When the state of Greece was founded in 1830, after the War of Independence, the first governments were immediately faced with the great problems of the economy, public administration and education. The last of these also included the question of the country's ancient treasures, which had been looted and destroyed over the centuries by traffickers in antiquities. However, the official Antiquities Service was undermanned and incapable of taking proper care of the ancient remains, and so on January 6th 1837, on the initiative of a wealthy merchant named Constantinos Belios, a group of scholars and politicians founded the Archaeological Society at Athens with the objects of locating, re-erecting and restoring the antiquities of Greece. The Presidents and Secretaries of the Society in its early days were politicians and diplomats, whose enthusiasm was such that in spite of the shortage of funds for it was financed entirely by members subscriptions and voluntary donations and received no assistance whatever from the State they were able to carry out a number of ambitious projects such as the excavation of the Acropolis, the restoration of the Parthenon and excavations of the Theatre of Dionysos, the Odeion of Herodes Atticus and the Tower of the Winds, all in Athens.
The Archive of the Archaeological Society contains material related to the Greek monuments and the history of Greek archaeology. It contains primarily documents, drawings, photographs, relics and excavation notebooks. One of its’ primary aims is the preservation of data of the earlier Greek archaeologists, which constitute a valuable source of information regarding Greek antiquities.
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