Preserving the Past, Promoting the Future, and Anchors Aweigh Jerusalem

Preserving the Past, Promoting the Future, and Anchors Aweigh Jerusalem

Jerusalem offers a wide array of activities before the new school year begins.

Searching for a good quote for “circus” I found “preserving the past, promoting the future.”

What could be more appropriate for Jerusalem, Israel?

Jerusalem Tower of David end of summer event Circus

What could be more appropriate for the Circus at the Tower of David?

Jerusalem Israel Tower of David Circus sign

In the venue of historic ancient stones, the past is carefully preserved.

The Circus being held this August is especially aimed at young families.

Encouraging. Enriching. Exciting.

Providing educational and enjoyable activities that promote the future.

Tower of David view of tables set for Shesh Besh competition in Jerusalem Israel

From the Tower of David, you get panoramic and dramatic views of Jerusalem.

From the top of the Tower of David, we could see the area above Mamilla Mall across from the Old City walls near Jaffa Gate was set and ready for a shesh-besh tournament.  Backgammon players of all ages were invited to enter the public competition.

The plaza area near Jaffa Gate was not the only place that was busy this summer.

360 Degrees music festival in Jerusalem Liberty Bell Park

The Liberty Bell Park was one of the locations of the 360 Degree music and theater festival.

Muslim woman standing with Jewish man at music event in Liberty Bell Park Jerusalem

Diverse populations attended these events that were open to the public and free of charge. This was a drum circle, with standing room also.

Muslim women picnic in Liberty Bell Park in Jerusalem during a summer music festival

I took this photo of a young woman ready to do face painting for the children in the park.

If you look closely the women behind her are wearing hijabs and having a picnic dinner.

Jerusalem Israel Bloomfield Park scene from Measure for Measure - Shakespeare in Motion

In Bloomfield Park, Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure in Motion holds its last performances on August 25, 26, and 27. The annual theatrical event attracted the attention of Yiddish-speaking children who were in the park on family outings. Shakespeare is not taught in Israeli schools, and this is one fun way to preserve the Bard.

End of August summer activities at Hansen House in Jerusalem Israel

Hansen House, the old leper hospital, now the site of innovative programs, is presenting end-of-summer activities for families. Locals may be away, but a few children were doing activities in the Hansen courtyard. Sunday night was scheduled for a grand opening.

Sign for Sukkot 2016 Archaeological campus

Preserving the past, the National Campus for the Archaeology of Israel, had a grand opening almost three years ago.

Building of Schottenstein Antiquities Campus

The huge complex was meant to showcase Israeli archaeology.

Inside Antiquities Campus 2016

The innovative architectural designed building was to be home to researchers preserving the past. Visitors could watch work being done through glass walls.

Room in Schottenstein Antiquities Campus

Rooms were dedicated to each era and the ancient finds were to be on display.

valuable pieces in museum lower level Schottenstein Campus

Down in the depths, the most ancient and valuable pieces were to be preserved and displayed.

Archaeological Campus site near Israel Museum

The front still appears the same from the street as on our exciting initial visit, only now the doors are chained shut. It will take a huge new cash infusion to promote the campus in the future.

Bible Lands Museum in Jerusalem Israel

The Bible Lands Museum Jerusalem (BLMJ) is next to the shuttered campus.

Bible Lands Museum Jerusalem main floor

BLMJ has rare antiquities carefully preserved and ancient relics on exhibition.

Exhibit at Bible Lands Museum on discoveries found preparing for new Beit Shemesh road

In the spring the Highway through History exhibit opened.

Beit Shemesh Road work halted because of major site underneath

Displays and photographs of the #38 Highway expansion are seen near the entrance.

Side of road where ancient site was found next to new road in BEeit Shemesh

However, driving by the site on the way to Beit Shemesh, was a very different experience.

Archaeological dig in Beit Shemesh where new road was to go.

I know they said it was big and close to the road, but as we drove by it was hard to capture how expansive the site is. Everywhere in Israel, preserving the past and promoting the future is a balancing act, as Beit Shemesh Mayor Aliza Bloch and museum curators said at the opening of the Highway Through History exhibition.

The newest exhibit Anchors Aweigh opened this week.

BLMJ exhibit on Sea Ports of Holy Land

The exhibit is dedicated to seaports and is located downstairs in the museum.

Blue and white Israeli flag at Bible Lands Museum Jerusalem Israel

 Out of the Blue and with its blue threads was the previous exhibit on display in this space.

Bible Lands Museum Jerusalem exhibit on Ports 1800s

Fifty works of Holy Land seaports from the private collection of Yossi Gilben are on display.

Image of Ashdod port in 1839 BLMJ exhibit

This 1839 lithograph by D. Roberts is of Ashdod. What a contrast to the thriving city and port today.

Lithograph from 1839 of Gaza with soldiers near water in port

Troops heading north to Sidon are depicted in this D. Roberts lithograph, also dated 1839, in Gaza.

BLMJ image of Jaffa SeaPort in 1677

Jaffa was the closest port to Jerusalem. It was not a natural harbor and lacked deep water, so those arriving had to disembark onto small crafts to reach land. It was destroyed in the 13th century after the Crusade-era and remained in ruins for hundreds of years.

In the 15th century as more pilgrims came to the Holy Land they would spend a night or two in the ruins and head for Jerusalem. Finally, in the mid-17th century, the Ottomans allowed a small group of Franciscan monks to settle in Jaffa and care for European pilgrims. Later they were granted permission to establish a hospice.

This engraving by O. Dapper is from 1677 shows the port and citadel, along with some buildings, in German, Ioppen in Palestine.

The other seaports of Ashkelon, Haifa, and Caesarea are included in Gilben’s impressive lithographs and engravings collection which has preserved the past for us to enjoy now.

BLMJ old map that was printed in error with Mediterranean on wrong side

This map placed just outside the main room is from the collection of Batya Borowski.

Incorrect map of coastline of Holy land printers error

Jewish Holy Land with allotments of the 12 tribes in German is the title of the wood engraving by S. Munster (ca. 1550).

It was pointed out to us, that the map with the south on the upper area and the Mediterranean on the right side, was due to a printing error. It seems as back as the early days of printing, even those who honored and yearned for Jerusalem did not always get their facts straight, as they had never been to the Holy Land.

Leonardo DaVinci is featured at the Bloomfield Science Museum.

The Israeli Museum always attracts families during the summer holidays.

It is hot. Streets are almost empty of cars.

But as always good things are happening on and under the Jerusalem, Israel streets as the summer wanes.

 

Shabbat Shalom – United in Jerusalem

I took many photos of diversity in Mamilla Mall yesterday: Muslim women eating at the table next to us in a cafe, and Arab families shopping in the Jerusalem mall.

But decided to share my favorite photograph this week which was published by United Hatzalah.

These smiling medical volunteers posed in Jerusalem with visiting Sheryl Sandberg, the chief operating officer (COO) of Facebook.  Sandberg along with her parents are visiting in Israel and donated an ambulance dedicated to Sderot.

Female volunteers of United Hatzalah with Sheryl Sandberg in Jerusalem
Photo Credit: United Hatzalah

Jerusalem, 22.8.19  – Sheryl Sandberg and her parents, Joel and Adelle Sandberg, honored first responders at the national headquarters of United Hatzalah, Israel’s largest all-volunteer EMS organization. The visit culminated in a dedication ceremony of a new ambulance donated to United Hatzalah by Joel and Adelle Sandberg…

During the visit, the Sandberg family met with members of United Hatzalah’s diverse women’s unit and its founder, Gitty Beer. The women’s unit sends female EMTs to treat other women in an effort to make patients feel more comfortable, particularly when dealing with sensitive or private issues such as childbirth or miscarriage.

The Sandbergs met with volunteers Sassya Simon, an Orthodox mother of three who studied pre-med in the US; Rania Abu Shaban, a devote Muslim woman who joined the organization after her grandmother died waiting for an ambulance; and Kayla Tzur, who responds to multiple emergencies a day via electric bicycle.

I totally agree with Sheryl Sandberg’s statement:

“United Hatzalah’s work to quickly respond to emergencies and save lives is one of the most impressive programs I’ve ever seen,” said Sheryl Sandberg. “I’m in awe of these brave women and all of the United Hatzalah volunteers, who race toward people when they need help most.”

Wishing all a safe, happy and healthy Shabbat Shalom.

שבת שלום

Finding Valuable History under Jerusalem Streets

Finding Valuable History under Jerusalem Streets

I’ve repeated countless times that you never know what you will find on the Jerusalem streets,

The saying that you never know what you will find under the Jerusalem streets takes upon itself new meaning daily.

An archaeological dig at the prophet Samuel’s Tomb was halted recently when workers exposed a World War I artillery shell.

Emek Tzurim National Park is in the upper reaches of the Kidron Valley.

View of Jerusalem from Sifting project

The park provides this impressive view of Jerusalem and it is the location of the Sifting Project.

Sifting project finds in new center at Zurim Valley

The Sifting Project, in the Zurim Valley, has a display of finds from the Second Temple period salvaged from the earth that was dumped by the Waqf.

In November 1999, Waqf carted away nine thousand tons of earth filled with centuries of history buried in it, to make an entrance to a new underground mosque for 10,000 Muslim worshipers.

I wrote about Dr. Gabi Barkai and this story four years ago.

Siting Project doing Givati parking lot earth

The revised Sifting Project is open to the public and ready for new amateur archaeologists.

Sifting project finds

The soil being checked currently is from the Pilgrims Road and Drainage Channel digs near the Jerusalem Old City Walls.

Looking for any bones or stones or coins sifting project

Each portion of the earth is carefully washed and searched.

Pottery from ancient times found in Jerusalem at sifting project

No gold bell or ancient coins, but we did find this piece of pottery in our bucket of dirt and rocks.

Our guide gave a demonstration. The staff is around to assist and supervise.

Stones found in the sifting project in Zurim Valley in Jerusalem

In this display case were colorful pieces from ancient wall mosaics.

Jerusalem Israel Sifting Project find of child ring in drainage ditch of Old City

This child’s ring may have fallen in the street and ended up in the drainage channel 2000 years ago. It was found recently.

Journalists crowd around to take a photo of ancient ring found

The tiny ring was a popular item to photograph.

Roman metal arrow head found in sifting project under road in Jerusalem

Also in the soil from outside the walls of Jerusalem was a metal tip from a Roman arrow.

Did you know the Romans had dice similar to those we use today?

Ancient coin found in Sifting Project

One of the valuable coins from the Roman period, proclaiming the independence of Jerusalem.

Sifting project in Jerusalem Israeli

After searching and sorting out valuables, the dirt is dumped and carted away.

Sifting project at Zurim Valley in Jerusalem Israel.

As we were leaving families arrived at the Sifting Project. All seemed engaged and eager to see what valuables they could find in their pail of earth.

Jerusalem Israel Sifting project view to Mt Scopus

Emek Tzurim National Park is located on the lower western slope of the Mount of Olives and Mount Scopus.

a- Tur street near sifting project

It is situated next to the neighborhoods of Wadi al-Joz, A-Tur, and Beit Orot,

View of Zurim Valley Jerusalem Israel

as well as the campus of Brigham Young University Jerusalem Center.

The Sifting Project parking lot is the cleared spot on the left of this image.

View of Jerusalem from Sifting Project

With Jerusalem’s Old City insight, the remains of generations are being revealed.