Palestinian Heritage Foundation 

Newsletter of the Palestinian Heritage Foundation
    Volume 20,  No. 2                            May, 2014      

نشرة مؤسسة التراث الفلسطيني


Just received from the Publisher

Farah! We do not have copies left of Hanan’s book. All gone! It is now a collector’s item

Michel Moushabeck

Interlink Publishing

Bethlehem Dress and Shatweh added to Munayyer Collection

The Munayyers have recently acquired a 200 years old Bethlehem dress and its complimentary Shatweh headpiece and belts.  Ms. Hazel M. Piazzi, shown wearing the dress in two pictures below had sold the dress to a coworker friend in the early twentieth century. Included in the shipment received with the dress were three distinct pictures along with an article published on Thursday, July 1959 in the local newspaper, “The Kissimmee Ghazette”. These unique and rare photographs of Ms. Hazel Piazzi and her baby father with his grandmother did help in tracing the original owners of the items going back to early nineteenth century.

Ms. Piazza worked as a nurse in Michigan starting 1911 and later in Texas until she retired in 1957. From Texas she returned to Michigan to live, and eventually, retired in Florida. Ms. Hazel Piazza’s grandfather, a lawyer and church minister left Italy for England to study ministry. Upon graduation, he was delegated to Palestine for the English Crown in the nineteenth century where he worked, and eventually got married in Jerusalem to a Bethlehem Arab girl. Ms Hazel’s father (baby shown in picture with his Bethlehem grandmother) was born in Palestine, grew up in Jerusalem, and studied  in England to become a medical doctor. After graduation he emigrated to the United States and lived in Chicago. The picture of the baby and his grandmother (Hazel’s great grandmother) was taken by the renown Palestinian Armenian photographer Garbed Krekorian. Hazel’s great grandmother was married in the acquired dress in the early to mid nineteenth century.

Hanan Spoke at Drew University in Madison New Jersey

On Thursday April 3, 2014 Mrs. Hanan Munayyer, cofounder and President of the Palestinian Heritage Foundation was the guest speaker at the Middle East Department at Drew University in Madison, New Jersey. This presentation was part of a lecture series taking place during the one month exhibit of Palestinian embroidery and textile at the university. The display commemorated the memory of the late Drew University Archaeology Professor Dr. Robert Jehu Bull who passed away last September at the age of 92. Dr. Robert Bull taught at Drew University for many years.

Introducing Hanan was Dr. Vivian Bull, President of the university and spouse of the late Dr. Robert Bull. Attending the Power Point presentation were the university Dean, faculty members responsible for the exhibit, students and an audience interested in the subject. The exhibit was scheduled from March 25 through April 24, 2014.

On Friday, April 4, 2014, Mr. Farah Munayyer, representing the Palestinian Heritage Foundation, attended the opening reception of the one month long exhibit. The reception audience included students of Middle East History at Drew, faculty members and members of the community. The exhibit included Palestinian embroidered dresses, pillow cases and jewelry from the Bull collection.

Mrs. Ethel Mendenhall Donates to Foundation

Mrs. Ethel Mendenhall of Ann Arbor Michigan again donated several antique embroidered items to the Foundation including a Syrian dress from the Sarakeb region of Syria, and an embroidered Palestinian pillow case. These items were bought by Mrs. Mendenhall while living in Palestine and while on a trip to Syria in the 1950s. It is worth noting that Mrs. Mendenhall is an ardent supporter of the Palestine Heritage Foundation had made two previous donations to the Foundation including several pillow cases and two dresses that are included in Hanan’s book “Traditional Palestinian Costume: Origins and Evolution”.

  Twenty University Libraries to Receive Hanan’s Book

The Palestinian Heritage Foundation is happy to announce that its project to place the book “Traditional Palestinian Costume: Origins and Evolution”  into both New Jersey Public Libraries and Middle Eastern sections of university libraries is advancing favorably. Recently, a grant covering the last twenty books for placement in university libraries has been received from a generous donor and supporter of the Foundation’s activities.

We are happy to report that Mr. and Mrs. Samih Darwazah, an ardent supporter of the Foundation and the Book Project was kind to sponsor the donation of the last  twenty copies of the book remaining in the Foundation’s possession to university libraries in the United States. The Foundation would like to thank Mr. and Mrs. Darwazah for their generous donation to such cultural institutions. Knowing the magnitude and impact of the book on such institutions, Mr. Darwazah previously acquired fifty books when published and planned to place them in all European universities that he visits.

Anna Rychter May watercolors in Washington DC Oct. 2014

A rare collection of watercolor paintings by the late Anna Rychter May will be on display at the Jerusalem Fund in Washington DC this coming Fall. The 13 exquisite pieces reflect the work of Anna Rychter May while she lived in Jerusalem since her arrival in the City from Europe in 1923. Most of these art pieces were commissioned by the late Dr. Rolla Foley, an American Quaker who taught at the Friends School in Ramallah between 1938 and 1946. The watercolors are on loan to the Jerusalem Fund and are part of the Munayyer Collection.

رحيل نيافة المتروفوليت فيليب صليبا
 عن شعبه وأصدقائه

إنتقل إلى رحمته تعالى يوم الأربعاء الموافق 19/3/ 2014 نيافة المتروفوليت فيليب صليبا راعي
لمؤسسة التراث الفلسطيني منذ نشأتها.  الكنيسه الأرثوكسية ألأنطاكية في أمريكا الشمالية وكندا عن عمر يناهز 83 عاما . وكان سيادته الداعم لمؤسسة التراث الفلسطيني منذ نشأتها.


من اليسار فرح منيٌر نيافة المطران عطالله حنٌا المتروفوليت فيليب صليبا وحنٌا حنٌا

كان الفقيد صديق عزيز للعائلة ومن أوائل من ناصر ودعم فكرة ونشاطات المؤسسة حتى وصلت إلى ما وصلت إليه
 من إنجازات
, وقد حضر جميع فعٌاليٌاتها الثقافية طوال خمسة وعشرون عاما.

تتقدٌم أسرة مؤسسة التراث الفلسطيني ومستشاريها بتعازيها الحارة لأسرة الفقيد متضرٌعة
 إلى المولى عزٌ وجلٌ أن يسكنه فسيح جنٌاته ويلهم عائلته, وأصدقائه وأبناء طائفته في ربوع أمريكا وأرض الوطن
 الصبر والسلوان.

وقد وري جثمان الفقيد الثرى في القرية الأنطاكية التي أسسها في ولاية بنسلفانيا الأمريكية

ومن أقواله المأثورة: أنا لبناني المولد, عربي الإنتماء, سوري الثقافة وأمريكي الجنسيٌة

وهكذا رددت من بعده: أنا فلسطيني المولد, عربي الإنتماء, سوري الثقافة وأمريكي الجنسيٌة

مؤسسة التراث الفلسطيني
حنان وفرح منيٌر




Editorial Reviews

Reviews (Just added on Amazon)

In this gorgeous volume, the author, a Palestinian American who, with her husband, began collecting traditional dress in 1987, draws from her own and various museum collections to illustrate an argument for a cohesive Palestinian cultural identity stretching back to the beginnings of Middle Eastern civilization. Even as the traditional forms, materials, techniques, colors, and motifs represented in the collection as a whole reflect the cultural, socioeconomic, and political factors that shaped the area’s tumultuous history, the Munayyer Collection derives its true power from the skill, resilience, and very localized expressiveness of the Palestinian women who created these extraordinarily beautiful objects. Hundreds of exquisite photographs, including many double-page spreads, communicate an intense experience of texture, color, and detail. …for any textile or Middle Eastern studies collection. Summing Up: Highly recommended. –Choice, April 1, 2012

“This spectacularly beautiful production is a major contribution to recording a critically endangered costume heritage. Elegantly boxed, with hundreds of splendid photographs, many of them full page, as well as a small selection of old photographs, paintings and prints, and images of jewelry and household accessories, the book is a treasure chest of information. The introduction tells the moving story of Farah and Hanan Karaman Munayyer s determination to do something to preserve their land s threatened cultural heritage. The couple own extensive collection, augmented by gifts and purchases, now numbers more than 3000 items and forms the core of the Palestine Heritage Foundation that they have established. The first section sheds an extremely interesting light on the origins of Palestinian dress, with illustrations that show, for example, parallels between headdresses of the mid-20th century and those from second-century Palmyra, or embroidery designs from Ramallah and mosaics on the floor of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. Palestine had an extraordinarily rich and varied embroidery tradition. Not only did each town or tribal group have its own designs and style, but they were constantly evolving. The dresses are stunning with every kind of technique from counted thread work, to brilliant and modern looking patchwork effects, to Ottoman-style couching. The book is arranged by major towns and, although older pieces are represented, is largely concerned with the dresses in use at the time traditional Palestinian society was overturned in 1948. Besides being a valuable resource for the history of costume, or the identification of pieces, Nathan Sayers s photographs make the book a wonderful resource for anyone interested in design or tempted to try her or his hand at some of the beautiful cross-stitch patterns.” –Saudi Aramco World

About the Author
Hanan Karaman Munayyer, a Palestinian-American, is co-founder and president of the Palestinian Heritage Foundation. She has researched and lectured on Palestinian textile arts for over twenty years. She is also a retired molecular biologist who worked in pharmaceutical research for more than three decades.
Note personal reviews on Amazon relative to Hanan’s book Traditional Palestinian Costume: Origins and Evolution
It’s very documented and has great images. This book is reflecting the history of Palestine on the motives and the stitches of the dresses. I need the book for a cultural presentation and I recommend it for any cultural organizations, churches, and instructors of the middle east studies or teaching world languages.

Fadwa Hussein
Excellent effort in preparing this valuable book. Very much needed as a reference for anyone interested in Palestinian art of embroidery.


The book is amazing, more than my expectations. Every one who likes embroidery will love it. It was very expensive but it is worth the price.


I have never seen a more beautiful book in my life. The photography brings to life the colors and detail of each amazing costume. This book is a feast for the eyes, a true work of art on its own. Every design school library should have this.

C. Mamary

Every home should buy this beautiful book of Colorful Embroidered cross stitch of the traditional Palestinian costumes and Jewelry.Very well researched and documented. Everyone who saw the book wanted to buy it for their home or as a precious gift for their loved ones. IT IS A FANTASTIC KEEPSAKE. Many thanks to Hanan Munayyer and her husband Farah.

Hala Ajluni

Book Reviews and Lectures:

Hussein Ibish’s review in NOW Lebanon. August 2011
This Week in Palestine, Book of the Month.                                 The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs
Dr. Clovis Maksoud review in The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs. 


Library of Congress 

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