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Independence Hall

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Basic Information

Location Rothschild Boulevard 16, Tel Aviv
Country Israel
City Tel Aviv-Yafo

General Information

Open to visitors yes
Need appointment no
Handicap accessibility yes
Geographical Coordinates 32.06296,34.77099


Summary

Independence Hall, originally the Dizengoff House (Hebrew: בית דיזנגוף‎) is best known as the site of the signing of Israel's Declaration of Independence. It is located on the historic Rothschild Boulevard in Tel Aviv, Israel. Today, a museum, it houses exhibits of the signing of the Declaration of Independence and on the history of Tel Aviv-Jaffa. From 1932 to 1971, it housed the Tel Aviv Museum of Art. The upper floors of the building house a Bible Museum, featuring archaeological artifacts and works of art with Biblical themes.


History and time period

At this site, sixty-six families gathered on April 11, 1909, to conduct a lottery for plots of land in a new a Jewish neighborhood, to be known as Ahuzat Bayit. Meir and Zina Dizengoff acquired plot number 43, on which they built their home. Meir Dizengoff served as the head of the new neighborhood council. In 1910, at a general meeting, the residents of Ahuzat Bayit, inspired by Theodor Herzl's book Altneuland (English: Old-New Land), unanimously decided to rename their neighbourhood, Tel Aviv.

As the neighborhood grew and became a city, Dizengoff became the first mayor of the city of Tel Aviv. In 1930, after the death of his wife, Dizengoff donated his house to his beloved city of Tel Aviv and requested that it be turned into a museum. The house underwent extensive renovations and became the Tel Aviv Museum of Art in 1932. The museum moved to its current location in 1971.

The first Israeli Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion, made the proclamation at 4 pm on May 14, 1948, in the main hall, eight hours before the British mandate over the region was due to end, in the presence of the members of the Vaad Leumi (Jewish National Council), and the leaders of the Jewish community. After David Ben-Gurion read the declaration of independence, Rabbi Fischman (Maimon), recited the Shehecheyanu blessing, and the Declaration of Independence was signed. The ceremony concluded with the singing of Hatikvah, now Israel's national anthem.


Photo Gallery

  • Independence Hall



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