Early ultra-Orthodox Zionists in Kfar Chassidim

Israeli history photo of week: JPost feature: Library Congress collection documenting Israel before the State.

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June 21, 2012 16:42
1 minute read.
Kfar Chassidim in 1935

Kfar Chassidim in 1935. (photo credit: Lenny Ben-David)

 
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The Library of Congress has recently digitalized a collection of over 10,000 photographs, taken by the "American Colony" in Jerusalem, a group of Christian utopians who lived in Jerusalem between 1881 and the 1940s. The photographers returned to the US, and bequeathed their massive collection to the Library of Congress in 1978. The collection includes Winston Churchill's visit to Jerusalem, Jewish expulsions from the Old City during Arab riots, and the building of Tel Aviv.

Many of the kibbutz and moshav agricultural communities established in Palestine in the early 1900s were based on socialist ideals. A large number of the new settlers discarded the old religious traditions of their parents and ancestors. But the Zionist enterprise and the promise to return to the "holy land" also inspired ultra-Orthodox Jews in Poland to establish a farming community in Israel's north called Kfar Chassidim, or "village of the devout."



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