The foundation of an American-Jewish colony in Palestine was laid at Unser Camp of the Jewish National Workers Alliance at Chelsea, Mich., at the two-day conference of Hairuth Beth.
Delegates, all of them enrolled as members of the group and as future colonists in this Palestinian settlement, were present from 10 cities in the Uniter States and Canada: Minneapolis, Detroit, Chicago, Cleveland, St. Louis, Kansas City, New York City, Weirton, W. Va., Welland, Ont., and Toronto, Ont.
These delegates represented the 65 members of Hairuth Beth, membership in which has been closed. It was estimated by Zwi Yehuda of Nahalal, Palestine, who presided at the conference and who was its guiding spirit, that when the colony is finally completed and is settled by 85 families, each investing a minimum of $4,000, there will be a total investment in the project of $350,000. Mr. Yehuda pointed out that for the first time a colony was established after less than seven months’ effort, work already having been begun, a well dug and cultivation started, the initial sum already remitted for the work being $24,000.
The delegates decided to call annual meetings of members in order to create a closer relationship between the future neighbors of Hairuth Beth, which is located at Hasharon, in Wadi Hawarith, on Jewish National Fund land purchased with contributions received from Canada.
Among the principles decided upon was one calling for self-help, establishing the rule that colonists must reside in the settlement, the work to be conducted for the mutual benefit of the settlers. Another decision ruled against private initiative, everything to be conducted on a co-operative basis, including the water installation.
The foundation was laid by the delegates for a mutual loan and savings society, each being required to have a share of $60, payable $1 monthly for a period of five years, the money to be deposited in Bank Hapoalim in Palestine. The Vaad, or board, of Hairuth Beth is also to be the Vaad of the loan society. Loans are to be made only to complete the cultivation of groves and are to be made for a maximum of three years at 6 per cent interest.
The conference thanked the Jewish National Fund for providing the land for the colony, the Histadruth and Yakhin for their co-operation.
This new Yishub is located on a piece of land extending to the Mediterranean. It is stated to be on first class ground and the groves are protected by a hill from the winds coming from the sea.
A. M. Koller, who with Zwi Yehuda is a leader of the Yakhim, was another guest at the conference.
Mr. Yehuda was enthusiastic over the result of the convention, and he lauded the conscientious, intelligent and determined efforts of the delegates. He also praised Unser Camp for its hospitality. Mr. Yehuda explained that of the 20 dunams allotted each settler, 10 dunams are to be set aside for the planting of oranges and the other 10 dunams to be used for mixed vegetable growing and for dairy farming.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.