The Old Yishuv Court Museum

Old Yishuv Court Museum 1


The Old Yishuv Court Museum

The Need:


The Jerusalem Foundation helps shape a modern, unified and vibrant city by creating opportunities for all Jerusalem residents and inspiring new generations. This is the heritage of Jerusalem. The Old Yishuv Court Museum, established in 1976 in a 16th century compound that has served the Jewish community in the heart of the Jewish Quarter of the Old City for more than 500 years, tells the fascinating stories of the residents of the Jewish Quarter from the 19th century through the fall of the Jewish Quarter to the Jordanians in 1948 – the story of life under extreme poverty, in a city under foreign rule.  The Museum exhibits artifacts that were used in everyday life by residents of the Jewish Quarter, both of Sephardic and Ashkenazic origin and preserves and displays the heritage of Jerusalem and the Jewish community inside the Old City walls.


Established four decades ago, there is now an opportunity to renovate the museum and its displays, updating the exhibits to incorporate modern and interactive technologies that appeal to today's youth and museum visitors, as well as acquire the adjacent building, thereby enabling expansion of educational programs and facilities. The museum conducts a range of interactive theatrical, food and music tours and workshops for the public. Acquiring the adjacent buildings would thus enable the museum to increase their workshops and tours, thereby reaching out to an even larger audience and generating more revenue for the museum.


The Impact on Jerusalem:


We are committed to celebrating Jerusalem's rich history and ensuring that residents of diverse backgrounds, in particular the city's youth, have the opportunity to learn about the city's importance and significance throughout the ages. With the support of the Jerusalem Foundation, projects such as the Isaac Kaplan Old Yishuv Court Museum are central to this endeavor, serving as source of information and inspiration dating back hundreds of years.


The renovation and expansion will enable the museum to finally establish a new youth center to provide children creative cooking and baking, theater and music workshops relating to the Old Yishuv period, which is of great interest to school groups and families. A conference hall will be used for public events, seminars and theater performances for school groups, tourists and the general public. A new library will house the museum's extensive collection of books on the Land of Israel, as well as a reading room, digital archive of documents and photographs that will serve tour guides, researchers and the wider public. Soundproofed workshop rooms and audiovisual equipment will be used for activities for small groups and the new storage area will enable museum staff to preserve and catalogue the museum's objects in a suitable manner.




Partners: The family of Isaac Kaplan, Ministry of Culture and Sport, the Jerusalem Municipality.