Residents of the prime tourism hotspot Bodrum in the southwestern province of Muğla have started a social media campaign to convert the house of Cevat Şakir Kabaağaçlı, known as “The Fisherman of Halicarnassus,” which has been used a meatball restaurant for 23 years, into a museum.
Locals have been sending retro and modern-day photos of the house to the municipality of the district via e-mails and social media posts, saying, “The duplex should be a museum, not a meatball-selling place.”
One of the supporters of the campaign is Seda Özen Bilgili, an architect and a restaurateur.
She posted an old photo of the house and said, “The bars in the balcony should be changed, a big signboard should be hung on the entrance.”
Some also criticized the municipality, questioning why the house has never been taken into the cultural inventory.
“We should pay respect to ‘The Fisherman of Halicarnassus’ who made Bodrum famous all over the world,” campaigners noted.
A historian, humanist and ecologist, Cevat Şakir Kabaağaçlı, who had been one of Turkey’s most popular writers, was described as a modern Homer. He was also Turkey’s first professional tourist guide.
Kabaağaçlı described the “Fisherman of Halicarnassus” as a figure of reverence in Bodrum.
Kabaağaçlı died in the province of İzmir in 1973 at the age of 83 and had stayed in his Bodrum house for 25 years. Today, the main street of Bodrum carries his name, quotations from his works adorn billboards, and his bronze bust stands outside the municipality building.
“This is a house that gave me seas and islands,” Kabaağaçlı once said, expressing his deep love for the property.
Hurriyet Daily News