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Stephen Samios

Ionian Parliament Meeting on Reunification with Greece, 23rd September, 1863.

From a photograph (under glass) supplied by the Hon. Jim Samios, former Deputy Liberal leader in the Legislative Council, the Upper House in the Parliament of New South Wales.

When making his inaugural speech in the Legislative Council, [see History, subsection, Documents, for a copy of the entire speech], Jim stated that:

"One cannot stand in the hallowed atmosphere of this ancient Chamber without sensing an aura of history when remembering the giants that bestrode it—men who by their conduct and service gave credence to the role of the second chamber as a bastion of freedom, vigilance and above all courage in our democratic society. And was it not Pericles who some 2 500 years ago said, The secret of liberty is courage.

Indeed it is with feeling that I stand here and recall the election of my great, great grandfather, George Panayotopoulos of Kythera, Greece, to another Legislative Council, that of the Ioanian Islands in 1863—then a protectorate of the United Kingdom. It was, I believe, largely as a result of that historic link between the United Kingdom and the Ioanian Islands that the migration of Greeks to Australia commenced last century".

George Panayotopoulos, is in the back row - 4th from the right. (He is the man with the beard, whose head is "framed" by the two pillars). A close-up of him, taken from the photograph, can be seen as the next entry.

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