The building is situated in the focal point of the city, in one of the most important and busy avenues of Mersin, the “Atatürk Avenue”.This building was built as a residence for German consul Herr Christman for his marriage in 1897 with a lady of the Mavromati family from Mersin. Its architect is not known. The people used to call it the Krizman (Christman) Mansion. Later on it became known as the Mavromati family mansion.
The building, which was built in a 1270 square metres site, was in the possession of the Tahinci family until 1972. The same year it was purchased by Nebil Hayfavi and was used as Toros College (High School) until 1976. After 1976 the building was kept vacant and with a decree taken by the municipality council, it was renamed as the “Atatürk House”.
On 1980 it was decided to nationalize the building and restoration works started. Since 1982 it became in possession of the Ministry of Culture. Approximately US $ 65.000 was spent for the restoration of the building, which was completed in 1992, and it was opened as “Atatürk House and Museum” with an official ceremony on 12 October 1992.
The ground floor of the Mersin Atatürk House and Museum is arranged as the “Atatürk Museum with photographs and documents”. Also, 22 pieces of his personal effects brought in from Anitkabir Museum of Ankara are also in exhibit at this floor.
In the upper floor, where the ethnographical articles are displayed, there are two bedrooms, one study room and four sitting rooms all opening to a large living room.
MERSİN ATATÜRK HOUSE
The founder of the Turkish Republic, the Great Leader Atatürk honoured Mersin, the beautiful Mediterranean city and a commercial centre, by visiting it eight times in various times.
The first visit occurred between 17 - 19 Mart 1923. And the visits made on 20 January - 2 February 1925, 9 - 16 May 1926, 11 - 12 February 1931, 28 January 1933, 20 - 21 February 1935, 19 November 1937 and 20 - 23 May 1938 followed the first one.
During their visit in between 20 January - 2 February 1925, our beloved Atatürk and his wife Latife Hanim were entertained for eleven days with great love and excitement by the people of Mersin, in this building. With the aide of the mansion’s owner Fedon Tahinci, the people of Mersin displayed the most meaningful hospitality by putting up the great leader and his wife in the most splendid building of Mersin. The building they stayed in this visit, now, is utilized as a museum.
Presently the building’s ground floor has a conference room for 50 people, arranged for cultural activities.
The big bedroom situated in the front facade was arranged by the Mersin Maritime Trade Chamber, the living room next to it was arranged by the Chamber of Trade and Industry, and the other rooms were arranged by the Ministry of Culture.
Items with ethnographical values such as carpets, candle holders, clocks, lamps sugar bows, coffee and tea cups, samovar, large brass tray, covers and embroidered napkins and various household goods were obtained from Sivas, Tokat Konya and Ankara Ethnographical Museums. Also, some of the goods are donations of Mehmet and Belkis Akcora family and of Taki Aleksinoglu from Tarsus. The cup that Atatürk had drunk coffee, was donated by Erdal Akalin.