Hacohen, Mordecai ben-Hillel

(1856–1936)
   Hebrew writer and early Zionist. A businessman from Mogilev in Russia, Hacohen was active in the Chovevei Zion movement and a regular contributor to Jewish periodicals, including the Hebrew Ha-Melitz. He was a delegate to the first Zionist Congress in 1897 and the only one to address it in Hebrew. He settled in Palestine in 1907 and was one of the founders of Tel Aviv, taking an energetic part in the business and cultural life of the country. His voluminous memoirs, diaries and articles are valuable source material of the period.
   Two of his sons, Hillel and Shimon, were founders of the farm village of Binyaminia in the Sharon plain. Another son, David (b. 1898), was the director of Solel Boneh, the giant construction cooperative of the Histadrut. A veteran Knesset member, he was chairman of its Foreign Affairs and Security Committee, and an executive member of the InterParliamentary Union. David was also the first Israel ambassador to Burma, and the pioneer of Israel’s aid programmes in developing countries. One daughter, Rosa, was married to Shlomo Ginnossar, the son of AHAD HA-AM, and was for many years national chairman of WIZO in Israel. Another daughter, Hanna, was the wife of Dr Arthur Ruppin, who developed agricultural settlement in the yishuv.

Who’s Who in Jewish History after the period of the Old Testament. . 2012.

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