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Jewish & Israeli History and Culture

Kedem is the only public auction house in the world conducting auctions devoted exclusively to fine collectibles with a focus on Zionism and Jewish history. Auctions are held twice a year and include rare items of exceptional quality centered on the history of the Jewish people in Israel and in the Diaspora. These auctions include paper objects and books, maps and booklets, posters, photographs, children's books and items of historic importance to the history of the Jews and Eretz Israel. We would be pleased to examine and evaluate items from customers who may be interested in selling that one unique "Shanah Tova" card, or autographed photo of famous personality to complete archives.

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The Jewish & Israeli History and Culture department, one of Kedem’s most established divisions (together with Kedem Judaica - books, manuscripts and rabbinical letters), was the basis for founding Kedem in 2008. Each auction is accompanied by a detailed catalogue featuring accurate descriptions of each item and quality photos. The catalogue is divided into several sections, enabling customers to take a look back into hundreds of years of Jewish history in Eretz Israel and the Diaspora.

The antiques and collectibles market can oftentimes be misleading. Kedem ensures the authenticity of each and every item in our Israeli & Jewish Culture and History collection.

The Zionist Movement

The history of Zionism is best represented with letters, manuscripts and archives from the founders of the Zionist movement. These include renowned leaders - Herzl, Wolfson, Weizmann, Jabotinsky, Ahad Ha'am, Warburg and others. Also featured are the founders of the Jewish State, its military and civilian leaders – David Ben-Gurion, Menachem Begin, Moshe Dayan and Golda Meir. We also showcase important documents related to other leaders, intellectuals, generals, politicians and public figures who helped form and influence the Zionist movement in the early years. Our sales include paper items, documents and other materials from Zionist organizations, such as the World Zionist Congress, United Israel Appeal, Jewish National Fund and others. 

At Kedem, we are aware of the keen interest in authentic materials from Israel’s War of Independence and the establishment of the state. In recent years, institutes, libraries and museums in Israel and around the globe, as well as private collectors, have shown considerable interest in these topics. Our collections include rare items from the early settlements in Eretz Israel, British mandate period, internment camps in Cyprus, the War of Independence, and more.

The Jewish Spirit

The Jewish spiritual world attracts noted attention around the globe, and at Kedem, we take pride in presenting the Jewish Spirit collection, guaranteeing original and genuine items and artifacts that represent the kindred spirit of the Jewish people. We offer a unique collection of Jewish philosophy books, rare poetry and prose, bibliographies and study books, ancient maps, travels in Eretz Israel, children's books, and graphic items, including posters and postcards.

Part of our unique offering includes a collection of extraordinary books, elaborate and bibliophilic editions, some of which are printed privately or in limited editions. We also offer an assortment of single bills, banknotes, coupons, stock certificates, tickets, and philatelic items and ephemera, which, in its nature, was not preserved through the generations, and is therefore particularly rare.  In addition, auction items include post 1948 Israeli culture with an emphasis on literature, music, theater and sports of the 1960s, 70s and 80s.

Kedem offer important historic items with a focus on anti- Semitism, the persecution of European Jews, World War II and the Holocaust, and other artifacts that symbolize post World War II Jewish life. These include artifacts from Holocaust survivors (She'erit Ha’Pleita) following their liberation in the spring of 1945. At Kedem, we are aware of the sensitive nature of these specific times. We are committed to honoring the memories buried within these artifacts, ensuring these items are furthered only to museums, holocaust study and research institutes and collectors whose identities and intentions we know and trust.

Auction catalogues provide a direct view of the Jewish, Hebrew, Arabic and Yiddish speaking cultures and their movement in Jewish history throughout central Europe, the Arab nations, in Asia and in America.

Kedem has held several special auctions dedicated to specific topics. These include an auction dedicated solely to Passovar Haggadot with a very limited number of items of rare quality and importance (refer to Auctions 25 and 35). Other auctions can be a collection belonging to one collector or to an institute, such as the sale of hundreds of books from the collection of Dr. Israel Mehlman, or from historian Prof. Shimon Abramsky, and single vendor sales such as the collection of Arnie Druck (refer to Sale 34).

Our trained staff are only too pleased to assist collectors – novice and experienced alike, librarians, archivists and curators with assistance in evaluating items for sale with Kedem. We welcome the opportunity of new ventures, prospects and to enhancing our special auctions to include selling complete collections and producing dedicated catalogues.

Comments and questions are an integral part of our business. We invite you to contact us to request additional information.

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