The Greek War of Independence (1821)


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In spite of the fact that it was far from the entre of military operations and thus an easy prey for the Turkish fleet, Skiathos soon joined the ranks of those fighting for Idependence. At that time, it possessed a good number of fully equipped ships, with trained and experienced crews, from the previous sea battles in which they had taken part up until 1816 with the Olympus chieftains.
The ships from Skiathos contributed greatly to the War of Independence.
At that time many people who had to flee from their homelands when the revoluonary efforts failed, found refuge in Skiathos.
An estimated 30,000 refugees from the Pelion villages, from Mt. Olympus, Euboea and Epirus arrived on the island.
This influx of population in a restricted space caused problems, as shelter and food became scarce.
Many of the people were armed, and it was not long before fighting broke out and anarchy began to reign.
The island was plagued for years by violence and looting, the main offenders being men of Albanian descent ("Liapides") who remained on Skiathos even when most of the refugees had returned to their homelands or settled in safer areas.
In 1823 the Turks tried to take the island again but were utterly defeated.
In 1829, after the signing of the Protocol of London, on which was based the founding of the Greek state - which, however, remained tributary to the Sultan the inhabitants of Skiathos abandoned the Kastro and resettled along the harbour, where the ancient town had stood.



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