Soup Kitchens

Soup houses were an important social institution in 19th and early 20th century Jerusalem. They provided, almost exclusively, for a large part of society. During WWI, they became even more important. Most of the countries that donated funds for the Jewish Yishuv were in a state of war with the Ottman Empire, and the Yishuv found itself cut off from its main financial life line. The Ottoman army that passed through the area on its way to the Suez front exacerbated matters by confiscation civilian food supplies for its soldiers' needs. The years of the war were also years of natural disasters – drought and locust. The young Jewish Yishuv suffered greatly from the hunger that erupted those years, especially in Jerusalem. Soup houses were, in those years, important in feeding the needy and in distributing food supply to most Jewish households in the city.
Most of the photos displayed her are from theTzadok Bassan collection .