As one of the oldest cities, Plovdiv is woven with history and a number of events that have started under the hills. We hardly think when passing through Tsar-Simeon's Garden that the first Bulgarian fair took place here, or do we look in the clouds to look for the balloon that took off from SahatTepe. Well, all these and some more significant events are just another reason to feel proud that we are Plovdivians.
The first celebration of the Day of Bulgarian Enlightenment
In 1851, on the initiative of NaydenGerov, the city celebrated for the first time at the Diocesan High School "St. Cyril and Methodius”(today's Humanities High School) the Day of Bulgarian Enlightenment and the Holy Brothers. The date of May 11 was not accidentally chosen by the founder of the high school - it is the common ecclesiastical celebration of the two saints. In the memorable 1856, when the icon of the two equal-to-apostles was ready, the day of St. St. Cyril and Methodius, from the patron saint celebration of the Diocesan School, grew into a holiday for the entire Bulgarian population in Plovdiv, and only a few years later it became a true national holiday and a day of the unbreakable Bulgarian spirit.
A liturgy in Bulgarian was held for the first time
In 1859, a liturgy in Bulgarian was held for the first time at the Church of the Assumption in the Old Town. This happened on December 25, the day of Christ's birth, by Metropolitan Paisii of Plovdiv, along with PopeZlatan, the church's chairman. It is considered the first great achievement of the Bulgarians from Plovdiv in the struggle for church independence.
Holding of the First Bulgarian Fair with foreign participation in Plovdiv
In 1892 Plovdiv hosted the First Bulgarian Exhibition with foreign participation. August 15, 1892 is the day on which it was opened. A triumphal arch to the railway station welcomed the knyaz and the government. In the evening, the place of the Exhibition (today's Tsar Simeon’s Garden) was lit by electric light. For the first time in Bulgaria, electricity has illuminated such a large space. The balance of the exhibition shows that companies from 24 countries from Europe, America and Asia participated in it. A special jury awarded 1000 awards to foreign and Bulgarian participants. Many of the native manufacturers received the first medals in their field in Plovdiv.
The first balloon flight
The first Bulgarian fair is marked by another memorable event for the people of Plovdiv. From Danov Hill (SahatTepe) flied the first balloon. The flying ball was called "France" and belonged to the Frenchman Eugene Godard. The long-awaited flight on August 19, 1892 caused much more excitement among the crowd than the opening of the exhibition itself.
Decoration of the first Christmas tree
The first Christmas tree in Bulgaria was made and decorated in Plovdiv. This was initiated in 1878 by Alexander Stolipin, the first governor-general of Eastern Rumelia. The first public Christmas tree was lighted in the Military Club in 1887 thanks to KnyaginyaClementina. The mother of the newly elected Bulgarian knyaz Ferdinand came with her son to Bulgaria and brought Christmas traditions from her native Germany.
The Ferris wheel was first seen in Plovdiv
It turns out that the Ferris wheel actually originates from Plovdiv.In 1826, the English traveler Peter Mundy passed through our lands. He saw the attraction for the first time and was amazed by it. The news of the Plovdiv wheel, which was then powered by a live force, reached Europe thanks to it.
Plovdiv is the hometown of the first Bulgarian actress to play in Hollywood
The first Bulgarian actress to play in Hollywood is Plovdiv's Mara Chukleva. Her performances have been noted by the US and Bulgarian emigrant press. Hired since 1925 by Metro Goldwin Meyer, she has been filming in Hollywood for 14 years. Some of her more famous films from this period are: Resurrection, Desert Flower, Caravan, Carmen, and more.
What else can we find together in the history of our city that started here?