A Canadian who with her husband taught in the American School at Bardizag at the time of the First World War and who witnessed the violent turning of the Turks against the Armenians gives a composite recall of her life there. There are the tillers of the soil, the cocoon sellers who must bow to overlord prices and burdensome taxes, the noble ancient peasant woman, the students at the school, the beauties of the valley itself. And there is Azneev, the eager young woman who has fallen in love with a Frenchman and wants to go to Europe to study music, leaving behind the valley customs and a contracted marriage which will help unburden her father from debt. Spared from the unwanted marriage by the departure of her fiance, Azneev suffers from her Frenchman's seeming desertion until she dreams of his death from illness. In the meantime, the author has made friends with her and persuaded her to write the folk tales of the village for the children. With the war balance of village life is broken by the drafting of the men, and finally with defeats come deportations and the Death March. A gentle memorial to a loved people.