Tuesday, April 25, 2017

This Day, April 26, In Jewish History by Mitchell A. Levin


April 26

121: Birthdate of Marcus Aurelius the Roman Emperor who described the Jews as being “stinking and tumultuous.”

1478: The Pazzi attack Lorenzo de' Medici and killed his brother Giuliano during High Mass in the Duomo of Florence. The Pazzi were rivals of the Medici family. Lorenzo’s death was a setback for the Jewish community of Florence.  The Pazzi’s big claim to fame was their participation in the First Crusade. On the other hand Lorenzo de’ Medici had defended the Jewish community from expulsions and from the aftermath of the anti-Semitic sermons given by Bernardino da Feltre in which he whipped up the masses into a violent frenzy by demonizing the Jews as the Christ Killers.

1624: Birthdate of Johannes Leusden, the native of Utrecht and a Professor Hebrew who authored numerous text on the Hebrew language and  “in 1660, together with the Amsterdam rabbi and book printer Joseph Athias, published his Biblia Hebraica, the first edition of the Hebrew Bible with numbered verses.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johann_Leusden#/media/File:LEUSDEN_JOHANN_1688_Sefer_Tehilim_Liber_Psalmorum_p5_A2_JEHOVA.png

1654: The Jews were expelled from Brazil.  The city of Recife had been taken from the Dutch by the Portuguese.  As a Dutch city, Recife had been hospitable to the Jews. But Portugal meant the Inquisition, forced conversion or exile.  It was the Jews fleeing from Recife who ended up in New Amsterdam later in 1654 and thus began what would become the American Jewish Community. Professor Arnold Witzner, author of “Jews In Colonial Brazil” the Jews could have remained in Brazil if they had converted.  They chose not to which meant that “all openly professing Jews left Brazil” prior to this date. “A total of 16 ships transported the Jewish and Dutch colonists from Recife. Some claim as many as 5,000 Jews left Recife at this time. Most of these Jews returned to Holland; some relocated to colonies in the Caribbean. Twenty-three of the Jews aboard one of these ships eventually arrived in New Amsterdam (New Netherland/New York) on September 7, 1654. There are at least two versions of the story of how these Jews came to settle in New Amsterdam. One version is that the original ship was captured by pirates at one point. The Jews were subsequently taken aboard the French ship the St. Charles, and this ship brought them to New Amsterdam. According to Wiznitzer, there was no capture by pirates. Instead, the Jews were driven by adverse winds to Spanish-held Jamaica. From there they boarded the small French frigate, Sainte Catherine, which took them to New Amsterdam.”

1655:  The directors of the Dutch West India Co. refused to grant permission to Governor Peter Stuyvesant to exclude Jews from New Amsterdam. This put an end to official efforts to bar Jews from North America. The Dutch West India Co. also specified that no restriction of trade be imposed upon the Jewish settlers. Thus it guaranteed not only the physical inviolability of the Jews but also their orderly economic development and progress. The only condition contained in the directive provided that "the poor among them shall be supported by their own nation." This gave further impetus to the growth of Jewish philanthropy in the New World.

1706: In Barbados, Abraham Burrows wrote his will today.

1721: A massive earthquake devastates Tabriz. There are records of a Jewish community in Tabriz dating back to the 12th century. The community must have been large and culturally diverse since it included bath Rabbanites and Karaites. In 1830, the Jews of Tabriz were massacred during a rise of Islamic fervor that also included the forced conversions of the Jews in Shiraz and Mashhad.

1737: Without any warning, the King of Prussia ordered that the decree limiting the number of Jewish families allowed to live in Berlin be enforced. According to a document entitled “General privilege and regulations to be observed concerning the Jews in his Majesty's dominions,” issued in 1730, the King had granted the Jews the right to settle 120 families in the capital city. By 1737, the number of Jewish families had risen to 180 and the king wanted these additional sixty families to depart even if it meant a loss of tax revenue.

1753(22nd of Nisan, 5513): Eighth Day of Pesach

1774(15th of Iyar, 5534): Moses Lindo passed away. Born in England he moved to South Carolina where he became a leading planter and merchant. “He did more than any other individual to encourage and advance the indigo industry of the colony, among the most important industries in South Carolina in prerevolutionary times. His transactions were enormous, and in 1762 he was appointed "Surveyor and Inspector-General of Indigo, Drugs, and Dyes," an office he resigned in 1772.

1792: Joseph ben Meir Teomim, the native of Galicia who served as a rabbi in Lemberg and Frankfurt an der Order and whose works include “Pri Megadim (פרי מגדים), a supercommentary on some of the major commentators on the Shulkhan Aruch passed away today.”

1796: The Jews of Fossano escaped from a massacre which they commemorated by celebrating the Purim of the Bomb

1808: Birthdate of Jonathan-Raphaël Bischoffsheim, the native of Mainz, who was part of the Bischoffsheim family and co-founder of the bank of Bischoffsheim & Goldschmidt which played an important role in the financial world during “the early years of Belgian independence.”

1817: Joseph Freiherr von Sonnenfels the son of Perlin Lipman “who was baptized in his early youth” and went on to become a leading “Austrian and German jurist and novelist.”

1826(19th of Nisan): Chaim (Hermann) Bloch, author of “Mavo ha-Talmud” passed away today

1826: Birthdate of Civil War Veteran and early homesteader Daniel Freeman.  Freeman was not Jewish.  He was the successful plaintiff in one of the first landmark cases that declared Bible reading and praying in public schools were unconstitutional.  Most of the landmark cases involving separation of church and state were brought by non-Jews.

1829: French jurist and parliamentarian Pierre-Stanislas Bédard who opposed Ezekiel Hart taking his seat in Legislative Assembly of Lower Canada because he did not think Jew should sit in the legislature, passed away today.

1829: Birthdate of Prussian-born Austrian surgeon Christian Albert Theodor Billroth who in 1876 trigger a storm with his “criticism of what he considered the disproportionately large share of Jewish medical students from Hungary and Galicia. Billroth questioned the success of assimilation, arguing "that the Jews are a sharply defined nation, and that no Jew, just like no Iranian, Frenchman, or New Zealander, or an African can ever become a German; what they call Jewish-Germans are simply nothing but Jews who happen to speak German and happened to receive their education in Germany, even if they write literature and think in the German language more beautifully and better than many a genuine Germanic native. "Therefore [we should] neither expect nor want the Jews ever to become true Germans in the sense that during national battles they feel the way we Germans do."

1850(14th of Iyar, 5610): Pesach Sheni

1850(14th of Iyar, 5610): Sixty-nine year old, Leo Wolf, who was one of the founders of the “Temple’ (reform) in Hamburg passed away today.

1853: Following a recent vote by the First Prussian Chamber to exclude Jews from public employment, today, thousands of Prussian citizens including  Alexander Von Humboldt, presented petitions to the Second Chamber urging it to reject the action of the First Chamber and adopt legislation allowing Jews to hold “civil offices” and allowing everybody full freedom of religious opinion.

1854: Albert E. Hertz and Maria S. Solana, daughter of Mathew Solana were married today in St. Augustine, FL.

1856: In Mannheim, Germany, Lazarus and Babette Morgenthau gave birth to Henry Morgenthau, Sr. the American lawyer and businessman who was best known as America’s Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire.

1856: In Philadelphia, sixteen German boys have been charged with savagely beating a boy named Bernadotte Glischman.  After attacking him a barroom, they took the boy to his room where they stuck him with pins and covered his face with a pillow so he could not cry out.  According to the boy,  he was attacked because he was Jewish and the other boys were Catholics who wanted to punish him because the Jews crucified Christ.  The boys were being held with bail being set at $250 for 15 of them and $800 for the remaing defendant.

1857: “The original Broadway Tabernacle” which was replaced by a new building designed by Leopold Eidlitz “was opened for the last time for “Divine Service.”

1859: Odo William Leopold Russell, 1st Baron Ampthill, a British diplomat serving in Italy, wrote to Sir Moses Montefiore describing the progress he has made in attempt to present a petition to the Pope concerning the kidnapping of Edgaro Martoro 

1860: Seventy-year old Friedrich Wilhelm Carl Umbreit the “Protestant theologian and Hebrew Bible scholar” whose works included translations and commentaries on Job and Proverbs and “a four-volume exegetical work on the prophets of the Old Testament” passed away.

1860: The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada (originally named 2nd Battalion, Volunteer Militia Rifles of Canada) whose most famous Jewish member may have Benjamin “Ben” Dunkelman who led them ashore at Normandy and later turned down the opportunity to command the unit, was formed today.

1860: As of 6 o’clock this evening the body of the unknown man, who was supposed to have committed suicide by shooting himself at Weehawken, NJ, had not been identified. For reasons that have not been disclosed, authorities believe him to be a German Jew from New York.

1861:  The Jewish Messenger publishes the following editorial entitled “Stand by the Flag” which demonstrates the patriotic, pro-Union beliefs held by a majority of Jews living in the United States.

“It is almost a work of supererogation for us to call upon our readers to be loyal to the Union, which protects them. It is needless for us to say anything to induce them to proclaim their devotion to the land in which they live. But we desire our voice, too, to be heard at this time, joining in the hearty and spontaneous shout ascending from the whole American people, to stand by the stars and stripes!

“Already we hear of many of our young friends taking up arms in defense of their country, pledging themselves to assist in maintaining inviolate its integrity, and ready to respond, if need be, with their lives, to the call of the constituted authorities, in the cause of law and order.

The time is past for forbearance and temporizing. We are now to act, and sure we are, that those whom these words may reach, will not be backward in realizing the duty that is incumbent upon them—to rally as one man for the Union and the Constitution. The Union—which binds together, by so many sacred ties, millions of free men—which extends its hearty invitation to the oppressed of all nations, to come and be sheltered beneath its protecting wings—shall it be severed, destroyed, or even impaired? Shall those, whom we once called our brethren, be permitted to overthrow the fabric reared by the noble patriots of the revolution, and cemented with their blood?

And the Constitution—guaranteeing to all, the free exercise of their religious opinions—extending to all, liberty, justice, and equality—the pride of Americans, the admiration of the world—shall that Constitution be subverted, and anarchy usurp the place of a sound, safe and stable government, deriving its authority from the consent of the American People?

“The voice of millions yet unborn, cried out, 'Forbid it, Heaven!' The voice of the American people declares in tones not to be misunderstood: `It shall not be!'

“Then stand by the Flag! What death can be as glorious as that of the patriot, surrendering his life in defense of his country—pouring forth his blood on the battlefield—to live forever in the hearts of a grateful people. Whether native or foreign born, Gentile or Israelite, stand by it, and you are doing your duty, and acting well your part on the side of liberty and justice!

“We know full well that our young men, who have left their homes to respond to the call of their country, will, on their return, render a good account of themselves. We have no fears for their bravery and patriotism. Our prayers are with them. G-d speed them on the work which they have volunteered to perform!

“And if they fall—if, fighting in defense of that flag, they meet a glorious and honorable death, their last moments will be cheered by the consciousness that they have done their duty, and grateful America will not forget her sons, who have yielded up their spirit in her behalf.

And as for us, who do not accompany them on their noble journey, our duty too, is plain. We are to pray to Heaven that He may restore them soon again to our midst, after having assisted in vindicating the honor and integrity of the flag they have sworn to defend; and we are to pledge ourselves to assume for them, should they fall in their country's cause, the obligation of supporting those whom their departure leaves unprotected. Such is our duty. Let them, and all of us, renew our solemn oath that, whatever may betide, we will be true to the Union and the Constitution, and STAND BY THE FLAG.”

 
1865: Seventeen year old Henry Schneeberger, a student at Columbia was invited to deliver his first sermon at Rodeph Shalom in New York.  His discourse provoked a resounding round of approval from the congregants. (This may be an incorrect date since a source claims that this sermon was delivered on the second day of Pesach which fell on April 12)

1865: Reuters, the news service created by Paul Julius Reuter, brought news of President Abraham Lincoln's assassination in the United States to the European public, making it the first news service to provide the information to those on the eastern side of the Atlantic Ocean.

1865: Edward Storm, a resident of Greenville, MS, was discharged from the Confederate Army having served in Company D of the 28th Mississippi Cavalry.

1868: Today’s European Affairs column reported that “Thirty-one radical members of the Rumanian House have proposed the most Draconic laws against theJews, which, if put into effect, would result in an absolute expulsion of the unfortunate Hebrews.  England, Prussia and other Governments havemade the most energetic protests agains such foolish measures, and the cry of indignation thoughout Europe has already had so much effect as to cause of the signers of the bill to withdraw their signatures from it.”

1869: Public school teachers and “scholars” living in and around New York City have reportedly been swindled by “an individual calling himself a converted Jew” and “a long-time resident of Palestine. He promises to take their photographs, asks that he be paid in advance and promises to return with the pictures “in a day or two” Needless to say, he has not been returning with the pictures

1871: It was reported today that Jacob Cohen is the publisher of a new Jewish newspaper, The Hebrew News.  The paper will be published weekly in Hebrew and English.

1876: Judge McAdams officiated at the wedding of Marion W. Dibble and Eliza Emma Ottolengui both of whom live in Charleston, SC.

1878(23rd of Nisan): Orthodox Rabbi David Duetsch of Budapest, author of “Goren David” passed away today

1880: A letter from St. Petersburg that was first published in the London Times takes issue with the contention that the Jews dominate the Nihilist and revolutionary movements in Russia.

1881: Pogroms spreading across the Ukraine, reached Kiev.

1882: Rabbi David Levy officiated at the wedding of Louis L. Cohen of Atlanta, GA and Hortense Solomons which took place at the residence of her father, S.S. Solomons.

1882: It was reported that the “poorer Jews” in Odessa, Russia, are marrying at the rate of 150 couples per day.  There is a belief that if they are married, they will be given free land in either the United States or Palestine.

1883(19th of Nisan, 5643): Sixty year old author and philosopher Samuel Alexander Byk passed away today in Leipzig.

1883: The Brooklyn Eagle reported today that after two previous failures Baith Israel, Beth Elohim, and Temple Israel, Brooklyn's three leading synagogues, tried to merge for a third time.

1883(19th of Nisan, 5643): Rabbi Solomon Reimann was crushed to death tonight when he attempted to jump from a ferry on to the dock.  The distance was only three feet, but no reason was given as to why he attempted the jump in the first place. He leaves behind a widow and four adult children

1884(1st of Iyar, 5644): Rosh Chodesh Iyar

1884: A motion to grant convicted killer Edward Brice was denied today in Washington, DC.  The motion was based on the grounds “that one of the jurors” who was Jewish took the oath on a Christian Bible instead of on the Five Books of Moses.  The judge said that the objection should have been raised at the time of the swearing in and refused to consider it.

1885: Phoenix, AZ suffers one of its worst fires during Emil Ganz’s first term as the city’s mayor.  Among the buildings burnt was the Bank Exchange Hotel which was owned by native of Germany who come to Phoenix by way of Georgia.

1885: The new facility of the Brooklyn Hebrew Orphan Asylum “which had cost about $20,000 was occupied and in operation when the seventh annual meeting took place” today where it was reported the facility was not caring for 29 boys and 17 girls.

1885:”Archaelogical Frauds In Palestine,” published today recounts the various sales of an inscription written in Greek that had supposedly been found in “an old Arab house near the Mosque of Omar.”  The inscription that read “Let no foreigner pass within the precincts of the temple.  Anyone found so doing will be guilty of his own death.”  Those who sold the relic claimed that it was a sign posted in the precincts of Herod’s Temple.

1888: In Milwaukee, Wisconsin, five Jews from two different synagogues faced a preliminary hearing on charges that they were leading a boycott of a Jewish butcher named Jacob Weisfeld.  Weisfeld claimed that the two congregations were boycotting his business because he refused to pay a tax of one half a cent per pound of meat sold to the rabbis. Weisfeld claimed that his refusal led to a whispering campaign that claimed his meat was not kosher. The defense tried to prove that Weisfeld, was in fact, guilty of not slaughtering his meat in a kosher fashion.

1889: Birthdate of Ludwig Josef Johann Wittgenstein, an Austrian born professor of philosophy at Cambridge University.  Wittgenstein was not Jewish but his family was up until the beginning of the 19th Century when the road to wealth and social acceptability was opened to those who would trade the Magen David for the Sign of the Cross.

 

1889: The Coroner’s Inquest that is trying to determine the cause of death a young Jewish boy named Tobias Hipper entered into its second day.  Dr. Stern and Deputy Coroner Jenkins have already testified as to the manner of death and two other witnesses have identified a couple of neighborhood boys as the culprits.

1890: Henry Rice, President of the United Hebrew Charities, testified before the sub-committee of the Joint Congressional Committee on Immigration.

1891: “Sir Pertinax Macpsycophant” published today provides a review of Charles Macklin by Edward Abbott Parry, a biography of the 18th century actor whose signature role was his portrayal of Shylock done in such a unique  manner that when “King George II saw the production” he “was so moved he could not fall asleep that night.

1893: Abraham E. Pumpiansky, the rabbi at Riga, passed away today.

1893: It was reported today the Prussian Supreme Court has declared “that to exclude Jews, qua Jews, from a Freemasons’ Lodge would be a violation of the Prussian Constitution. The case stemmed from the decision of a newly formed lodge of Freemasons to admit Jews which had been objected to other lodges that did not admit Jews because the “anti-Semitic members” did not want “to fraternize with Jews.”

1895: Mayor Strong held hearings on the Hebrew Benevolent Home Bill which has already been passed by both branches of the Legislature.

1896: In South Bend, Indiana, “Louis Stein, a dry goods store owner, and Rosa Cohen (née Kahanaski) gave birth to Jules Stein, an ophthalmologist by training who was also the founder of MCA which became the leading talent agency in the United States.  Stein joined forces with another Jew name Lou Wasserman to create the Universal entertainment empire.  Stein used his fortune for humanitarian purposes primarily in the field of research and treatment related to the eye.  He passed away in 1981 leaving behind such legacies as the National Eye Institute and the Jules Stein Eye Institute at UCLA.

1896: It was reported today that Great Britain has “a national concern” as a result of the death of Baron de Hirsch’s death. The Baron had large investments in England and the death duties owed on these properties would “yield enough revenue to build three or four new” battleships which would help the UK in its naval race with Germany.  However, the Baron is an Austrian and the will be probated in Vienna. The fear is that this will make it difficult if not impossible for the British to collect any taxes on the estate.

1896: A betrothal reception for Lucien L. Bonheur and Amelia Simon was held today the home of Miss Simon’s parents on East 56th Street.

1896: David Wolffsohn visited Herzl and offers his cooperation. Wolffsohn had been a supporter of groups seeking to establish a Jewish homeland in Eretz Israel.  Wolfffsohn provided Herzl with an entree into the German Hovevei Zion, Lover’s of Zion, organizations.

1896: In the report of the Committee on the Hebrew Technical Institute which was presented at the meeting of Hebrew Benevolent and Orphan Asylum Society the necessity of creating a fund to provide assistance for the boys who were graduating but who had not started working was called to the trustees’ attention.

1897: According to a report by Superintendent Herman Baar published today, the Hebrew Benevolent and Orphan Asylum is caring for 823 children.  Of these, 350 children attend Grammar School No. 43 while the balance attended classes at the asylum.

1898: In Romania, Sara and Israel Freedman gave birth to radio gag writer David Freedman and author whose bestselling biography of Eddie Cantor was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

1898: Max Nordeau delivered a speech on "Die Gegner des Zionismus" in Berlin today.

1899: The list of the Board of Directors for the Society of Aid of Jewish Prisoners published today included “Jacob H. Schiff, William N. Cohen, Jacob A. Cantor, Samuel B. Hamburger, Dr. Joseph Wiener, A.S. Solomons, E. W. Bloomingdale and the Reverends Davidson and Harris. 

1902: Birthdate of painter Isaac Soyer, the native of New York whose older twin brothers Moses and Raphael Soyer were also painters.


1903: Herzl has a meeting with representatives of the I.A.C. in Paris who had read the report about the expedition to the Sinai Peninsula. The I.A.C. is the Jewish Colonization Association which was funded by Baron de Hirsch. The I.A.C. was established to set up agricultural settlements in places like Argentina, Brazil, Canada and the United States.  The settlements were supposed to provide places of refuge for Romanian and Russian Jews. Herzl sought enlist I.A.C. support for the establishment of agricultural colonies in the Sinai which would be a stepping stone to a Jewish home in Eretz Israel.

1903: The building of the Jewish Theological Seminary at West 123rd Street which had been funded by Jacob Schiff “was erected” today.

1903: According to an article in today’s edition of the New York Daily Tribune, “the gang that would become the Eastman Gang (named for Monk Eastman, the turn-of the-century gangster who was its leader) “first came on the scene in the early 1890s. They started out in the notorious Corlear's Hook section of the lower east side on Rivington Street in the vicinity of Mangin and Goerck streets. Another gang of the era, the Short-Tail Gang, had its headquarters in this same area, making it entirely possible that the Eastmans grew out of the Short-Tails. Originally composed of gentiles from the local slums, the gang quickly became almost exclusively Jewish with the influx of Jewish immigrants into lower Manhattan and nearby Brooklyn. When Monk Eastman himself entered the gang is unknown, but the fact that several newspaper articles refer to him as hailing from Corlear's Hook indicates that it was probably during this early era”.

1904: Solomon Barnato Joel and his wife the former Ellen “Nellie” Ridle gave birth to Conservative Party MP and horse racing aficionado Dudley Jack Barnato Joel, the husband of Esme Oldham who “was killed in action 1941” while serving as a member of the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve aboard the steam merchant ship Registan.

1907: Klauber, Horn and Company, of which Samuel David Klauber was partner was dissolved today.

1912: Anglo-Jewish boxer Mathew “Matt” Wells lost a bout to Packey McFarland at Madison Square Garden.

1912: In New Zealand, Arthur Myers received “the portfolios of Finance, Defense and Railways.”

1913(19th of Nisan, 5673): Fifth Day of Pesach; Shabbat

1913(19th of Nisan, 5673): Eighty-one year old Rabbi Moses Trager passed away in London.

1913: It was reported today that “Benjamin Alexander has been elected Secretary of the Jewish Publication Society of America succeeding the late Dr. Lewis W. Steinbach who held this office for many years.

1913: Mary Phagan comes to the pencil factory where she is given her pay for the week by Leo Frank.  According to the testimony in the trial, Leo Frank was the last person to see Mary Phagan alive.

1913: It was reported today that in Cleveland the Hebrew Orthodox Hospital Alliance now has 2,000 members and has already raised $10,000 which will be used to build a “strictly Jewish hospital in the only diet will be kosher.”

1914: “Liberal Judaism here and abroad is gaining ground, according to Dr. Maurice H. Harris, President of the Eastern Council of Reformed Rabbis, which opened its Fifth Assembly tonight at Temple Emanu-El, Fifth Avenue and Forty-Third Street. He said that an international propaganda for Liberal Judaism had been started and that a conference on the plan and scope of the movement probably would be arranged in Europe in 1916.”

1914: Rabbi Samuel L. Levinson officiated at the dedication of the new synagogue of Temple Beth Emeth, the second such building to be built in Brooklyn.  Dr. Stephen Wise, the rabbi of the Free Synagogue addressed the crowd who had come to the building which cost $40,000.

1914: Birthdate of Lillian Rolfe, a courageous member of the Marquis who was murdered by the Nazis at Ravensburck concentration camp.

1914:  Birthdate of author and Pulitzer Prize winner, Bernard Malamud.  While many think of him as a Jewish writer, one of his biggest hits, which Robert Redford later turned into a hit movie was The Natural - a book about baseball that has no Jewish characters.  Malamud passed away in 1986.

1915:  As a corporal in the 1st Battalion, The Manchester Regiment, Issy Smith was engaged in the Second Battle of Ypres. Today, Smith, on his own initiative, recovered wounded soldiers while exposed to sustained fire and attended to them "with the greatest devotion to duty regardless of personal risk".  In August, 1915, Smith was awarded the Victoria Cross for his brave behavior.

1916: The annual convention of the Order of B’nai Zion is scheduled to meet for the second and final day of its annual convention in Baltimore, MD.

1917: It was reported that as of today “no Jew has had the right to officer’s rank” but that “in June over 2,000 Jews will be promoted to Lieutenants.”

1917:The text of a telegram from  Louis Marshall, Henry Morgenthau, Jacob H. Schiff, Oscar Straus and Julius Rosenwald of the American Jewish Committee to the new Russian government which was “made public by the State Department today expresses the alarm felt by American Jews over reports that Russia might make a separate peace.”

1917: Dr. Schmarya Levin, formerly a member of the Russian Duma, told “an enthusiastic gathering of Zionists” tonight at Cooper Union who were meeting under the auspices of the Poale-Zion that “a Jewish homeland in Palestine was inevitable in view of recent world developments.”

1917: At this afternoon’s meeting “of the Women’s Proclamation Committee, the national Jewish women’s organization for war relief” Rabbi Stephen S. Wise “told of the sufferings of Jews on the eastern front” and Mrs. Samuel Elkeles, the Chairman of the Committee said that in the last year the group “had contributed $10,000 to the Joint Distribution Committee.

1917: In response to “President Wilson’s reported intention to aid the aid project for a Jewish republic in Palestine” in Berlin the Zeitung am Mittag  that while “this scheme is intended to impress pious American Jews” “it only proves that that certain insidious imperialistic British purposes are to covered with Wilson’s noble ideals of the independence of nations.”

1917: “Dispatches from Petrograd received” today “by the Jewish Daily Forward” in New York City “tell of the proposal of the new Russian government to bring to trial Minister of Justice Shtcheglovitoff  who was instrumental in prosecuting Mendel Bellis, the shoemaker of Kiev, whose trial on the charge that he participated in a ritual murder horrified the world.”

1917: As thousands of Jews fight for the Kaiser, “The Deutschvölkische Blätter, official publication of the anti-Semitic Deutschvölkische Partei (DVP), announced that it's time to declare war on Jews openly because of the Jewish opposition to World War I. Ferdinand Werner, chairman of the Deutschvölkische Partei spoke to the Reichstag and demanded that the government pass laws "against the Jewish race, which agitates for strikes and raises the price of food." (Yes, this 26 years before Hitler came to power)

1918: Three Jews were elected as members of the fifty-two member State Council in Warsaw.

1918: Leone Ravenna was appointed grand officer of the Crown of Italy.

1918: It was reported today that the London Jewish Chronicle has learned “that the Union of Polish Rabbis has decided to send three delegates to the conference of the Agudath Yisrael branch at Frankfort” where they will make a case for complete emancipation of the Jews in Poland.

1918: Birthdate of Miriam Shinezon, the native of Vitebsk, Russia who gained fame as “Miriam Ben-Porat, the first woman to serve as a Justice on Israel’s Supreme Court…” (As reported by Isabel Kershner)

1918: In Sofia, Bulgaria the premiere praised “the patriotism of Jews and pledged his government as an ally of the Jewish cause in the negotiations with Roumania.”

1919: It was reported today that “the Jewish Welfar Board has received a letter from Action Secretary of the Naty Franklin D. Roosevelt expsssing the government’s thanks for welfar servce rendered to soldiers during the war.”

1920: Julus J. Dukac, the Acting Chariman of the Central Committee sent a letter to the Directors of the Central Committee for the Relief of Jews Suffering Through the War asking them to attend a dinner meeeting at the Broadway Central Hotel, where among other things, they will a report from Rabbi Ephraim on the conditions of the Jews in Poland.

1921(18th of Pesach, 5681): Fourth Day of Pesach

1922: In Hartford, CT, Russian Jewish immigrants Sophia and Samuel Kellin gave birth to Myron Kellin who gained fame as actor Mike Kellin who “made his Broadway debut in 1949 in ‘At War with the Army.’”

1924(22nd of Nisan, 5684): Eighth Day of Pesach and Shabbat

1924(22nd of Nisan, 5684): Eighty-one year old Moritz Walter the native of Bavaria who was the son of Nathan and Rosa Walter passed away in San Francisco.

1925: The New York Times featured a review of “My Portion: An Autobiography” by Rebekah Kohut with an Introduction written by Henrietta Szold. According to the review, the book describes “Kohut's Life Story of Social Service” and should appeal to both Jewish and non-Jewish readers alike.

1925: The Pulitzer Prize was awarded to Edna Ferber for So Big.  This Jewish author became famous for her sweeping novels that portrayed American history.  Showboat and Giant are two of her literary hits that went on to become cinematic successes.

1926: In New York, Esther Garfunkel and Benjamin Gottesman gave birth to businessman and billionaire David Sanford “Sandy” Gottesman, the brother of Milton and Alice Gottesman and the nephew of Samuel Gottesman who has been married to his wife for over sixty years.

1927: Birthdate of Avi Livney, the New York native and WW II U.S. Navy veteran who served aboard the President Warfield, which sailed under the name of the Exodus carrying Jewish refugees to Palestine.

1928: “Present Arms” a Rodgers and Hart musical opened at the Mansfield Theatre.

1929: In Jerusalem, there was a cornerstone laying ceremony to mark the construction of the building designed to house the Jewish National Fund.  The building was part of a construction project designed to provide space for several national institutions.

1931: More than 1,000 people, including Gustave Hartman, the President of the Israel Orphan Asylum, attended a testimonial dinner for Herbert D. Perlman, the grand master of the Independent Order of B’rith Abraham, who will be retiring this year

1931: Eighty-five year old Dr. Otis Glazebrook the American Consul in Jerusalem during World War One who was honored by Jewish leaders for the effective way he “distributed relief funds in Jerusalem passed away while aboard the SS Belgenland..

1932: Birthdate of Anthony Ray Gubbay, “the former Chief Justice of the Supreme court of Zimbabwe.

1933: In Munich Justine and Karl Penzias gave birth to Arno Allan Penzias, a “kindertransport kid” who won the Nobel Prize for Physics.

1933: Hermann Göring established the Gestapo (Geheime Staatspolizei; Secret State Police).

1933: Hitler met with Bishop Wilhelm Berning of Osnabrück and Monsignor Steinmann, prelates representing the Roman Catholic Church in Germany. Hitler claimed that he is only doing to the Jews what the Catholic Church has already done to them for 1600 years. He reminded the prelates that the Church has regarded the Jews as dangerous and pushed them into ghettos. Hitler suggested that his anti-Jewish actions are "doing Christianity a great service." Bishop Berning and Monsignor Steinmann later described the talks as "cordial and to the point."

1933: Jewish students were barred from schools in Germany

1934: U.S. premiere of “We’re Not Dressing” a musical comedy directed by Norman Taurog with a story co-authored by Benjamin Glazer who also produced the film and co-starring George Burns as “George Martin.”
1934:  Birthdate of actor Alan Arkin.

1934: The third biennial Levant Fair opens in Tel Aviv.  According to Israel B. Brodie, “the fair is designed to attract trade to Palestine and also to draw attention to the importance of Palestine in reaching many of the Near Eastern markets.”

1935: U.S. premiere “Mark of the Vampire” co-authored by Guy Endore (born Samuel Goldstein)

1936: “As sporadic acts of violence by Arabs continued…a young Jew walking near the Damascus Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem was severly beaten by an Arab who escaped.  Buses in Jewish districts are stone by Arabs and attempts by Arabs to set fire to Jewish owned fields have been thwarted. 

1936: In France, the first of two rounds of elections take place that will bring a Popular Front Government to power with Leon Blum serving as “the first authentically Socialist prime minister in French history.”

1936: “A few hours after Chaim Wiezmann…had sent a cable telling of the recent outbreak of violence in Palestine and asking for a special $150,000 fund to meet urgent needs” a meeting was held tonight at the Hotel Astor that included representatives from the ZOA, World Zionist Organization of America, the World Zionist Executive, the Jewish National Fund, the Labor Zionists, Mizrachi, the Order of the Sons of Zion and Hadassah.
1938: Austrian Jews were required to register property above 5,000 Reichsmarks.  This came as part of the Nazification of Austria after the Germans annexed Hitler's homeland.  After the war, the Austrians sought to portray themselves as the first victims of Nazi aggression.  The cheering throngs that greeted Hitler told a different story.

1938: Nazi Germany adopted a statute requiring government authorization for the sale or rental of a company.

1938: “Austrian composer and cabaret star” Hermann Leopoldi was kept from making his planned trip to the United States today when he was arrested and transported to Dachau.

1939: “The decision to unify” Kibbutz BaMa’ale and Kibbutz BaMifne in Karkur “was made in the secretariat of Hashomer Hatzair” today.

1942: Leopold Müller and his wife Irene were marched on a roundabout route from a Gestapo gathering point in a small park in Würzburg through the city's streets to a train depot. There they left their luggage on the platform and boarded a train to the East and to their deaths.

1944: Release date for “The Hitler Gang,” “a pseudo-documentary…which traces the political rise” of the German dictator.

1945: Prisoner Karl Riemer fled the Dachau concentration camp to get help from American troops

1945: “As the Americans approached Dachau about 7,000 prisoners, most of them Jews, were sent on a death march to Tegernsee.”

1946: U.S. premiere of “The Glass Alibi” directed and produced by W. Lee Wilder with music by Alexander Laszlo.

1946: “Thousands of British paratroopers made a house by house search through north Tel Aviv today rounding up and question 1,200 suspected terrorists” following the attack on a British police station.  Tel Aviv is placed under a strict curfew.

1947: IN Russia, Bluma and Yechezkel Yadlovker gave birth to David Ben-Shalom Yadlovker who made Aliyah 1960 and passed away when the INS Dakar sank in 1968.

1948(17th of Nisan, 5708): Third Day of Pesach is observed as Arab armies besiege Jerusalem seeking to strangle the Jewish state before it is even born.

1950: Seventy-nine year old Irish archaeologist Robert Alexander Stewart Macalister who “was responsible for the excavations at Gezer” from 1902 to 1909 where the “Gezer calendar” was found passed away today.

1951: Birthdate of Erin Stoff, the native of Romania who gained fame as the American film producer who formed 3 Arts Entertainment, Inc.

1953: “Printer's Measure” an episode of the TV anthology series The Philco-Goodyear Television Playhouse written by Paddy Chayefsky aired for the first time tonight.

1954: For the first time, NBC broadcast “The Tony Martin Show” which showcased the talent of the San Francisco born singer who was the son of Eastern European Jews.

1959: In “Ambassador at Large for a Nation in the Making” published today Walter Laquer reviewed Chaim Wiezman by Isaiah Berlin.

1960: West German release date for “ I Married a Woman” directed by Hal Kanter with a script by Goodman Ace.

1965: The World Zionist Congress tonight closed a two-day debate on Israel's security crisis after having heard new attacks on United States and Soviet policies

1965: Composer Aaron Avshalomov passed away. Born into a Jewish family in Nikolayevsk-on-Amur, Khabarovsk Krai, then Russian Empire) in 1894, “he was one of highly qualified Jewish musicians (i.e., Alfred Wittenberg, Walter Joachim, Arrigo Foa, etc.), who fled pogroms and revolutions in Russia in the beginning of the 20th century, went to China (first arrived in Harbin, later moved to Shanghai). They entered the world of Shanghai's academia and trained a number of young Chinese musicians in classical music, who in turn became leading musicians in contemporary China. Aaron fled China in when the Japanese invaded in 1931 and moved to live in Portland, Oregon, USA. He was the father of composer Jacob Avshalomov, conductor of the Portland Junior Symphony (now called the Portland Youth Philharmonic Orchestra) from 1953-1994.

1966: Arnold "Red" Auerbach retired as Boston Celtic's coach

1967:  In what would turn out to be part of a diplomatic offensive leading to the Six Day War, the Soviet Ambassador to Israel protested to Prime Minister Levi Eshkol that Israel was planning on starting a war with Syria.  Ehskol denied the claim and offered to take the Soviet diplomat to the border so that he could see that troops were not being massed for attack.  The Russian declined to go, but the Syrians believed the Russian report increasing tension in the area.

1967: Hallelujah, Baby! a musical with music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Adolph Green and Betty Comden, opened on Broadway at the Martin Beck Theatre

1969: In Canada, the Bulletin published a list of the demands and goals made by a group of students at Shaar Hashomayim that were designed to show their respect for the synagogue while at the same time calling for “practices necessary for a renaissance in Canadian Jewish life.”

1969: After 161 performances, the curtain came down “Jimmy Shine” written by Murray Schisgal at the Atkinson Theatre.

1969: After 433 performances the curtain came down on the first Broadway production of “George M!” a musical with a book by Michael Stewart and Francine Pascal, produced by Emanuel Azenberg and starring Joel Grey.

1970(20th of Nisan, 5730): As part of a campaign to gain rights for Russian Jews, tens of thousands of Jews shared in a Passover “Exodus March” that began at the Soviet mission to the United Nations

1970(20th of Nisan, 5730): Stripper Gypsy Rose Lee, born Louise Hovick passed away at the age of 56.

1973: A West End production of “Two Gentlemen of Verona” a rock musical based on Shakespeare’s play of the same with a book by Mel Shapiro opened at the Phoenix Theatre with Shapiro as the director.

1976: For a second time, Pierre Goldman went on trial for his role in a robbery in which two pharmacists were killed.  This time he was acquitted.

1976(26th of Nisan, 5736): Sixty-two year old South African born British actor Sid James suffered a fatal heart attack “while performing on stage at the Sunderland Empire Theatre.

1977: Samuel Lewis was appointed U.S. Ambassador to Israel.

1978: In a New York Times profile Lillian Vernon was described as "the first lady of mail order catalogues," a designation she had earned through more than two decades of entrepreneurship and steady growth of her eponymous business. Born Lilly Menasche in Leipzig, Germany, in 1927, Lillian Vernon fled with her family first to Amsterdam and then to New York to escape Hitler. In the U.S., her father manufactured leather goods, which would become the base of Vernon's first foray into mail-order. Married and pregnant, Vernon began the business that would become Lillian Vernon, Inc., in 1951. She took $495 of her wedding gift money to place an advertisement for personalized belts and handbags in Seventeen. Her father's company manufactured the belts and bags, and Vernon embossed, packaged, and shipped them. The ad brought in over $32,000 worth of sales, and Vernon's company was born. She mailed her first catalogue two years later. Taking monogramming as its trademark, and catering mainly to women, Lillian Vernon mail-order grew rapidly, generating $200,000 in sales in 1956, the year Vernon opened her first manufacturing plant. By 1990, sales had risen to $238 million, and the mailing list had grown to 17 million names. After pioneering her successful mail-order business, Vernon continued to keep the company at the forefront of commercial changes. She began opening retail outlets in 1985, and went online a decade later. Hers was also the first woman-owned business to be listed on the American Stock Exchange. The company continues to introduce new catalogs regularly, and now produces special lines of items for children, teens, and gardening, as well as its traditional products for the home. Vernon has used her wealth to support over 500 charities, and has been recognized by, among others, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, which awarded her its National Hero Award. She has also received the NAACP Medal of Honor, and has been inducted into the Direct Marketing Association Hall of Fame and the National Women's Hall of Fame. In 1997, she was named one of 50 leading women entrepreneurs by the National Foundation for Women Business Owners. Though she no longer embossed items herself, Vernon was active as the CEO of her company and as its main spokesperson until 2006

1981(22nd of Nisan, 5741): Eighth Day of Pesach marks the close of the celebration for the first time during the Presidency of Ronald Reagan.

1985(5th of Iyar, 5745): Seventy-six year old American screenwriter Albert Maltz a member of the Hollywood Ten who were jailed for their refusal to testify before Congress passed away today. (As reported by C. Gerald Fraser and Jerry Belcher)

1987: At Congregation Rodeph Sholom in New York Margaret Howell Hudesman, an interior designer, was married to Gabriel Levinson, an architect with Nadler, Philopena & Associates in Mount Kisco, N.Y. Rabbi Gunter Hirschberg performed the ceremony.

1987(27th of Nisan, 5747): Yom Hashoah,

1987: Israeli radio quoted sources in Prime Minister Shamir's office as saying Mr. Moshe Arens had succeeded in persuading Secretary of State Shultz to give up the idea of an international conference, a report that was promptly denied by Foreign Minister Shimon Peres's office. Foreign Minister Peres favors such a conference.  Shamir opposes it.

1990: Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir, leader of the right-wing Likud bloc, was chosen to form a new government after Labor Party leader Shimon Peres failed in his attempt to form a coalition.

1990(1st of Iyar, 5750): Rosh Chodesh Iyar

1990(1st of Iyar, 5750): Ninety-five year old Irma (Seeman) Goldberg, the widow of Rube Goldberg passed away today.


1991(12th of Iyar, 5751): Eighty-one year old Henry Lipson who served as Professor of Physics at the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology from 1954 to 1977 and then became Professor Emeritus passed away today.

1992(27th of Nisan, 5747): Yom Hashoah

1992: Appearing before 5,000 men, women and children gathered to mourn the Jews killed by the Nazis, Vice President Dan Quayle pledged the commitment of the Bush Administration to the memory of those who perished in the Holocaust and to Israel, which he said "was built upon the ashes of the Holocaust." “‘Never again' is more than the vow of Jewish survivors," he said. "It's the deep, unshakable resolution of the world's sole superpower." At another point, the Vice President said: "America has more than 'interests' where Israel is concerned. We have shared values, cherished traditions, a true friendship." But even as the Vice President sat on the dais at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center with his wife, Marilyn, other speakers questioned recent actions of the Administration regarding Israel and American Jews. Several criticized the way the United States had handled Israel's request for loan guarantees to settle Jews from the former Soviet Union, linking it to an end to building settlements in Israel's occupied territories. Others said that Israel had not been rewarded for its "restraint" during the Persian Gulf war, when, at the request of the United States, it did not retaliate against Iraq's missiles. Elie Wiesel, the Holocaust survivor and Nobel laureate, also suggested that the Administration had not done enough to condemn resurgent anti-Semitism in Germany and other parts of Europe. "Mr. Vice President, I plead with you to be our intercessor," Mr. Wiesel said. Mr. Quayle has been a major figure in the Republican strategy to win over Jewish voters unhappy with some of the Administration's policies on Israel, sometimes appearing to play the "good cop" to Secretary of State James A. Baker 3d's "bad cop." In his remarks yesterday, the Vice President stuck to his prepared text, steering clear of controversial points. It was a largely a historical and personal speech in which he recalled visiting the death camp at Auschwitz last year and coming away saying of the genocide: "It was evil, horrendous, sickening -- a tragedy we shall never, never, never forget." The event yesterday honored the Warsaw ghetto uprising on April 19, 1943, when the Jews began a doomed armed resistance. Yesterday's event was one of the largest planned in connection with Yom Hashoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, which will be officially marked in Israel and around the world on Thursday. Commemorative events, including films, music and lectures, will be held this week in synagogues, churches and schools. Like yesterday's event, most will include the lighting a of a six-branched candelabra, honoring the six million Jewish victims of the Nazis. Some events this year will include Christians, homosexuals -- who also were targets for annihilation in the Holocaust -- and the "righteous Gentiles" who at great risk sheltered Jewish refugees during World War II. The candles were lighted yesterday by Holocaust survivors and their children and grandchildren, as youngsters from the Abraham Joshua Heschel School on the Upper West Side of Manhattan sang Hebrew and Yiddish songs with Cantor Joseph Malovany of the Fifth Avenue Synagogue. The emotional highlight was the cantor's rendition of "El Mole Rachamim," God Full of Mercy, a memorial prayer, which was followed by a communal reading of "Kaddish," the prayer for the dead. As the words were recited, many donned yarmulkes as a sign of respect and others, crying softly, held handkerchiefs to their eyes. Among the others who spoke were Mayor David N. Dinkins, Gov. Mario M. Cuomo and Shoshana S. Cardin, chairwoman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. At the request of the chairman of the event, Benjamin Meed, a 71-year old survivor of the Warsaw ghetto, there was no applause for any speaker or artist. When Mr. Quayle finished his speech to a silent audience, Mr. Meed said: "The silence is a very loud voice. Please understand that the silence is in memory of those who are not here."

1992: “Lou Bernstein: Five Decades of Photographs” an exhibition that includes “images of life the 1940s to the 1960s” came to an end today.

1993(5th of Iyar, 5753): Yom HaAtzma’ut

1994: Seventy-one year old Rostam Bastuni, a journalist and politician who was the first Arab citizen to represent a Zionist Party (Mapam) in the Knesset.

1995(26th of Nisan, 5755): Ninety year old Dutch born cellist Frieda Belinfante a member of the Portuguese -Sephardic Belinfante family that settled in Holland in the 17th century passed away today.

 
1996: According to a report published in the Bulletin, two days before Passover, the leaders of Shaar Hashomayim in Montreal found out the nature of the upcoming student demonstration that would confront the congregation.

1997: In “Adding a Contemporary Ring to an Ancient Story,” Gustav Neibuhr described a Seder the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism hosted for the Dalai Lama.


1998(30th of Nisan, 5758): Rosh Chodesh Iyar

1998(30th of Nisan, 5758): Two days before her 80th birthday, Matilda Meltsner, the daughter of Morris Meltsner, whose older brother Joseph Meltsner had been killed during the battle for Iwo Jima, passed away today in Valley Stream, NY.

1999: Israel charged Avisahi Raviv, “a former undercover agent and right-wing radical today with failing to prevent the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin by a Jewish hard-liner.”

1998: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of interest to Jewish readers including Between Dignity and Despair: Jewish Life in Nazi Germany by Marion A. Kaplan, Killing the Dream: James Earl Ray and the Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. by Gerald Posner and Heading South, Looking North: A Bilingual Journey by Ariel Dorfman.

1998: An exhibit styled “An Expressionist in Paris: The Paintings of Chaim Soutine” opened at the Jewish Museum in New York City. “’Known as a "painter's painter,’ Soutine's work is characterized by his energetic, lively brushwork and bold use of color. This exhibition, the first major presentation of the artist in New York in nearly fifty years, brings together some of Soutine's most extraordinary works.” The exhibition focuses on exploring Soutine's reception by his patrons, supporters, and critics. The space of the exhibition will be organized according to three time periods--the 1920s, the 1930s, and the 1950s--when Soutine was being defined and redefined by his audience as an unschooled tragic genius, as a savior of traditional French painting, and as a progenitor of Abstract Expressionism and the avant-garde in America.

2001(3rd of Iyar, 5761): Yom HaAtzma’ut

2002: “About a Boy” a comedy directed by Christ Weitz and Paul Weitz who also wrote the screenplay and co-starring Rachel Weisz was released today.

2003: Thirteen people were injured during a bombing at the Kfar Saba train station for which the PFLP and Al-Aqsa claimed joint responsibility.

2003(24th of Nisan, 5763): Seventy-three year old Peter Stone who scripts included everything from lighthearted comedy like Father Goose to the Broadway hit “1776” who won the trifecta – Emmy, Tony and Oscar – passed away today.

2004: Two Palestinians were killed when suicide bomber coming from Gaza detonated himself “on the way to carry out an attack in Israel.”

2005(17th of Nisan, 5765): Third Day of Pesach

2005(17th of Nisan, 5765): Eighty-six year old Mason Adams who may be best remembered as the voice of Smuckers – “With a name like Smucker’s, it has to be good” – past away tday.

2005: Dr. Raul Hilberg, author of the three-volume, 1,273-page The Destruction of the European Jews regarded as the seminal study of the Nazi Final Solution was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

2005: ‘One of Isaac Lazarus Israëls Donkey riding on the Beach series realised €482,400 at Christie's, Amsterdam.”

2006(28th of Nisan, 5766):  Yuval Ne’eman, founder of Israel’s space program and a key figure in Israel’s nuclear program passed away.

2006: The family of real estate magnate and book lover Sami Rohr has created the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature, an annual $100,000 prize for an "emerging writer whose work has demonstrated a fresh vision and evidence of future potential." The Rohr family said that the award hopefully will "encourage, promote, and support outstanding writing of Jewish interest." Fiction and nonfiction books in English (including translations) will be considered in alternate years—the inaugural prize in 2007 will be for fiction. Short story collections are eligible if 75 percent of the text was not previously published in periodicals or other collections. All nonfiction titles must concern Jewish themes and are limited to history, biography, contemporary Jewish life, Jewish scholarship, and current affairs.

2006:  Haaretz reviewed Betabat Hahenek or In a Stranglehold by Uri Ben-Ari. 

2006(28th of Nisan, 5766): Yuval Ne’eman founder of Israel’s space program and a key figure in Israel’s nuclear program passed away.

2006: While delivering the James Fox Memorial Lecture today Robert S. Mueller, III, the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation described a terrorist plot which included plans to blow up a synagogue in Los Angeles on Yom Kippur in 2005. When the would-be terrorists were caught, they also had lists of the addresses of the Jewish houses of worship in Los Angeles and the address of the Israeli consulate in Los Angeles

2006: “The Hebrew Manuscripts of the Cairo Genizah” published today.

2008(21st of Nisan, 5768): Seventh Day of Pesach – Reform Jews recite Yizkor

2008(21st of Nisan, 5768): Yossi Harel, who commanded four ships bringing Jews to Israel illegally, died at the age of 90 in Tel Aviv. Harel assisted 24,000 Jews in reaching Israel aboard four ships, including the famed SS Exodus, between 1945 and 1948. Great Britain, which controlled the region at the time, banned Jewish immigration due to Arab pressure. The other three ships were called Knesset Yisrael (Gathering of Israel), Atzma'ut (Independence) and Kibbutz Galuyot (Ingathering of the Exiles).The Exodus was made famous by a film of the same name. Born in 1919, Harel was the sixth generation in his family born in Jerusalem. At the age of 15 he joined the pre-state Haganah defense force. By the age of 28 he oversaw the clandestine immigration operations bringing Jews, many of them survivors of the Holocaust, to the Holy Land. Later on, Harel oversaw the IDF’s Unit 131, an intelligence unit that ran a spy ring in Egypt until the so-called Lavon Affair of 1954.Harel will be buried at the Caesarea-area kibbutz, Sdot Yam.

2009: Final performance of “The Accomplices” at the Center Stage Theatre in Jerusalem.

2009: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including Vincente Minnelli: Hollywood’s Dark Dreamer by Emanuel Levy and the recently released paperback edition of The Mayor’s Tongue a novel written by Nathaniel Rich.

2009: First annual Mitzvah Day in Iowa City sponsored by Agudas Achim

2009: Authorities fear a case of swine flu may have made it to Israel after a 26-year-old Israeli who just returned from a trip to Mexico today checked himself into the hospital reporting flu-like symptoms. Also today, the Foreign Ministry urged Israeli nationals in Mexico and certain parts of the United States to exercise caution after the deadly swine flu strain killed up to 81 people in Mexico. After consulting with the Health Ministry, the Foreign Ministry recommended that Israelis keep as clean as possible and avoid crowded areas. It also called on them to visit a doctor immediately if they suspect they have contracted the virus. The U.S. declared a public health emergency today to deal with the emerging new swine flu, much like the government does to prepare for approaching hurricanes.

2009: Temple Judah in Cedar Rapids hosts its annual Big Dinner, one of the congregations oldest and most important fund raiser.

2009(2nd of Iyar, 5769): Eighty-two year old Meir Benayahu, the son of Rabbi Yitzhak Nissim and the brother of Moshe Nissim, whose areas of research including the Sephardi Diaspora, Kabbalah and Sabbataism passed away today.

2009(2nd of Iyar, 5769): Eighty-two year old award winning historian Emanuel Tov whose disitinguished career included cofounding the “Institute for Research on Israeli Communities in the Middle East.”

2009(2nd of Iyar, 5769): Eighty­-sixty ear old Salamo Arouch, a Greek-born Jewish boxer who survived the Auschwitz death camp in World War II by winning fight after fight against fellow prisoners, to the delight of Nazi guards who had placed their bets on him, died in Israel today.

2010: “The Wedding Song,” film about a Jewish girl and a Moslem girl, living in war torn Tunisia, is scheduled to be shown at the 2010 NoVA International Jewish Film Festival

2010: “Iron Man 2” a superhero movie directed by Jon Favreau was released today in the United States.

2010: Professor Gil Troy is scheduled to deliver a lecture entitled "The 1975 Zionism is Racism Resolution: American Anger and British Appeasement" in Jerusalem sponsored by the Israel Branch of The Jewish Historical Society of England.

2010: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including “Get Capone:The Secret Plot That Captured America’s Most Wanted Gangster” by Jonathan Eig and “Ill Fares the Land” by Tony Judt.

2010: The Los Angeles Times included a review of “Three Chords For Beauty’s Sake: The Life of Artie Shaw by Tom Nolan that traces the transformation of Avraham Ben-Yitzhak Arshawsky from the son of immigrant Jews to one of the main players in the world of Swing and the Big Band sound.

2011: “The Wizard of Lies: Bernie Madoff and the Death of Trust” by Diana B. Henriques, a book that “analyzes Mr. Madoff’s rise and fall” is scheduled to be published today.

2011(22nd of Nisan, 5771): Eighth day of Pesach – Yizkor

2011: The New York Times published a review of “A Book of Recipes Gathered From Holocaust Survivors” by June Feiss Hersh. Recipe books based on the memories of Holocaust survivors might seem to trivialize the horror. But Dr. Ruth Westheimer, one of the survivors featured in “Recipes Remembered: A Celebration of Survival,” said that food represents identity for these people who did not have a real homeland. June Feiss Hersh interviewed more than 100 survivors and their relatives for the book, and recorded their stories, food memories and recipes, which she also tested. When the dish called for ketchup or canned tomato soup, that’s what the recipe included. This lavishly illustrated book is divided by geographic areas, including Greece, where there was a Jewish community on the island of Rhodes. Though the recipes from Polish survivors tend to represent traditional Jewish cooking (kugel, gefilte fish), there are plenty of new ideas to explore, including an Italian Sunday sauce, potato soup made with a browned roux, a cabbage pie wrapped in puff pastry and a feather-light chocolate roll of exquisite simplicity. The personal stories recount amazing coincidences and moments of luck that led to survival, often after internment at Auschwitz. The immigrant experiences in places like Cuba as well as the United States are also described, and indeed influence the food. Ms. Hersh added recipes from 26 chefs and professional cooks, but these are unnecessary and often irrelevant. The rich collection from the survivors needed no help, especially when you even have people like George Lang among the bona fide contributors.

2011: Peter Shumlin appeared on The Rachel Maddow Show via telephone where he discussed health care reform in his state, his belief in health care for all and that "health care is a right, not a privilege".

2012: “Lea and Darija” about the “Croatian Shirley Temple,” Lea Deutsch ,the Jewish star of a Zagreb song-and-dance troupe, and her gentile dancing partner Darija Gasteiger is scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival

2012: “In Darkness,” a film set in Nazi occupied Lvov, is scheduled to be shown for the final time as part of the Yom HaShoah commemoration in Iowa City, Iowa.
2012(4th of Iyar, 5772):  Yom Ha’Atzmaut – Israel Independence Day

2013: “Family, ‘Not Willing to Forget,’ Pursues Art It Lost to Nazis” published today described the fight of
3 generations of the Rosenberg family to recover art stolen during WW II.

2013: “No Place Earth” is scheduled to open in several cities across the United States including Beverly
Hills, Philadelphia and Washington, DC

2013: In New Orleans, Touro Synagogue is scheduled to host its 22nd annual Jazz Fest Shabbat

2013: One hundredth anniversary of the start of events that would become known as “The Leo Frank Case,” the worst single outbreak of anti-Semitism in the United States.

2013: Today, Bulgarian investigators staged a re-enactment of the bus bombing that killed five Israeli tourists, the bus driver and the alleged perpetrator at the Burgas airport in July. The Europol-sponsored experiment, aimed to provide more details about the attack, was done at a police compound near the city of Ihtiman, 40 kilometers (25 miles) east of Sofia. Officials said the results confirmed the facts they had previously established.(As reported by AP & Times of Israel)

2013: Lebanese media outlets reported this afternoon that the Israeli Air Force was conducting mock raids over southern parts of the country, one day after an unmanned aerial vehicle was shot down by the IAF off the coast of Haifa

2014: “The Zig Zag Kid” is scheduled to be shown at the JCC Rockland International Film Festival.

2014: Dominican priest Giuseppe Girotti “an opponent of Benito Mussolini and a protector of Jews from the Nazi Holocaust who died at Dachau Concentration Camp which earned him the designation of declared Righteous Among the Nations by Yad Vashem” was beatified today by Cardinal Angelo Amato on behalf of Pope Francis

2014: “Haunted Screen” an exhibition at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art that described the role of German Jews in the film industry when the Nazis came to power and the changes that came afterwards came to a close today.

2015: “Watchers of the Sky” a documentary that includes a look at “the forgotten life of Raphael Lemkin, the man who created the world genocide” is scheduled to be shown at the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center

2015: Music scholar Walter Frisch and Jewish historian Jonathan Karp are scheduled to discuss the life and legacy of Harold Arlen in a program entitled That Old Jewish Magic? Harold Arlen and American Popular Song presented by American Society for Jewish Music

2015: “Dior and I” and “While We’re Young” are scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.

2015: “The Republican Jewish Coalition leadership conference is scheduled to come to an end in Las Vegas, Nevada.

2015: 4th Annual ReelAbilities: Greater DC Disabilities Film Festival is scheduled to open today.

2015: Israeli choreographer and his company are scheduled to perform “Dabke” at the JCC Manhattan.

2015: “‘Martyrs Street,’ Misha Shulman’s new play about the Israel-Palestinian conflict that explores the power and seduction of extremism” is scheduled to complete its run “at New York’s off-off-Broadway Theatre for the New City” today. (As reported by Cathryn J. Prince)

2015: The Maccabeats are scheduled to perform at Beth Shalom Congregation in Columbia, MD.

2015: The New York Times featured reviews of books written by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including The Do-Over: Poems by Kathleen Ossip, Infamy: The Shocking Story of the Japanese American Internment in World War II by Richard Reeves and The Train To Crystal City: FDR’s Secret Prisoner Exchange Program and America’s Only Family Internment Camp During World War II by Jan Jarboe Russell

2016: In the United Kingdom, the Oxford Jewish Chaplains are scheduled to provide “a Kosher for Passover version of their popular Radcam Picnics.

2016: Publication date for Disraeli: The Novel Politician by David Desarani and Barbara Streisand: Redefining Beauty, Femininity and Power by Neal Gabler.

 2017: In Vienna, Im Kinksy is scheduled to auction Portrait of a Man, a painting by a 17th century Dutch Master that had been part of a collection amassed by Adolphe Schloss which was looted by the Nazis in 1943 and which is heirs are attempting to get back to the rightful owners.

2017: Dr. Norman Cohen is scheduled to lecture on “Abraham’s Journey from Ur to Moriah” at the Streicker Center in NYC.

2017: Lynn Downey is scheduled to speak to the Nevada Historical Society about her book Levi Strauss” The Man Who Gave Blue Jeans to the World.

2017: The American Jewish Historical Society is scheduled to host the launch of “the third edition of Remember the Women Institute’s Women, Theatre, and the Holocaust Resource Handbook.”