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Palestinian Colonisation Association (PICA), Paris

In the 1880s, Baron Edmond de Rothschild (1845-1934) funded Jewish settlements in Palestine and encouraged the development of agriculture and industry. In 1895, he visited Palestine for the first time. Until his death, 'The Benefactor', as he was known, provided support for Jewish colonists, overseeing dozens of new colonies. Rishon le Zion (the First in Zion) was followed by others bearing the names of his parents. In 1899, responsibility for the Rothschild settlements was transferred to form the Palestine branch of the Jewish Colonisation Association. In 1924 Baron Edmond de Rothschild created a separate Association to manage these settlements – the Palestine Jewish Colonisation Association (PICA) – under the direction of his son, James de Rothschild (1878-1957). As well as offices in Palestine, PICA had offices in Paris. 

PICA records

Administrative records created by the Paris PICA office were transferred to Waddesdson Manor by James de Rothschild after the Second World War. They contain correspondence, financial records, censuses, photographs and publications relating to the management of the settlements, land ownership, individual settlers, and the politics of Jewish settlement in Palestine, as well as industry, vineyards, and agriculture. These records are now held by The Archive, Windmill Hill, Waddesdon Manor ». A catalogue of Jewish Colonisation Association (PICA) records, held at Waddesdon Manor is a available in the Reading Room.

A few sundry papers relating to PICA will be found in the papers held by the Rothschild Archive; these include the Memorandum and Articles of Association of the Jewish Colonisation Association, 1891, and some correspondence and reports relating to Palestinian colonies supported by Edmond, 1899, which will be found in the Lafite Papers (OE 532). An Agreement terminating the administration and management of the Palestinian colonies, between Baron Edmond de Rothschild & the Jewish Colonisation Association, 1923 will be found in the Moscow Papers, (58-1-825).

Palestinian Colonisation Association (PICA), company seal, n.d.

000/939, 1 item

Company seal-die of the Palestine Jewish Colonisation Association (PICA).

Palestinian Colonisation Association (PICA), Memorandum and Articles of Association, 1891

000/1530, 1 item

Memorandum and Articles of Association of the Jewish Colonization Association, 1891.

Palestinian Colonisation Association (PICA), sundry correspondence and papers, 1862-1919

000/1634, 1 file

Photocopies of correspondence and other documents in French and English relating to the Jewish Colonization Association 1862-1919. Originals belived to be at Château Lafite. Includes: preliminary report of Mr Meyerson, on the Palestinian Colonies, for Baron Edmond de Rothschild; Memorandum and Articles of Association of the Jewish Colonization Association, 1891; Jewish Colonisation Association Report for the year 1898 on its activities in Argentina, United States, Palestine, Cyprus, Russia and Romania.

Palestinian Colonisation Association (PICA), sundry reports, 1928

000/2390, 1 volume

Reports of the Experts submitted to the Joint Palestine Survey Commission, December 1927, Boston, Massachusetts, October 1928. Relates to reports on the colonies of  PICA.