|The Jewish Battalion, a Passover Seder in Jerusalem, 1919. (Harvard, Central Zionist Archives) The photo is signed by|
Ya'akov Ben-Dov who moved to Palestine in 1907 from Kiev. He was drafted into the Ottoman army during World War I and
served as a photographer in Jerusalem. Ben-Dov filmed Allenby's entry into Jerusalem in 1917.
The Jewish battalions of the Jewish Legion were manned by volunteers from Palestine, Europe, the United States and Canada, soldiers stirred by the call to action by Zionist leaders Zev Jabotinsky and Yosef Trumpeldor. Colonel John Henry Patterson, the unit's first commanding officer, described the Legion:
Recruiting poster for Jewish soldiers
"The Jewish Legion was the name for five battalions of Jewish volunteers established as the British Army's 38th through 42nd (Service) Battalions of the Royal Fusiliers. The initial unit, known as the Zion Mule Corps, was formed in 1914-1915 during World War I, when Britain was at war against the Ottoman Turks, as Zionists around the world saw an opportunity to promote the idea of a Jewish National Homeland."
|Soldiers from the Jewish Battalion on Passover in Jerusalem. The|
caption in the Harvard/Central Zionist Archives lists the date as
1918. The Hebrew inscription behind the soldiers reads "Pesach
Jerusalem 5678" which corresponds to 1917-1918.
|16-year-old volunteer Yitzak Jacov Liss|
from "Diary of a Young Soldier" by
|"Jewish Legion enters a Jewish village in the Land of Israel" from|
"We Are Coming, Unafraid"