Stamp: Mordecai Haffkin, Bacteriologist (1860 to 1930) stamp
Born and educated in Odessa, Ukraine, Haffkine studied under Nobel prize winner Elie Metchnikoff. During the first pogrom (organized massacre of Jews) in Russia, in 1881, following the assassination of Czar Alexander ll, Haffkine who was active in the Jewish Defence Movement, was arrested, tried but later released. Invited in 1892 by Metchnikoff, then at the Pasteur Institute, Paris, Haffkine developed the first effective vaccine against cholera. He went through India inoculating volunteers with excellent results. In 1896 when plague struck Bombay, the government sent him there to develop a vaccine against the plague. He succeeded within three months, and became world famous. In 1897 Queen Victoria named him "Companion of the Order of the Indian Empire." In 1902 plague struck the Punjab, which received large quantiies of vaccine and when ninteen of the tens of thousands of inoculated, contracted tetanus and died, Haffkine experienced hostilities from scientists who were envious of his success, and was charged with administering contaminated vaccine. Haffkine was suspended and his pay forfeited and it took three years to investigate the accusation and only after the London Times published a long, scientific defence of Dr. Haffkine that the government exonerated him. Later, he settled in Paris, where he became actively involved in various Jewish organization efforts to create an independent Jewish State in Palesting. Having been an orthodox Jew during most of his life, he published a major paper on Judaism in 1916. He concluded that the Jewish religion was the only set of values, supported by modern science. He died in 1930 and was commemorated in Israel with the planting of 1,000 trees in Kennedy Forest.
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