Centre for Nautical and Regional Archaeology in Kibbutz Nachsholim.
Dor, a large mound located on the Mediterranean coast, about 15 km north of Caesarea, has one of the few good natural ports along Israel’s coast.
It is identified with D-jr of Egyptian sources, Biblical Dor (Jos 11:1, Jos 11:2; Jos 12:23, Jdg 1:27, Kg1 4:11) and with Dor/Dora of Greek and Roman sources.
The principal role of Dor was that of a commercial warehouse and a gateway between East and West.
Dor was successively ruled by Cannanites, "sea Peoples", Israelites, Phoenicians, Assyrians, Persians, Greeks, Romans.
Josephus Flavius describes Dor as an unsatisfactory port where goods had to be transported by lighters from ships at sea ( Antiquities 14:333), and Pliny the Elder describes it as a mere memory.
At the time of Agrippa (37-44 CE) it had a Jewish synagogue and a sizeable pagan population.
From the C1 to the C6 CE Dor had a Purple Dye factory, the best preserved purple dye factory in the eastern Mediterranean.
Dor was also the site of a Byzantine Bishopric and later the Templars had a small Crusader fort, named after the fief-holders de Merle.
Saladin captured Dor in 1187.
Napoleon dumped his canon in the sea here, during his retreat from Acre in May 1799.
In 1863-4 H.B.Tristram writes: "..a low mound projects into the sea… This is Tantura (so named from the supposed resemblance of its tower to a tantur, i.e., "a horn"), the ancient Dor a city allied with Jabin, king of Hazor, and allotted by Joshua to Manasseh, who here came down to the coast.
Baron Edmond de Rothschild founded Ahot Zikron Ya’akob.
Meir Dizengoff, later the first mayor of Tel Aviv, studied during the late l880s chemical engineering in France, specializing in glass production and was sent to Eretz Yisrael in l892 by Baron Edmond de Rothschild to establish a glass factory HaMizgaga at Tantura to supply bottles for the wines produced in the settlements.
The local sea sand proved unsuitable for manufacturing transparent bottles.
The special sand imported from Belgium and France, like other raw materials, was heavily taxed.
Furthermore, craftsmen arriving from France contracted Malaria.
The factory, however, was closed in l894 three years after its establishment.
HENRIETTA SZOLD wrote: Glass was once made at Tantura, Baron de Rothschild’s factory near Athlit; that, too, with the sand of the dunes at hand, remains a fair hope in spite of the failure of the first attempt.