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184 The Death of a Principality and Birth of a Kingdom

In the aftermath of the Young Turk Revolution, everyone from the Great Powers to the former right and left-wing factions of the MRO have to decide how to respond. In the process, the decades-old Balkan status quo will finally be broken.


Major Characters in this Episode

Yane Sandanski

Tsar Ferdinand

Tsar Nicholas II

Ivan Stefanov Gueshov


Timeline for this Episode

  • 1908 July 20th - The first Bulgarian constitutional circles are founded in Bitolya and Veles by legalized activists from ВМОРО’s right. Similar clubs pop up in various other cities.

  • 1908 July 22nd - After 2 years of negotiations, the union headquarters of БРСДП and БСДС sign a unifying protocol.

  • 1908 Aug 8th - Forming of the Bulgarian teachers union in Salonica that existed until 1912 and included 44 teachers.

  • 1908 Aug 27th - First tobacco coop in the village of Vanya.

  • 1908 Aug 30th - Geshov incident prompts Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire to recall their diplomatic representatives.

  • 1908 Sept 5-9th - railroad workers’ strike in the Eastern railroads, organized by the railroads union. BDZ sign an agreement on the 6th of Sept and on the 9th the railroads are occupied by the Bulgarian army (on Ottoman territory the Ottoman army occupies them) and the strike is ended. The government refuses to return the railroads to the company but suggests buying them back, despite protests from the Porte.

  • 1908 Sept 7-15th - Constituent congress of the Union of the Bulgarian constitutional clubs Macedonia and Odrin, held in Salonica.

  • 1908 Sept 15th - First Bulgarian Orthodox Church in the US, in Granite City, Illinois.

  • 1908 Sept 16-21st - Constantine Kalchov goes to Istanbul on a secret mission on account of the controversial issues, but it’s unsuccessful.

  • 1908 Sept 17th - Nov 20th - Common strike of the textile workers leads to the creation of a textile factories cartel, on the 18th of Sept they initiate a lockout and the strike eventually ends without success.

  • 1908 Sept 22nd - Bulgaria’s independence is proclaimed in a church in Tarnovo. Austro-Hungary annexes Bosnia and Herzegovina and a little later Greece annexes the island of Crete.

  • 1908 Sept 24th - A failed assassination attempt is made at Sandanski in Thessaloniki.

  • 1908 Oct 6th - Austria-Hungary annexes Bosnia and Herzegovina, triggering the Bosnian crisis.

  • 1908 Oct 7th - Petar Dimitrov and Ivan Stoyanovich go on a mission to Istanbul on account of the disputes. Negotiations start on the 20th, led by Andrei Lyapchev.

  • 1908 Oct 25th - Elections for Ottoman members of parliament. Four Bulgarian officials are elected.

  • 1908 Dec 4th - The first movie theater opens in Sofia. It’s the second one in Europe overall.

  • 1908 Dec 14th - The progressives are kicked out of БРСДП. A second group is ousted on Feb 13th, 1909. A group of 97 coconspirators publish Poziv with which they announce their leaving of the organization alongside their leaders.

  • 1908 throughout the year - Census of the agrarian sector.

  • Bulgarian Orthodox mission to the US.

  • Founding of the volunteer organization Slivnitsa, consisting of volunteers from the Serbian-Bulgarian war from 1885.


Ferdinand at the declaration of Bulgaria's full independence in 1908
Ferdinand at the declaration of Bulgaria's full independence in 1908

The text of Bulgaria's declaration of independence
The text of Bulgaria's declaration of independence

A Greek lithograph celebrating the Young Turk Revolution
A Greek lithograph celebrating the Young Turk Revolution

A map showing the territory Austria-Hungary annexed in 1908
A map showing the territory Austria-Hungary annexed in 1908

A French magazine's depiction of the 1908 crisis
A French magazine's depiction of the 1908 crisis




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