PLace

Khirbat al-Damun

Place
Khirbat al-Damun — خِرْبَة الدامُون
District
Haifa
Average Elevation
435 m
Subdistrict
Haifa
Distance from Haifa
10.5 km
Population
Year Arab Total
1944/45 340 340
Land Ownership (1944/45) in dunums
Year Arab Public Total
1944/45 1904 893 2797
Land Use (1944/45) in dunums
Use Arab Public Total
Non-Cultivable & Built-up (Total)
Use Public Total
Non-Cultivable 893 893
893 893 (32%)
Cultivable (Total)
Use Arab Total
Cereal 1619 1619
Plantation and Irrigable 280 280
Citrus and Bananas 5 5
1904 1904 (68%)

This village was located on the higher reaches of Mount Carmel, along the eastern bank of Wadi Falah. One secondary road linked it directly to Haifa, and a shorter one connected it to the highway that led to the city. During the Mandate the village was classified as a hamlet by the Palestine Index Gazetteer. The residents of Khirbat al-Damun were Muslims. They depended for their livelihood upon animal husbandry and agriculture; their most important crop was grain, although they also grew olives. In 1944/45 a total of 5 dunums was devoted to citrus and bananas and 1,619 dunums were allotted to cereals; 280 dunums were irrigated or used for orchards. Their lands also contained several forests. At the base of Khirbat al-Damun was a cave that was used as a sheep fold. The cave led to a series of subterranean rooms. Flint artifacts at the entrance to the cave were dated to the Neolithic period at the latest.

No date is given for the occupation of this village, but judging from its location it probably was captured either just before or shortly after the fall of Haifa, in late April 1948. After Haifa was captured, the Haganah committed numerous forces to the capture of the surrounding villages in order to strengthen its hold on the city. Although the nearby village of al-Tira managed to hold out until July, it was heavily attacked in the last week of April and women and children were evacuated at that time. The New York Times reported that while al-Tira was being attacked on 26 April, 'another nearby village' was occupied by Jewish forces. Khirbat al-Damun, the closest village which is otherwise unaccounted for, is the most likely candidate.

There are no settlements on village lands.

All that is left of the village is a building that is now used as a prison. Cactuses and a few remaining fruit trees, such as pomegranate and almond trees, grow on the site. The land is forested and the area is currently used by Israelis for recreation.