A time when Greek industry was roaring

A petrol-operated semi-diesel engine made in 1950 by the Stefanou firm in Syros. Two-stroke, water-cooled, single cylinder, 12 horsepower and 700 rpm, it was used to pump water from a family well. [Industrial Museum of Ermoupoli]

A symbol of different, industrial times, Greek-made engines live among us, often hiding in plain sight. We can hear them powering fishing boats and tractors or watering fields of crops, but you need to get up close and personal to see the manufacturer's logo, written in the elegant typefaces of yesteryear. Malkotsis, Axelos and Roditis are but some of the many names behind the tale of the Greek engine, a tale of innovation that unfolded across the breadth of Greece, from Thessaloniki and Mytilene, to Halkida and Kalamata. However, some of the most successful chapters of that story were written in the town of Volos, on the island of Syros, and in the port city of Piraeus.

'Detroit' in Thessaly

Almost a century ago, in the early 1930s, the coastal town of Volos practically shook with the roar of industry. Such was its output in diesel engines, the media of the time...

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