Sunday, May 17, 2009

The Emek Izrael (Jezreel valley) Pioneer Museum

I've always loved pioneer museums. When I was growing up I used to love going to see "how people once lived" in the room set up like in real life back them, and there were plenty of them in Illinois and Wisconsin and Texas.
In Israel they are called Halitzim and most Halitzim sites you can go visit deal with the idealism of the settlers, the battles that went on in the area, the poetry and mythology created around the pioneer ideal. Not many fill my interest in the private lives of the individual people.
Well I finally found a place for that.
The Museum Emek Izrael (Jezreel valley) Hityashvut offers a real glimpse of how people actually lived, worked, cared for their children in the "Emek" in the Moshavim and Kibbutzim of the area.
The museum is in Kibbutz Yifat not far off the road between Kiryat Tivon and Nathareth.
The Halitzim museum has a few areas some with life size replicas of Kibbutz and Moshav houses much smaller then any one room cabin you would see in the US. This is the part I liked best. In this area there are also replicas of school rooms and kibbutz "children's houses". Another area has a display of old tractors and pioneer worksites for building the rail track, clearing way for the roads, fieldwork and livestock.
My kids enjoyed the kitchen where you make Halitzim meals (when we were there in Passover in was Matza balls in chicken soup), old time childrens games (mostly outside games of rope or stilts and some wooden toys), and especially an explanation on bee keeping and collecting honey.

The Website:


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