Akiva Aryeh Weiss

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Akiva Arie Weiss House, built 1909

Akiva Arieh Weiss, also spelled Aryeh (1868-1947), was the initiator and founder of a Jewish settlement, Ahuzat Bayit, established in 1909 in Ottoman Palestine, which grew to become "the first Hebrew city", Tel Aviv, today Israel's main economic hub.


Weiss, a jeweler and watchmaker, was born in the Russian Empire.[1] He immigrated from Russian Poland to Palestine in 1906.[2]

As president of the then newly established building cooperative named simply Ahuzat Bayit, Hebrew for Building Society, Weiss presided over the 1909 real estate lottery in which 66 Jewish families drew numbers written on seashells to determine the allocation of lots in the about-to-be established city of Tel Aviv.[3][4]

Weiss was a founder of the textile industry in Mandatory Palestine, and built the earliest textile factory, the Lodzia House.[5]

One of Weiss' visions which became reality was the establishment of a Jewish diamond industry in Palestine.[6]


The cornerstone of Weiss's Tel Aviv house at #2 Herzl Street was laid in 1909. Originally a single-story structure, the upper floor was added in the 1920s. The house was restored between 1996 and 2011.[7]


  1. ^ Stanford. "Ahuzat Bayit and the Founding of Tel Aviv in 1909". stanford.edu. Stanford University. Archived from the original on 27 October 2014. Retrieved 27 October 2014. 
  2. ^ Kohen, Edna Yekutieli Kohen - Granddaughter of Akiva Aryeh Weiss. "Tel-Aviv Centennial - Akiva Aryeh Weiss (1868-1947)". boeliem.com/index.html. Boeleim; Complete Reference to Israeli Stamps. Retrieved 27 October 2014. 
  3. ^ Azaryahu, Maoz; Troen, Selwyn Ilan (2012). Tel-Aviv, the First Century: Visions, Designs, Actualities. Indiana University Press. p. 31. ISBN 9780253223579. Retrieved 19 April 2014. 
  4. ^ Kosharek, Noah (20 April 2009). "Seashell lottery". Haaretz. Retrieved 23 November 2012. 
  5. ^ BarOr. "43 Nahmani Street, Tel Aviv-Jaffa – Lodzia House". amnon-baror.co.il/?lang=en. Retrieved 27 October 2014. 
  6. ^ The Early 1900s Archived 2006-11-07 at the Wayback Machine. by Shira Ami
  7. ^ Amnon Bar & Co. Architects. "2 Herzl St., Tel Aviv-Yafo – Akiva Arieh Weiss House". amnon-baror.co.il/?lang=en. Retrieved 27 October 2014.