The Second Aliyah lasted for ten and a half years (1903-1914), bringing 35,000-40,000 Jews to the Land of Israel. The migration to the Land of Israel was part of the mass migration of Jews from Eastern Europe. 1.3 million Jews immigrated to America and 35,000 came to Israel. The composition of the Second Aliyah was similar to that of the First. Most of the people joined the “Old Yishuv”, but it was the young people, those in their twenties, a minority among the newcomers, who turned to the strengthening of the new settlements.
In 1904, the year in which the immigrants started to arrive, the financial situation in the Land of Israel was at a low point. The vineyards, which were a source of employment for the immigrants of the Second Aliyah were facing a crisis. Life in the Land of Israel was difficult and not all survived. In the early years of the Second Aliyah, a large number of immigrants, who had come with the hope of finding their new home, left the Land of Israel
1,500 People Make History
The pioneers fought for Hebrew labor in the framework of the Hebrew Labor Movement in Israel. They established the first cooperative settlements. Although there weren’t many, they created a new reality in the Land of Israel – settlements and agriculture start to flourish.
These immigrants had a socialist-nationalist labor ideology with a variety of nuances. Their world of ideas included “mutual assistance, Hebrew labor, Hebrew guards and Hebrew land”.
The future leaders of the Jewish Yishuv and even those who became the first generation of leaders of the State of Israel were among those young people, including three prime ministers: David Ben Gurion, Moshe Sharett and Levi Eshkol, the second and third presidents: Yitzhak Ben-Zvi and Zalman Shazar, and other major figues, such as Berl Katznelson and Dr. Arthur Ruppin.
So what else do you have to know about the Second Aliyah?