Israeli history photo of the week: Tel Aviv Port, 1936

JPost special feature: A Library of Congress collection of photographs that document pre-state Israel.

December 15, 2011 12:42
1 minute read.

Tel Aviv Port 311. (photo credit: American Colony-Jerusalem-Photo Dept.)


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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.

Why is the Israeli Philharmonic performing at the Tel Aviv Port this week? Because they're both celebrating their 75th birthdays.

The renovated Tel Aviv Port is a beautiful location for a romantic dinner or a stroll along the boardwalk. But as the site for a series of classical concerts by the world-renowned Israel Philharmonic Orchestra? With performances with singer Ahinoam Nin and famous cantors?

Yes, the Port and the IPO will be celebrating their birthdays together.

Both were created because of the adversity Jews faced in Palestine and in Europe.

The Arab Revolt of 1936-1939 shut down the Jaffa Port, and the Jewish population of Palestine, centered around Tel Aviv, required a port.

Meanwhile, as anti-Jewish sentiments and laws were endangering the Jews of Europe, Jewish musicians found themselves out of work. Seventy-five instrumentalists were recruited and immigrated to Palestine to form the new orchestra. The Symphony's first concert was conducted by the world-famous Arturo Toscanini in Tel Aviv on Dec. 26, 1936.

Happy Birthday, Happy Birthday!

More photos can be viewed at

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