Mazkeret Batya (Hebrew: מַזְכֶּרֶת בַּתְיָה) (lit. "Batya Memorial") is a local council in central Israel located southeast of Rehovot and 25 kilometres (16 mi) from Tel-Aviv. Mazkeret Batya spans an area of 7,440 dunams (7 km²). In 2017 it had a population of 14,159. The mayor of Mazkeret Batya is Gaby Gaon.
|• ISO 259||Mazkert Batya|
Baron Rothschild's farm
|• Type||Local council|
|• Head of Municipality||Gaby Gaon|
|• Total||7,440 dunams (7.44 km2 or 2.87 sq mi)|
|• Density||1,900/km2 (4,900/sq mi)|
Mazkeret Batya was established on November 7, 1883 by 11 pioneers from Russia and 7 local Jews. It was originally called Ekron, the first agricultural settlement of the Hovevei Zion movement. The land was purchased by Baron Rothschild in an early attempt to introduce Jewish farming in Palestine. Rabbi Shmuel Mohilever was instrumental in mobilizing funding and organizing the settlers. Mohilever's remains were later reinterred in the Mazkeret Batya cemetery. In 1887 the name was changed to Mazkeret Batya, in memory of Betty Solomon de Rothschild, mother of Baron Edmond James de Rothschild.
The economy of the village was originally based on dry farming, which continued even after the Mekorot Company constructed a pipeline to bring water from Rehovot. In 1947, Mazkeret Batya was home to 475 people.
According to a census conducted in 1922 by the British Mandate authorities, Mazkeret Batya (then Ekron) had a population 368 Jews. During the Mandate era, a Jewish police station was established in Mazkeret Batya to safeguard the local roads. In the War of Independence, convoys to besieged Jerusalem left from Mazkeret Batya. A field hospital operated there to care for Haganah fighters wounded at Latrun.
Due to its proximity to Tel Aviv, Mazkeret Batya has recently experienced a growth spurt. Mazkeret Batya is a mixed community of religious and secular Jews. Historic landmarks include Beit Ha'Itut (Signal House), the Great Synagogue, Beit Meshek HaBaron ("The Baron's Farmhouse", now housing a cultural center), the saqiya-type water-rising system with its wooden wheels, well and pool, and an old farmyard.
Twin towns — sister citiesEdit
Mazkeret Batya is twinned with:
- "Localities File" (XLS). Israel Central Bureau of Statistics. 2017. Retrieved 22 April 2019.
- Mazkeret Batya website
- Jewish National Fund (1949). Jewish Villages in Israel. Jerusalem: Hamadpis Liphshitz Press. p. 41.
- Society for Preservation of Israel Heritage Sites Archived 2009-12-05 at the Wayback Machine
- "Stadt Celle". www.celle.de. Retrieved 2010-01-05.
- Harry Sanders, "'Shalom,' from Israel," Calgary Sunday Sun 25 Jan. 1998: S7
- "Ville de Meudon - Villes jumelles". Ville de Meudon. Archived from the original on 2013-05-07. Retrieved 2013-07-29.