JNF Timeline

1897 - 1902

1903 - 1908

1909 - 1914

1915 - 1920

1921 - 1926

1927 - 1932

1933 - 1938



Professor Zvi Hermann Schapira, one of the founding fathers of "Hovevei Zion, recommends at the First Zionist Congress that the Jewish People establish a national fund for the purchase of land in Eretz Yisrael.


With the strong encouragement of Theodor Herzl, the Fifth Zionist Congress, meeting in Basel, decides to establish Keren Kayemeth Lelsrael (KKL) - the Jewish National Fund.


Johann Kremenetzky is appointed chairman of KKL and its headquarters are established in Vienna. The Blue Box, the Golden Book and KKL stamps yield their first contributions from all over the world.


The first land purchases ate trade at Kfar Hittim, Hulda, Ben Shemen, Daieiqa and Umm Juni later Kinneret and Deganya).



The Bezalel School of Art and Design is established with KKL assistance, and on its land.



KKL transfers its headquarters to Cologne, and Dr. Max Bodenheimer becomes Chairman.



The Herzl Forest is planted at Ben Shemen.

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KKL contributes funds for the establishment of the city of Tel Aviv and Haifa's Hadar Hacarmel neighborhood; purchases land for the construction of the Technion and Science High School in Haifa, the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and Herzliya High School in Tel Aviv; and helps establish Israelis first kvutza, Deganya.



On behalf of KKL, Yehoshua Hankin purchases the first tracts of land in the Jezreel Valley on which the farming community of Merhavia is founded.



KKL helps establish neighborhoods for immigrants from Yemen in Petah Tikva, Rehovot, Hadera, Rishon LeZion, Nes Ziona, Zichron Ya'acov, Yavniel and Be'er Ya'acov.



On the eve of the First World War, KKL owns 24,000 dunams (6,000 acres) of land in Eretz Yisrael. Its headquarters move to The Hague. Fundraising is stepped up as world Jewry rallies on behalf of the impoverished Jews in the Iand of Israel, helping with the development and defense of their settlements.


Land purchases resume with the acquisition of Kiryat Anavim near Jerusalem, Nehemia de Lieme is appointed chairman of KKL and its headquarters move to London.


Hankin acquires two large parcels of land in the Jezreel Valley, earning the title of "Redeemer of the Valley." The first moshav, Nahalal, is established in the west and Kibbutz Ein Harod, in the east. These are soon followed by other settlements.


Hibat Zion's energetic leader, Menahem Ussishkin, is appointed Chairman of KKL. Its headquarters move to Jerusalem.


Land is redeemed in Haifa Bay and the Zebulon Valley. The first workers' neighborhood is established on the outskirts of Haifa.


The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is inaugurated on KKL land on Mount Scopus.

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The "Teachers' Movement for KKL" is founded and begins spreading KKL's message throughout the school system in Eretz Yisrael,


The Balfour and Mishmar HaEmek forests are planted.


The Hefer Valley is purchased, as is additional land in Haifa Bay and the Jezreel Valley.


Land is purchased in the Beit She'an Volley. Yosef Weitz, "the Father of the Forests," is appointed head of KKL's Land and Forestry Department


The Wadi Huarit swamps in the Hefer Valley are drained.


At the onset of the Arab riots, KKL holds about one third of all Jewish owned lands in the country - almost 35,000 dunams (9,000 acres) - which support 108 settlements, With KKL's assistance, the "Tower-and-Stockade" settlements are established in previously uninhabited areas.


The "Ussishkin Fortresses" - Kibbutz Dan and Kibbutz Dafna - are established on the northern border, and land is purchased in Upper Galilee.



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31 Jul 2007 / 16 Av 5767 0