NAHALAL or NAHALOL


NAHALAL or NAHALOL (Heb. נַהֲלׂל, נַהֲלָל).

(1) Town in the territory of the tribe of Zebulun, along with Shimron and Beth-Lehem (Josh. 19:15, 21:35). The Israelites were apparently unable to dispossess the Canaanites from Nahalol (Judg. 1:30). Later, probably in the days of David, it became a levitical city belonging to the family of Merari (Josh. 21:35). In the Talmud (TJ, Meg. 1:1, 70a), it is identified with Mahalol, which corresponds to the present-day Arab village of Maʿlūl southwest of Nazareth; the remains that can be found there are of the Roman period only and include a mausoleum (Qaṣr al-Deir). The site of Nahalal proper is still in dispute.

[Michael Avi Yonah]

(2) The first moshav ovedim in Ereẓ Israel. It was founded in 1921 in the western Jezreel Valley by veteran pioneers of the Second *Aliyah, some of whom had been members of the first kevuẓah, *Deganyah. The 80 settling families each received 25 acres (100 dunams) of land, and they drained the malarial swamps. (Malaria had prevented two previous attempts at settlement, one by Arabs and one by Germans.) In the 1920s, the first farm branches – field crops, cattle, and poultry – were developed and concrete stables built, while the settlers lived in wooden huts for 15 years. The village layout, devised by the architect Richard *Kauffmann, became the pattern for many of the moshavim established before 1948; it is based on concentric circles, with the public buildings (school, administrative, and cultural buildings, cooperative shops, and warehouses) at the center, the homesteads in the innermost circle, the farm buildings in the next, and beyond it ever wider circles of gardens and fields. In 1929 a Girls' Agricultural Training Farm was established at Nahalal by *WIZO; it was headed by Hannah Maisel-Shoḥat, wife of Eliezer *Shoḥat. In the 1940s it became a coeducational farming school of *Youth Aliyah. Nahalal is one of the principal centers of the Tenu'at ha-Moshavim. More water became available in the 1930s from the *Mekorot regional network and deep wells were drilled in the vicinity. Farming then became more intensive, fruit orchards were added, and existing branches expanded. In 1969 Nahalal, including the agricultural school, had 1,020 inhabitants. By the mid-1990s its population had grown to 1,240, but in 2002 it was down to 925, with 350 resident farmers, 165 permanent non-farming residents, 100 school employees, and the rest temporary residents. The main farming branches were dairy cattle, poultry, fruit orchards, flowers, and field crops.

[Efraim Orni /

Shaked Gilboa (2nd ed.)]

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

Albright, in: AASOR, 2/3 (1923), 26; Aharoni, Land, index; EM, S.V. (incl. bibl.). WEBSITE: www.nahalal.org.il.


Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.