P.e.c. Obtains Option on 25,000 Dunams of Land of Haifa Bay Company

(Jewish Telegraphic Agency)

One part of the problem concerning the Palestine land stretches of the American Zion Commonwealth, now under criticism because of the financial difficulties in which it became involved, was solved when the Palestine Economic Corporation of New York obtained an option on 25,000 dunams of the land held until now by the Haifa Bay Development Company, a subsidiary of the Zion Commonwealth.

Mr. Mohl, on behalf of the Palestine Economic Corporation, which represents the Joint Distribution Committee and the former Palestine Development Corporation, signed the contract obtaining the option. The amount involved in the purchase was not made public.

In connection with the taking of the option on land in and around the Bay of Acre, Bernard Flexner, President of the Palestine Economic Corporation, made the following statement:

“Almost a year ago we were led to take up the question of acquiring this option with the purpose in mind of assisting, if possible, in the development of sound land policy in Palestine and preventing a ruinous speculative land development. At the time we became interested, an instalment of a mortgage of the Arab land owners was about to become due and the Haifa Bay Development Company was not in a position to make payment. We began at that time and have since been steadily occupied in digging out the facts with reference to this land. It has been an extraordinary, difficult task and it has required unremitting labor here in New York and on the part of our representatives, in London and in Palestine. Through the courtesy of James de Rothschild, the president of the P. I. C. A. (Palestine Jewish Colonization Association), we were able to draw on the advice of their experts in Palestine which they gave us unstintedly. In taking this option we have arranged to pay the amount of money due on the instalment of the Arab mortgages which has remained in default. There is a considerable amount of labor still involved in exploring all the facts about this land and during the interval of the life of the option we expect to be busily occupied in accomplishing this.”

Besides the president the officers of the corporation are: Louis Marshall, Herbert H. Lehman, Robert Szold, vice-presidents, Walter E. Meyer, treasurer and Joshua Bernhardt, secretary.

Purchase of a site in Atlanta, Ga. for the erection of a temple and temple center to cost approximately $300,000 has been effected according to an announcement by Harold Hirsch, vice president of the Hebrew Benevolent Congregation. This announcement followed the recently reported purchase of a new clubhouse on the north side by the Jewish Standard Club, most of whose members are also members of the congregation.

The temple now occupied by the Hebrew Benevolent Congregation is to be sold to the Greek Orthodox Church it was learned.

The present location of the temple is on the south side of Atlanta, a section formerly resided in by the city’s most influential families. Under leadership of Rabbi David Marx, the congregation has used the structure as a house of worship since its election more than a generation ago. Since then the north side of the city has become the foremost residential district and a movement has been started to erect the temple, as well as the club, on that side.

The new temple site was the home of the late Colonel William Lawson Peel. The purchase price for the Peel estate was $62,000 while $60,000 was paid for the clubhouse site.

The new Jewish Comunity Center of Congregation Beth Hillel, Kenosha, Wisconsin, will be dedicated on Sunday.

The building houses all Jewish activities, including the synagogue. There is a gymnasium, club rooms, reading rooms, Sunday School class rooms, and an auditorium. The cost of erection and equipment was $125,000.

Dr. Julius Rappaport is the rabbi of the congregation and J. D. Rosenblum is president.

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