Sarajet e Gjon Marka Gjonit

The Sarajet e Gjon Marka Gjonit is a historical estate in Orosh, Mirdita, with a rich history dating back to the Ottoman Empire. The estate itself belonged the Kapidans of Miridite, Princes of the region, since the time of the Ottoman empire and was destroyed multiple times through wars. Ultimately, it succumbed to the ravages of communism in 1944 while under the ownership of Kapidan Gjon Marka Gjoni.

Since its last destruction it has remained untouched, a silent symbol of the bravery and sacrifices of the Marka Gjoni (Gjomarkaj) family. The historical importance of this symbol is felt and recognized all throughout Albania, but mostly in the North, where it sits. The Mirditore people are fiercely proud of its Kapidan, its history and hold the sacred land where the estate sat as holy ground.

Many pilgrimages have been made there to reflect on the passing of the heroes of this family who fought and ultimately paid with their lives or internment, in Albanian concentration camps during the communist regime. Kapidan Gjon Marka Gjoni (1888-1968), leader of Mirdita, his sons: Kapidan Mark Gjon Marku, who led the resistance from 1944-1946 when he perished in Kthelle. Kapidan Ndue Gjon Marku, who led the resistance fighters for 5 months in May 1944. Kapidan Sander (Llesh) Gjon Marku who stepped in for his brother and continued the fight against the invading forces until 1947 when he was killed. Kapidan Dede Gjon Marku, who was imprisoned for over 15 years and then interned in concentration camps until democracy in 1991 released him. Kapidan Nikoll Gjon Marku, who was arrested with the rest of the family in 1945 and sent to the camp in Tepelene, from where he successfully escaped in 1949. Dava, Mrika, Marta, Bardha, Kristina, Celestina and Kapidan Gjon Mark Gjomarkaj who all endured decades in Albanian concentration camps, from 1945 to 1991.

The Sarajet and its land legally belongs to the heirs of Kapidan Gjon Marka Gjoni, yes, but before God and the watchful eye of the Eagle, in heart and mind, it belongs to all of Mirdita. To all of the heroes and followers of its Kapidan.

The ruins of the estate lay in silence, waiting to be resurrected and brought to life once again as a symbol of courage, honor and pride in its history. The people of Mirdita deserve to have the estate of their beloved leader restored to its grandeur and be allowed to pilgrimage there once again with their heads held high and proudly declare that they are Mirditore and they respected and loved their Kapidans. Nobody can take that away from them.

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