Greek American




The original family name is KARAMANOLIS.  Around the year of 1940, Our grandfather, George Karamanolis, began using the Americanized name, Karamanol, for business purposes after starting his new business ... George Karamanolis and Sons, Grave Stone and Monument Contruction Company, Astoria, Long Island.  I have not found any evidance that the Karamanolis name was ever legally changed,   the family just used the Americanized name for business and personal purposes.   The name Karamanol continues only through my father, Harry George Karamanol ... Harry's brother, Christos George  Karamanol,  had all daughters; and therefore, Chistos' family,  did not carry on the "Karamanol" family name.



The following information is taken from a brief "family historical perspective" written by our father, Harry George Karamanolis on 12/7/1985.

George Karamanolis (Paternal Grandfather)

George Karamanolis was born on February 27, 1877 in the town of Lyhna (Leehna), Lemnos (Limnos) Island, Greece.  George, his brother (Emanuel) and sister (no record of name found) became orphans in childhood, and was adopted by an Uncle, Father Papanikolaou.

George Karamanolis was 22 years old when he married, Despina Karapanagiotis.  Despina was born in 1881 in the town called Pesperagon, Limnos Island, Greece.  Both George and Despina were baptized and married in the Pesperagon Greek Orthodox Church, Lemnos Island, Greece.

George and Despina Karamanolis (Paternal Grandparents)

After the birth of his first child, Christos Karamanolis, George went to Alexandria, Egypt, where he trained in a six year apprenticeship in Marble Sculpturing.  In Alexandria, Egypt, George demonstrated himself to be a very good artist and marble sculptor.  The bust of Hermes of Praxitelis, one of his projects is pure white marble is shown below.

Sculpted by George Karamanolis

George returned to Limnos were he practiced his profession until he migrated to the United States of America in 1911.

George and Despina Karamanolis were the parents of six children.

1) Christos (Christy) was born in 1903
2) Malamo (Goldie) was born in 1907
3) Stavroula (Stella) was born in 1908
4) Haralambos (Harry) was born in 1911
5) Stellios (Stephen) was born in 1915
6) Androniki (Antoinette) was born in 1921

Christos, Stavroula and Haralambos were born in the town of Pesperagon, Limnos, Greece.  Malamo was born in Alexandria, Egypt.  Stellios and Androniki were born in America.

George Karamanolis migrated to the United States of America in 1911 and took residence in Jersey City, New Jersey.  George's profession was Marble Sculptor and Stone Mason, specializing in monumental works.  This also included marble and tile works in the building trades.  George became naturalized as a citizen of the United States of America on February 1, 1927.

Christos the eldest son, married Stella (Italian ancestry)  and together had three daughters.  Despina (Despie), Georgine and Jeanine (twin daughters).  Despie married John Fiore.  Jeanine married Michael Kosek.  Georgine's married name is Sundholm (husband's first name not known by me and not written down anywhere).  Unfortunately, due to bad feelings regarding the family business going to the eldest son Christos ... Christos and our father Harry did not associate with each other and we never got to know our first cousins very well ... met them once or twice.

Goldie married (husband's name not mentioned) and together they had a daughter: Katherine.
Katherine married Robert Benson.  Katherine lived with us for a period of time.  Unfortunately, we did not know this first cousin very well in my later years ... grew apart.   My Aunt Goldie's second marriage was to Fred Stagg ... who we met in later years in Florida, April 1978.

Stella married John Gabriel and together they had a son:  Nicholas Gabriel.  After Stella's first husband died ... some years later she remarried to Pete Senevriotis.

Harry married Katherine G. Kefalas on March 7, 1937.  Together they had four sons: George Karamanol (7/1938); Stanley Karamanol (7/1940);  Jack Karamanol (7/1944); and Fred Karamanol (2/1950).  Our father, Harry, decided to give the hospital the "Americanized" name, Karamanol, at each of our births.

Stephen, died at age 9.  We do not know the cause of death.

Antoinette married, George Mavrides.  Antoinette and George had a son: Gregory Mavrides ... and adopted a young girl from Greece: Valerie.

Stellios, Stephen, died first at the age of 9 in 1924.  Despina passed away on January 7, 1945 and George passed away on January 25, 1948.  Christos Karamanolis died on September 28, 1962 at 61 years of age.  Our aunts died later in Florida dates were not included in Harry's historical perspective.  Harry George Karamanolis died Christmas 2000 at 89 years old.  He is resting in peace with our mom, Katherine, in East Hanover, New Jersey.


"Pesperagon was indeed damaged in an earthquake and abandoned by its inhabitants.  However, the village was never taken under the sea.  Several homes were greatly damaged by this earthquake but that was mainly because the homes were poorly built.  After the earthquake, there was a dictatorship ruling Hellas and the dictator wanting to make a good impression on the people's minds offered to build new homes for them.  There was some debate where the new village would be built because some geological survey showed that the earth where the village was previously built was not stable enough.  This survey was a joke because Pesperagon was finally built only a couple hundred meters from the old location. It was built close to the village of Koutali.  The old village was abandoned and the houses were destroyed with time.  The only building that was preserved was that of the village's church which is operational even today. Time went by and a few years ago some people started rebuilding their old houses hoping to increase the value of the land so that they can profit out of it.  So, some of the houses have been sold to Europeans (mostly Germans) and the village is slowly being rebuilt.  The new village in place of Pesperagon is called Pedinoand it is so near Koutali that they look as one large village.


 Our grandfather, our mother's father,  was the only ancestor in the family tree that did not come from the island of Lemnos.  Our mother's father, George Jack Kefalas (1883-1976), came from an Island north of Lemnos ... called Samothrace ... when he was only 12 years old ... and by himself ... he stowed away on his step-father's ship.

George Jack Kefalas (Maternal Grandfather)


Fotinee and George Kefalas,  68 Rose St., Danbury, Conn.
(Maternal Grandparents)

Our maternal grandmother was Fotinee (1885-1954).  Our maternal Grandparents had three children: Susan (Sue), Katherine and Jack.  Jack died of food poisoning at age 12.

Our Aunt Sue married George Demas, from Glens Falls, New York and together they had three sons: John Demas, Steven (Steve) Demas and Michael Demas.