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Map of Haifa, 1917

Map of Haifa, 1917Map of Haifa in 1917. From a British military guide that describes Palestine just prior to the British occupation, towards the end of WWI. In the eyes of the modern observer, the map’s orientation is striking: the sea is at the top, Mount Carmel at the bottom. Prominent on the map are sites that testify to the various ethnicities in this diverse and multi-cultural city: Greek Orthodox, Greek Catholic, Franciscans, Maronite Christians, Protestant Christians, Muslims. And of course, the German Colony and evidence of the presence of local feudal masters: Selim Effendi Khuri  and his sprawling villa at the center of the map. In the southern part of the city, the German Colony stands out with its beer brewery, soap factory, and orderly weave of streets. And of course, the Haifa shore: harbors, bathing sites, and a customs station with a lighthouse. The mountain, Mount Carmel, lacks any urban population, historical evidence of the reality of 1917 that would soon undergo rapid changes.