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Leo Arieh Goldhammer (Zehawi) (18/3/1884 - 18/7/1949)was an Austrian and Israeli journalist, lawyer, sociologist, statistician, and Zionist leader.<1,2,3,4>


Personal life

Born in Mihaileni, Romania, as the son of the industrialist Isaak Goldhammer and Sophie. He grew up in Czernowitz and later on lived in Vienna, Austria (1904 -1938). He married Sidonie in 1914, having one son, Alfred (Emanuel), and two grandchildren, Ruth Goldhammer (Eldar) and Ehud Goldhammer. In 1939 he immigrated to Israel, and died in Haifa in 1949 after having suffered from a brain tumor. <1-4>


Following accomplishment of his studies in the Staatsgymnasium in Czernowitz he studied Law and Political Science in the Vienna University, Austria, and then Economics in the Export Akademie of Vienna <1,2,4>. He was also a student of G. Simmel in Berlin (Sociology) and F. Oppenheimer in Frankfurt (National Economics).


Along with his work as a lawyer, Leo Goldhammer (LG) was actively involved in Zionist activity, social, and cultural life of the large Jewish community of Vienna. He published many articles, manuscripts, works, and books, most of them in German,<1-4,11,13> "Handelsbeziehungen zwischen Ostereich und Rumanien", 1910,<2> "Die landwirtschaflichen Produktiv – Genossenschaften in Rumanien", 1915, <2> "Einen Fuhrer durch die Palestina – Literatur", 1918 <2>, Die Soziologie und Tendenzen der Judischen Wnderung", 1908 <2>, "Die Juden in Mahren", 1929 <2>, " Das Zahlenbild der Juden in Pressburg", 1932,<2> " Die Juden Wiens",<5> 1927, and "Die Ursache der Sterblichkeit der Wiener Juden", 1926.<2> LG published several socio-economic research on Czernowitz and Vienna's Jews.<8,9> He was the editor and the publisher of the journal "Das Werdende Palestina" <6> in Vienna 1933-1937, and wrote several articles in "Die Stimme – Judische Zeitung" <7>. Together with some eminent Zionist activists he founded IN 1914 the academic society "Theodor Herzl" <2,12> which published Zionist issues, Israeli, and Jewish literature. In 1921 he became a member of the Presidency of Austrian KKL (Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael, Jewish National Fund), being its chairman <1,4> in Austria in 1937-1938, and then in the Keren Hayessod <2,4>, another Jewish National Fund. In 1925 he was elected to national board of Jewish Agency (Hahistadrut Hatzionit) in Austria <2,4>, and during the years 1926-1930 was its chairman, representing the Jewish Zionist Community of Austria in the Zionist Congresses 15th - 21st .

LG was also the President of the Jewish Community in Vienna, Chairman of the Jewish National Library (Volksbibliothek), and the President of the "Working Palestine in Austria" league("Liga fur die Arbeitende Palestina in Oseterreich"). <1-4>.He was also actively involved in the Jewish sport club "Hakoach Wien" being the head of its swimming section <2>.

After [[Nazism)] gained control on Austria he has been involved in the "Alliat Noar", youth immigration to Israel, trying to achieve immigration permits to Israel.

After 1938 most of his social and political activities took place in Israel, being one of the founders of the "Alija Hadasha" party, and became a member of the "Assefat Haniwcharim" <2>, one of the 3 national institutions which governed the Jewish population in Palestine prior to establishment of the State of Israel. He settled in Haifa and was head of the inhabitants registry department in the Ministry of Interior until 1949 <2>.


1. Die Geistige Elite Osterreichs, Verlag C. Barth, Wien, p.265 -266, 1936. 2. OBL, Oesterreichisches Biographisches Lexicon 1815-1950 (Austrian Academy of Science), p.23. 3. Judaica Lexicon, Davar editions, Keter publisher, Israel, p.79, 1976. 4. M. Henisch, Meebaiit Vemibachutz, Achdut Editor (Israel), p.246-247, 1961. 5. L. Goldhammer, Die Juden Wiens, Ein Statistische Studie, p.1-93, R. Loewit Verlag, 1927. 6. Das Werdende Palestina, 1934, Editor – Dr. Leo Goldhammer, Appel & Co, Wien. 7. L. Goldhammer, Das letzte viertejahrhundert judischer wanderung, Die Stimme, Judische Zeitung, p.3-4, 5th January, 1928. 8. L. Goldhammer, Tchernowitz, in Arim Veimahot, Harav Kook Institute, p. 89-209, 1946. 9. L. Goldhammer, Vienna, in Arim Veimahot, Harav Kook Institute, p. 175-289, 1950. 10. L. Goldhammer, Einheit und Vielseitigkeit, in Das Werdende Palestina, p. 1-26, no.1/2, April –May 1934. 11. E. Weinzierl & O.D. Kulka, in Vertreibung und Neubeginn (Israelische Burger Osterreichischer Herkunft – Teddy Kollek), Bohlau Verlag, p.212, 1992. 12. Goldhammer, Leo. 'Herzl and Freud.' Herzl Year Book. Editor - R.Patai, Vol. I. New York, 1958. 194 - 196. 13. E. Weinzierl, The Jewish Middle Class in Vienna in the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries, CAS (Center for Austrian Studies), University of Minnesota, p.16, 2003.



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