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Jewish Labour Settlement in Germany: First Colony for Unemployed Jews Started Near Berlin: Will Comb

The Central Jewish Welfare Office here announces that it has for some time been considering establishing a Jewish labour colony in Germany. There were certain difficulties that held up the scheme, but these have now been cleared out of the way, and with the generous assistance of the Prussian Ministry of Welfare, the Prussian Federation of Jewish Communities, and the other State Federations of Jewish Communities, the Neuendorf Estate, near Berlin, has been taken over, which provides an opportunity of settling a large number of Jewish unemployed there both in agriculture, including vegetable gardening, and in artisan occupations.

Even in ordinary, economically sound days, the Welfare Office states, the scheme would be of great importance, but at the present time it is impossible to over-estimate its importance. The number of Jewish unemployed are steadily growing. Many of them cannot be re-absorbed in productive work for many years ahead. The young people leaving school have no openings for employment. All these look for opportunities such as those provided by the Neuendorf scheme to engage in productive work and earn their livelihood.

The Neuendorf estate will start work on July 1st., with 30 or 40 settlers. It is intended soon to increase the number of settlers very considerably, in order to give really valuable assistance to the Jewish unemployed.

The Neuendorf estate is eminently fitted to provide extensive openings for employment. There are carpentry, locksmith, shoemaking, and other workshops.

Herr S. Adler-Rudel, Dr. Alfred Berger, Dr. Max Kreutzberger, Land Court Councillor Dr. Lilienthal, Herr Wilhelm Marcus, and Dr. Bruno Voyda, are the members of the Committee in charge of the Neuendorf colony.

The foundation stone was laid in June last year, of the first Jewish agricultural settlement in Germany, situated at Gross Gaglow, near Cottbus, outside Berlin, established with the aid of the Government and intended for beginning a big movement to settle German Jews on the soil in Germany, launched by the Union of Jewish ex-Soldiers in Germany.

The ceremony was attended by representatives of the Prussian Government, the District Chief, Dr. Eichler, the Lord Mayor of Cottbus, Dr. Kreutz, and other State and local dignitaries, and by about 200 representatives of Jewish communities and Jewish organisations of all shades of opinion, among them Rabbi Dr. Leo Baeck, President of the Federation of German Rabbis; Law Councillor Leo Wolff, Vice-President of the Berlin Jewish Community, representing also the Federation of Jewish Communities in Prussia; Herr Heinrich Stern, President of the Federation of Liberal Jews in Germany; Professor Frankfurt, on behalf of the O. R. T. World Federation; Herr Wilhelm Graetz, on behalf of the German O. R. T. ; Dr. Ludwig Tietz, on behalf of the Jewish Youth Organisation in Germany; Dr. Friedrich Brodnitz, on behalf of the Keren Hayesod, Dr. Nathan Birnhaum, on behalf of the Agudath Israel, and Councillor Rau, on behalf of the Jewish People’s Party and the Zionist Federation in Germany.

At the beginning of this month, the Federation of Jewish ex-Soldiers in Germany reported that the land settlement movement it had started was making good progress, and that 17 additional plots were being allocated for settlers at Gross Gaglow.

In Breslau, twenty Jewish families have formed a group for starting a land-settlement outside the city, and it is planned to start similar settlements in the vicinity of other towns.

The Agudath Israel in Germany is also settling 20 or 30 unemployed Jews on the land in Germany.

Dr. Ludwig Hollaender, Director of the Central Union of German Citizens of Jewish Faith recently declared at a meeting of the Jewish Land Settlement Federation in Germany that the more menacing the economic crisis, the more important was the idea of Jewish settlement on the land.

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