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Ledgers of the Mukhtarim in Jerusalem

The Ottoman Empire ruled over the Land of Israel from 1517-1917, until the area was conquered by the British during World War I
The Israeli State Archives stores 461 population registry books containing details of the citizens of Israel during the periods of 1875-1917. These books were mostly written in Ottoman Turkish language – using Arabic letters – titled “Nefus Books - Books of Persons”
Registrations were written according to the person’s religion: i.e. Muslim, Christian or Jewish

The “Books of Persons” are divided into the different categories:
• Basic and drafts copies - 378 entries
• Foreigners (non-Nationals) – 10 entries
• Sub- district ( out of the area) – 47 entries
• Mukhtars (Village Leaders) – 9 entries
• Military Personal – 17 entries
Some of the Mukhtar books were written in the Hebrew language.
For further information please visit the Israel Government Archives at

This book only relates to the Ashkenazi population and was added to the Israel Genealogy Society website, with the blessings and permission of the Israel Government Archives management. IGS is greatly appreciative for this unique opportunity. In the near future all the Mukhtar Books written in Hebrew will be uploaded on our website. As well, in cooperation with the IGA all the “Persons Books“ related to Jews across the Land of Israel will be posted on the IGS website.
The book is presented in its original format in order to enable researchers the opportunity to pursue their inquiries directly from their home computers, instead of traveling to IGA offices. The Family Names were arranged alphabetically to make the task easier; searching should be done using a search engine or alphabetical search.
Facts and Details:
  • 1,830 families over-all a total of 6,151 people.
  • Index was assembled according to the name of the Head of the family.
  • Family sizes range from one individual to large extended families.
  • Some families did not have Family Names.
  • Females (widows) Head of the family were not assigned Family Names. The Family name can be determined if there was a son to whom the Family Name was assigned.
  • Some Family Names have their profession mentioned i.e. builder, tailor, scholar etc. to these names an asterisk was posted (*)
  • The writer wrote at the beginning of each Family Name – the full name of the Head of the Family following by the names of the rest of the members in his family- in relation to the Head of the Family e.g. wife, son, daughter etc.
  • In some of the entries city of birth is not mentioned. It seems that a large number of the Head of the Families were first generation Jerusalemites- born inJerusalem.
  • The book was written in Ashkenazi Hebrew, which is usually written with extra added vowels e.g.”Alef” “Ayin” “Vave” to the words, causing difficulties when deciphering some words. The decoding and proofreading was done by volunteers( IGS Members and Friends).
  • Common Family Names: Please Note the English spelling differs from the Hebrew characters
    • Cohen, Kahana, Katz (66)
    • Levi, Levvian (25)
    • Lipsitz (23)
    • Rabinovitch (19)
    • Yeruzalimsky(17)
    • Common Birth Cities: Please Note the English spelling differs from the Hebrew characters
      • Yerusalayim, Yerusalem (396)
      • Vilna,Villnah, (131)
      • Pinsk(89)
      • Kavvnah (46)
      • Minsk(41)
      • Hordnah (40)
      • Warsaw(37)
Searching Instructions:
Beneficial only for those interested to search the Jerusalem Mukhtar Book.
Click the following link to see the Full names list:
  1. Review the list of names - sorted by family name
  2. Press “CTRL+F” - a small box will open on the upper right. This is PDF Search.
  3. Write the Family Name in the “ SEARCH BOX” and click “SEARCH” , or
  4. Scroll through the list of names alphabetically.
  5. Click on the page number marked in “BLUE” on the left side. This will display the photocopy of the original page written in long hand writing which shows the Family Name you requested.
Please Note! The Project operation has been tested by the following browsers;
  • Internet Explorer
  • Firefox
  • Mozilla
Beneficial only for those interested to obtain all the requested Family Names which appear in the various projects on the IGS website.
  1. IGS website chapter “Eretz Yisrael Listings”. press the “SEARCH” botton. click and write the word “Levvi”.
  2. Click on the : “SEARCH” button at the bottom of the screen, you will get a list of all the “Leevem” on the IGS website and reach the listings of “ The Jerusalem Mukhtar Books”.
  3. Click on the “YELLOW “arrow on the left side and you will get a printed list with the required details.
  4. Another click on “LINK” at the top of the page, it will provide you with a photocopy of the original page.
Special Thanks to the following Volunteers (in alphabetical order)
Ruti Abramovitz- IGA, Deputy Archivist
Amnon Atzmon – Project chairperson and Ranana IGS Branch chairperson
Roe Ba’Geyo – Program Assistant
Miriam Bulbar David-Chai – English Translation
Prof. Amnon Cohen- Consultant
Naomi Elad – Hebrew Editor
Alex Friedlander - Proofreader
Avraham Granit – Proofreader
Nira Grinstein - Proofreader
Hana Klein – Proofreading and Interpreter
Eli Melitz – Proofreader
Yakove Lazovik – IGA – State Archivist
Neta Levy - Interpreter
Zvika Oren – Israel Genealogical Society, Webmaster
Benjamin Panteliat - Proofreader
Yonatan Pegis – Author-“The Book of Basic Population Censuses during the Ottoman Period” and project Consultant
Helena Vilensky – IGA- Archivist and Reading Room Supervisor Assisted with the Project
Yossi Yavin – Web Designer
Nili Yuval – Interpreter and Proofreader
Peninah Zilberman – English Editor

Dear User,
If you find any errors, please contact me at with your assistance we will reach a much more accurate listings.

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