I stood near the Keokuk marker looking at it when a young mother, complete with baby balancing on her ample hip, walked up and read the marker. She looked a bit perplexed when she turned to me with a comment. “I did not know there were Jews here,” she said. “Yes, there were,” I responded. The marker was doing its job.
Rabbi Hermann Adler - Chief Rabbi of the U.K. 1891-1911
In all the honors and recognitions for Adolph Sutro, one word was missing, the word Jew. Sutro accomplished what he did because he was the best, the ablest to do what he did. He never campaigned or sought honors or position, using his ethnicity or “race” as a PR cudgel crying antisemitism. Jews were called “Hebrews” until after WWII. They were considered a separate and distinct race in America. The Holocaust brought racial identity and antisemitism to shame and a hoped-for permanent death. Regretfully, that death has risen Phoenix-like anew from the ashes in the last few years.
Mark Twain did not wait for his family to apologize for him. A year after his anti-Semitic article came out, Twain publicly admitted he was wrong. “When I published the above article in Harper’s Monthly, I was ignorant—like the rest of the Christian world – of the fact that the Jew has a record as a soldier. I have since seen the official statistics, and I find that he furnished soldiers and high officers to the Revolution, the War of 1812, and the Mexican War. In the Civil War, he was represented in the armies and navies of both the North and the South by 10 percent of his numerical strength –the same percentage that was furnished by the Christian populations of the two sections. This large fact means more than it seems to mean; for it means that the Jew’s patriotism was not merely level with the Christian’s but overpassed it.”
Debron Walker - Eleanor Roosevelt School with Jerry Klinger - JASHP
You will not turn your back or close your eyes to what is happening to the discriminated in this country. What is happening to them could easily happen to you. They can be, they will be, your partners for good.”
November 30, 2021, the first-ever permanent Memorial to the 850,000 Jews from Arab countries and Iran, who were ethnically cleansed from their homes of millennia with the birth of Israel, was dedicated. The Memorial is located on the Sherover Promenade adjacent to the Hass Promenade in Jerusalem.
January 29. 2021, the San Francisco School Board voted 6-1 to remove and rename over 40 schools. The Board believes it inappropriate to have schools name for people who have been “engaged in the subjugation and enslavement of human beings, oppressed women, committed acts that led to genocide or who otherwise significantly diminished the opportunities of those amongst us to the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Diane Feinstein, John Muir, James Lowell, Paul Revere are on the list of the unsuitable, as is Adolph Sutro. Malcolm X was on the list. Malcolm X was a pimp at one time in his life. After long discussion, the Board felt the totality of his life should be considered, and his name should not be removed.
In the early 1880’s the first Jewish settlers came to Quincy, mostly from Russia, but it was not until ten years later that the ten men required to form a minyan were available. Most of the early Jewish residents were peddlers and junk dealers. Ahavath Achim, the first synagogue in Quincy, was organized in 1890. The first synagogue building was dedicated in 1903, and was located on Water St. Rabbi Julius Sandlovitz served as the Rabbi there for over fifty years, starting his rabbinate at the age of 19.
Alaska is the land of the very long day and the land of the very long, longer, night. During the very long day temperatures can soar to 100 degrees. During the very long nights, temperatures can drop to 50 degrees below zero plus. Alaskan Jews quippingly refer to themselves as the “frozen chosen.” Most denizens of the lower 48, as Alaskans like to refer to us warmer clime preferring types, do not know Alaska has a Jewish story as old as northern recorded history. Did Jews invent the Baked Alaska, Klondike Bars, or Eskimo Pies? Honestly… no.
American Liberators entering Buchenwald Concentration Camp
he Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation (JASHP) proposed an American Liberators’ Memorial for the 75th anniversary of the Liberation of Buchenwald. The Communists, who formerly ran East Germany, bitterly opposed it. Without knowing it, JASHP had stepped on a major political/historical landmine in Germany.
Of the 800 German POW deaths in the U.S., from the lowest rank to Generals, his unusual stone is the only one with the Knights Cross on his tombstone. Research, so far, has found his name, nowhere. Paul Eilert, the Swastika in the U.S. Military Cemetery, is a mystery.
“My father had been a Jewish prisoner in the infamous Nazi Concentration Camp of Buchenwald. April 11, 1945 he was liberated by U.S. Armed forces, the third Army under George Patton. He was barely alive. He weighed barely 89 lbs. When given the option of where to go after liberation, the answer was focused. He arrived in America in 1947 and saw another reality, the reality, American racism and Black American victimhood. From the time I was very little he taught me and anyone who would listen, ‘Silence, when your neighbor is oppressed, will mean silence when you are oppressed.’
August 20, 2019 is Roddie Edmonds 100th birthday. Some people choose to acknowledge the day a person died to remember them. Instead the Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation has chosen to remember the day Roddie Edmonds was born. If he had not been born, more than 200 American Jewish G.I.s would have been murdered. There never would have been life to live on, to live on after them.
"If the American Jew will be but true to his traditional powers for righteousness, if he be faithful to the best traditions of his past, and ready to do his best for this land of his adoption and nativity, he can play a big role in the ethicalization of public life in this country.” ...Rosenwald experienced a universal truth about giving. It overrode his historic, legitimate insecurity being a Jew. He knew anti-Semitism had a way of reappearing anywhere, even in America. “All the other pleasures of life seem to wear out, but the pleasures of helping others in distress never does.” - Julius Rosenwald. It is the best epitaph anyone can have.
Reverse side of marker - Map of Rosenwald school sites in Faugquier County
The Professor told us about Mary Burton’s economics of slavery, breeding. Mary Burton owned a slave they called Bull. He was a stud slave. His job on Mary’s plantations was to impregnate all the young girls. Mary sold Bull’s services to surrounding plantations. “Bull” Burton sired hundreds of children in Marshall County, Mississippi. Mary had increased her wealth, her slave holdings by breeding more and more slaves. She treated her slaves as cattle to be impregnated, to produce a product to be sold or to be kept for more labor. Pregnant slaves were valuable and were looked after. I
The Great Drum was rhythmically beaten by ten Native American Salish Singers seated about it. Their Song drifted out over the Palouse Prairie as it had once for untold years. Hundreds gathered on the high ridge above Eastern Washington University, in Cheney, Washington below the white colored water town with the school’s logo, a huge black and red eagle painted on the side. The logo had been changed in the 70’s because empowered Native American students threatened a complete boycott unless the school’s logo was changed. It had been the Eastern Washington Savages.
The marker is a silent sentinel of a past that gave hope and reality to a better future to thousands of Black American children in Fauquier. Located in Warrenton’s Eva Walker Memorial Park, the marker tells of the belief in a better future for decades to come.
The Long Road to Brown v. Board of Education began in a Jewish funded public school in Rockville, Md. ----The small four-room building is gone today. A modern five-story apartment condo sits on the forgotten historic school site that led to the landmark, 1954, U.S. Supreme Court decision, Brown v. Board of Education. The Brown decision upended, long settled law, long-established precedent, upended Stare Decisis, it ended the 1896 U.S Supreme Court decision of Plessy v. Ferguson which had affirmed the constitutionality of segregation in public facilities, such as schools, buses, etc., with a caveat. The separate had to be equal. Separate but equal was always separate but never equal.
A little remembered, 1919 petition of two hundred and ninety-nine leading American Jews was presented to President Wilson at the Paris Peace conference urging the rejection of Zionism. The petition was headed by Julius Kahn of California, the first American Jewish Congressman. It was co-signed by Jewish Ambassadors, Jewish State Supreme Court Justices, Rabbis, Jewish social and community leaders, Jewish financial leaders, Jewish philanthropists and Jewish news media moguls such as Adolph Ochs, publisher of the New York Times.
It is a warm feeling movie with choking wet eyes for an ending. There is a universality about Miracle on 34th Street that happily is for those who will suspend disbelief with belief. We dispel our cynicism with the possibility of love.
Glendale, Oregon - Jewish New Odessa marker project
The Yekis had nothing to fear. The New Odessa Jews had no intention of settling in New York. They wanted to be farmers. New York Jewry’s, Hebrew Emigrant Aid Society arranged for them to be sent as far West as possible. The agriculturally inexperienced, undercapitalized and naïve Jewish refugees were connected to Solomon Abraham in Oregon. He needed people to settle and develop the lands along the railroad. He settled the New Odessans near Glendale.
“…I decided to dedicate my life to the ideals of progress and freedom. I never deviated from this decision during the course of my long life, a life rich in stormy events.” Five times August Bondi risked his life for freedom and liberty. Four times he risked his life specifically to end slavery and free the Black Man.
An economic visionary, Harriman sent his agent, Count Felix Schaffgotsch, an Austrian-Bohemian nobleman, to scout out possible winter resort locations in 1935. With Schaffgotsch’s recommendation, Hammerman recognized the Ketchum/Hailey valley could become a winter wonderland of skiing for the who’s who of American Society. An ardent Nazi and supporter of Adolph Hitler, Schaffgotsch returned to Austria. He became an officer in the Waffen SS Florian Geyer division, known for perpetrating the Holocaust. Schaffgotsch was killed outside of Moscow, August 11, 1942. The “swells”, especially Hollywood “swells”, did come to Sun Valley. Some stayed. Ernest Hemingway is buried in Ketchum. He ended his days there with a shotgun. A Jewish Nobel Prize winner in physics, Melvin Schwartz, is buried in Ketchum. Harriman opened the Sun Valley Resort in 1936. The name “Sun Valley” was coined by Harriman’s Union Pacific Publicist. The world’s first ski lift was invented by Union Pacific’s James Curran for the Resort.
A first generation Hindu American had contacted me, a first generation Jewish American. Mahendra wanted to tell the story of another first generation Jewish American who created and became the first international Cowboy Super Hero of the Silver Screen. Aronson was born and grew up in the Deep South where Jews were not supposed to be. And…he couldn’t ride a horse or shoot a gun! Oye! Until Mahendra had written to me, I had never heard of Bronco Billy Anderson.
Jews, the 8th Air Force, Machal, and the Slany Holocaust Torah---“Twelve of (our) Group's (13) aircraft were shot down… leaving the Royal Flush all by herself… Flak had knocked out one of the left engines as well as one on the right wing making it impossible to keep up with any formation.
"Charlie Winters was a non-Jewish supporter of Israel who had broken the U.S. Neutrality laws. Charlie smuggled to Israel three desperately needed B-17 WWII bombers designated as war surplus. Winters was tried and convicted by the U.S. Government. Charlie served 18 months in Federal Prison. He was the only person to be imprisoned for helping Israel by the American government. Ironically Charlie was not even Jewish. Charlie died in 1984. At Charlie’s memorial service in Florida, before his cremated remains were transferred to Jerusalem for burial, the Consul General of Israel spoke. Two very large blue and white flower arrangements from the Government of Israel filled the front of the chapel. At Giddy’s memorial service, there were no blue and white flower arrangements from Israel. The Consul General of Israel was not present. The only flag of Israel present in the chapel was the small lapel pin I had on my jacket of the crossed flags of Israel and the United States. Times have changed."
237 years ago, on the Dutch Caribbean Island of St. Eustatius, an oft-repeated Jewish tragedy occurred. February 3, 1781 the Jews were expelled by the British. British calumny, mired in virulent anti-Semitism, culminated years later with the birth of Modern Israel.
Anne sat at her desk in the Mamilla Mall looking for a home. A naked electric bulb hung over her head. She was supposed to go to a Jerusalem Holocaust museum until internal politics and money became an issue. She became homeless instead.
They came from 59 countries. There were fewer than 5,000 of them out of 2,000,000 Jews who had served in World War II Allied Armies. Yitzhak Rabin poignantly said years later about them, “You came when we needed you most, during those dark and uncertain days in our War of Independence. You gave us not only your experience, but your lives as well. The People of Israel and the State of Israel will never forget." For the most part, Israel did forget them.
Russian style antisemitism was non-existent. The brothers and sisters realized the American world was more freeing than any utopian communal constraints New Odessa could provide...The New Odessa brethren came to America to establish a utopian ideal of freedom. They found that the American pull of individual freedom was even greater. Members of the New Odessa experiment moved into the mainstream of American life. Three became doctors, two lawyers, two druggists, one a teacher, another an engineer and a few became individual farmers in Oregon... The Russian Jewish Am Olam immigrants found their Utopias. Their Utopias were not communal but as free individuals in the unique experiment, America.
November 7, 2017, the evening was rainy and cold. Over 3,000 Christians organized and celebrated the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration at the Royal Albert in the world’s largest show of respect and honor for the Balfour Declaration. They were joined by a thin number of Jews, many not comfortable in the company of Israeli flag waving, faith driven, Israel supporting, Evangelical Christians.
Mt. Rushmore, South Dakota, where the visages of four presidents, Washington, Jefferson, T. Roosevelt, and Lincoln are massively carved into the mountain, means different things to different people. For some, it is awe at the enormity of the vision begun by the “Father of Mt. Rushmore”, Doane Robinson. For others, it is the recognition of the skill, the drive, the single minded belief in the project of, at times controversial, sculptor Gutzon Borglum. But for most Americans, it is a visible, tangible link of our great country that we all can reach out and touch together.
Pat Boone and Jerry Klinger viewing artistic print of the S.S. Exodus
"Pat Boone, world famous singer, movie actor and writer has been a lifelong friend of Israel. His active continuing career has spanned over 62 years, selling more than 46 million albums, 38 Platinum top forty singles, starring in 12 movies and a hit T.V. show. Yet, he will modestly tell you, he thinks “his song” Exodus was the high point of his career.... The Exodus was an American Holocaust rescue ship. She was American funded. She was crewed by American World War II veterans with Haganah leadership. Her mission was to rescue 4,515 desperate survivors of the Holocaust, unwanted by the world for surviving, trapped in European Displaced Persons Camps. In some cases, the DP camps were adjacent to the Concentration Camps where the Nazis had tried to murder the survivors just two years before."
2007, U.S. Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell, himself a Northern Cheyenne, described the Termination policy. “If you can’t change them, absorb them until they simply disappear into the mainstream culture. ...In Washington’s infinite wisdom, it was decided that tribes should no longer be tribes, never mind that they had been tribes for thousands of years.”
"Hang the Jew", an agitated member of the vigilantes bellowed. His quarry, Sol Nitzberg, Sonoma County, poultry farmer, labor organizer, Communist and Jew, along with four comrades awaited judgement in the yard of a West Santa Rosa feed mill. The article, courtesy of the author, first appeared in the Sonoma Historian - 2006
For Jews, incredulously to those few fortunate Jews who were in the dangerous, unknown remote across the Hudson River of Oklahoma, America was offering them the opportunity for free land. A few Jews could be identified in the massive run. America was offering them land not on the basis of religion, but on their willingness to reach for the Golden Ring.
Herman Stern was a small town North Dakota clothier centered out of Valley City. He was isolated, remote from any major Jewish community. He and his wife lived their lives modestly and with community respected dignity on the Dakota Plains. Stern became a major, American Holocaust rescuer.
"History has not given enough credit or attention to Blackstone or his contribution to Zionism, which is why we are here today to commemorate his legacy and to pay tribute to his immeasurable contributions to the Jewish people and the creation of the modern state of Israel. It is why, for me, as the official representative of the state of Israel, (it is important) to stand here and pay that tribute. It is a great honor and a tikkun – a correction of the lack of attention and credit that he so much deserved and his legacy deserved.” Consul General Sam Grundwerg of Israel
Rev. William Blackstone - Wreath - State of Israel
Moses Alexander was the 11th governor of Idaho. He was a Jew. Some sources say he was the first Jewish governor, others, the second… or was he the third?.....A Jewish community does not need a building to pray in. Ten Jews can assemble anywhere, even under a tree, to be a quorum to hold religious services. Rather, Jews built synagogues because they could in America. A Jewish house of worship was a visible, permanent statement – Jews are part of the community, they are part of America.
Congregation Ahavath Beth Israel
Burial Site of Gov. Alexander
Click to enlarge - Jersey Homesteads - 1930's
A Jewish home in the East: Part 1
After the failure of the Jewish agricultural home in the West, spearheaded by Benjamin Brown in Clarion, Utah, Brown tried again in the East.
Jersey Homesteads -Roosevelt, N.J. The First 50 Years - part 1
Chula Vista was developed in 1887 by the Santa Fe Railroad as an agricultural tract for five-acre lemon ranches and elegant orchards. As options for Jews grew, they became part of the American fabric. Jewish life in a small town.
To supplement these, much has been done to record the geneology of Jamaican Jewish families and to find, clean and catalogue most of the 13 remaining Jewish Cemeteries. The Second Beth Chaim of Spanish Town is one such project.
He was, like Schindler, a Volksdeutsche who used slave labor in order to protect his son from being sent to the Russian front... It was a white leather book inscribed on the cover with gold lettering, stating that the inmates of Kara-Hortensja dedicate the book to Christman for saving the lives of about 700 Jews... What better evidence could he have than the grateful acknowledgment of his slave laborers?
A few moments before Leo Frank was lynched from a tree on Frey’s Gin Rd, in Marietta, Georgia, he asked that his wedding ring be given to his wife Lucille. The lynchers were respectable men. Some of them were the finest men of Georgia, Judges, businessmen, officers of the law, even a former Governor. The simple gold ring was slipped from Leo’s hand. As promised, it was eventually given to his widow. Leo was hung. Pictures were taken. Thousands of copies of the famous photograph of Leo Frank hanging from a tree were sold as souvenir post cards for many years in Georgia. The lynchers, the onlookers, were satisfied that justice, delayed, was justice finally done. None were tried for the murder they had done.
War had been declared between the Pissarro family and the St. Thomas Mahamade. A direct challenge to the authority of the Mahamade and the laws and regulations that permitted the Jews to live on St. Thomas was at issue not to mention the violation and definition of traditional Jewish marriage practices.
It has been two hundred years since Levy wanted, tried and failed to create a safe haven for European Jews in America. He wanted them to come, to escape deadly European anti-Semitism. Ironically, today, two centuries later, once again calls are going out to European Jewry, from the United States and Israel. Each of those lands is calling on Jews to escape deadly, resurgent European antisemitism.
Of the many islands in the Caribbean, St. Eustatius is one of the smallest. It may be small but the island played an enormous role in the success of the American Revolution. The Jews of St. Eustatius were central to that success but not for the reasons you would have expected.
In Argentina, Isaac brought Sophia to his business at the Hotel Palestina and the Café Parisienne in Buenos Aires. She, and other new “brides”, were displayed naked before groups of Jewish businessmen who examined what they were about to buy, carefully. Isaac, like the other Jewish businessmen, only dealt in Jewish women. Sophia was sold. Sophia was sold.
Robert Avrech, the Emmy Award winning screen writer, wrote about Joan Winters’ in his blog; that is where I first learned about her. Avrech wrote, (her life) “reads like the plot of a movie. A young, beautiful, restless American showgirl travels to the exotic east where she finds intrigue, romance—and a violent death.” Joan was murdered late in October 1933. Her body was found near the Garden of Gethsemane in an olive grove. It was a frightening time in Jerusalem and all of Palestine. Arab rioting against the Jews and the British had, violently, bloodily, and terrifyingly, flared up again. Winters was almost 24.
The American frontier, argues Jacob Marcus Rader, founder of the field of American Jewish history, created a new Jew. The Jew was different here”, he writes. He had left the ghetto to become a pioneer on the American frontier….If to be a frontiersman is to be a man who dares to hazard, then the Jews as a whole are America’s urban frontiersman par excellence….Here he could be an individual.
The Pew Survey reported that 22%, more than one in five, of American Jews admit they have no religious identity. Only 46% of American Jews felt that being Jewish or identifying as Jewish was important to them.
Just as Benjamin Kreiger, the left gun rammer, slammed the breech of the left gun, the smoldering cotton cover of the powder being prepared on the right gun glowed very brightly. It flamed and exploded in a massive rain of fire, searing heat, a horrific concussion of blasting air confined inside the turret. Men had been diving for cover as best as they could when they heard the scream and saw the powder bag burning. They understood what was going to happen. They knew they were sealed inside a steel shell of death.
Samuel Sussman Snow was a Jewish Wagon Train Master, Doctor, Indian Trader, California Pioneer, Gold miner and Rancher. He married a Catholic woman. They raised their children as Jews. Patrilineal Judaism and the Frontier experience.
U.S. Senator, Secretary of War, Secretary of State - Confederate States of America, Slaveholder. Some historians have called him "the brains of the Confederacy," even as others tried to blame him for the South’s defeat.
He sacrificed his career supporting the idea of a Jewish army during WWI. The British anti-Semitic military heirarchy fought him bitterly. In the United States he was the Christian voice of Jabotinsky screaming to all who refused to hear about the coming Holocaust. He died forgotten by all but his Revisionist-Zionist friends. He had hoped to be buried with his men in Israel, unfulfilled. His cremains wait in Los Angeles. Patterson is the Godfather of Yoni Netanyahu - the brother of the Prime Minister of Israel.
Jews for guns...crazy...maybe not. American Jews are, by significant majorities, liberal and pro-gun control. Some Jews support gun confiscation. The discord within the Jewish world over guns exhibits an almost schizophrenic split between the religious, balanced attitudes of the Observant and the secular motivations of the non-religious. People have a right to defend themselves, even kill, the Orthodox argue from Jewish religious law.
David Levy Yulee was one of nineteenth-century Florida’s most enigmatic and distinguished leaders. Since his death in 1886, Floridians have chosen to remember different aspects of his remarkable life. Some communities have concentrated on his political career, especially his relationship with the Confederacy. Known notoriously by some as the “Florida fire-eater,” he also led the state in secession from the Union and maintained contact with leading Confederate officials throughout the Civil War...Upon Florida’s admission into the Union on 3 March, 1845, Levy was promptly elected to the US Senate as one of the new state’s first senators.
“Sheila, why don’t we go out for a ride today? You don’t need to watch this ‘drek, this crap’. I found an incredible place to visit, Opa Locka. “Opa what?” she responded, still half distracted from the shock and daze that none of the five guys were the father.Opa-tisha-worka-locka”, it’s an area near Miami named by the Native Americans who lived here a long time ago. Long before when Miami was nothing but a mosquito infested swamp. It means ‘a big island covered with many trees and swamps’. No one can say that. The locals shortened it to Opa-locka. Its a city built in the 1920’s to look like something from the Arab world” I finished saying.
Ken was not just a visitor or a tourist. He had a mission. His mission was on behalf of the American people. His mission was to acknowledge, to document and honor, the sacrifice and patriotism of the American Jew for their country.
"Periodically, the story of Solomon Bibo is sent out via the internet. Each time, it astonishes the Jewish world. Bibo was a Jewish man from Poland. He was a Chief of the Acoma Indians of New Mexico in the 1880's."
The report’s title oozed with blood - "Report to the Secretary on the Acquiescence of This Government in the Murder of the Jews.” January 16, 1944, an outraged Morgenthau, accompanied by John Pehle, presented the damning report to President Roosevelt.
Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim (KKBE) in Charleston, South Carolina, is the oldest synagogue in continuous use in the United States. Its story is one of faith, perseverance, and tolerance in the American tradition of religious freedom.
With the passing of the Shoah generation, American Holocaust Memorializations in synagogues, cemeteries and communities are passing into the fog of historical forgetfulness. The major memorials have been documented and photographed though not catalogued. Local and small community Holocaust memorials have not been photographically documented, catalogued or archived.
Enlarging my picture, I saw a person appear. Imagination and wishful thinking is a powerful delusory director. But, I had no such imaginings. I was just taking a picture. There was something else in the Memorial. The person was an old man, a characterized sharp nosed man with a scraggly beard wearing a Tallis and holding a Torah.
In 1992, a Torah was requested by Beit Tshuvah. Torah #773 traveled to LA were it was lovingly placed into the Holy Ark of Beit Tshuvah’s community. It once again radiated light, love and life back to people who had, like the Torah, encountered an evil that sought their death. Together, the Beit Tshuvah Torah on permanent long term loan to the community lives, as it together with the people, return to the living.
How can the nation (America) which holds the lead in human experimentation in any conceivable form, how can that nation dare to accuse and punish other nations which only copied their experimental procedures? And even euthanasia! …the nation which in the face of the history of humanity will forever have to bear the guilt for Hiroshima and Nagasaki…
Miners prospecting for gold in the Black Hills needed supplies delivered to their camps and it was the practice at that time to have peddlars travel out into the countryside to fill those needs. Jewish peddlars would originate from businesses in Rapid City and Deadwood carrying 100 plus-pound backpacks loaded with overalls, socks, boots, harnesses and other necessities, carrying their stores on their backs as they traveled, visiting camps along the way to sell
As a last desperate act to focus an uncaring world’s attention on the increasingly known extermination of European Jewry, Zygielbojm dramatically took his own life. The world in 1943 cared for a few days and moved on.....In 1959, a surviving son of Schmuel Zygielbojm found the cremains of his father in a shed in a Jewish cemetery in Golder’s Green, in London. He had been denied a Jewish burial. Jews, even Jews who are atheists, openly hostile to Jewish religious values are entitled to a Jewish burial in the consecrated ground of a Jewish cemetery. Zygielbojm was not because he had been cremated. The fact that he had died and was cremated in a protest to try and save Jewish lives did not matter. He had violated basic premises of Jewish faith and could not be buried properly in the cemetery. Zygielbojm’s son, with the assistance of the American Bundist and Jewish Labor Movement, brought his ashes to America. They all felt he would be given proper and better respect in New York than he would have in Israel. Zygielbojm, in life and in death, was not a Zionist.
It was the evening of Feb. 2, 1943, and the U.S.A.T. Dorchester was crowded to capacity, carrying 902 service men, merchant seamen and civilian workers when the torpedoes struck. As the ship was sinking in the frigid waters of the North Atlantic, there were not enough life jackets to go around. Four chaplains, two Protestant, one Catholic and one Jewish took their own life jackets off and gave them to the men. The chaplains were last seen standing arm in arm, in prayer, as Americans before God
Like many young Americans raised in the ethos of the American West, the Battle of the Little Big Horn was a story that excited the blood. It stirred the imagination. What stirred more than the imagination was when I read on the internet about Sergeant George Geiger from Cincinnati, Ohio. He fought at the Battle of the Little Big Horn. He received the Congressional Medal of Honor. Web site after web site told the same fascinating tale. George Geiger was Jewish. My mind raced with excitement at the thought; a Jew had fought at the Battle of the Little Big Horn.
“Mr. Brandeis is perfectly infatuated with the work that you have done along the lines of Zionism. It would have done your heart good to haveheard him assert what a valuable contribution to the cause your document is. In fact he agrees with me that you are the Father of Zionism, as your work antedates Herzl”
Glenn King had died three weeks earlier in a horrific air crash. His C-46 lumbered down the runway of Mexico City , one engine began spitting and smoking as the plane strained to get off the ground. The ship clawed at the thin air, overloaded with a cargo of weapons bound for Israel before American FBI agents could stop them.
The Aliyah Bet veterans are almost all gone now, passing under the grey waves of lapping history and forgetfulness. Peter Bergson & Ben Hecht's struggle to save Jewish lives is still deliberately obscured, to protect the ethos, the myths of Jewish/Zionist leadership.
"It [the Holocaust] is something like a religion.... The Intellectual Adventure is that we are reversing this entire trend within the space of one generation -- that in a few years time no one will believe this particular legend anymore. They will say, as I do, that atrocities were committed. Yes, hundreds of thousands of people were killed, but there were no factories of death. All that is a blood libel against the German people." David Irving, Speech in Portland, Ore., September 18, 1996
Frodo: "I wish none of this had happened." Gandalf: "So do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." Lord of the Rings
For Jews, Touro was a contradiction in purpose and motivation. Modern Jewish historians such as Bertram Korn saw him as a Scrooge needing to be shown the path to redemption before his passing. Other Jewish historians such as Leon Huhner saw him as an American patriot, a faithful and generous Jew. Most historians pay little attention to him except for his famous and extraordinary will. His benefactions were forgotten once the money was gone.
The gunfight broke out in a flash. Everyone was sure that Levy would be lying on the floor, bleeding from a gaping hole in his gut. It was Harrison who was dead instead. No one had heard of Jim Levy the gunfighter or of his reputation before. Harrison had never bad mouthed Levy for being a Jew. He bad mouthed Levy for being an Irishman.
Mordecai Noah, the first American Zionist. "My religion an object of hostility? I thought I was a citizen of the United States, protected by the constitution in my religious as well as in my civil rights. My religion was known to the government at the time of my appointment, and it constituted one of the prominent causes why I was sent to Barbary; if then any 'unfavorable' events had been created by my religion, they should have been first ascertained, and not acting upon a supposition, upon imaginary consequences, have thus violated one of the most sacred and delicate rights of a citizen".
The true story of the Exodus is largely unknown, mostly forgotten today. It is not the story of Uris, Preminger and Gold. It is a story of drama, fierce courage, determination, tragedy and resolution in the face of cold hearted anti-Jewish brutality. The Exodus – the Ship that Launched a Nation, Ruth Gruber the famous newswoman, named her in dispatch and in her book by the same name. She was the ship that launched a nation, but what became of her? Where was the Exodus?
"The small Jewish community in Salt Lake City formed the Hebrew Benevolent Society in 1864. The Society looked after Jews who were poor or had fallen on hard times. High Holiday services were held in the homes of local Jewish merchants between 1864 and 1866. Later, the Mormons generously donated use of the Seventies Hall, an LDS communal building accommodating the growing Jewish community’s need for more space for High Holiday services. They wanted to encourage the Jews to worship God. Brigham Young, respecting and supporting the Jewish community’s needs, donated land to the Jews, 1869, for a communal Jewish cemetery."
He sleeps silently in the Mt. Nebo Jewish cemetery in West Miami, Florida awaiting the coming of the Messiah. To the end, he declared himself a Jew, though not a religious one. Meyer shares his gravesite with his oldest son Buddy under the flight path of El Al jets arriving from Israel into nearby Miami International airport. A large pink colored memorial stone carved with the single un-telling name, Lanksy, and an eternal light to one side is at his head. His footstone reads modestly, "Meyer Lansky 1902 -1983", a Star of David serves as the dash between the dates. "Forever in our Hearts" is carved on the bottom row.
"It was an overcast afternoon. I stood quietly looking… a long time… at the graves of the long forgotten children. I said Kaddish. Non-Jewish hands had generously, kindly, gently marked where they lay with multicolored stones from the mine. For the most part, it is the Jews who no longer remember them."
"Light was just breaking in the eastern sky as the plane, patriotically named the Columbia, lifted off the runway straight into the rising sun. It was 6:05 am at Roosevelt Field, Long Island, Saturday, June 4, 1927. Aboard was the pilot, Clarence Chamberlin and a last minute recklessly courageous passenger."
The Balfour Declaration is one of the most momentous documents of the 20th century. The Zionist organization of America asked American Senators and Congressmen to respond, what were their feelings about the Balfour Declaration. During 1918, 61 Senators, 239 Congressmen and Representatives from three U.S. Territories wrote back reflecting on American popular feelings toward the Balfour Declaration, Jews and Zionism.
" To minds like these Zionism came with the force of an evangel. To be a Jew and to be proud of it; to glory in the power and pertinacity of the race, its traditions, its triumphs, its sufferings its resistance to persecution; to look the world frankly in the face and to enjoy the luxury of moral and intellectual honesty; to feel pride in belonging to the people that gave Christendom its divinities, that taught half the world monotheism, whose ideas have permeated civilization as never the ideas of a race before it, whose genius fashioned the whole mechanism of modern commerce, and whose artists, actors, singers and writers have filled a larger place in the cultured universe than those of any other people”.
"Stanley Stein was not his real name; it was a name he chose for himself in the few seconds he was given, rather than being known simply as patient #746. He could not use his real name anymore. He did not want the stigmatization, the fears of societal revulsion and isolation to extend to his beloved family that he had been snatched away from suddenly, traumatically. Stanley Stein was a leper. Taken away under American quarantine laws, to a benign American concentration camp in Carville, Louisiana with other diseased human beings like himself; Stanley was 31."
In the first few moments of the battle the Color bearers of the 1st New York were cut down. from the withering fire from the Confederate line, heavy and deadly accurate. The 1st New York staggered as the whizzing lead slammed into men with dull thuds. The Union line wavered in the smoke and lost its cohesiveness. The Colors had to be saved. As men about him fell bleeding, cut to pieces, wounded into frightening crimson screams of pain, Private Levy jumped forward and grabbed the fallen colors, raising them anew. Waving them bravely, he heartened the men of the 1st New York. The line stabilized and rallied about the battle flag. The regiment was saved from probable total destruction by the skinny Jewish drummer boy.
"On emerging from the woods with the two colors, he met General Phil Kearney, who was in command of his division at that time. The general inquired what regiment he belonged to, and on being informed, directly him to the point where the remnant of the regiment was stationed. For his gallantry in rescuing the two colors he was then and there promoted by General Kearney to be color-sergeant."
Jews were part of the voyages of discovery even with Columbus's maiden voyage. Sometimes Jews came as crew members willingly as conversos, hidden Jews who chose to convert superficially to Christianity because they feared the horrors of the Catholic Church's Inquisition. Sometimes Jews were kidnapped, forcibly baptized and became members of exploring crews, such as Gaspar da Gama a Sephardic Jew who sailed with Portuguese admiral Pedro Alvares Cabral to present day Brazil in 1500.
"Petition to the Governor General Peter Stuyvesant and Council of New Amsterdam - 1655. We, Jacob Barsimson and Asser Levy, members of the Jewish community wish to be included not exempted or excluded from Military Service in the common defense of New Amsterdam."
"They (the Jews of St. Eustatius, Caribbean Antilles) cannot too soon be taken care of - they are notorious in the cause of America and France." Admiral Sir George Rodney commander of the British Fleet, February, 1781."
"For happily the Government of the United States, which gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance, requires only that they who live under its protection, should demean themselves as good citizens."
""Today was a day of the most heartfelt sadness, of the bitterest pain for the local Israelite congregation. Six fathers of families with wives and children, altogether 44 individuals of the Mosaic faith, left home to find a new fatherland in far off America. Not an eye remained without tears, not a soul unmoved, as the bitter hour of parting struck.... They said that they were emigrating mainly because of their children"
"I lived among trappers and Indians, but always as a Jew. Did I need grander temples to worship in? In the murmurs of the pines I hear the psalms of David: the fragrance of the incense is as of old, the winds speak to me in 'His Voice."
They have come to this country with the pious purpose of making it their home; of identifying themselves and their children with its future; of worshipping under its protection, according to their consciences; of becoming its citizens; of loving it; of giving to it their energies, their intelligence, their persistent industry.
"The orthodox Jewish influences, still at work upon (the Jewish boy) are rapidly weakened. He grows to look upon the ceremonial life at home as rather ridiculous. His old parents, who speak no English, he regards as 'greenhorns'…. The growing sense of superiority on the part of the boy to the Hebraic part of his environs extends itself soon to the home… he runs away from the supper table to join his gang on the Bowery, where he is quick to pick up the very latest slang, where his talent for caricature is developed often at the expense of his parents, his race, and all 'foreigner.' For he is an American, he is 'the people.'"
The single most extraordinary period in American Jewish history, perhaps in Jewish world history was between the years 1945 – 1967. Jews for the first time in two thousand years of struggle to exist were presented with two accomplished facts. One, with the near total destruction of European Jewry came a miraculous Jewish rebirth with the modern State of Israel. Second, with the end of WWII, came the reality and hoped for dream of freedom and acceptance of Jewish existence in a non-Jewish land.
"Reform rabbis don't care what the Torah or Jewish law says about anything; it doesn't apply to them. At an interdenominational dialogue in which I participated some years ago, shortly after the Reform movement had endorsed Cesar Chavez's boycott of grapes picked by underpaid Chicano laborers, a Conservative rabbi infuriated his Reform Counterpart by observing: ' A reform rabbi who publicly eats pork on Yom Kippur will not get into trouble with the Central Conference of American Rabbis (the Reform rabbinical association) unless he has grapes for desert."
"The Diaspora will continue to exist, but only for two or three more generations, not longer. After that, Jewish ignorance will greatly increase in the gentile world, assimilation will increase, and no trace will remain of our spiritual heritage. Slowly, the material connection between the Jews in the golah (Diaspora) and those in Israel will cease, and when the State of Israel will no longer require its help and reconstruction aid, an end will come to the golah."
According to some, Cresson's spirit was blessed, but according to others he was cursed with a restless religious soul that continually sought to encounter God directly. It was his desire to experience the Kingdom of Heaven as a living, present reality. His deep unfulfilled religious yearning brought him into conflict with his Quaker community and roots, eventually it was to cause his separation.
"The CJLS (Committee for Jewish Law and Standards - of the American Conservative Movement) has two postions on whether women may participate in Nesiat Kapayim. The Va'ad Halakha of the Masorti movement has approved one position."
"Morris Bernstein was born in London, Feb. 11, 1856. He was murdered at the South Fork of the Tularosa River, near the Mescalero Apache Indian Reservation Agency at Blazer's Mill, New Mexico, August 5, 1878."
"Baltimore, Maryland is one of the largest and most cohesive Jewish communities in the U.S. The Jews are so cohesive that most live within an area of northern Baltimore – actually Baltimore County, called Pikesville. They have their own eruv and can be seen walking or riding up and down Reisterstown Road, to and from their various shteibels, synagogues or temples, on Shabbat or Yom Tov. "
"A few days before Wild Bill was laid down to the shrieks and wails of a alcoholic, part time prostitute, female gun totter and deeply loving admirer, Calamity Jane, a real western lawman and his sidekick rode into town. His name was Seth Bullock and his unlikely partner was Solomon (Sol) Star. An unlikely a pair as ever could be seen. They came from Helena, Montana, another rough gold mining town, where Seth had been a marshal. Bullock was a tall, Christian man with a cold look in his gray eyes above his handle bar mustache. Star much shorter, sturdily built, a firm look in his face of reliability and toughness – was a Jew."
"Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That all the rights, privileges, and immunities heretofore granted by law to the Christian churches in the city of Washington, be, and the same are hereby, extended to the Hebrew congregation of said city, and that the third section of the act approved the seventeenth of June, eighteen hundred and forty-four, entitled "An act concerning conveyances or devises of places of public worship in the District of Columbia," shall be so construed as to allow the members of the Hebrew congregation from time to time, by a vote of two-thirds, to elect their own trustees, and the same, by a like vote, to displace at pleasure; which said trustees shall, during their continuance in office, have the same title in power over any lot or tract of land as if held by them under the act aforesaid for a Christian church, or as if they were appointed under said act trustees of any Christian church: "
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