The Filiki Eteria (Society of Friends) Museum in Odessa, Ukraine is a beacon of Hellenism, housed as it is in the place where the Greek revolution of 1821 was conceived and planned.
It is housed in the former Kresnij Pereulok Street home of Greek businessman and national benefactor Grigorios Maraslis (1831-1907), the mayor of Odessa between 1878 and 1895.
Here the founders of Filiki Eteria — Emmanuil Xanthos, Athanasios Tsakalov and Nikolaos Skoufas — vowed to revolt against the Ottomans who had ruled Greece for almost 400 years.
This house was renovated on the initiative of the Hellenic Culture Foundation – Odessa Branch and since 1994, with its adjoining buildings, was transformed into a Museum of the Society of Friends in 1979 by the Historical – Laographic Museum of Odessa.
The museum houses a scientific library with 6,000 titles. Among the exhibits are original works on the activities of Filiki Eteria, maps, engravings and photographs, documents in the cryptographic code used by the Friends.
There are also manuscripts on the founding of the Filiki Eteria, lists of its members, letters and handwritten notices by the Filiki Eteria army leader Alexandros Ypsilantis, portraits and stamps of Alexandros Ypsilantis and the other founders of the secret society.