• Issue: September 1984
  • Designer: N. & M. Eshel
  • Stamp size: 40 x 25.7 mm
  • Plate no.: 87
  • Sheet of 15 stamps Tabs: 5
  • Printers: E. Lewin-Epstein Ltd.
  • Method of printing: Photolithography

The idea of the Moshav (co-operative Workers' Settlement) emerged in 1919 and was formulated that year in a publication by E.L. Yaffe. He and the young men and women who shared his views came together in 1921 to establish a new type of agricultural settlement. A decade earlier, some of them had been among the founders of Degania, the first kibbutz. Inspired by the ideas of creating a new type of farmer and a socially-just society as a basis for a free nation, they, nevertheless, thought that the social structure of the kibbutz limited personal initiative and sense of achievement. They sought to establish a society built on the family as the basic unit, in which each family would have equal opportunities within a framework of social regulations based on four principles:

Today, there are over 300 Moshavim (pl.) in Israel with a population of about 130,000. Each moshav, organized and registered as a co-operative society, comprises 30-100 individual farms of uniform size. Each farm is operated by its owner and his family as a private enterprise, although several or all the farmers in a Moshav often pool some of their land for joint operation. The executive committee and other Moshav authorities elected by the general assembly are responsible for running the municipal affairs of the village as well as for providing the vocational and economic services required for the farmers' activities.

Nahalal, the first Moshav, was established in 1921 in the Jezreel Valley near the Haifa-Nazareth road, and was named after a town in the same area mentioned in the Bible (Jos., XIX, 15). The entire area at that time was swampland and earlier attempts to settle the site, one by local Arabs and one by German Templars, had failed because of malaria. The founders of the Moshav lived in tents for the first year while the swamps were being drained. In 1922, the building of the village in a wheel-shaped pattern, according to a layout conceived by the architect R. Kaufmann, was begun. This particular plan also fitted the topography of the site, a flat, round hill emerging from a plain. On the outer side of the circular main road, 75 farmsteads were established, while the inner central part, on top of the hill, was reserved for public buildings and for the houses of those engaged in operating the co-operative public services of the Moshav. Farming in the early years was of a diversified nature, each farm having a few cows, some hens, variegated fruit trees as well as vegetables, wheat and other field crops. In recent years, specialization, fostered as elsewhere by modern mechanization, has taken place, and today, we find dairy, poultry, and fruit farms, etc., each according to the preference of the respective farmer.

Nahalal also hosts two educational institutions: WIZO's Hanna Meisel Shochat Youth Village and a teacher's training college named after E.L. Yaffe. The population, including students and staff of these institutions, numbers more than 1100.

top top 

The "Moshav"