On 8 October 1912, during the First Balkan War , Lemnos became part of Greece . The Greek navy under Rear Admiral Pavlos Kountouriotis took it over without any casualties from the occupying Turkish Ottoman garrison, who were returned to Anatolia. Peter Charanis , born on the island in 1908 and later a professor of Byzantine history at Rutgers University recounts when the island was occupied and Greek soldiers were sent to the villages and stationed themselves in the public squares. Some of the children ran to see what Greek soldiers looked like. ‘‘What are you looking at?’’ one of them asked. ‘‘At Hellenes,’’ the children replied. ‘‘Are you not Hellenes yourselves?’’ a soldier retorted. ‘‘No, we are Romans ."