Smilevo (Home of Dame Gruev)

Smilevo – Смилево

This village is best known for the Battle of Smilevo, the start of the Ilinden Uprising against the Ottoman Empire on the 2nd of August in 1903.  It is also famous for one of its native sons, Dame Gruev, one of the founders and leaders of the VMRO (Внатрешна Македонска Револуционерна Организација, Vnatrešna Makedonska Revolucionerna Organizacija) that held the Smilevo Congress on from 2 May to 7 May 1903 and made the decision for the uprising.1

This historical and culturally significant village is located on Bigla Mountain (Бигла Планина) 15 kilometers southwest of Demir Hisar and 34 kilometers northwest of Bitola.  The pictures in the gallery below are in order as they were taken as we entered and exited the village.

There is also a museum here that opened in 2003, 100 years after the congress and the Ilinden Uprising with a memorial hall and an ethnology hall. There is a room dedicated to Dame Gruev with photos and documents and a commemorative room dedicated to the Bitola-Prespa detachment.



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About Brko

I am a Macedonia enthusiast and an adventurer. I really enjoy being immersed in the Macedonian culture, meeting people from all over Makedonija and sharing their traditions and cultural heritage.