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1839 Census of Eretz Israel & 1840 Census of Alexandria

Introduction to the 1839 Census
The digitization ו- translation of the 1839 census of Eretz Israel Jewish population is based upon the publication of A Census of the Jews of Eretz Israel (1839) published in 1987 by the Dinur Center the Hebrew University[1].  The use of Excel for the basis of the transliteration allows, in addition to the database, a demographic analysis of the population by many parameters, giving a comprehensive picture of the Jewish population in Eretz Israel and immigration from various countries to Eretz Israel.[2]
Due to the format of listing the members of a whole family in one line (usually), most of the "missing information" pertains to married women.  The wives are not listed, but "inferred" in the 1839 census because the head of the family unit is listed as being "married". In the other censuses the name of the wife is usually given. 

Distribution of Population by Family Status ו- Gender of 1839 Census[3]
Family Status # Sub-total Family Status # Sub-total
male head of household 1847   male child 882  
male engaged 0 1847 stepson 4  
wife 1658   grandson 6  
widows 971   male orphan 294 1186
female engaged 1   female child 671  
female divorced 3   step daughter 8  
female deserted 1   grand daughter 2  
mother 7   female orphan 145 826
elderly mother 3   child (gender not stated) 35  
mother-in-law 6 2650 orphan (gender not stated) 26 61
      TOTAL   6571

 

Distribution of Places of Birth by Geographic Bloc in 1839 Census [4]
Eastern Europe Communities 437
Eretz Israel 816
Mediterranean Basin Communities 1298
Oriental Communities 34
Western Europe Communities 18
סך הכל 2603

 

Distribution of Places of Birth by Country [5]
Country # of People Country # of People Country # of People
Algeria 218 Hungary 1 North Africa 73
Austria 6 India 3 Poland 29
Belarus 189 Iran 1 Romania 50
Bosnia 30 Iraq 23 Russia 10
Bulgaria 97 Italy 17 Serbia 17
Croatia 2 Kurdistan 4 Slovakia 4
Egypt 5 Latvia 3 Syria 95
England 1 Lebanon 51 Tunisia 12
Eretz Israel 816 Lithuania 45 Turkey 363
France 3 Macedonia 30 Ukraine 87
Germany 4 Moldava 4 Yemen 3
Gibraltar 1 Morocco 33    
Greece 269 Netherlands 4 סך הכל 2603

 

Patterns of Settlement or Congregations
One of the advantages of a database is that it allows data mining, which enables the finding of information that isn't seen by the naked eye reading a list of names of people in a book. Through analysis of the 1,787 people with places of birth outside of Eretz Israel the following pattern of settlement can be seen. The table is of groups of immigrants according to the listing of the place of birth ו- where they settled in Eretz Israel. The presentation of the information in this format enables the emergence of a pattern of settlement. The list includes only groups of least 13 people in the town. The choice of 13 was arbitrary, in that it is greater than the number of people needed for a miyan, ו- even if one to three of the 13 were widows or orphans under the age of 13, the group would still have had a miyan in which they could pray according to their own customs.

Patterns of Settlement
Country
of Birth
Town Kollel # of
people
Country
of Birth
Town Kollel # of
people
Algeria Acre Sephardim 14 Macedonia Jerusalem Sephardim 30
Haifa Sephardim 21 Morocco Safed Sephardim 12
Safed Sephardim 102 North Africa Jerusalem Sephardim 54
Tiberias Sephardim 58 Romania Safed Hassidim 28
Belarus Hebron Habad 35 Serbia Jerusalem Sephardim 17
Jerusalem Prushim 118 Syria Jerusalem Sephardim 35
Tiberias Russia 19 Nablous Sephardim 22
Bosnia Jerusalem Sephardim 21 Safed Sephardim 14
Bulgaria Jerusalem Sephardim 89 Turkey Hebron Sephardim 15
Greece Jerusalem Sephardim 247 Jerusalem Sephardim 331
Italy Safed Sephardim 14 Ukraine Safed Hassidim 28
Lebanon Sidon Sephardim 51 Tiberias Volin 24
Lithuania Jerusalem Prushim 41        

1840 Census of Alexandria
From the documents available, it seems to be the only commissioned by Montefiore outside of the administrative Ottoman boundaries of Eretz Israel[6], although the city of Sidon in Lebanon was included in the 1839 census of Eretz Israel. The reason ל- being that many Jews from Safed found refuge there after the 1837 earthquake that destroyed the city. 
The information collected on the residents of Alexandria is similar to that of the 1839 census of Eretz Israel. An outstanding difference is the registering of the age, which for the majority ends with a 5 or a 0. In the Eretz Israel census the ages registered seem to be more specific.
 
The population of Alexandria is more homogenous than any of the cities of Eretz Israel. All of the residents are Sephardim, with most of them born in Alexandria. A few of the residents were born in Safed, Sidon, Thessaloniki, Tripoli and Morocco. But since the place of birth is only given for the head of the household it is hard to give exact numbers for those born outside of Alexandria. An in-depth analysis of this census can be found at:
 http://www.nebidaniel.org/documents/E-MONTEFIORE_CENSUS.doc
 
Project Coordinators: Mathilde A. Tager, Rose A. Feldman, Billie Stein
Dec 2008 

[1] A Census of the Jews of Eretz Israel (1839): (MS. MONTEFIORE 528), Jerusalem, The Dinur Center, The Hebrew University (Hebrew).

[2]  Hollingsworth, T. H. (1969) Historical Demography, London.

[3] Feldman, R.A., (2008). A new look the 1839 Montefiore census of Eretz Israel. Shemot, 16, (2), 13-16.

[4] Feldman
[5] Feldman
[6]  http://www.nebidaniel.org/documents/E-MONTEFIORE_CENSUS.doc

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