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Elizabeth A.Sackler Center for Feminist Art

Henrietta Szold

b. 1860, Baltimore; d. 1945, Jerusalem

Henrietta Szold organized numerous groups dedicated to zionist efforts, including Hebras Zion, one of the earliest such groups in the United States, and Hadassah, a women’s society. Szold was the daughter of a rabbi and taught in his synagogue from an early age. From 1893 to 1916, she served as editorial secretary of the Jewish Publication Society. During a trip to Palestine in 1909, Szold became convinced of the need for a Jewish state and by 1916 she was devoting all of her energies to the zionist cause. She organized new chapters of Hadassah, coordinated the Palestinian activities of the American Zionist Medical Unit, and led the Histadrut Nashim Ivriot (Jewish Women’s Organization) as president. In 1933, she directed the Youth Aliyah, which relocated children from Nazi Germany to Palestine. Her work for children continued with the founding of Lemaan ha-Yeled, which was renamed the Szold Foundation after her death.