|Name meaning||The ruin with the gap, or chink|
|Also spelled||Um el-Faraj, La Fierge|
|Date of depopulation||21 May 1948|
|Cause(s) of depopulation||Military assault by Yishuv forces|
|Current localities||Ben Ami|
During the late Ottoman period, in May 1875, the French explorer Victor Guérin visited the village. He described it as being surrounded by "delightful" gardens, irrigated with water from Nahr al-Mafshukh. Many houses were build with great care, and some had old pieces of stone built into them. All the villagers were Muslim. In 1881, the Palestine Exploration Fund's Survey of Western Palestine described it as being built of stone and with a population of 200. The villagers planted fig, olive, mulberry and pomegranate trees.
The older houses in the village were built close together and formed a circle, while the homes build after 1936 were scattered among the orchards. The entire population of Umm al-Faraj were Muslim, and lived by agriculture. In 1944/45 a total of 745 dunams (0.745 km2; 0.288 sq mi) was used for citrus and bananas, 18 dunams (0.018 km2; 0.0069 sq mi) were used for cereals, while 42 dunams (0.042 km2; 0.016 sq mi) were irrigated or used for orchards.
1948 War and aftermath
During the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, Umm al-Faraj was assaulted by Israel's Carmeli Brigade in the second stage of Operation Ben'Ami. The operational order, issued 19 May 1948, was to "attack with the aim of conquest, the killing of adult males, destruction and torching." The assault came on the 20–21 May 1948, when Carmeli forces attacked Umm al-Faraj together with Kabri, al Tell and Nahar, and then "demolished them," according to Morris.
The Palestinian historian Walid Khalidi described the village remains in 1992: "Only the stone mosque remains. It is shut and stands in a state of decay amid tall wild grass. Many trees that might predate the village's destruction can be seen. The nearby lands are cultivated; a banana grove belongs to the Ben Ammi settlement."
- Palmer, 1881, p. 50
- Hadawi, 1970, p.41
- Morris, 2004, p. xvii, village #83. Morris also gives cause of depopulation.
- Khalidi, 1992, p.34
- Sharon, 1999, p.170, p.171
- Guérin, 1880, p. 45 -46
- Conder and Kitchener, 1881, SWP I, p.147. Quoted in Khalidi, 1992, p.34
- Hadawi, 1970, p.81
- Morris, 2004, p.253, note 727
- Morris, 2004, p.253-254, note 729
- Khalidi, 1992, p.35
- Conder, Claude Reignier; Kitchener, H. H. (1881). The Survey of Western Palestine: Memoirs of the Topography, Orography, Hydrography, and Archaeology 1. London: Committee of the Palestine Exploration Fund.
- Fisk, Robert (1990): Pity the nation: Lebanon at war. (For future expansion: Chapter 2: Mrs Zamzam in the Rashidieh refugee camp in southern Lebanon recalls Umm al-Faraj)
- Guérin, Victor (1880). Description Géographique Historique et Archéologique de la Palestine. Vol 3 Galilee; pt. 2.
- Hadawi, Sami (1970), Village Statistics of 1945: A Classification of Land and Area ownership in Palestine, Palestine Liberation Organization Research Center
- Khalidi, Walid (1992), All That Remains, Washington D.C.: Institute for Palestine Studies, ISBN 0-88728-224-5
- Mills, E., ed. (1932). Census of Palestine 1931. Population of Villages, Towns and Administrative Areas. Jerusalem: Government of Palestine.
- Morris, Benny (2004), The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem Revisited, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0-521-00967-6
- 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.
- Sharon, Moshe (1999), Corpus Inscriptionum Arabicarum Palaestinae, Vol. II, B-C, BRILL, ISBN 978-90-04-11083-0
- Welcome to Umm-al-Faraj
- Um Al-Faraj photos, from Dr. Moslih Kanaaneh
- Umm Al-Faraj, at Khalil Sakakini Cultural Center