Jacob Moser 1839- 1922
Jacob Moser was born on November 29th 1839 in Kappelin- Schleswig, then a part of Denmark.
Growing up, his parents were passionate about him learning Judiasm and Hebrew, he was sent to Hamburg to do this.
When he left education, he worked in his fathers business, then became a clerk in Hamburg, where he also learned other languages.
Moser moved to Britain when Schleswig took on German nationality, when he was 24 years old. He moved to Bradford and worked for some time in the cities lucrative woollen trade. He then decided to go into business on his own. So in 1872 he opened Edelstein, Moser and company shipping woollen goods. This company prospered, both in the UK and foreign markets as he established his reputation. His business was based in Vicar lane, and the building is now Merchant House.
He married Florence in 1875, Florence worked with her husband to do many great things for the communities within Bradford with her husband after he retired from the woollen trade in 1902. The couple’s charity work took on lots of different areas, e.g. giving £30,000 in aid of Bradford, they also helped many families in all communities when financial assistance was needed. Moser gave Bradford Royal Infirmary financial assistance to build a new building. They were also members of many different charities aimed at stopping cruelty to children, Bradford scientific association and The Discharged Prisoners Aid also benefited from his charity work.
The couple also bought 12,000 books and donated them to Bradford Central Library. In 1866 Jacob became a member of the technical college. In 1895 he was appointed as Justice Of peace, and in 1910, he became the Lord Mayor of Bradford. Additionally, he was the founder of Bradford Guild (please check name), with the help of Bernard Cohen, opened a day nursery called The Nest, based in Wayne Street, providing nursery care was pioneering for this time.
During his time at the council, he was elected twice, in 1896 and 1901 for Manningham Ward, in 1903 He became the liberal candidate for Heaton Ward, until 1904 where he served as an alderman, and in 1908, he served Little Horton Ward, in 1864 he became a Freemason.
In 1873, he helped fo found the Bradford Jewish Congregation, he helped to errect and decorate Bowland Street Synagogue.
In addition to his work in the UK, he also worked in Israel, which he visited in 1908 and 1910, whilst there, he contributed to buildings there. He supported the Herzliya Gymnasia also known as the Hebrew High School in Tel Aviv and Bezalel School of Art in Jerusalem, which was opened in 1906. These schools attracted pupils from across Europe, Palestine and America.
In addition to the practical assistance he gave to Israel, he also became a member of Zionist Society, Jewish Colonial Trust and English Zionist Federation. He also went on to found a Jewish nursing home in 1905 for members of the Jewish community in memory of the works of his friend Dr Theodor Herzl, this was later called Herzl Moser hospital in tribute to him.
Since his death Bradford has remained richer for having him as part of its rich history.When he died, it was felt that Bradford had lost part of its wealth. Moser leaves a legacy of health and education in the city of Bradford, but also on Judaism and Zionism that will remain with the Jewish communities both in the UK and Israel. There are also two Streets named after him in Bradford and one in Tel Aviv. Moser Avenue and Moser Crescent lie on the Swain House Estate in North Bradford, which was constructed during the inter war years, while Moser Street or Ya’akov Mozer is situated just off the David Yellin Road in the centre of Tel Aviv, a short distance from the Marina.