Thursday, June 5, 2014

The First "American Colony" Was Established in the Holy Land 150 Years Ago. Help Us Find It in Photographs

The American "Colony" in the 1860s. Please help us obtain
such pictures in high-resolution digitized form
We are proud that the photographs presented here are all "kosher."  They usually have lapsed copyright restrictions, but, in any case, we seek and obtain permission from the relevant collections, archives and libraries.  All pictures are presented with the links to the original source, and we find librarians and archivists thankful for our site driving readers to their material.

On occasion, however, we have skipped certain collections because of requests for payment.

Photograph of the colony founder, George
Jones Adams, c. 1841
We believe that pictures of Americans attempting to establish a colony near Jaffa in the 1860s are worthy of an entry in these pages. 

(Our research found that Mark Twain met some of the members of the failed colony and wrote about them.)

Unfortunately, the photographs can only be obtained in digitized high-resolution with payment.  In one case, a small American museum contains documents and photographs, and images must be purchased.  In the case of the Library of Congress, which has been amazingly cooperative in releasing their photographs, the photograph described below has never been digitized.

Title: The American Settlement, near Joppa, Palestine. Erected by the Adams Colony from Maine and New Hampshire, 1866-7
  • Date Created/Published: [1866 or 1867]
  • Medium: 1 photographic print.
  • Summary: Photograph shows buildings of the "American Colony" or "Adams City" near Jaffa, now Tel Aviv, Israel which was founded by George Jones Adams (ca. 1811-1880) in 1866.

  • Please click on the Paypal "Donate" button on the top right of our website,, to assist us in purchasing these historic, high-resolution digitized images. (We are not purchasing the originals, just digitized copies.)


    1. What is your goal to raise for this American collection?

    2. For now purchasing rights and digitizing vintage pictures which cost $50- $100 per picture

    3. Most of Adams colony left back to rthe US on the "Quaker City", The steam ship that Mark Twain came on, so on rout to Egypt he had the acquaintance of some of the members. One of that Families that stayed behind was Rolla Floyd who later became t6he main Dargoman (Tour guide) for Thomas Cook Travels. In his memoirs, R. Floyd claimed he "Guided Mark Twain during his travels on horse back from Beirut to Jerusalem (Sep. 1867), a false claim of taking credit for the trip. He mentioned that once Twain became famous, but during the time (1867) R. Floyd had not yet become a Dragoman. Interesting anecdote of a guide taking credit for a guiding a celebrity tour he did not really do. Go prove...