Moshav on the southern Coastal Plain of Israel
In 1887, a group of First Aliyah newcomers from Bessarabia founded a moshava, which they named Quastina, after the neighboring Arab village.
Although supported by Baron Edmond de Rothschild, the moshava did not prosper due to lack of water, distance from other Jewish centers, attacks by neighboring Arab villagers and strained relations between the settlers and the Baron's administration. The village was almost abandoned, but in 1896, the association of Hibbat Zion in Odessa purchased the land and new settlers came. Quastina became Be'er Toviyyah - an adaptation of the site's Arabic name, "Bir Ta'abya."
The moshava was practically destroyed during the 1929 Arab Riots and had to be abandoned. In 1930, it was founded anew as moshav. After water was discovered, Be'er Toviyyah became one of the most prosperous moshavim in the country.
After 1948, the moshav became the center of a densely settled farming area.
In the early 1990's, the population of Be'er Toviyyah numbered some 650. The moshav's economy is mainly based on citrus and intensive farming.
Entry reproduced with permission from
"Junior Judaica, Encyclopedia Judaica for Youth" CD-ROM © C.D.I. Systems 1992 (LTD) and Keter.