|• Also spelled||Sur Bahr (official)|
|• Arabic||صور باهر|
|Name meaning||The wall of Bahir (Prominent)|
Sur Baher (Arabic صور باهر, Hebrew צור באהר) is a Palestinian neighborhood on the southeastern outskirts of East Jerusalem. It is located east of Ramat Rachel and northeast of Har Homa. In 2006, Sur Baher had a population of 15,000.
During a general survey of the southern part of Sur Baher, ancient stone cut olive presses, wine presses, cisterns and a limekiln were found. A cave, with remains dating to the Iron Age I (12-11th centuries B.C.E.) were excavated at Khirbat Za‛kuka, south of Sur Baher.
Sur Baher, like the rest of Palestine, was incorporated into the Ottoman Empire in 1517, and in the tax registers of 1596 "Sur Bahir" appeared as being in the Nahiya of Quds in the Liwa of Quds. It had a population of 29 households, all Muslim, and paid taxes on wheat barley, vineyards and fruit trees, goats and beehives.
In 1838, Edward Robinson noted Sur Bahil N 13° E from Tuqu'. French explorer Victor Guérin visited the place in 1863, and described Sur Baher as having about 400 inhabitants. An Ottoman village list of about 1870 found 46 houses and a population of 154, though the population count included only men. It further noted that it was an old, well-built and nice-looking village. In 1883, the Palestine Exploration Fund's Survey of Western Palestine described Sur Bahir as "a stone village of moderate size, on a bare hill. On the north is a well in the valley, and there are rock-cut tombs above it to the west."
British Mandate era
In the 1922 census of Palestine, conducted by the British Mandate authorities, Sur Baher had an all Muslim population of 993 persons. In the 1931 census the population of Sur Bahir was a total of 1529, still all Muslim, in 308 inhabited houses.
In 1945 the population of Sur Baher, together with Umm Tuba, was 2,450, all Arabs, who owned 8,915 dunams of land according to an official land and population survey. 911 dunams were plantations and irrigable land, 3,927 used for cereals, while 56 dunams were built-up (urban) land.
In 2000, the Israeli government and Jerusalem municipality approved building plans for two new high schools and a youth center. In September 2005, the Jerusalem municipality, in cooperation with the Israel Defense Forces, cleared a Jordanian minefield in Sur Baher. The work, carried out by an Israeli company, was completed by October 2005. In May 2007, the municipality built two schools on the cleared land: a girls school attended by 800 students, and Ibn Rushd, a boys school attended by 700 students.
- Palmer 1881, p. 329
- Minefield as a School Ground: The Tzur Baher Minefield Clearance Project, by Bentzi Telefus
- Dagan, Barda and ‘Adawi, 2009, Jerusalem, Sur Bahir, Survey Final Report
- ‘Adawi, 2014, Jerusalem, Khirbat Za‘kuka (Sur Bahir) Final Report
- Ganor and Klein, 2011, Sur Bahir, Survey Final Report
- ‘Adawi, 2010, Jerusalem, Sur Bahir, Final Report
- Hütteroth and Abdulfattah, 1977, p. 120.
- Toledano, 1984, p. 299, gives Sur Bahir‘s position as 31°44′15″N 35°13′40″E
- Robinson and Smith, 1841, vol 2, p. 183
- Guérin, 1869, p. 83
- Socin, 1879, p. 161
- Conder and Kitchener, 1883, SWP III, p. 30
- Barron, 1923, Table VII, Sub-district of Jerusalem, p. 14
- Mills, 1932, p 44
- Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 58
- Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 104
- Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 154
- Arnona 2008, newsletter published by the public relations department of the Jerusalem Municipality http://www.jerusalem.muni.il
- ‘Adawi, Zubair (2010-01-19). "Jerusalem, Sur Bahir, Final Report" (122). Hadashot Arkheologiyot – Excavations and Surveys in Israel.
- ‘Adawi, Zubair (2014-08-07). "Jerusalem, Khirbat Za‘kuka (Sur Bahir) Final Report" (126). Hadashot Arkheologiyot – Excavations and Surveys in Israel.
- Barron, J. B., ed. (1923). Palestine: Report and General Abstracts of the Census of 1922. Government of Palestine.
- Conder, Claude Reignier; Kitchener, H. H. (1883). The Survey of Western Palestine: Memoirs of the Topography, Orography, Hydrography, and Archaeology 3. London: Committee of the Palestine Exploration Fund.
- Dagan, Yehuda; Barda, Leticia; ‘Adawi, Zubair (2009-12-13). "Jerusalem, Sur Bahir, Survey Final Report" (121). Hadashot Arkheologiyot – Excavations and Surveys in Israel.
- Ganor, Amir; Klein, Alon (2011-09-12). "Sur Bahir, Survey Final Report" (123). Hadashot Arkheologiyot – Excavations and Surveys in Israel.
- Guérin, Victor (1869). Description Géographique Historique et Archéologique de la Palestine (in French). 1: Judee, pt. 3. Paris: L'Imprimerie Nationale.
- Hadawi, Sami (1970). Village Statistics of 1945: A Classification of Land and Area ownership in Palestine. Palestine Liberation Organization Research Center.
- Hütteroth, Wolf-Dieter; Abdulfattah, Kamal (1977). Historical Geography of Palestine, Transjordan and Southern Syria in the Late 16th Century. Erlanger Geographische Arbeiten, Sonderband 5. Erlangen, Germany: Vorstand der Fränkischen Geographischen Gesellschaft. ISBN 0-88728-224-5.
- Mills, E., ed. (1932). Census of Palestine 1931. Population of Villages, Towns and Administrative Areas. Jerusalem: Government of Palestine.
- Palmer, E. H. (1881). The Survey of Western Palestine: Arabic and English Name Lists Collected During the Survey by Lieutenants Conder and Kitchener, R. E. Transliterated and Explained by E.H. Palmer. Committee of the Palestine Exploration Fund.
- Robinson, Edward; Smith, Eli (1841). Biblical Researches in Palestine, Mount Sinai and Arabia Petraea: A Journal of Travels in the year 1838 2. Boston: Crocker & Brewster.
- Socin, A. (1879). "Alphabetisches Verzeichniss von Ortschaften des Paschalik Jerusalem". Zeitschrift des Deutschen Palästina-Vereins 2: 135–163.
- Toledano, E. (1984). "The Sanjaq of Jerusalem in the Sixteenth Century: Aspects of Topography and Population". Archivum Ottomanicum 9: 279–319.
- Welcome To Sur Bahir & Umm Tuba
- SWP map 17, IAA
- SWP map 17, Wikimedia commons
- Sur Bahir and Umm Tuba (Fact Sheet), ARIJ
- Sur Bahir & Umm Tuba Town Profile, ARIJ
- Sur Bahir & Umm Tuba areal photo, ARIJ
- Sur Baher on facebook
- Wandering in Sur Baher on I'm from Jerusalem website