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 Early settlement attempts

Thus saith the Lord:

 "refrain thy voice from weeping, and thine eyes from tears; for thy work shall be rewarded saith the Lord; and they shall come back from the lands of the enemy. And there is hope for thy future saith the Lord; and thy children shall return to their own border”     (Jeremiah XXXI: 15-16)

 Three times the Jews ascended Mount Hebron in recent times. A stony, arid, hostile, stormy and snowy mountain greeted them.Three times they were uprooted from the land and retured for a fourth time. This parallels the history of the Jewish people in its homeland; three times the Jews went up to the land of Israel, contended with its host of limitations, they were uprooted from it but returned and clung to it on the fourth occasion.

 Those are the three Early settlement attempts: 

The Cohen Farm 5695 -1935 

 

In the year 1935 Yizhak Yehuda Cohen, a Sephardic Jew from Jerusalem, the owner of a large clothing store near the Jaffa gate, set out for the El-Hader vicinity to find himself some land.  With an Arab from Hebron serving as a go-between he purchased a plot of 128 dunams.  Cohen purchased a large cultivated (primarily with grapevines) plot, with a house and a water cistern at its summit.

 

 Yizhak Yehuda Cohen

 

 Haj Yussuf, who had an adjoining piece of land, testified: Cohen brought workers and paved the road, he brought building materials and began constructing a large house that was intended to serve as a barn – its foundations (10 x 40 m) exist to this very day, he dug an additional water cistern and engaged in planting apples, pears etc.

Cohen would customarily arrive in the morning, sometimes in the company of his family, work to the evening and returned to Jerusalem.  Since he  had not completed building the house, he didn’t sleep at the plot.  The elders from El-Hader relate that he was an easy-going person and enjoyed good relations with its Arab neighbors.

 

It would appear that during the 1936 disturbances he stopped his activity in the area, after having worked there for a year.  The plot remain neglected till the end of the War of Independence.  Following the Six-Day War, ownership over it passed into the hands of the Jewish National Fund, and subsequently the community of Neve-Daniel was established upon it.

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