Sheinkin, Menahem

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SHEINKIN, MENAHEM (1871–1924), Zionist leader in Russia and Ereẓ Israel. Born in Ulla (near Vitebsk), the son of an ḥasidic rabbinical family, Sheinkin studied to become a rabbi. He became attracted to the *Haskalah movement, however, and enrolled at Odessa University. An early Zionist, he was a delegate to the Second Zionist Congress in 1898. In 1900 he visited Ereẓ Israel for the first time and from there went to London as a delegate to the Fourth Zionist Congress. A year later he became the *kazyonny ravvin in Balta, Podolia. He was a member of the *Democratic Fraction of the Zionist Movement; took part in the activities of the Ẓiyyonei Zion, who opposed the *Uganda scheme at the Seventh Congress (1905); and was then elected a member of the Zionist General Council. He was forced to resign from his post as an officially appointed rabbi when he refused to give up his Zionist activities. In 1906 he went to Ereẓ Israel, where he directed Ḥovevei Zion's information and immigration office in Jaffa and was one of the founders of Tel Aviv (1909). When World War i broke out, he was exiled by the Turks from Ereẓ Israel and went to the United States, where he was among the founders of the Zion Commonwealth Company and organized groups for settlement in Palestine. He returned to Palestine in 1919 and became director of the Zionist Commission's immigration office. In 1924 he went to the United States on behalf of the Zion Commonwealth Company and was killed in a road accident in Chicago. A central street in Tel Aviv and one of the city's suburbs are named after him. His writings were published posthumously as Ketavim (1935).


A. Ḥermoni, in: Ketavim (1935), first pagination, 11–16; D. Smilansky, Im Benei Dori (1942), 133–45; Tidhar, 4 (1950), 1608–10.

[Yehuda Slutsky]