Ethiopia III Returned Peace Corps Volunteers
"Return to Ethiopia" Trip
September 22 - October 7, 2012
50th Anniversary of the Peace Corps in Ethiopia
October 2 - Tuesday
About one kilometre (half a mile) north of the Gondar limits and just just off the main road, lies the tiny village of Wolleka, which was formerly in habited by Falashas, or Judaic Ethiopians.
The Falashas call themselves Bete Isra'el and practiced Judaism, which was the dominant religion of north-western Ethiopia for hundreds of years.. After the coming of Christianity and its adoption as the state religion, leaders from the northeast gradually penetrated and converted most of the Bete Isra'el.
The penalty for not accepting conversion was loss of land. The remaining Bete Isra'el communities had to subsist on marginal land, and pottery, blacksmithing, and weaving became important parts of their economy. Recent research has shown that it was probably the Bete Isra'el artisans who actiually built the Gondar castles and provided many of the other artifacts that supported the Gondar culture.
After a mass evacuation to Israel in 1991, only a few individuals still live in Ethiopia. Examples of their curious artifacts, earthenware pots, and figurines, made by their Christian neighbors who have remained behind, may, however, be purchased at the village, as well as in Gondar itself. The Falasha figurines, made of black or red pottery, are unique and in great demand.
(Important note: All photographs, except where mentioned, are copyrighted as of October 8, 2012, by Darrel and Betty Hagberg. Please request permission to use and please credit them).
Click below for more Photos of the trip
September 22 Ethiopian Embassy Reception September 23 Dulles Airport September 24 Addis Ababa Airport Reception September 24 Addis Ababa City Views September 24 Hebir Restaurant Dinner Show - Addis Ababa September 25 Addis Ababa City Views September 25 Ethiopian President Welcome September 25 Kotebe College for Teachers - Addis Ababa September 25 US Embassy Reception September 26 Ethnological Museum - Addis Ababa September 26 Saint George Cathedral - Addis Ababa September 26 Mercato Market Place - Addis Ababa September 26 Meskel Celebrations - Addis Ababa September 27 National Museum - Addis Ababa September 27 Mount Entoto Overlook - Addis Ababa September 27 Trinity Cathedral - Addis Ababa September 27 Debre Berhan September 28 Debre Berhan September 28 Ankober September 29 Lalibella and Market September 29 Yemrehanna Kristos Church, Bilbilla September 30 Churches of Lalibella October 01 Stelae Field - Axum October 01 Tombs of Kaleb and Gebre Meskel - Axum October 01 The Enzana Stone - Axum October 01 Queen of Sheba's Palace - Axum October 01 Monastic Complex of Saint Mary of Zion - Axum October 02 Mai Shum (Queen of Sheba's Swimming Pool - Axum October 02 Fasilo Ghebbi (Royal Enclosure) - Gondar October 02 Debre Birhan Selassie Church - Gondar October 02 Wolieka (Falasha Village) - Gondar October 03 Fasilidas's Pool - Gondar October 03 Barhar Dar October 04 Blue Nile Falls - Barhar Dar October 04 Lake Tana - Barhar Dar October 04 Church of Ura Kidane Mihret - Barhar Dar October 05 Dire Dawa - Harar October 06 Red Terror Museum - Addis Ababa October 06 Babile - Harar - Dire Dawa October 07 Dire Dawa October 07 Farewell Dinner at Crown Hotel - Addis Ababa
Click below for more Ethiopia Web Site features
Map of Ethiopia and Eritrea (circa 1964) Ethiopia III Trainees Book In Country Assignments, 1964-1966 Photo Memories of Ethiopia Ethiopian Art and Culture Ethiopia III's Attending the 50th Reunion Books on Ethiopia Ethiopian Artifact Exhibition Return to Home Page
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Betty McLaughlin Hagberg, Web Master
Updated on 9 November 2012