LAPIN, ISRAEL MOSES FISCHEL
LAPIN, ISRAEL MOSES FISCHEL (1810–1889), yishuv leader. Born in Grodno (then Russian Poland), Lapin was a contractor for the building of the Grodno railway and thus became wealthy. In 1862 he settled with his family in Jerusalem, where he contributed to the foundation and maintenance of various health and educational institutions. Along with Judah *Alkalai, Lapin was a founder of Kol Yisrael Ḥaverim for land settlement in Ereẓ Israel and was elected its vice president, but resigned under pressure from Jewish community leaders. In 1872 he joined a group of Jerusalemites who sought to buy land for Jewish settlement in Jericho, but later purchased lands near Jaffa and Moẓa. Lapin acquired the land for the Bet Ya'akov quarter of Jerusalem and helped to expand the city. His grandchildren included Joshua Lapin, director of the Baron de *Hirsch's colonies in Argentina (from 1893), and Bezalel and Leib *Jaffe.
One of his sons, BEZALEL (1856–1939), was taken to Ereẓ Israel at the age of seven. He initiated a coach service between Jerusalem and Jaffa in place of the mules and donkeys used hitherto. He also founded the firm that built the Sha'arei Pinnah quarter of Jerusalem. In 1890 he went to live in Jaffa where he considerably extended his commercial and communal activities. During World War I Lapin organized an aid campaign for Jewish soldiers in the Turkish army.
P. Grajewsky, Rabbi Fischel Lapin (Heb., 1932); idem, Rabbi Beẓalel Lapin (Heb., 1926); idem, Zikkaron la-Ḥovevim ha-Rishonim, no. 3 (1927), and no. 13 (1928); EẒD, 3 (1965), 79–83, incl. bibl.
[Geulah Bat Yehuda (Raphael)]
Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.