Banking on the Jews

An exhibition at the Eretz Israel Museum on Jerusalem’s first Jewish bank highlights the illustrious Valero family behind its founding

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February 28, 2013 11:03
Warrent certificate Jewish Colonial Trust, 1900

Warrent certificate Jewish Colonial Trust, 1900. (photo credit: Kadman Numinsmatic Pavilion Collection, Eretz Isra)

 
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The name Valero may not mean much to the average Israeli today but, for about 70 years, up to just under a century ago, the family was responsible for founding and running the eponymous bank that was one of the flagship enterprises of the Yishuv in the second half of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century.

The bank is the subject of an exhibition that opened at the Eretz Israel Museum in Ramat Aviv a couple of weeks ago and is due to run until the end of June. The show catalogue is a handsome tome called simply “The Bank of Valero” and subtitled “The First Hebrew Bank in Eretz Israel, 1848-1915.”

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