Pamphlets, reports, newspaper cuttings and correspondence relating to the Arab Development Society, the life of its founder Musa Alami and details of the Society's legacy and supporters. Also includes an album of professional photographs, along with loose photographs, documenting the work of the Arab Development Society.
Arab Development Society Collection
- This material is held at
- ReferenceGB 165 0324
- Dates of Creation1953-1984
- Name of Creator
- Language of MaterialEnglish Arabic
- Physical Description3 boxes
Scope and Content
Administrative / Biographical History
Arab Development Society (1945-)
The Arab Development Society was established in 1945 and worked to assure the welfare of Arab refugees following the British withdrawal from Palestine in 1948. Using the remainder of funds assigned to the Arab Development Society by the Arab League Economic Committee in 1945, combined with some personal capital, in 1949 Musa Alami engaged a project to dig for water on an area of land north-east of Jericho. The land was then cultivated and a small experimental farm set up. By 1951 the farm was more or less established and by 1955 was capable of large scale cultivation. The Farm was used to accommodate, educate and give vocational training to orphaned children. These children were not supported by the United Nations Relief Agency, as this only dealt with the heads of families. At the Arab Development Society Farm and Vocational Training Centre, orphaned Palestinian boys learned how to farm, were schooled and also trained in vocational skills including electrical engineering, weaving, carpentry and metalwork, for which there was significant demand in the Arab World at the time. The Arab Development Society Farm and Vocational Training Centre received significant damage during rioting in Nov 1955. The Centre managed to recover with the help of charitable donations, but was then more or less destroyed in the events of the 1967 war and its aftermath. The Farm and Vocational Centre were re-established to some extent with assistance from Friends organisations in the United Kingdom and USA. These organisations continued to support the Centre's projects and Musa Alami's legacy.
Musa Alami (1897-1984)
Musa Alami was a Palestinian Nationalist and Philanthropist (1897-1984). Born in Jerusalem, he studied at Cambridge and later worked for the legal department of the Palestinian Government. He died in June 1984. The Friends of the Arab Development Society was established in the UK in 1961 with E.C. Hodgkin as Chairman and Sir Geoffrey Furlonge as Treasurer. A parallel organisation, the Musa Alami Foundation of Jericho, was also set up in the USA, with Dr. John H. Davis acting as President.
1. Arab Development Society Report
2. Fundraising and the History and Work of the Arab Development Society
4. Death of Musa Alami
Conditions Governing Access
For further information on how to use the Middle East Centre Archive, please see our Archon entry at http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/a/A13531965
Received as a gift from E.C. Hodgkin in 1999
Other Finding Aids
Fonds level description created by Clare Brown in 1999, revised by Alastair McInnes in Jul 2010. File and item level description created by Alastair McInnes 4th Aug 2010. Sources for Administrative History within collection. Other sources are "Personality: Dr. John H Davis", Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, 30th Dec 1985.
Conditions Governing Use
No restrictions on copying or quotation other than statutory regulations and preservation concerns
- Hourani, Cecil A, "Experimental Village in the Jordan Valley'', Middle East Journal, Vol 5, No 4, pp. 497-501
- Mayer, T, ''Arab Unity of Action and the Palestine Question'', Middle Eastern Studies, Vol 22, No 3, Jul 1986, pp. 331-349
- Furlonge, G, Palestine is my Country: The Story of Musa Alami (London: Murray 1969)