Israel National Photo collection goes online

Menachem Begin kisses actress Elizabeth Taylor’s hand. Israeli President Efraim Katzir gives a French kiss to Golda Meir. David Ben-Gurion wades in Ein Feshkha next to the Dead Sea in a bathing suit. King Hussein of Jordan grabs on to Yitzhak Rabin’s arm after tripping during a celebratory event held by US President Bill Clinton following the signing of the Israel-Jordan Peace Treaty. And finally, a rare color picture of Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann pacing back and forth in the prison yard in Ramle before his trial.

These are just a few of the examples of what’s contained in the National Photo Collection’s new website. The collection is a part of the Government Press Office, and is open for anyone to look at.

The collection contains hundreds of thousands of pictures of central figures and events, presenting a pictorial history of Israel. All of the pictures were taken by Government Press Office photographers, and cover everything from the founding of the state up to today.


Color Photo of Adolf Eichmann pacing in the Ramle prison yard before his trial


Hillary Clinton, Queen Noor, Leah Rabin, and Leah Weizmann at a ceremony after the signing of the Israel-Jordan Peace Treaty in the Arava, 1994


Israeli President Efraim Katzir kisses Golda Meir during an Israel Prize ceremony on Israel Independence day, 1975


David Ben-Gurion and Eliezer Kaplan at Ein Feshkha, 1940


Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, Jordanian King Hussein, and US President Bill Clinton, 1994


Yitzhak Rabin wearing a wig before travelling to an Arab country, 1975


Shimon Peres, age 13, Poland 1936

Additional photographers contributed to the collection as well, some of which took pictures from before the founding of the state.

Amongst other pictures, one can find rare pictures of men and women praying together at the Western Wall in 1910; a rare photo of the Mosque of Omar on the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem from 1920; and a picture of 13-year-old Shimon Peres before he immigrated to Israel.


Men and Women pray together at the Western Wall, 1910


Menachem Begin and his wife visit Abu Simbel in Egypt, 1980

The Government Press Office also created a new website and app compatible with both Google and Apple products.