A neighborhood found in the center of Jerusalem, entering Musrara feels like stepping into a different world. With a divisive history, this neighborhood embodies living history.
Centrally located between the ultra-orthodox neighborhood of Meah Shearim, the Russian Compound and the Old City, Musrara was founded at the end of the 19th Century when Old City residents were leaving the Old City during the ‘departure from the walls’ escaping the overcrowding. Arab Aristocrats formed Musrara, building beautiful Arab homes that are still standing today with beautiful entrance ways, large windows and high ceilings.
It became quite a battlefield in 1948, until a ceasefire line was drawn through the center of Musrara. And in the ‘50s, whilst there was still high tensions and dangers, immigrants from North Africa were housed there. The dangers and the animosity of Musrara caused the previous Aristocratic neighborhood to become a slum. In the ‘70s, the tensions within Musrara birthed the group called, the Israeli Black Panthers, which spread and spoke to people across the country.
This intense history can be seen in every corner of this now peaceful neighborhood, and it has become a place where tourists flock to to admire the preserved history, and the beauty of Musrara. It has become the focal point of art, history and music with well known artistic institutions founded here. The diverse neighborhood can be explored walking through the Jerusalem stone narrow alleyways, with the smells of herbs, flowers and trees wafting through the pathways of Musrara and makes strolling through here quite the picture perfect place.