944 and detained for transportation to the Reich, with names, professions and grounds for their arrest.


Eyewitness Account
of the Expulsion of the Chams from Greece

An account of the massacre in Filat (Filiates) and the expulsion of the Albanian Chams from Greece in September 1944.


Fred Brandt:
With the Partisans in Albania

Memoirs of a Nazi agent and ‘master spy’ in the mountains of northern Albania during the Second World War.


Fred Brandt:
Bei den Partisanen in Albanien

Bericht aus den Bergen Nordalbaniens im Zweiten Weltkrieg von einem deutschen ‘Meisterspion’, Mitglied der militärischen Abwehr der Wehrmacht.


Lazër Radi:
The Autumn of 1944

Lazër Radi describes the moment of his arrest in Tirana that would lead to forty-six years of imprisonment and internment in communist Albania.


Zef Pllumi:
The Church in the Garden of Gethsemane

Chapter from the memoirs of a Catholic priest who survived in communist Albania.


Vaso Cubrilovic:
The Minority Problem in the New Yugoslavia

A second memorandum by the Bosnian Serb scholar and political figure Vaso Cubrilovic, proposing a radical solution to the “minority question” in Yugoslavia.


The translations in this anthology may be copied, downloaded and used for non-commercial purposes if the source is appropriately documented. | Robert Elsie