Chuck Mahaleris Ancestral Stories

1890 Nicolas Kostopoulos weds Georgitza Kastani

Chuck shares his research about his great great grandparents. Nicolas N Kostopoulos and Georgitza Kastani were married on Monday, October 13, 1890 in the Spartan village of Riza. Nicolas was born to Nicolas and Maria Kostopoulos. Georgitza was born in the village of Riviotissa to Panagiotis Kastani (born in Kalami) and Afrodite Konstantarakos (born in Tzeramio).

1913: George Papafagos weds Helen Kostopoulos

Chuck Mahaleris gives us a glimpse of what life was like in 1913 in Lowell, Massachusetts as his great grandparents George Papafagos and Helen Kostopoulos meet and wed. The couple grew up living very close to each other as youngsters.

1917: The Family Farm on Varnum Ave

Chuck highlights the Greek struggle in America. The story of the Poulicakos-Papafagos farm located at 805 Varnum Ave brings forth some sadness owing to the fact that it was lost for non-payment of back taxes in 1932 to the City of Lowell. Costas D Papafagos had been a farmer in Greece and the purchase of this farm in 1917 with his son in law Nick Poulicakos likely seemed like the realization of his dreams.

1926 Boston Marathon

The Greek wrestler turned Marathon Runner, Demetrios Nicholas Kostopoulos (later James Costopoulos) was born in 1894 in Riza. Nicknamed “Jim Christo”, Demetrios supplemented his income by wrestling for several years until 1925, when he decided to try running a marathon.

1930 Wedding of Jim Kostopoulos

Jim Christo, well-known local welterweight wrestling contender for the New England championship married Hariclia Georgoulas in 1930. Pictured here are Hariclia (Georgoulas), James “Jim Christo” Kostopoulos, and his sister Helen (Kostopoulos) Papafagos.

1937 Penelope Papafagos weds Elias Michalareas

Penelope Papafagos, daughter of George and Helen (Costopoulos) Papafagos, was gowned in white satin, on Sunday, June 13, 1937 when she was given in marriage by her father to Elias (Louis) Michalareas of Peabody. The bridgegroom was Louis Michalareas (an earlier spelling of Mahaleris), son of Leonidas and Sophie (Michaleas). Together they would buy a home together in Dracut on Homefield avenue, raise three children (Charlie, George and Sophie), struggle together when times were challenging, run two businesses, and kept their family close.

1940 Greeks in Dracut

Chuck Mahaleris tells the story about the Papafagos family -Constantinos “Costas” and his wife Penelope (Basourakas), their son George and his wife Helen (Costopoulos), and their granddaughter Penny (his grandmother), growing up in Dracut.

1946 George’s Café and Penny’s Variety

Chuck retells the story of his great grandparents, George and Helen Papafagos who emigrated to the United States in 1907. They had one child, his grandmother, Penelope in 1914. They opened George’s Café in 1946, which began as a small restaurant.

1961 Citizen Helen Papafagos

Helen (Costopoulos) Papafagos had been born in the village of Riza on April 10, 1895. She arrived, according to the 1920 census, in 1912 with her mother. Her father, Nicolas, and older brother, James, had arrived in 1905. Helen became a new citizen of the United States of America on November 17, 1961.