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Aryeh Leib Frumkin

(1845 - 1916)

Born in Lithuania, Rabbi Aryeh Leib Frumkin had long felt a connection to the Jewish people and their desire for independence and building a Jewish community. He made his first visit to Palestine in 1871, where he was awakened to the beauty of the land. After, he decided to return to Europe, where he became a rabbi in a synagogue in Kovno. However, he was unable to stay away from Palestine for long. In 1883, he once again visited the land, and this time stayed until 1893, during which time he helped to establish the settlement of Petah Tikva.

After leaving Israel, he and his family chose to immigrate to London, where they initially opened a pub. Unfortunately, due to licensing laws, which demanded that the store stay open on Shabbat, the family was forced to close down their business. It was at this time they he and his family chose to open a wine store, in the East End of London, where they became well acquainted with the large Jewish community. His stay in England did not last long; in 1911, he decided to leave his business to his family and return to Palestine.

Frumkin was a Zionist pioneer and a Jewish scholar. He edited Seder Rav Amram, and wrote a history of the sages of Jerusalem (Toledot Chachmei Yerushalayim).

Sources: Beha’alotcha