Dizengoff Meir (1861-1937)

A founder and first mayor of Tel Aviv.


Born in Bessarabia, he was active in Russian revolutionary circles in his youth, and was arrested in 1885. Later he became active in the Hibbat Zion movement. During the late 1880s he studied glass production in France, and he was sent to Erez Israel in 1892 by Baron Edmond de Rothschild to establish a glass factory to supply bottles for the wines produced in the settlements. However, the factory was closed in 1894 when it became clear that the local sand was unsuitable.

Returning to Russia in 1897, he settled in Odessa, went into business, and became active in the Zionist movement. He returned to Erez Israel in 1905 and settled in Jaffa. Dizengoff was one of the founders of the Ahuzat Bayit Company for establishing a modern Jewish quarter near Jaffa. This quarter, later called Tel Aviv was founded in 1909. In 1911 Dizengoff was elected head of the local council. Later, when Tel Aviv became a city (1921), Dizengoff was elected its first mayor and, except during 1925--28, served in that capacity until the end of his life.

Entry taken from "Junior Judaica, Encyclopedia Judaica for Youth" CD-ROM

by C.D.I. Systems 1992 (LTD) and Keter.





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02 May 2005 / 23 Nisan 5765 0