Subscribe to our newsletter with stories from our latest adventures and the travel tips
The story of the Crimean Memorial Church, located in the Beyoğlu district of Istanbul, is related to the Crimean War between the Ottoman Empire and Russia. During the war, the United Kingdom sided with the Ottoman Empire, and in return, Sultan Abdülmecid gifted England an area for the construction of a church in memory of the British soldiers who participated in the war.
The construction of the church was started in 1858 by the British architect George Edmund Street in a neo-gothic style and was completed within 10 years. The black stones used in the construction of the church were brought from Büyükada and the other stones were brought from Malta. The church was opened for worship in 1868, but it was closed in 1870 because it did not have a congregation. It was owned by the Anglican Church in 1991 and reopened for worship.
Years after, Queen Victoria gave a British-made car to the new Sultan Abdulaziz as a reward for what the Ottoman Empire did. This is the first automobile to come to the Ottoman Empire. But this gift was not welcomed by the Shaykh al-Islam and was declared to be “the work of the devil”. Rumor has it that the car was thrown into the Bosphorus from Sarayburnu and destroyed.