1492: Alexander VI is elected Pope. Alexander was one of the Borgia popes. He had reputation for “moral depravity” and was more politician than prelate. He defied Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain by allowing large numbers of Marranos who were fleeing the Inquisition to take refuge in Rome. He did reduce the size of the badge worn by the Jews under his rule but raised their taxes by five per cent. He also lengthened the course that the Jews of Rome were forced to run each year so that he could view it from the comfort of his castle. The Jews were forced to run naked much to the amusement of the Christian population of Rome – the home of Catholicism. Everything is relative and for all of his shortcomings, Alexander VI’s treatment of the Jews was a lot better than that of the other Catholic strongman of the day, The Grand Inquisitor – Torquemada.
1634: Seventeen arrests were made by the Inquisition after a man turned another man in for being "unwilling to make a sale on Saturday," and for not wanting to eat bacon.
1667(21st of Av, 5427): Jonah Abravanel, a Dutch Jewish poet and author, passed away today at Amsterdam. “He was the son of the physician Joseph Abravanel, and a nephew of Manasseh ben Israel.”
1770: Moses Mendelssohn and his wife the former Fromet (Frumet) Guggenheim gave birth to Joseph Mendelssohn, their oldest son, founder of the bank Mendelssohn & Co. and along with his sister Recha were the only two of the couple’s six children to remain Jewish.
1772: Following the partition of Poland which gave the Russians a large, unwanted population, Catherine II whom the Boyars call “Great,” issued an order that read, “Jewish communities residing in the towns, cities and territories now incorporated in the Russian Empire shall be left in the enjoyment of all those liberties with regard to their religion and property which they at present possess.”
1778: Birthdate of Prussian native Friedrich Ludwig Jahn, the German nationalist whose statement in 1810 that "Poles, French, priests, aristocrats and Jews are Germany's misfortune” are an example of views that Peter Vierck among others claimed made him “the spiritual founder of Nazism” – a claim challenged by the highly respected Jacques Barzun who “observed that Viereck's portrait of cultural trends supposedly leading to Nazism was "a caricature without resemblance" relying on "misleading shortcuts.”
1786: Captain Francis Light establishes the British colony of Penang in Malaysia. The Penang Jewish Cemetery, established in 1805, is believed to be the oldest single Jewish cemetery in Malaysia. According to legend, the first Jews may have actually come to Malaysia as far back as the 11th century.
1793: Thirty-four year old Jacob Aaron who had passed away on Shabbat, was buried today at the Alderney Road Jewish Cemetery in the UK.
1799(10th of Av, 5559): Tish’a B’Av observed for the last time in the 18th century
1804: Francis II assumed the title of first Emperor of Austria. When it came to his Jewish subjects, Francis and his chief minister, Metternich followed in the footsteps Maria Theresa and not the more liberal Joseph II. During his reign ghettos were set up in Austria. Jews were not allowed to settle in the province of Tyrol. Stringent restrictions were placed on where Jews could live in Bohemia and Moravia. In Vienna, a special tax was placed on all Jews who entered the capital. While the Emperor “ennobled a few Jews” he “humiliated” the remainder of the population. Jewish marriages were restricted to the eldest son or those who had enough money to pay large bribes to the appropriate officials.
1810: In Oberdöbling near Vienna, banker Joseph von Henikstein and his wife, the former Elisabeth von Sonnenstein gave birth to Alfred von Henikstein who was baptized as a child making him the highest ranking officer of Jewish parentage in the Austrian army and chief of staff before the battle of Königgrätz in the Austro-Prussian War
1827: Birthdate of Jesse Seligman, the German born American banker and philanthropist whose career began in Alabama and ended in San Francisco, CA.
1828: Birthdate of Edward Salomon a native of Saxony who served as Lieutenant Governor of Wisconsin from 1860 to 1862 at which time he became the state’s 8th Governor when Louis P Harvey drowned in the Tennessee River.
1830(22nd of Av, 5590): Dr. Philip Moses Russell, a native of England who began serving as a medical officer for various units in the Revolutionary War starting in 1775 passed away today. In addition to his medical work for which he was commended by George Washington, Russell and six other Jews “volunteered as guides to lead the American forces through the woods and swamps in a surprise attempt to recapture British-held Savannah, GA.”
1833: Birthdate of Robert G. Ingersoll, Civil war soldier, orator and defender of agnosticism. He was the author of “Some Mistakes Moses Made” which begins “For many years I have regarded the Pentateuch simply as a record of a barbarous people, in which are found a great number of the ceremonies of savagery, many absurd and unjust laws, and thousands of ideas inconsistent with known and demonstrated facts. To me it seemed almost a crime to teach that this record was written by inspired men; that slavery, polygamy, wars of conquest and extermination were right, and that there was a time when men could win the approbation of infinite Intelligence, Justice, and Mercy, by violating maidens and by butchering babes.” Ingersoll was not an anti-Semite. He had a “low opinion” of other religions as well.
1840: Lord Palmerston the British Foreign Secretary wrote a letter to the ambassador in Constantinople that said, “There exists…among the Jews…a strong notion that the time is approaching when their nation is to return to Palestine…. I instruct you… to strongly recommend that the Turkish Government … encourage the Jews of Europe to return to Palestine.” Palmerston was not philo-Semite or a proto-Zionist. Rather he was an English statesmen looking to bring what he considered Western civilization to the Orient.
1844: Birthdate of Wilhelm Stern the son of a rabbi in Posen who became a German physician.
1844: Just days before his death, Rabbi Aron Chorin sent an address to the conference of Hungarian rabbis meeting at Páks.
1848: Establishment of The United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia to which Amy Totenberg would be appointed in 2011 making her the first Jewish woman to serve in such a capacity.
1852: In Bielostok, Russia, Noah Brodsky and his wife gave birth to Hyman Brodsky who “was instrumental in establishing Sheltering Homes, Talmud Torah Schools, Free Schools, Free Libraries, Building Associations, Loan Associations, Chevra Kadisha and Zionist Societies in New York, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Providence, RI, Troy, NY and Newark, NJ where since 1899 he has served as the rabbi of Congregation Anshe Russia.
1853: It was reported today that an unnamed Jew owns a house at Table Rock adjacent to the Great Horse Shoe Falls where visitors can buy brandy and cigars and seek protection from the spray of the cataract.
1856: Isle Dernière (Last Island), a barrier island southwest of New Orleans which has served as a resort was destroyed today by the Last Island Hurricane whose victims included more than one unnamed Jewish resident.
1857: During a debate on India, Benjamin Disraeli reiterated his conviction that the mutiny in India was more than just a military matter and that the government was not taking the correct measures in the matter. He also repudiated the government's faith in European alliances declaring that could not be depended upon.
1858(1st of Elul, 5618): Rosh Chodesh Elul
1860: The Jewish Messenger cautions “the public against an impostor, who calls himself Nelton and Abramowitsch, according to circumstances,” who writes his name with Hebrew letters “which may mean saint or sinner, as far as the knowledge of the common crowd goes. He dresses in priestly attire, so the Messenger says, with a white cravat and black cassock. While asking the Editor for charity, he appropriated an article of silver-ware from the mantelpiece”.
1862: In a letter written today addressed to the Adjutant General of the United States Army, General William Tecumseh Sherman warned that "the country will swarm with dishonest Jews" if continued trade in cotton is encouraged. (In a letter written in 1858, Sherman had described Jews as "…without pity, soul, heart, or bowels of compassion…" During the Civil War Sherman had numerous Jews serving in the various armies under his command with no whiff of anti-Semitism attached to his decisions. This included the 82nd Illinois Regiment that included a large contingent of Chicago Jews and was commanded by Edward S. Salomon. The regiment fought under his command during Sherman’s brilliant Atlanta Campaign and rose to the rank of General as Sherman’s forces bravely marched north from Savannah to help trap the remaining Confederate forces.
1862: Sarah Bernhardt made her acting debut at the Comédie Française in the title role of Racine's Iphigénie.
1864(9th of Av,5624): Tish’a B’Av (Did the Jewish soldiers fighting in the Union’s multi-prong offensive against the Rebels fast as they made their way across Northern Virginia and Georgia.
1865(19th of Av, 5625): Fifty year old Abraham Mordka Alter, the son of Yitzchak Alter and Feigele Lipschitz passed away today in Warszawa, Poland.
1866: Ernest Abraham Hart “was appointed editor of the British Medical Journal” today.
1867: Birthdate of Joseph Weber, one half of the vaudeville comedy act of Weber and Fields. Playing Jews was not a key to show biz success when this team started out. Some of their early success came playing Dutch (German characters) and Irishmen, something their audiences really enjoyed.
1879: It was reported today that there are parts of Coney Island, New York’s popular resort, where “Jews are not tolerated.”
1879: A review of Somebody’s Ned a work of romantic fiction combined with a murder mystery by Mrs. A.M. Freeman was published today. In this case the star crossed lovers are a French Catholic named Danton Roland and French Jewess named Rachel Rosenthal as well David Dudley and Jessica-Rachel. The plot thickens when Solomon Rosenthal is found dead. To find “who done it” go to
1879: In White Plains, New York, Justice C.W. Cochrane heard a case in which the Osmond C Lyon had filed a complaint against a Jewish merchant – Adolph D. Pollack – for selling cigars and neckties on Sunday in violation of the “blue laws.” The defendant responded that he had not violated the law because he had not “exposed” his goods “for sale” and had only sold them quietly when requested. He also said that as a Jew, he observed the Sabbath on Saturday and the enforcement of the law in this manner was a violation of the New York Constitution which prohibits interference with his religious views.
1879: “A Cool Day At Coney Island” published today shows that prejudice against Jews is now becoming prevalent at the popular resort. “For Coney Island is miniature New York and has its German quarter, its American quarter and its quarter where Jews are not tolerated.”
1881: It was reported today that the new Home for the Aged and Infirmed being built in Yonkers will cost more than $60,000.
1881: During a period of on-going Pogroms,” a dozen of the wealthiest Jews in Tsarist Russia filed into the palatial St. Petersburg home of Baron Horace de Gunzberg” to discuss their concern that a mass exodus of Jews from Russia would convince the authorities to continue their program of violence as a way of dealing with “the Jewish problem.”
1882: Mr. Lazarus Silverman, a Chicago banker, appeared at the office of the Clerk of Circuit Court with 12 Russians Jews who had arrived in the Windy City with their families. After following all of the legal requirements, the men took the oath and became citizens of the United States. Since their knowledge of English was limited, they signed the documents in Hebrew.
1883: Police fired on a mob that had resumed its attacks on the home of Joseph Scharf one of the defendants who had been acquitted of charges of having killed a Christian girl as part of a Jewish ritual murder.
1883: “The Demands on Charity” published today described a change in the assistance that will be rendered to the needy by New York’s charitable organizations. In the future, they will provide assistance to the needy who are trying to establish themselves in gainful occupations and trades. The United Hebrew Charities will help Jewish immigrants establish themselves in almost any occupation with the exception of street peddler, a calling that is now considered to be a public nuisance.
1884: “Persecuted By His Family” published today described the plight of Walter Gerson a young Jew born in 1858 at Bradford England who moved to London, Ontario and then to Chicago where he converted to Christianity and married a non-Jewish woman, a fact which his family first accepted but now seems to be determined to undue.
1884(20th of Av, 5644): Israel Blatchky, a young Jew who has been working in Des Moines, Iowa for the past three years passed away today.
1885: Dr.law Alois Eisler and Emilie Eisler gave birth to Otto Eisler.
1888: Oliver Hazard Peary married Josephine Diebitsch who would join Angelo Heilprin , the Hungarian born Jewish explorer on the expedition to Greenland in 1891
1888: “Something More About European Pauper Labor” published today included a summary of the testimony of the Director of the Jewish Emigration Protective Society before the Immigration Committee holding hearings at the Westminster Hotel in which he explained the reason for the impoverishment for Jewish workers coming to American and the tendency of them to settle among their co-religionists who provide them with support.
1889: “The Russian Emancipation” published today described the freeing of the serfs, which took place a quarter of a century ago, as a total failure. The peasants are in perpetual debt due to their inability to re-pay the government for their land and the failed agricultural system. This forces them to borrow money from the Jews who seize the land when they are unable to repay the loan. (Yet another reason for treating the Jews badly – they are the moneylenders despoiling the noble serfs)
1890: “Geographical Palestine” published today provides a detailed review of Palestine by Major C.R. Conder. Claude Reignier Conder served in the Corps of Royal Engineers and served two tours with the Palestine Exploration Fund providing him with invaluable first-hand knowledge of the future Jewish homeland.
1890: “Against Jews In Russia” published today provided a summary of the repressive edicts that the Czar has imposed on four million of his subjects which has led to their impoverishment and are intended to force them to leave the country and/or give up being Jewish.
1890: Sixty-four year old philanthropist and social reformer Charles Loring Brace passed away today In his book The Unknown God Or Inspiration Among Pre-Christian Races Brace points out that there is little “evidence of Egyptian found in the Hebrew faith.” According to him “the thinkers and teachers of the Jews were visited by those higher and purer inspirations which have made them the greatest benefactors of mankind in ancient history…The Jews of modern days ought to be forever honored for such progenitors; a race which could such men deserves the lasting respect of mankind.”
1890: Birthdate of Samuel Bischoff, the native of Hartford, CT and graduate of Boston University who produced movies from 1922 to 1964>
1891: “The seventh free excursion” sponsored by “the Sanitarium for Hebrew Children” takes place today with the boat leaving from the foot of East Third Street at nine o’clock this morning.
1892: Birthdate of publishing giant Alfred Knopf.
1892: The Third Marquess of Salisbury, Lord Robert Cecil, who as Prime Minister has reassured the House of Lords that regardless of the Czar’s policies “there were no grounds for dreading a wholesale invasion of Great Britain by pauper Jews from Russia” left office today and became the leader of “the loyal opposition.”
1893: In Brooklyn, Justice Walsh sentence William Davison to ten days in jail for his part in robbing a Jewish peddler named Burns.
1895: Five Jews were arrested by the police from the Elizabeth Street Station for violating the Sunday Closing Laws. One of those arrested, Morris Cohn “pleaded that he was a strict observer of the Hebrew Sabbath” and he was released by the Magistrate.
1895: “Sympathy For Hat And Cap Makers” published today described a mass meeting held at Union Square by several Jewish organizations in support of the workers who have been locked out by the manufacturers.
1895: Based on instructions provided by Meyer Schoenfeld and Herman Robinson the striking tailors, most of whom were Jewish and who were returning to work were not worried that they were being locked out today by the contractors since it was Sunday and the bosses observed the Sunday closing laws.
1895: During July, it was reported today, the United Hebrew Charities “responded to the applications for relief from 3,304” people on behalf of 11,013 individuals.
1896: Populist leader Mary Elizabeth Lease was quoted today as saying "Redemption money and interest-bearing bonds are the curse of civilization. We are paying tribute to the Rothchilds of England, who are but the agent of the Jews."
1898: “Nevada Colonists Despoiled” published today described how a group of Russian Jews who had been building a new life in Lyon County, Nevada, were swindled by two of their co-religionists Daniel Schwartz who mortgaged the groups crop to get $1,500 from a bank in Carson City and then ran off with money. The penniless Jews are now faced with the prospect of losing their newly built homes.
1898: L’Anti-Juif, “a weekly organ of the Anti-Semitic League” was published today for the first time in Paris.
1899: “Joseph Haworth’s New Role” published today described Jacob Litt’s decision to cast Joseph Haworth in the role of Raphael, the leading character in Israel Zangwill’s “The Ghetto.”
1899: The officers presiding over the court marital of Captain Dreyfus announced that the next four sittings of the court would be held behind closed doors.
1899: In Mitau, Latvia, merchant Lazar Hirshhorn and his wife Amelia gave birth to their 12th child, Joseph Herman Hirshhorn, the self-made financier and prospector best known for his role in establishing the Joseph H. Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C.
1899: The great Jewish actor Jacob Adler fell and seriously injured himself today while riding his bicycle at Long Branch, NJ.
1900: Mass meeting of the English Zionist Federation was held in East End.
1903: Herzl meets Jews from all circles in St. Petersburg and a banquet is arranged by the Russian Zionists.
1905: Birthdate of Erwin Chargaff, the Austrian born American biochemist who discovered two rules that led to the discovery of double helical structure of
DNA. He passed away in June of 2002.
1905: The British Aliens Act, which reflected anti-Jewish bias, became a law. The anti-Jewish bias was aimed at the Jews fleeing Rumania and Russia who were seeking a safe haven in England. This was manifestation of lingering anti-Jewish sentiment in an English society that was increasingly accepting of its Jewish population.
1907: Birthdate of Max Abrams, the native of Glasgow who played drums for several bands in the 1930’s and 1940’s who wrote “50 jazz tutor books.”
1909: The Chief Rabbi of Adrianople was forced to resign by Jews of Demotica for failing to take action and not protesting against the change in market day at Demotica, from Thursday to Saturday.
1910: In Philadelphia, PA, Max Leopold Margolis and his wife, the former Evelyn Kate Aronson gave birth to Catherine A. Margolis.
1911: Birthdate of Giorgio Cavagliere, an American Jewish architect who fled Mussolini’s Italy and became a leader of the urban preservation movement.
1911: Jews suffer the impoverishing effect of fires in Russian communities including Tulishkoff, Mlava and Konskavola.
1911: As the Turks recover from the effects of the fires at Constantinople, the Chief Rabbi forms a Relief Committee and Grand Vizier Hakki Bey sent a telegram to the 10th Zionist Congress meeting at Basle, Switzerland thanking the Jewish organization for the contributins to relieve the suffering of fire victims.
1911: In Copenhagen, Denmark, attacks are made on Shechitah at the Animal Protection Congress.
1912: In Westfield, MA, founding of Ahavas Achim synagogue.
1912: In Providence, Rhode, Island, found of Beth Israel synagogue.
1912: In Kenosha, Wisconsin founding of B’nai Zedek synagogue.
1914: Jews are expelled from Mitchenick, Poland
1914: Jews are expelled from Mitchenick, Poland
1916: It was reported today that Oscar Straus, the former U.S. Ambassador to Turkey, “assailed Jews who sought to forget their ancestors and their Jewish inheritance” saying “that if the present fashion in Jewish families of giving their children names as remote as possible from those with a Jewish sound continued, within a short time only Americans of Puritan ancestry would have names of Abraham and Jacob, Ruth and Esther.”
1917: It was reported today that the British Labour Party has adopted a memorandum on issues that will be part of a peace settlement that stated “in behalf of the Jews equal citizenship rights with other inhabitants is demanded from all countries and it is hoped that Palestine will be free from Turkish domination and become a free state under international guarantees to which such Jews as desire my return to work out their own salivation free from interference from nations and religions.”
1917: Turkish representative at The Hague, Netherlands denies that negotiations took place between Turkey and former United States ambassador, Henry Morgenthau regarding the sale of Palestine to the Jews
1917: Birthdate of Algerian born, French-Israeli writer Andre Chouraqui, known for his French-language translation of the Bible and his work for the government in Israel. A poet, Chouraqui was best known for translating religious texts, including La Bible hebraique et le Nouveau Testament (The Hebrew Bible and New Testament), published in 26 volumes between 1974 and 1977. Chouraqui studied law in Paris. During World War II, he joined the French Resistance and hid out in the Haute-Loire region of central France. After moving to Israel in 1958, he became an adviser to Israel's first Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion, from 1959 to 1963. He also served as deputy mayor of Jerusalem. He passed away at the age of 89 at his home in Jerusalem in 2007.
1919: The Weimar Republic's first Reichspräsident ("Reich President"), Friedrich Ebert of the SPD, signed the new German constitution into law. The Weimar Republic marked Germany’s first experience with a truly democratic government. It failed for lack of popular support and would give way to Hitler’s Third Reich. One of the excuses offered for German support the Holocaust was that Jews were associated with the founding of the Weimar Republic and the Weimar Republic was viewed as a humiliation saddled on the Germans by the Allies at the end of World War I. The logic is tortured, but it is neither the first time that people would rationalize and justify their anti-Semitism.
1920: Samuel Gompers is one of several labor leaders who attend a dinner honoring T.J. Healy before he departs for Europe where he will represent the American Federation of Labor at an international labor conference.
1923: At a session of the World Zionist Congress meeting in in Carslbad, Czechoslovakia, that continued until this morning, Dr. Chaim Weizmann and Nabum Sokolow, heads of the World Zionist Organization, defended their administration from the attacks to which it has been subjected during the last few days.
1925: Birthdate of Philadelphia native Arnold Schulman the University of North Carolina trained screenwriter whose work on such films as “Love With A Proper Stranger” and “A Hole in the Head” have earned him Writers Guild and Oscar nominations.
1926(1st of Elul, 5686): Rosh Chodesh Elul
1927: Birthdate of Gustav Bermel a member of the Ehrenfield anti-Nazi resistance Group who was murdered at the age of 17.
1927: In Brooklyn, of Sara (née Kaminsky) and David Rosenberg gave birth to Stuart Rosenberg, director of Cool Hand Luke.
1928: “Four Walls” a silent film co-starring Carmel Myers, the San Francisco born daughter of “daughter of an Australian rabbi and Austrian Jewish mother” was released in the United States today by MGM.
1929: Birthdate of Frankfurt, Germany native Geoffrey H. Hartmann one of “the Jewish children evacuated from Nazi Germany as part of a Kindertransport” who became a Professor of English and comparative literature at Yale, co-founder of the Judaic studies program at Yale and the “first director of what is now the Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies at Yale.”
1929: The Jewish Agency was created at the 16th Zionist Congress in Zurich. It was intended to include non-Zionists such as Louis Marshall, Leon Blum and Felix Warburg to take a leading role among those working to create a Jewish state. 1929: Florence Wolfson Howlett turned 14 and made her first entry in the diary she received as a birthday present. The diary would provide the basis for The Red Leather Diary by Lily Koppel
1930: At the second session of the fourth world congress of the Zionist Revisionist, Dr. Robert Lichtheim delivered a speech in which he said that the organization “would conduct its own political activities, particularly in pleading the Zionist cause before governments and statesmen, independently of the Zionist executive and the Jewish agency.
1930: In New York City, an announcement was made at the headquarters of the Allied Jewish Campaign that more than $1,214,000 was spent in the development of the economic and cultural program of the Jewish Agency in Palestine during the half year” that ended on May 1.
1932: Birthdate of American architect Peter Eisenman
1932: Birthdate of Israel Harold “Izzy” Asper, Canadian tax attorney and media magnate. A native of Minnedosa, Manitoba, Asper “was the founder of CanWest Global Communications Corp and father to Leonard, Gail and David Asper, each of whom served as officers of CanWest.
1933: The Supreme Representative Committee of German Jews established a farm near Rathenow, in Prussia, to train unemployed Jews as agricultural workers.
1933: Nineteen year old actress Heddy Lamar, the daughter of Viennese Jewish parents married Austrian arms dealer and fascist Friedrich Mandl.
1933: In response to what is described as an “epidemic of suicides among German Jews of the Rhineland,” the Jewish community of Cologne has issued an appeal signed by the lay leaders and the Rabbinate, urging Jews not to despair.
1933: The Hamburg Federation of Grain Merchants, which had a large Jewish membership, was dissolved. Its funds and property were turned over to the "Aryanized" All-German Federation of Commerce.
1933: In Warsaw, an edict was issued forbidding Jewish bakers, who observe the Sabbath, to bake bread on Sundays. The edict affected over 50,000 Jewish bakers.
1933: In Cracow, Thirty-one of the forty-two arrested persons, charged with organizing riots against Jews in a nearby town received sentences of imprisonment of from four months to three years.
1935(12th of Av, 5695): Sixty-five year old portrait artist Leo Mielziner passed away today.
1936: Condemning British proposals to partition Palestine as "outrageous," Senator Royal S. Copeland (Dem., NY) introduced in the Senate today a resolution asking the Senate's "forthright indication of unwillingness to accept modification in the mandate without Senate consent." Senator Copeland declared that the territory allotted the Jews in the proposed partition was insufficient to maintain even a small number of Jews and that establishment of a small Jewish state might result in a war between the Jews and the Arabs. The Jews are having a "terrible time" in Germany, Poland and Rumania.... At the same time he noted a "distinct animosity" on the part of American consuls abroad in granting visas to Jews, which, he said, showed discrimination. (As reported by JTA)
1936: “The Polish delegation to the World Jewish Congress charged early today…that Poland’s 3,500,000 Jews were being terrorized and made paupers” and that “anti-Semitic agitation is making the Jews the scapegoats for” Poland’s “ills” which “has led to the loss of Jewish life and property.”
1936: In Geneva,tonight, at the meeting of the World Jewish Congress, Rabbi M.L. Perlsweig, head of the World Zionist Organization's political information department, accused the British authorities in Palestine of "political ineptitude so gross as to be almost unbelievable” while “Rabbi Stephen S. Wise of New York paid tribute to the self-restraint of the Palestine Jews…”
1937: By a vote of 304 to 158, the 20th Zionist Congress, held in Zurich, endorsed Chaim Weizmann¹s proposal and empowered the Zionist Executive to negotiate with the British government the terms of the Royal (Peel) Report, according to which the partition of Palestine would be implemented and the Jewish state was to be established. Dr. Weizmann¹s proposal was denounced by Dr. Stephen Wise, on behalf of American Jewry and many other delegates, including Menachem Ussishkin. A revised version of the partition plan was also supported by David Ben-Gurion.
1937: In Zurich roving bands of Nazis assaulted and molested a number of Zionist delegates.
1939: Laurence Steinhardt begins serving as U.S. Ambassador to the U.S.S.R.
1939(26th of Av, 5699): Having received a summons from the Gestapo and fearing that he would be tortured like others who had received such a summons, 68 year old mathematicians Paul Epstein “took a lethal dose of Veronal.
1941: Birthdate of Brooklyn political figure, Elizabeth Holtzman. A graduate of Harvard Law School, Holtzman began serving in Congress in 1973 just in time to be part of the Watergate investigation. After leaving the House, she held various political positions but missed out on her biggest prize, a seat in the U.S. Senate.
1941: Vichy adopted an ordinance excluding Jews from working as doctors.
1941: Het Parool, “an Amsterdam-based daily newspaper” was published for the first time “as a resistance paper during the Nazi occupation” by a staff that included Jaap Nunes Vaz who would be sent to Sobibor in 1942.
1942: Today “Hollywood actress Hedy Lamarr (called “the most beautiful woman in Hollywood”) received a patent with composer George Antheil for a “frequency hopping, spread-spectrum communication system” designed to make radio-guided torpedoes harder to detect or jam.”
http://jwa.org/thisweek/aug/11/1942/actress-hedy-lamarr-patents-basis-for-wifi1942(28th of Av, 5702): The Nazis murdered 13,000 Jews at Rostov-On-Don, a deadly total that would be added to a few days later when another two to five thousand Jews were murdered.
1944: Joop Westerweel, Dutch poet and educator was executed by the Nazis, for helping Jews escape. In late February 1944 Joop Westerweel traveled to the foot of the Pyrenees to say farewell to the group about to cross into Spain, which included Joseph Heinrich and thirteen other young people Joop and his underground group had helped to escape from Holland. His memorable speech was later vividly recalled by many who were present. He wished them well and that they should build Palestine into a place where there would be no war, only food and work for everyone. As the young pioneers left for Spain, Joop turned back to Holland. On March 11, he was arrested by border police while helping two young Jewish girls cross illegally from Holland to France. Five months later he was executed in prison in Vught Concentration Camp. The sacrifice of Joop Westerweel and those like him must never be forgotten. The challenge for the living is to be worthy of the proof of such virtue.
1945: A ‘small pogrom’ took place in Krakow, Poland, three months after the end of World War II in Europe.
1945: Collier’s magazine published “Terror in Palestine” by Frank Gervasi which provides a contemporary look at events following the death of Lord Moyne.
1948(8th of Av, 5708): Elaine Hammerstein, the daughter of opera producer Arthur Hammerstein, who gained fame as an American silent film and stage actress, passed away.
1949: Birthdate of David Rubenstein, the son of a Baltimore postal worker, who co-founded the Carlyle Group and whose philanthropies included serving as Chairman of both Kennedy Center and the Duke University board of Trustees.
1950: In Riga, Frieda and Zalman Baskin gave birth to Ilya Zalmanovich Baskin who came to the United States in 1976 where he gained fame as actor Elya Baskin whose first film appearance was in “The World’s Greatest Lover”
1951(9th of Av): Yiddish playwright and journalist David Pinsky passed away.
1951(9th of Av, 5711): Rebekah Bettelheim Kohut passed away
1952: The ailing Talal¹s son, Hussein II, was proclaimed the King of Jordan, but a Regency Council was appointed to rule the country, since he was a minor. In 1952 three Middle Eastern monarchs Hussein II of Jordan, Ahmed Fuad of Egypt and Faisal of Iraq were minors. King Hussein had seen his grandfather assassinated by an Arab fanatic who thought he was too friendly with the Jews. Hussein’s goal was to stay alive and remain king. He wisely did not take part in the Sinai Campaign of 1956. He foolishly attacked Israel in 1967 and lost the West Bank and east Jerusalem. In the end, he signed a peace treaty with Israel but without gaining any territory west of the Jordan River. Fuad would be ousted by a revolt masterminded by Colonel Nasser, the Pan-Arabist who had a secular version of Osama’s vision. Faisal would die in a revolt in 1958 that would eventually bring Hussein (the dictator not the king) to power in Iraq.
1953: Birthdate of Stephen M. Katz, the native of Jericho, NY and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine who worked at several overseas locations including the Yotvata Hai-Bar Nature Reserve in Israel before pursuing a political career as a Republican member of the New York States Assembly.
1953: CBS broadcast the last episode of “Steve Randall” “a television series starring Melvyn Douglas.”
1955: Leonard Bernstein led premiere of Symphonic Suite from "On the Waterfront", BSO, Tanglewood
1955: After premiering in the United Kingdom last year, “The Divided Heart” featuring Theodore Bikel and John Schlesinger was released in the United States today by Ealing Studios.
1961: Birthdate of columnist David Brooks
1962: "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do" “a song recorded by Neil Sedaka, and co-written by Sedaka and Howard Greenfield” “hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100” today.
1964(3rd of Elul, 5724): Sixty-four year old Leopold Mannes, the creator of Kodachrome, passed away today.
1965: Rolf Friedemann Pauls, the man chosen to be Bonn’s first Ambassador to Israel arrived today at a “heavily guarded Lydda Airport.”
1968: In London, Nigerian native Henry Okonedo and his wife Joan Allman the Jewish Pilates teacher gave birth to Tony Award winning actress Sophia Okonedo who was raised in the faith of her mother.
1970(9th of Av, 5730): Tish’a B’Av
1972(1st of Elul, 5732): Rose Schneiderman passed away. Born in Poland in 1884, Miss Schneiderman was brought to the United States by her father who worked as a tailor on the lower East Side. She gained first-hand experience on life in the garment industry when she went to work as a cap maker. She earned eight dollars a week. But she had to buy her own sewing machine with a cash $25 cash down payment and an additional $45 paid in installments. In addition to this, she had to pay for power and thread. Miss Schneiderman helped to organize the Women’s Trade Union League, an organization that she served as President for several terms. In 1909 she took part in a strike of waistmakers that began the unionization of the garment industry. In New York, she served as Secretary of the State Labor Department from 1937 to 1944. During the Great Depression, she served as an official of the National Recovery Administration and was considered to be a member of F.D.R.’s “brain trust.”
1975: “Prisoner of Zion David Chernoglaz received an exit visa to Israel.”
1976(15th of Av, 5736): Tu B’Av
1976(15th of Av, 5736): Twenty-nine year old Harold W. Rosenthal of Philadelphia was an aide to Senator Jacob Javits, Japanese tourist guide, Yutako Hirano and two Israelis – Solomon Weisbeck and Ernest Elias – were murdered and thirty others were by two Palestinian terrorists who unsuccessfully attempted to hijack an El Al plane at the Istanbul airport.
1977: West Bank mayors and notables submitted separate views to US Secretary of State Cyrus Vance. The mayors acknowledged that the PLO was the ³sole² representative of the Palestine Arabs and claimed that no settlement was possible without PLO participation. But other West Bank notables had different ideas. They advocated an immediate mutual recognition of the national rights of Palestinians and Israelis in the area. They claimed that their two homelands must be mutually exclusive and advocated the establishment of a ³peace-promoting force² acceptable to both nations. These West Bank notables advocated the holding of a plebiscite during the interim period so that Palestinians could decide freely whether to join Jordan or establish an independent, democratic state. Unfortunately, these talks led to the same place as those that had come before and after – nowhere.
1977: Jordan and Egypt informed the US that they were prepared to sign formal peace treaties with Israel, but at the conclusion of the Arab-Israeli peace negotiations.
1983: Today, Joseph Hochstein wrote an Op-Ed titled "Not goodbye, but l'hitraot," in which he said, "I love newspapering, and I have a special love for this paper, since I helped start it in 1965 with my father. ... What happens each week at The Jewish Week is achieved with greater difficulty than the work done in the newsrooms of great metropolitan dailies, and it is more profoundly needed. Knowing that I played a central role in making this happen helps offset the regret of leaving, as does the joy of realizing a long-held dream of living in Israel." He wrote this just before making Aliyah.
1983: “Phar Lap” a biopic about a racehorse co-starring Ron Leibman was released in Australia today by 20th Century Fox.
1983: Birthdate of Rochester, NY, native Adam Podlesh the outstanding punter for University of Maryland Terrapins who has played for the Jacksonville, Chicago and Pittsburgh NFL teams.
1984(13th of Av, 5744): Ninety-one year old American published Alfred Abraham Knopf, Sr. founder of Alfred A Knopf, Inc passed away today. (As reported by Herbert Mitgang)
1987(16th of Av, 5747): Eighty-six year old Clara Peller who gained fame as the “Where’s the beef” lady passed away today in Chicago.
1987: Alan Greenspan becomes Chairman of the United States Federal Reserve. Another Jewish economist hits the top spot.
1988: Meir Kahane renounced his US citizenship to stay in the Israeli Parliament. Kahane and his virulent anti-Arab views have been rejected by the Israeli mainstream. Kahane himself was gunned down by Arab terrorists.
1991: In “The Felix Warburg Mansion; A Window to the Past in the Present,” published today Christopher Gray describes the past, present and future of the building that was home to one of New York’s most influential and famous Jewish families. http://www.nytimes.com/1991/08/11/realestate/streetscapes-the-felix-warburg-mansion-a-window-to-the-past-in-the-present.html?pagewanted=print&src=pm
1991(1st of Elul, 5751): Rosh Chodesh Elul
1995: “A Walk in the Clouds” produced by David and Jerry Zucker, co-starring Debra Messing and filmed by cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki was released in the United States today 20th Century Fox.
1997: Baltimore born Washington lawyer Alfred H. Moses completed his service as U.S. Ambassador to Romania. Five years later the President of Romania awarded him the Marc Cruce Medal.
1997(8th of Av, 5757): Erev Tish’a B’Av
1997(8th of Av, 5757): Forty-nine year old Eli Adourian of Kfar Adumim died of the wounds he sustained when a Hamas suicide bomber struck at the Mahane Yehuda Market on July 30th where the death toll would reach sixteen with an additional 178 injured.
1999: Sheila Finestone began serving as Senator for Montarville, Quebec.
1999: Max Kampelman was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
1999: Janet Jagan, the Chicago born Jewess completed her service as President of Guyana when Bharrat Jagdeo was sworn as President
1999: Michael Dougall Bell began serving as Canada’s Ambassador to Israel.
2002: The Sunday New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including 'F E G: Ridiculous Poems for Intelligent Children by Robin Hirsch Fireweed: A Political Autobiography by Gerda Lerner, the Austrian born Jewish American political activist.
2004: Seventy-three year old German historian Wolfgang Mommsen who fought attempts to whitewash the Holocaust made by some other German historians passed away today.
2005: While the front pages of the paper carried news of Sharon’s attempts to bring peace to the Middle East with the withdrawal from Gaza, the back pages of Haaretz carried a reminder of Sharon’s warrior past. According to a story in Haaretz, “The bloodstained bandage that wrapped Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's head after he was injured in fighting during the 1973 Yom Kippur War has been offered for sale on e-Bay with the bidding starting at $10,000.” Sharon sustained the head wound when he was leading Israeli forces across the Suez Canal.
2006: First day of the New York International Fringe Festival which will include a performance of “The Cheerleader and the Rabbi” featuring Sandy Wolshin. “A former cheerleader for the Oakland Raiders shelater immersed herself in a mikveh as part of an orthodox conversion.”
2006: The Jerusalem Post reported that Maj. Nimrod Hallel, 42, from Rosh Ha'ayin, was killed in the town of Leboneh in the western sector of southern Lebanon when an anti-tank missile was fired at his vehicle.
2006: A reported 120 rockets rained down on northern Israel striking Haifa, Safed and Kiryat Shimona.
2006: Conflicting reports abound concerning the terms of a proposed cease fire intended to stop the fighting in Lebanon. Some of the major points of contention include the robustness of the mandate of the international force and the willingness of the Lebanese army to confront and disarm Hezbollah fighters.
2007: On the “Jewish Jock Front,” The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that San Diego Charger Igor Olshansky may not get to play in an upcoming exhibition game with the Seattle SeaHawks while John Grabow of the Pittsburgh Pirates won a game on just 13 pitches, which was all he needed to complete a one inning relief stint against the San Francisco Giants.
2008: Yuli Tamir announced plans to remove Ze'ev Jabotinsky's work from the national education curriculum
2008 Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Finance Minister Ronnie Bar-On decided to implement all of the recommendations of the State Commission of Inquiry into the government's handling of Holocaust survivors. One of the key recommendations was to increase the monthly stipend of about 43,000 survivors to the level of 75 percent of the stipend given by the German government to recipients of its restitution payments.
2008: Palestinian terrorists in Gaza violated a truce agreement with Israel, firing a Kassam rocket at the western Negev town of Sderot. The incident continues a pattern of sporadic cross-border shelling and rocket launches since the cease-fire was declared.
2008: Iowa native, James Hoyt passed away at the age of 83. As one of the first four American soldiers to discover the Buchenwald labor camp in 1945, James Hoyt rarely slept well. “He’s finally getting the rest he’s never had all these years,” his daughter, Theresa Stewart, 51, of Oxford said. When he closed his eyes, he’d see images of the Nazi concentration camp, which he thought was a mannequin factory when he first saw it before its liberation April 11, 1945, Stewart said. His daughters remembered him as a reserved man who put others first and loved reading, rebuilding cars and solving crossword puzzles.“He had time to listen to anyone and would hear everybody’s story,” Stewart said. For years, Hoyt did not share his own story. He later learned from doctors at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Iowa City that he was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. Hoyt of Oxford, Iowa graduated from high school in 1943 and became a private first class after he was drafted in early 1944 to serve in World War II. He was a member of the 6th Armored Division’s 9th Infantry Battalion and fought in the Battle of the Bulge. On April 11, 1945, Hoyt was the radio operator and driver for a four-man reconnaissance team when two Buchenwald escapees flagged them down. The team went to the camp, which was hidden in a forested area. “When the people saw our vehicle with the American markings on it, they really went wild. They tore a part of the fence down. They threw us up in the air,” Hoyt told The Gazette 10 years ago. “It was a very sorry sight all the way. They were skin and bones, the living ones. Of course, there were all kinds of dead ones there.” In all, about 238,500 prisoners were held at the camp. As the years passed, Hoyt became more willing to talk about his experience, helping him to heal, his daughter, Pat Hatcher, said. “We didn’t know what he was fighting,” Hatcher said of the emotional memories. “It helps us understand him better.” After the war in 1949, Hoyt married Doris Hipp. He worked with his brothers in construction before joining the United States Postal Service in Oxford, where he served more than 30 years.
2009(21st of Av, 5769): Robert William LeVine passed away to at the age of 71.(As reported by Emma Stickgold)
2009: Three books about Bernie Madoff – Too Good to Be True: The Rise and Fall of Bernie Madoff, Madoff with the Money, Betrayal: The Life and Lies of Bernie Madoff – all hit the bookstores today.
2009: The National Jewish Retreat opens at Greenwich, Connecticut. Featured presenters and performers for this event that ends on August 16 include Rabbi Manis Friedman, Rabbi Immanuel Schochet, Rabbi Yossi Jacobson, Professor Jonathan Sarna, Mrs. Rivka Slonim and recording star Arvram Fried.
2009: Barnes & Noble announces that Rashi by Elie Weisel and Blindman’s Bluff by Faye Kellerman are available at their stores and on-line.
2009: Releases of “Saints & Tzadiks” a CD on which Irish chanteuse Susan McKeown and Lexatics bandleader Lorin Skalmerg sing Yiddish, Irish and blends of Yiddish and Irish songs that highlight “the traditions and similarities as well as the different ways each tradition tells a musical tale.”
2010(1st of Elul, 5770): Rosh Chodesh Elul:
2010: Anat Hoffman leader of the Women of the Wall Prayer group is scheduled to blow the shofar on behalf of the group as she has done for the past 21 years.
2010: US envoy George Mitchell met with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to discuss advancing direct talks with the Palestinians. “We see eye to eye on the need open up direct talks with the Palestinians," Mitchell said about Netanyahu in comments made before the meeting.
2010: IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi told the Turkel Committee today that the IDF made a crucial mistake when it did not resort to accurate fire against those blocking entry to the Mavi Marmara Turkish aid ship as IDF Shayetet 13 commandos rappelled onto the ship from helicopters
2011: Another session of “Hebrew Literacy: Aleph, Bet, and Beyond” is scheduled to take place at Sixth & I Historic Synagogue.
2011: The Eleventh Memorial for Yiddish Poets is scheduled to take place tonight at the amphitheater in Tekoa. The event memorializes “the victims of the ‘Night of the Murdered Poets’ who were thirteen prominent Jewish figures in the USSR who were secretly executed at Stalin's order on the night between August 12th and August 13th 1952. These were the most outstanding and renowned Jewish writers, intellectuals, poets, musicians and actors of their time.”
2011: At the Off the Wall Comedy Club, Jerusalem funny man David Kilimnick whose funny bone was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, is scheduled to performTu BAv Comedy Special 'Jewish Singles' from The ‘Find Me A Wife’ Show.
2011: Israel's interior minister gave final authorization to build 1,600 apartments in disputed east Jerusalem and will approve 2,700 more in days, officials said today.
2011: Eighty-two year old Juergen Corleis passed away.
2011: Interior Minister Eli Yishai (Shas) said today during a meeting with that the “time is ripe for an upheaval in the coalition” in order to solve the ongoing social crisis that has rocked the country over the past month. Yishai has repeatedly stated that his party will leave the government coalition if no solution is to be found. As opposed to Yishai, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman (Yisrael Beiteinu) threw his support behind the government’s policies, calling Israel an “island of stability” in comparison to the ongoing riots occurring across Britain.
2011(11th of Av, 5771): Noach Flug, a Holocaust survivor who dedicated his life to fighting for the rights of other survivors is remembered as "a towering figure" passed away today in Jerusalem at the age of 86.
2012: Ben Sarsin in scheduled to be called to the Torah as a Bar Mitzvah at Temple Judah in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
2012: “Avenue Q,” the musical creation of Jeff Marx is scheduled to have its final performance at the Barter Theatre.
2012: The International Arts and Crafts Fair also known as Hutzot Hayozer is scheduled to open one after the end of Shabbat in Jerusalem.
2012: A fire broke out near the town of Kiryat Tivon, near Haifa, this morning, a few days after firefighters battled repeated blazes in the area believed to have been set by arsonists. Eight firefighting crews supported by two aircraft brought the fire under control. No injuries were reported.
2012: Israeli rhythmic gymnast Neta Rivkin performed well in all four routines at the London Games today, to secure a best-ever Israeli finish in the event. Rivkin, 21, finished seventh overall, making her the most successful rhythmic gymnast in Israeli Olympic history. Evgenia Kanaeva of Russia won the gold.
2013: “The Last White Knight” Paul Saltzman’s documentary about his personal encounter with Mississippi Racism is scheduled to be shown at the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival.
2013: The San Diego Jewish Film Festival, PJ Library, Shalom Baby, and Jewish Family Service are scheduled to sponsor “Learn About the Jewish New Year with Elmo” an event designed to prepare youngsters for the upcoming holidays.
2013: “Passages through the Fire: Jews and the Civil War,” an exhibit co-presented by the American Historical Society and Yeshiva University is scheduled to come to an end today.
2013: Harriet Rochlin, the leading expert on Western Jewish History recommends that those who can attend this evening’s opening of “American Jerusalem: Jews and the Making of San Francisco” a film that tells the epic story of pioneer Jews in San Francisco, a number of whom played a significant role in the transformation of a tiny village to California’s first metropolis.
2013: In Cedar Rapids, friends and family are scheduled to celebrating the graduation from Nursing School and Pinning of Rebbitzin Sabrina Thalblum.
2013: “Passages through the Fire: Jews and the Civil War,” a new exhibition presented by the American Jewish Historical Society and Yeshiva University Museum is scheduled to come to an end today.
2013: Just three days before Israeli-Palestinian peace talks are set to resume in Jerusalem. “Housing and Construction Minister Uri Ariel (Jewish Home) announced today that 793 new apartments would be built in Jerusalem, and 394 in large settlement blocs in the West Bank.” (As reported by Lazar Berman)
2013: Finance Minister Yair Lapid lashed out today at the decision to build more than one thousand new homes in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, calling it "a double mistake." Lapid's comments came on the heels of similar condemnation by Meretz leader, Zahava Gal-On, who accused the government of trying to stymie the nascent peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. (As reported by JPost Staff)
2014:”Marvin Hamlisch, What He Did for Love” and “The Jewish Cardinal” are scheduled to be shown at the Berkshire Jewish Film Festival.
2014: Israel will send its team of negotiators back to Cairo today if Hamas honors the 72-hour cease-fire that went into effect at midnight, diplomatic officials said yesterday evening. (As reported by Herb Keinon)
2014: “Former Israeli ambassador to the US Michael Oren denied today that he was fired as a CNN analyst, saying that he asked to suspend his contract, which obligates him to interview exclusively to that network, so he could accept more requests from other media as well.” (As reported by Raphael Ahren)
2014(15th of Av, 5774): “Three Israelis were killed when a train collided with their minibus at a level crossing in the canton of Nidwalden in Switzerland this morning.” (As reported by Stuart Winer)
2014(15th of Av, 5774): Celebration of Tu B’Av, a day devoted to love with no particular ritual but with a long tradition dating back, according to some, to the days when Shiloh was the site of religious observance for the 12 tribes
featuring “excerpts from Metallic Blues, Broken Wings and Lost Islands (all of which are Israeli movies from the 2000s) followed by informal discussion with Dr. Moshe Rachmuth, who teaches Modern Hebrew and Israeli cinema at Portland State University.
2015: At a time when “an estimated 47,000 African migrants, mostly from Eritrea and Sudan, have managed to illegally enter Israel via Egypt, seeking jobs or asylum” “Residents of south Tel Aviv demonstrated tonight against a High Court of Justice ruling that would limit to 12 months the detention time for migrants in holding facilities” because they feel that their neighborhood has “the State of Israel’s warehouse” for these individuals. (As reported by the Times of Israel)
2015: Julie Azous is scheduled to provide Maj-Johngg training for players at all levels at the 92nd Street Y.
2015: “Hours after Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon warned that Palestinian terror group were seeking to carry out attacks” “members of the IDF, Border Police and Israel Police arrested 15 wanted Palestinians in a series of operations” tonight.(As reported by Stuart Winer)
2016: Comedian Gary Gulman is scheduled to appear at the summer benefit fund raiser sponsored by the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Educational Center.
2016: In New Orleans, Congregation Gates of Prayer is scheduled to host the first meeting of PFLAG which “promotes the health and well-being of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender persons, their families and friends through: support, to cope with an adverse society; education, to enlighten an ill-informed public; and advocacy, to end discrimination and to secure equal civil rights.”
2016: Madeline Isenberg is scheduled to lecture on “Different Traditions Even In Death: Ashkenazi vs. Sephardi Tombstones” and Brooke Ganz is scheduled to lecture on “Using the Gesher Galicia Website and All Galicia Database to Research Towns and Families” at the 36th IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy in Seattle, Washington.