1191: As the Christians seek to retake Jerusalem King Richard the Lionhearted arrived at Tyre.
1242: Two dozen wagonloads of Talmudic volumes and 200 other rabbinic manuscripts were burned at Paris.
1247: Pope Innocent IV contacts the king of Navarre. In a dispatch he requested the king compel Christian debtors to pay off their debt to Jewish lenders.
1249: King Louis IX, the French King who made great effort to convert Jews, occupied Damietta Egypt during the 7th Crusade.
1391: Ferrand Martiniz of Seville incited a mob to attack the Jewish quarter. It soon spread to all of Spain except for Granada. Over 10,000 Jews were killed; many others chose conversion and became New Christians. Of these, many continued to practice Judaism in secret, while paying lip service to the Church. This eventually led to the Inquisitions. In Barcelona, the Jewish quarter, located for over 400 years near the castle, was totally destroyed.
1391: “In the aftermath of the great massacres of Jews” in Spain “which began” today, Paul of Burgos who “was original names as Solomon ha-Levi’ “converted to Christianity, and became an archbishop, lord chancellor, and exegete known as Pablo de Santa Maria.
1487: In Soncino, Italy, Joshua Solomon Soncino completed the printing of a Pentateuch with a commentary by Rashi.
1490: After being interrogated by the Vicar-general of the Bishopric of Astorga, Benitor Garicia confessed to having secretly returned to practicing Judaism five years ago and that he had encouraged two other conversos – a man named Franco from Tembleque and Juan Juan de Ocaña, from La Guardia – to return to Judaism. Eventually all three would be put to death on charges of having participated in ritual murder of one who came to be known as the Holy Child of La Guardia.
1506: Birthdate of King John III of Portugal. Persecution of Marranos and Conversos intensified during his reign with the arrival of the Inquisition. On the other hand he met with David Reubeini in 1525 and the two negotiated over the possibility of the King supplying this adventurer with as many as eight ships to use in a fight against the Moslem leader, Selim I. Since much of the life of Reubeni is shrouded in myth and half truths, we cannot be sure as to the reason the negotiations failed.
1536: The Inquisition was introduced into Mexico. Convsersos, Sephardic Jews who had been forcibly converted to Catholicism arrived in Mexico with Cortes and the Conquistadores. Among these first arrivals was Hernando Alonzo who built the boats used by Cortes during his conquest of Mexico. The most famous of these early arrivals was a Luis de Carvajal, the noble who established the New Kingdom of Leon in what today is part of northern Mexico. The arrival of the Inquisition had an inimical effect on the Conversos, many of whom secretly practiced Judaism. The descendants of these people may be found among the crypto-Jews of New Mexico who began trying to reconnect with their Jewish roots in the last decades of the 20th century
1629 (14th of Sivan): Rabbi Joseph ben Benjamin Samegah author of Mikrae Kodesh passed away
1716: The SS Restoration arrived in Massachusetts carrying several Jewish merchants who would help to form the core of the Jewish community in the Bay Colony.
1771: Isaac Lindo presented the synagogue in Barbados with a sepher Torah
1775(28th of Iyar): Leib Epsitein, author of Or ha-Shanim passed away.
1799: Lyon Samuel and Kitty Solomons were marred at the Great Synagogue in London today.
1802: Birthdate of Rabbi Aaron II of Klarlin the Chasid who was the grandson of Aaron ben Jacob.
1808: Birthdate of Jacob Raphael De Cordova, Texas land agent and colonizer. A native of Jamaica, he settled in Philadelphia in the 1820’s with his father before moving to Texas in 1839. Jacob and his brother Phineas De Cordova operated one of the largest land agencies in Texas. Jacob was one of three men who helped lay out Waco in 1848. He passed away in 1868.
1818: Birthdate of I.M Rabinowitz
1819: Joseph Myers married Rebecca Cohen today in the United Kingdom.
1821(6th of Sivan, 5581): Shavuot
1821: Birthdate of Moses Isaac Tedeschi, the native of Triest whose knowledge of the Bible and Italian enabled him to lecture “in the Talmud Torah in his native city.”
1821: Birthdate of Leone Levi, the native of Ancona, Italy who immigrated to London where he became a successful jurist, statistician and Presbyterian.
1826: Birthdate of Léon Say “a former employee of the Rothschild's Northern Railway Company who became the Minister of Finance in 1872’ who supported Alphonse de Rothschild’s attempt to preserve France’s bimetallism system.
1827: Phineas Nathan and Rachel Barnett were married today at the Great Synagogue in London.
1832: English philosopher Jeremy Bentham “who spoke out many times on behalf of the Jews as an oppressed minority who were victims of popular prejudices” passed away For a detailed account of Bentham’s complex view of the Jewish people see “Jerry Bentham: Critical Assessments, Volume 4” starting on page 319.
1838(13th of Sivan, 5598): In Vienna, Judah Jeiteles, the son of Jonas Jeiteles, the author of “Mebo Lashon Aramitm” the first Hebrew language grammar of Biblical Aramaic passed away today.
1838: Samuel Magnus married Miriam Isaacs at Chatham today.
1839: The first train of the Nordbahn, or Kaiser Ferdinands-Nordbahn, Austria's first steam railway company which was financed by Salomon Mayer von Rothschild which had come from Vienna arrived at Břeclav
1841: In Silesia, Gustavus Mosler, a lithographer, cigar maker and tobacconist and his wife gave birth Henry Mosler, who was raised in Cincinnati, Ohio where he began his career as a wood engraver, sketch artist and illustrator.
1841: Raphael Picard and Sarah Levy were married at the New Synagogue in London.
1844: In London, George Williams founded the first YMCA which was the model for the YMHA and in America, the site of the creation of basketball which was for a time “the Jewish sport.”
1846: Birthdate of Colonel Nicolas Jean Robert Conrad Auguste Sandherr who while serving in the Statistical Section (Counterintelligence) gather a secret commission of inquiry to investigate the origin of documents that showed French military secrets were being sold to the Germans which concluded the Captain Dreyfus was the culprit.
1851(6th of Sivan, 5611): Shavuot
1855: Isaac Kaatz, Gottlieb Milhelm and Anton First were arrested today on charges of having been involved in the theft of eight cows from a farm belong to Colonel Lewis Morris. The three carcasses found in the possession of the accused all bore a mark indicating that they were Kosher.
1859: In Australia, Queensland is established as a separate colony from New South Wales. By 1865, there were enough Jews living in the Queensland city of Brisbane that a congregation was formed that held services in a local Masonic hall until 1886 when a sanctuary with a seating capacity of 400. In 1879, the Jews of Toowoomba, Queensland, built a synagogue which, as the community shrunk in size, was only used on the High Holidays.
1859: In Budapest, Dr. Lowinger Ignatius Salzer and his wife Berti gave birth to Donát Bánki “the Hungarian mechanical engineer” whose invention included “the carburetor for the stationary engine.”
1861: Fifty year old Count Cavour, a leader in the movement to create a unified Italy in which all people, including the Jews, would enjoy full civil liberties, passed away. While Cavour complained about Baron James Rothschild because of his banking practices, he used him to finance the cause and counted among his closest advisors Isaac Atrom who was dissuaded from resigning his position when Cavour passed away.
1865: Birthdate of Dr. Max Rosenthal, the son of Herman Rosenthal, the gynecologist who served as House surgeon at St. Mark’s Hospital and the Montefiore Home in New York City. His young brother George became the manager of the Edison General Electric Company at St. Louis.
1866: In the United Kingdom, Judah P. Benjamin, the former Confederate cabinet member and unrepentant rebel “was called to the bar” today.
1867: In Cincinnati, Ohio, George Seeman, a cotton factor who was business with the Lehmann brothers and Caroline (Carrie) Goodhart gave birth to Julia Seeman who married Felix Drefyous at New Orleans’ Temple Sinai in 1891.
1870(7th of Sivan, 5630): Second Day of Shavuot
1870: A meeting is scheduled to be held a Temple Israel in Brooklyn “to consider the distressed condition” of the Jews in Romania.
1872: The New York Times reported that “the Greeks in the Levant have hit on a new mode of converting Jews.” After hearing the “stale old fable…that a Christian child had been killed…by the Jews so as to mix its blood with their bread at Passover” the Greeks have been “inflamed…with a fine spirit of proselytism” that began with the seizure of Polish Jew whose hair and beard they smeared with tar before setting it on fire. After enough Jews were tortured in a similar fashion, they sought shelter with the local Moslems.
1873: Today’s Minor Topics column described the progress that Jews of England have made during the 19th century. Thirty years ago a Jew could not sit in Parliament. And now Sir George Jessel, who was appointed Solicitor General last year, is about to named Master of the Rolls, a position so prestigious that is just below the post of Lord High Chancellor.
1875: Birthdate of Novelist Thomas Mann. Mann was not Jewish but in 1905 he married Katia Pringsheim, daughter of prominent family of Jewish intellectuals. They had six children. Mann left Nazi German in 1933, four years after having won the Nobel Prize for Literature. He lived in the United States for many years. He died in Switzerland in 1955, never having lived in his native land again.
1876: Alois Schicklgruber changes his name to Hiedler which morphs into Hitler. In this case a name change may have helped to change history because as one comic said, can you imagine people saying Heil Schiclgruber with a straight face?
1877: Anglo-Jewish author Benjamin Leopold Farjeon married Margaret Jane “Maggie” Jefferson, the daughter of Joseph Jefferson, a member of a distinguished American acting family.
1878(5th of Sivan, 5638): Erev Shavuot
1878: In article entitled “The Pentecost Festival” published today, the New York Times reported that “The Festival of Pentecost, which will be celebrated this evening at sunset by all the Jewish congregations in the world, is the second of the three great feasts which mark the calendar of the Hebrew Church. These are the Passover Festival, or Feast of Unleavened Bread; the Pentecost Festival, or Feast of Weeks, and the Tabernacles.” The article traces the history of the holiday from its origins as an agricultural festival to a celebration of the giving of the Decalogue to its modern observance which includes the ceremony of Confirmation.
1879: It was reported that problems of the Jews in Romania are not a matter of religion but a matter of money. Supposedly until 1864 the Jews and the Romanians lived peacefully side by side. The Jews would lend money to the Romanians at exorbitant rates of interest which the Romanians gladly paid since they had no intention of paying off the loan. Furthermore, the loans were secured by mortgages; mortgages on which the Jews could never collect because they were not classified as citizens and only citizens could own real estate. That all changed when Napoleon III demanded that the Jews be made citizens. Reportedly, the Jews began foreclosing on the mortgages, expelling the Romanians from lands their families had held for centuries. This forced the Romanians to begin shooting and hanging the Jews or driving them from the country. The Jews were being persecuted but not for reasons of religion. At the same time, the Romanian government contended that it was not violating the edict of the Berlin Congress regarding the treatment of Romanian Jews because the Jews living in Romania were “foreigners” and not citizens of the country. [Editor’s note – people may run out of money but they never run out of rationalizations for cheating and killing Jews.]
1880: In “Man Before Adam” the reviewer of Preadmites: The Existence of Man Before Adam points that Dr. Alexander Winchell challenges several Biblical based conventions including that creation took place 4,000 before our era, that Adam was created on the 6th, that Eve was from Adam’s Rib, that Adam lived for 930 years, that 1,656 after creation there was a great a flood that destroy everybody except Noah, his family and the animals on the ark and that the origin of the human species took place in Western Central Asia. [Winchell was a Protestant minister. His book is an example of the challenges to the literal reading of the Bible taking place in the 19th century among many denominations. For Jews, this was a dominant motif of the Reform movement and many German-Jewish biblical critics.]
1880: It was reported today that The Young Men’s Hebrew Association of Harlem will be hosting a strawberry festival later this month to raise funds for the organization.
1880: It was reported today that the last religious census in France showed that there were almost 36 million Roman Catholics in the country but only 50,000 Jews.
1880: Rabbi Meisner of the Rivington Street Synagogue officiated at the wedding of Miss Essie Pakulski and Louis Mendelson, the son of the synagogue’s president. The ceremony took place at Irving Hall and followed the Reform ritual.
1882: Samuel Obrieght, a young Jewish man who was a partner in his family’s liquor business, suddenly married a Christian woman. This fact became part of the public record during Obreight’s sanity hearing.
1882: A festival to raise funds for Russian Jewish immigrants is scheduled to be held this afternoon in the 23rd Ward Park in NYC. Speakers will include Algernon S. Sullivan and Steward L. Woodford. The Philharmonic Society under the direction of Max Maretzek will provide the musical entertainment.
1883: It was reported today that the cornerstone laying ceremony for the Hebrew Orphan Asylum in Brooklyn will take place later this month.
1885(23rd of Sivan, 5645)Bernard L. Jaworower, the agent of the United Hebrew Charities serving at Castle Garden fell overboard while leaving the steamer George Starr at the Castle Garden dock.
1885: In Wilkes-Barre, PA, a fist fight broke during Shabbat services between two Polish Jews – Abraham Rosenthal and Abraham Zubunsky – after “Rosenthal accused Zubunsky of being more of a Christian than a Jew.” Both men left the synagogue and went to Justices of the Peace and charged each other with assault and battery. Not much shalom in their Shabbat.
1887: Testimony resumed today in the trial of Adolph Reich, the Hungarian Jew who has been charged with murdering his wife.
1888: Birthdate of Louis Freeman, the native of Glasgow who gained fame as artist Scottie Wilson.
1888: Albert Levy sent a letter from San Francisco to his wife Katie in New York saying the he had filed for a divorce and was going to Australia. [This correspondence came to light during an alienation of affection suit that was brought by the Roman Catholic Katie Levy against her Jewish mother-in-law, Pauline Levy.]
1889(7th of Sivan, 5649): Second Day of Shavuot
1889: A group of Jews met at the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue to begin making plans for observing the 400th anniversary of the discovery of America by Columbus and the expulsion of the Jews from Spain.
1890: It was reported today that the managers of the Sanitarium for Hebrew Children has received $3, 688.50 in contributions which will be used to finance outings for underprivileged children and their mothers.
1892: It was reported today that Rabbi Henry S. Jacobs delivered an historical poem entitled “The Genius of Hebrew History” to those attending graduation of Congregational B’nai Jeshurun’s religious school. The poem recounted the history of the Jewish people which he subdivided into a series of epochs, each with its own set of verses.
1892: A group of prominent Jews met this afternoon at the Jewish Theological Seminary and formed The American Jewish Historical Society. The meeting was chaired by Dr. Cyrus Adler who “explained that the object was to collect, preserve and publish data having reference to the settlement and history of Jews in America.
1893: The funeral for Joshua Hendricks, the fourth generation head of Hendricks Brothers, is scheduled to be held at his home on Cliff Street followed by interment at Cypress Hill.
1894: Governor Davis H. Waite ordered the Colorado state militia to protect and support the miners engaged in the Cripple Creek miners' strike. Famed financier Bernard Baruch was one of those who got his start in the “strike it rich” world of Cripple Creek. Arriving from the east, Baruch bought shares of stock in the San Francisco mine. During the day he worked as a “mucker” and at night he played at the roulette wheel in a local gambling joint where he was so successful that he was barred by the owners. Baruch took his winnings and headed back to New York where he gained fame and fortune. Sam Butcher, a Hungarian Jew, was one of the few Jews who actually made money in industrial mining in Cripple Creek. Because many of his fellow miners were blatant anti-Semites, Butcher “took pains to conceal his identity” until he had gained financial success. Sam and Bertha Flax were one of the first, if not the first Jewish couple to marry in Cripple Creek. They tied the knot in 1909. Sam was not much of a miner but he would prove be a successful restaurant owner in Denver, Colorado.
1895(14th of Sivan, 5655): Fifty-six year old Henry Phillips the Philadelphia born archaeologist and numismatist passed away today.
1896: “Reverend Herman P. Faust of the Forsyth Street Hebrew-Christian Mission called on Mayor Strong to see if something could be done” to help two Jewish peddlers who had been driven from the streets by the police. The crackdown on street vendors is depriving many Jewish immigrants of their means of livelihood a matter into which Mayor Strong said he would look into.
1897(6th of Sivan, 5657): For the first time during the Presidency of William McKinley, observance of Shavuot.
1897: In Chicago, Jews and Christians prayed together as members of Emmanuel Congregation led by Rabbi Julius Newman joined members of the Belden Avenue Baptist Church led by Pastor Haynes at the latter’s house of worship for a service where both ministers preached to the congregation.
1897: Eleven youngsters participated in the Confirmation Service led by Rabbi Julius Newman of Emanuel Congregation.
1897: “In Williamsburg special services were held in Temple Beth Elohim on Keap Street near Broadway which is the wealthiest congregation in this section of the city” where 19 boys and girls participated in Confirmation services led by Rabbi Greenfield.
1898: “Hebrew Free Schools” published today described the Confirmation Services for the Hebrew Free School during which Esther Krosovitch recited a prayer followed by the singing of “The Heavens Declare” and “My God” by her fellow confirmants.
1898: It was announced today’s meeting of the Trustees Columbia University that Jacob H. Schiff has donated $15,000 “to establish a fellowship in political science.”
1899: “Increase In Death Rate” published today described the efforts of the Board of Health to contain the diphtheria outbreak which has included children from the Hebrew Sheltering Guardian Society who go to the public grammar school “at the corner of St. Nichols Avenue and 166th Street” forcing quarantines to be put in place at both institutions.
1899: The list officers of the newly reformed Educational Alliance published today include Benjamin Altman, Henry Morgenthau and Isidor Straus
1900: Birthdate of Manfred Joshua Sakel, Polish born neurophysiologist and psychiatrist. Like so many others of his generation Sakel would leave Europe during the Hitler period. He died in New York City in 1957.
1901: Bella Weretnikow, who became the first Jewish woman lawyer in Washington State, was admitted to the Bar of Washington State.
1903: Dr. Kaufmann Kohler, for twenty-four years rabbi of Temple Beth-EI, delivered his farewell sermon this morning before going to his new duties as the head of the Hebrew Union College of Cincinnati. At the conclusion of the service the congregation individually bade farewell and Godspeed to the retiring rabbi.
1903: “Mr. L.S. Levine, the Assistant City Solicitor of Pittsburgh” represented the city’s mayor at the opening session of the Sixth Annual Convention of the Federation of American Zionist which was being “held at the Central Turners’ Hall.”
1905: Birthdate of Laszlo Halaz, the native of Hungary who “was appointed he first director of the New York City Opera” a position from which he mounted the first performance of “The Dybbuk,” an opera by David Tamkin
1906: Birthdate of David Kessler, the man who would play the leading role in making the Jewish Chronicle one of the most respected Jewish weeklies in the world.
1907: Dropsie College for Hebrew and Cognate Learning, a graduate school for biblical and rabbinical studies, was chartered in Philadelphia.
1908(7th of Sivan, 5668): Second Day of Shavuot
1909: Birthdate of David Kessler, the man most responsible for making the Jewish Chronicle one of the most respected Jewish weeklies in the world.
1909: In Riga, “Mendel Berlin, a timber industrialist and direct descendant of Shneur Zalman (founder of Chabad Hasidism), and his wife Marie, née Volshonok” gave birth to Sir Isaiah Berlin who most popular essay may be “The Hedgehog and the Fox.”
1911: Bruno Walter “wrote to his sister that he was to conduct the premiere of Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde”
1911: Sixty-six year old American playwright and producer Edward “Ned” Harrigan the author and producer of “Mordecai Lyons” an 1882 drama which unlike some “Jew plays” is “serious and valuable” when it comes to portraying its Jewish characters passed away today.
1912: Julia Richman, superintendent of New York City Public Schools set sail for France where she hoped to rest and improve her French language skills.
1913: The First American Conference on Social Insurance to which Lee K. Frankel was a delegate opened today in Chicago.
1914(12th of Sivan, 5674): Seventy-seven year old Austrian born chemist Adolf Lieben “who death he held the chair of general and pharmacological chemistry at the University of Vienna” passed away today.
1915: Dedication of the Hebrew Institute at McKeesport, PA.
1915: The reasons for the opposition to commuting the sentence of Leo Frank offered by Reverend A.C Hendley, the pastor an Atlanta Baptist Church published today included his belief that “outside influences were attempt to dictate to Georgians how they should administer justice” and that “Leo M. Frank was fairly tried and convicted and the United States Supreme Court…has affirmed the findings of the Georgia courts.
1915: At its annual meeting, the Federation of Oriental Jews of America “pledged its support to President Wilson for upholding the rights and honor of the United States.”
1915: “Speaking at the graduation exercises of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America at Aeolian Hall this afternoon Dr. Solomon Schechter, President of the Seminary, attributed the catastrophe of the present world war to over-emphasis on unreligious secular nationalism and declared that the regeneration of humanity that would result out of the present struggle and chaos would take place not in the direct of the religion of valor but in a return to the religion of Israel with ideals no longer of strength, force and astuteness but of gentleness, humility and loving kindness.”
1915: In Atlantic City, NJ. “1,237 delegates representing 200,000 members cheered wildly as” “Louis Brandeis of Boston” “sound a call for a United Judaism” at the 29th annual convention of the United States Grand Lodge of the Independent Order of B’rith Abraham.
1915:“In the presence of 200 men, women and child…more than half of whom were blind, the roof garden on top of the new Bank of the United States Building at 77 Delancey Street was formally opened this afternoon as a recreation and social center for the Hebrew Association for the Blind.
1915: Based on letter that Hugh M. Dorsey has sent to Governor Slaton “it became practically certain today that when the case of Leo M. Frank…comes before the Governor for consideration of the prisoner’s appeal for commutation to life imprisonment, Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey will appear to oppose any change in the sentence.”
1916(5th of Sivan, 5676): Erev Shavuot
1916: “Among those receiving degrees at the 99th Convocation of the University of Chicago held” today were Leo Mordecai Goldsmith of Aurora, Isador Michael Levin of Chicago and Harry Cohn of Collinsville
1916: It was reported today that “British censors have confiscated almost 10,000 checks amounting in all to 800,000 marks (about $200,000) sent by Americans through the Hebrew Sheltering and Immigration Aid Society of American to dependent relatives in Russian Poland.”
1916: Among the Planks of the Republican Platform that were agreed on today by Senators Lodge, Borah and Sutherland was one on “Americanism” that recognized “the need of a treaty of commerce with Russia that will give full equality to American citizens of Jewish birth traveling in Russia.”
1917: At today’s “annual meeting of the East London Fund for the Jewish, the Bishop of London expressed the hope that a Christian Power would control Palestine and characterized as folly” the belief “of some unthinking Christians that the coming of the Kingdom of god in the east would hastened by filling Palestine with unconverted Jews because that would result in the establishment of an outpost against the spread of Christianity.”
1917: The last regular meeting of the Sisters of Fidelity is scheduled to be held this afternoon at the Masonic Temple.
1917: Birthdate of Selma Goldstone, who as Selma Goldstone Hirsch would become a noted humanitarian and an author who would enjoy a long association with the American Jewish Committee.
1917: In Pittsburg, Max Senior of Citizen is scheduled to chair this morning’s session of the National Association of Jewish Social Workers where the topic of “Americanization and Citizenship” will be discussed.
1917: Birthdate of George Kidd, the native of Glasgow, who was the first Canadian Ambassador to Israel.
1918: Three hundred delegates from the United States and Canada attended the opening session of the Jewish Labor Congress at the Central Opera House in New York City.
1920: Rabbi Herbert Levintahl is scheduled “to deliver the baccalaureate sermon” at the “commencement exercises of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America and the Teacher’s Institute” this afternoon at Aeolian Hall.
1921: “It was stated tonight on high authority that President Harding” is planning on naming Jewish advertising mogul Albert D. Lakser, President of the Lord and Thomas Advertising Company of Chicago to be Chairman of the Shipping Board.
1922: American actress and singer Lillian Russell who had been married to the Anglo-Jewish composer Edward “Teddy” Solomon passed away.
1925: Birthdate of poet and novelist Maxine Kumin who published her first collection of poetry, Halfway in 1961. Influenced by the confessional style of poetry, it was followed in 1965 by The Privilege and in 1970 by The Nightmare Factory, both of which explore her Jewish identity and family. She won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1973.
1926: Second baseman Andy Cohen makes his major league debut with the New York Giants.
1926(24th of Sivan, 5686): As he was crossing Second Avenue at 15th Street, Meyer London, one of only two members of the Socialist Party elected to Congress was caught in the middle of heavy automobile traffic passing in both directions. London became confused and when he halted in the middle of the road he was struck by a car, suffering internal injuries. The driver rushed him to Bellevue Hospital, where London’s daughter was an intern. When she saw her father London’s only concern was that the driver not be punished. "It’s not his fault", said London "and he is a poor man." London died at 10 o'clock that night at the age of 56, after physicians had labored for 11 hours to save him.
1927(6th of Sivan, 5687): Shavuot
1927: In Amsterdam, Jo Spier, “a newspaper illustrator and cartoonist, and the former Albertine van Raalte, a homemaker,” gave birth to “Peter Spier, an award-winning children’s-book author and illustrator who depicted Noah’s biblical journey…” (As received by Richard Sandomir)
1928: In Camden, NJ, the Sisterhood of Beth El Congregation is scheduled to hold its final luncheon which has been arranged by Mrs. Herman Odlen.
1931: After 272 performances the curtain came down on the original Broadway production of “Girl Crazy” a musical with lyrics by Ira Gershwin and music by George Gershwin.
1932(2nd of Sivan, 5692): Dr. A.S. Waldstein who helped to found Paole Zion in the United States in 1904 passed away in Tel Aviv at the age of 58.
1932(2nd of Sivan, 5692): Fifty-five year old Benjamin Schlesinger, who served two terms as President of the International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union who suffered from Hodgkin’s Lymphoma passed away.
1933: The Council of the League of Nations conducted a second day of hearings on “the persecution of the Jews in Germany” in official response to the Bernheim Petition. “Many of the speakers severely censured Germany for the treatment of its Jews and demanded that they be accorded minimum human rights.” At the end of the hearing, the Council took the “bold step” of requesting Germany to provide “information on further developments.”
1934: President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs the Securities Act of 1933 into law, establishing the Securities and Exchange Commission (S.E.C.) as part of the fabled New Deal. One of the purposes of the S.E.C. was to create a level playing field for all investors. The regulatory agency was created to end the kind of stock fraud and manipulation that had been rampant in the 1920’s and helped cause the Great Depression. Like many other New Deal agencies, the S.E.C. provided employment for the college educated offspring of Jewish immigrants who had come to the United States prior to World War I. In the case of the S.E.C., it gave several Jewish lawyers a chance to practice securities law, a branch of the law to which they had limited access because of the WASP dominated culture of the financial industry. Among those who worked for the SEC was Joseph B Levin an attorney who rose through the ranks to become Assistant General Counsel.
1935: In London, premiere of “39 Steps” a murder mystery produced by Michael Balcon, co-starring Lucie Mannheim and with music by Louis Levy.
1936: The American Jewish Committee issued a statement reiterating it opposition to the world Jewish Congress scheduled to be held in Geneva in August which Dr. Stephen S. Wise, head of the American Jewish Congress is a leading proponent.
1936: In Paris, “by the enormous majority of 384 to 219 the new Chamber of Deputies this evening voted confidence in Premier Leon Blum’s Cabinet to carry through the program of reforms for which the country voted when it returned the Popular Front to power a month ago.”
1936: The British military commander of the Southern District published an order prohibiting all Jewish motor traffic from entering or leaving Tel Aviv. This “blockade” of Tel Aviv, was in response to the murder of an Arab kerosene vender who was shot while riding on a highway between Tel Aviv and Petach Tikvah.
1937: The Palestine Post military correspondent reported that according to reliable sources, the number of British battalions present in the country depended entirely on the security situation and the attitudes of the various sections of the population. Britain had resolved not to take any more risks by reducing the defense force of the land to a mere police force, as the situation existed before the organized Arab troubles of 1936, which left such a bloody aftermath.
1937: “The Jewish Theological Seminary of America held its 50th anniversary convocation exercises” this afternoon during which “eight graduates of the Seminary Rabbinical College were ordained as rabbis Dr. Cyrus Adler, the president of the seminary.”
1937: Today “two hundred delegates from 27 organizations” throughout the United States” heard “former Justice Jeremiah T. Mahoey and other speakers” protest “against discrimination against Jews in Rumania and urge action on their behalf by American Jews at the 28th annual convention of the United Rumanian Jews of America at the Hotel Astor.”
1937: The Palestine Post reported that a mass meeting was held at the Tel Aviv's Mograbi building during which the participants vowed active support for the beleaguered Polish Jewry.
1938: Thanks to the intervention of influential friends Sigmund Freud, his wife and his daughter arrived in London from Vienna via Paris.
1939: The Jewish city of Tel Aviv was virtually cut off from the outside world today when, by order of the British military commander of the Southern District, all Jewish motor traffic into or out of the city was prohibited until tomorrow night. Only medical and milk transportation is permitted.
1940: It was reported today that the Nazis had moved “through Amsterdam with ready-made lists of enemies and Jews, rounding them and having them shot en masse.
1942: Following a failed attempt in 1940, the Nazis succeed in ordering Belgian Jews to wear the Yellow Star.
1942: During his sermon today, Rabbi Israel Goldstein told the congregants of New York’s Temple B’Nai Jeshurun that Japan's air raid on Dutch Harbor, Alaska, was the "final shattering blow to the illusion of those who until recently coddled themselves with the thought that oceans can protect us from air attacks."
1942: In his sermon today, Rabbi Jacob Katz of the Montefiore Synagogue “advised parents to have their children trained in mechanical skills as well as in cultural subjects.”
1942: During his sermon today, Rabbi Hyman J. Schachtel urged the congregants of the West End Synagogue to do their part in the war effort by signing up with the civilian protective services.
1942: During his sermon at the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue, Rabbi David de Sola Pool said, “The first great challenge to the fuehrer concept was thrown down by Moses…It is not without reason that the Fuehrer has singled out the people and the religion of Moses for his most venomed hostility.”
1942: In Cracow, Poland, thousands of Jews were rounded up for the second day in a row for deportation. Eichmann, worried about appearances asks that the words ‘deportation to the East’ not be used, but instead, that ‘people are emigrated elsewhere.'
1942: Adolf Eichmann insists via a telegram sent to Gestapo officials that residents of a mental institution must be included in a planned mass deportation of Jews from Coblenz, Germany, to Lublin, Poland.
1942: The Jewish ghetto at Kraków, Poland, is liquidated; 6000 Jews from the city are murdered at Belzec.
1942: The Nazis burned the village of Lidice Bohemia, as reprisal for killing Heydrich.
1943: Helga Deen saw 1,300 children leave Vught, a Dutch internment camp, for Sobibor and Auschwitz. In her diary she wrote, “Transport. It’s too much. I’m destroyed and tomorrow again.” Deen would later be shipped to Sobibor where she was murdered by the Nazis.
1943: Jacob Gens, the leader of the Jewish Council in Vilna, argued that Vilna's Jews will have an improved chance of survival if they demonstrate their usefulness as workers.
1943: “We Will Never Die” was performed at the Boston Garden, with guest stars Ralph Bellamy, Lionel Atwill, Howard Da Silva, Berry Kroger, and Jacob Ben-Ami in prominent roles. The Boston Jewish Advocate reported: “This spectacle must have impressed and stirred the imagination of the many who saw it to a degree impossible to achieve through the printed word.”
1943(3rd of Sivan, 5703): Germans execute all 1000 Jews still remaining in the Rohatyn (Poland) Ghetto after German authorities discover a plot of local Jewish policemen to purchase weapons.
1944: “Despite having no parachute training”, Mickey Marcus who had Ranger training “traded on being a West Point classmate of General Maxwell Taylor to parachute into Normandy with the first wave of the “Screaming Eagles
1944: Allied forces led by the United States land on the beaches of Normandy. While no exact figures exist for the number of Jews who took part in “The Longest Day” the graves marked by Stars of David attest to the fact that Jews were not only present but paid the last full measure. According to one source 550,000 Jews served in World War II in the U.S. military. Of those, 11,000 were killed, 40,000 were wounded, and 52,000 were decorated for gallantry. Jews made up some 3.5 percent of the U.S. military during the war.
1944: Among the units landing at Normandy today were a contingent of the Ritchie Boys. The Ritchie Boys was a special U.S. Army intelligence unit of approximately 10,000 German speaking soldiers most of whom were Jewish refugees from Germany and Austria. Trained at Fort Richie, Maryland, they were able to use their special language skills and intimate knowledge of the culture to infiltrate behind German lines, capture and interrogate prisoners and conduct disinformation campaigns. Among those making the land was Stefan Heym who would confound people by moving back to Europe after the war and taking up residence in the German Democratic Republic (Communist East Germany)
1944: Maria Madi, a native of Budapest wrote in her diary today “B.B.C. announces at 9:30 am that allied invasion has begun on the Normandy peninsula, between Cherbourg and Le Havre. I almost gave up hope these days, am trembling all over from excitement. If only it would be a success
“This afternoon, very few G[erman] soldiers can be seen on the streets, they are shut up in their quarters, I suppose, in order not to hear the news. Here the noon papers brought the news, without any trace of G[erman] measures taken against the invasion…”
1944: Lester Milton Bronstein, the father of Ambassador Michael Oren, was among those who took part in the D-Day Invasion.
1944: Robert Capa is part of the first wave of troops to land at Omaha Beach. He goes in with Company E armed with a Contax camera. After ninety minutes of shooting, he heads back to London with ten rolls of films that capture the first moments of the invasion. Due to mistakes made by the lab technician employed by Life Magazine, only 11 of the 106 pictures survive the development process.
1944: Lt. Bert Katz led a unit that hit Easy Red Sector of Omaha Beach at “H plus seven minutes” which means that his platoon hit the beach seven minutes after the start of the “Longest Day. In a testament to the withering fire faced his unit, “within the first ten minutes” he lost 23 men and while he himself was wounded he stayed with his men as they fought their way across Europe during the next 11 months until VE Day. This is the same Bert Katz who returned to Cedar Rapids, Iowa where he became a successful businessman, philanthropist and leader of Temple Judah and the Jewish community.
1944: Major Benjamin “Ben” Dunkelman, who had enlisted as private in The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada in 1939 landed at Juno, the beach assigned to the Canadians during the Normandy Invasion.
1944: Lieutenant Mortimer Caplin (the future Commissioner of the IRS) “was commander of a Naval Beach Master Group on Omaha Beach” who used his wits and imagination to force a reluctant Liberty ship skipper to run his ship aground so that its cargo of ammunition could distributed among the tankers and artillerymen heading inland and was award the French Legion of Honor for being part ‘of the initial landing force.”
1944: Louis Rabinowitz who had been appointed Senior Jewish Chaplain of the British Army followed up his service with Allied forces in the Middle East by taking part in the Normandy invasion.
1944: Captain Charles Stein, “an Austrian Jewish refugee” landed on Omaha Beach today.
1944: Sarah Levnedeal, the wife of Max Levendal and the mother of Isaac Levndel was arrested today and sent to Drancy
1944: SS-Obergruppenführer and Nazi Party leader Carl Rudolf Werner Best was told today of the refusal of the Danish police to protect “57 enterprises the Germans deemed at risk of sabotage by the Danish resistance movement.”
1944: When German authorities become aware that news of the Allied invasion is circulating through the Jewish ghetto at Lódz, Poland, a search is mounted for illegal radios. Six Jews are arrested. On the same day the Germans rounded up all 1,795 Jews on the Greek Island of Corfu and deported them to Birkenau death camp where 1,500 were murdered by gas upon arrival. The Germans also captured 260 Jews this day on the Island of Crete.
1944(15th of Sivan, 5704): A German deportation ship with approximately 260 Canean Jews aboard is sunk off the coast of Crete. Latter-day accounts conflict as to the details: In one version, the ship carried the corpses of Jews murdered by Nazis, who set the ship afloat and sank it to destroy evidence of the crime. In another, the ship was bound for Auschwitz but was torpedoed and sunk by a British submarine. Besides Jewish people, the ship may have carried 300 Italian POWs and 400 Greek civilians.
1944(15th of Sivan, 5704): In Poland, 150 police, all of whom were Nazi sympathizers ambushed Jacob Allweiss and his two sons Zygie and Sol. Jacob is murdered. The two sons escape.
1944: Two more Auschwitz inmates, Arnost Rosin and Czeslaw Mordowicz, arrived in Zilina. They reported that trainloads of Hungarian Jews were being massacred.
1944: In Corfu, Greece, the Germans rounded up 1,795 Jews. One thousand, five hundred of them were then gassed at Birkenau.
1944: Birthdate of Rene Rivkin, Australian entrepreneur, investor, investment adviser, and stockbroker. He was a well-known stockbroker in Australia for many years until his conviction for insider trading.
1944: As Joel Brand sought to help save the Jews of Hungary Anthony Eden expressed his sympathy regarding the decision to block the negotiations with Eichmann, but said he had to act in unison with the United States and Soviet Union.
1945: The Lady and the Monster” based on a novel by Curt Siodmak with a script by Frederick Kohner co-starring Erich von Stroheim was released in Sweden today.
1945: Robert Capa met Ingrid Bergman for the first time. The meeting marked the beginning of passionate love affair between the Jewish was photographers and the Scandinavian cinema star. Their relationship will be part of the plot for the Alfred Hitchcock thriller “Rear Window.”
1945: The Fort Ontario Emergency Refugee Shelter also known as "Safe Haven," located in Oswego, New York the first and only refugee center established in the United States during World War II which housed almost 1000 European refugees, most of whom were Jewish was closed today.
1946: Birthdate of Tony Levin, bassist for King Crimson.
1947: Four days after his burial at Willesden Cemetery, the obituary of Myer Jack Landa was published today.
1948: The IAF completed its move to a new base in Herzliya.
1948: In New York City, literary critic Alfred Kazin and his wife gave birth to Georgetown University history professor Michael Kazin who earned his Ph.D at Stanford and became the co-editor of Dissent, “a left-wing intellectual magazine founded in 1954 whose previous editors have included Irving Howe, Mitchell and Cohen and Michael Walzer.
1950: Birthdate of director Chantal Anne Akerman, the native of Brussels whose mother Natalia (Nelly) had survived Auschwitz “where her own parents had died”
1950: Mrs. Martha Sharp left New York tonight by plane to visit “her 20,000 children” in Israel. “These thousands of Israeli boys and girls are Mrs. Sharp’s charges by long-range adoption since she is a founder and national vice chairman of Children to Palestine, Inc., an American organization that is bringing them out of starved and fear-ridden backgrounds to a new life in a new land.” Mrs. Sharp is the wife of a Unitarian minister in Chicago. In the next month she will help some of them move into the only real homes they have ever known and watch others learn to play children's games for the first time.
1951(2nd of Sivan, 5711): Hilda Aaron passed away today after which she interred at the Adath Jeshurun Cemetery in Hampton Township, PA.
1952: The Jerusalem Post reported on the ground- breaking ceremony for the projected $10 million Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical School on the bare Judean hills, west of Ein Kerem. Speakers declared that this construction did not mean the abandonment of Hadassah facilities on Mount Scopus which were effectively under Arab control in violation of existing U.N. guarantees
1954: In Brooklyn Harriet (née Gilbert), a school librarian, and Irving Fierstein, a handkerchief manufacturer gave birth to actor Harvey Fierstein
1955: In Flint, Michigan Jeanette and Jerome Bernhard, a proctologist, gave birth to comedienne Sandra Bernhard.
1955: Birthdate of Samuel Michael “Sam” Simon, the “co-creator of the ‘The Simpsons.’”
1955(16th of Sivan, 5715): Seventy two year old British author Joseph Jefferson Farjeon, the son of Benjamin Leopold Farjeon passed away.
1956: David Marshall, Singapore's first Chief Minister resigns. David Saul Marshall was born in Singapore in 1908 to a Jewish family that had originally come from Iraq. He became a lawyer and a leading leader of the left wing. In later years he would serve in several diplomatic postiions before retiring after a dispute with the Prime Minister of Singapore.
1957(7th of Sivan, 5717): Second Day of Shavuot
1957: “The Delicate Delinquent” produced, written and starring Jerry Lewis was released in the United States today.
1957: The Soviet government informed the Jewish community that it would permit the opening of a yeshiva in Moscow for the training of rabbis. The announcement was made on Shavuot, probably to "impress" world Jewry that the USSR was doing a wonderful thing for Jews and Judaism. It turns out that this was mostly "smoke". The laymen's council of the yeshiva was dissolved in 1961. The bulk of the students had come from Georgia. After Pesach of 1962, these students were denied permits by the local government to return to Moscow. Thus the yeshiva, reduced to a handful of students, could no longer hope to provide rabbis for Russian Jewry.
1959: In Palo Alto, CA, Dorothy Jean St. Germain (née Rich) and Phillip Gary Schultz gave birth to American Olympic wrestler, David Leslie "Dave" Schultz
1960: “The Damaged Eye” co-starring Herschel Bernardi and filmed by cinematographers Helen Levitt and Haskell Wexler was released in the United States today.
1961: “Hadassah-Ein Kerem opens with a moving day. Supervised by HMO senior staff, the Israeli Army meticulously and efficiently transports every patient in each of Hadassah's five temporary hospitals to a preassigned bed at the new medical center.”
1961: Carl Jung, the man Freud called "his adopted eldest son, his crown prince and successor" but who later broke with his mentor, passed away today.
1962: In New York, Enid (Rodman) and Harold Flender, a writer and screenwriter gave birth to actor, writer, director and producer Rodman Flender.
1963: In Richmond, VA, realtor Eddie Cantor and Mary Lee (nee Hudes), a schoolteacher gave birth to Eric Cantor who represented Virginia’s Seventh District and served as House Majority Whip before being defeated in his bid for re-election.
1963: Birthdate of British actor Jason Isaacs.
1965(6th of Sivan, 5725): First Day Shavuot
1967: This marked the second day of Israel's Six Day War. Now that the Israelis had control of the skies, their armor and infantry could begin advancing against the numerically larger Arab armies. As accounts of the fighting will attest, this was no cakewalk. The fighting in Sinai involved some of the largest clashes between tanks since World War II. And the Jordanians fought tenaciously along the Green Line around east Jerusalem.
1967: At six o’clock in the morning the Supreme Command of the Arab armed forces began broadcasting on the great lies that is still believed to this day. Repeating a report that Nasser had made to King Hussein the night before, the Arab military leaders claimed that the Egyptian and Jordanian air forces had been demolished on the first day of the war by U.S. planes attached to the Sixth Fleet and by British warplanes flying from unspecified bases. This tale had not no basis in fact. It gave Nasser a chance to save face with the Arab masses and to provide his Soviet patrons with an excuse for intervening. The Cold War is already becoming a distant memory to those living in the 21st century. However, the conflict between the U.S. and the Soviet Union was very real in 1967. The Soviets were actively looking for a way to gain control in the Middle East and the Communist Bloc was Nasser’s patron, a factor that was part of the military and political equation facing the Israelis.
1967: Defense Minister Moshe Dyan still refused to allow any military action to be taken along the Golan Heights. With fighting raging in the Sinai to the South, he did not need additional military worries. What did worry Dyan was that the U.N. might impose a cease fire before Israeli forces could seize Sharm el-Sheik, the choke-point held by the Egyptians that made it possible for them to close the Straits of Tiran to Israeli shipping. Dyan ordered Chief of Staff Rabin to move with all speed to seize Sharm. Rabin completed planes for a combined assault that was to be carried out the next evening.
1967: “The Egyptian armored forces collapse. Ariel Sharon's division later joins an armored brigade making its way to the Egyptian posts at Tamed and Nakhl. When they arrive there, Sharon quickly reads the battlefield and successfully ambushes an Egyptian armored brigade. The Egyptian tanks column goes straight into Sharon's trap and there they it is systematically destroyed. At the end of the day, what's left is a 20 mile long column of twisted and burned Egyptian tanks and vehicles, and hundreds of dead bodies beside them.”
1967: Egyptian troops are ordered to fall back to the Suez Canal. In the evening, unbeknownst to the Israelis, Egypt evacuated the strategically important position of Sharm el-Sheik.
1967: According to transcripts released in 2017, “what to do with the Old City was a hot topic conversation in” today’s meeting of “the security cabinet.”
1970: Peggy and Dr. Milton D. Glick, who would eventually become President of the University of Nevada, Reno, gave birth to their son David.
1970(2nd of Sivan, 5730): Twenty three year old Josh (Eli Joshua) Bay the son of Charles and Canadian born actress Frances Bay passed away today.
1972(24th of Sivan, 5732): Eleanor Joan Clara Nathan, the wife of Baron and Major Louis Nathan Nathan and mother of Captain Roger Carol Michael Nathan passed away today.
1974: “In anticipation of President Nixon’s visit, telephones of Moscow Jewish activists were cut off and many of them received conscription orders particularly those organizing scientific seminar
1974: The Syrians returned the body of Avraham “Avi” Lanir. The Syrians captured him during the Yom Kippur War and tortured him to death in an attempt to extract information from him about Israel’s nuclear program.
1975: “One hundred activists send an appeal to the United States and House of Representatives in defense of Anatolii Malkin.”
1975: The USSR Supreme Soviet adopted a decree imposing a new tax of 30% on money sent to Soviet citizens from abroad i.e. money sent to aid reufsniks.
1975(27th of Sivan, 5737): Forty-nine year Larry Blyden, a Jewish actor from Houston, TX passed away today.
1976: “The Omen” a horror film directed by Richard Donner, produced by Henry Bernhard, written by David Seltzer and with music by Jerry Goldsmith was released in the United Kingdom today.
1979: Premiere of “Escape to Athena” a movie set in Nazi occupied Greek Island produced by Lew Grade and co-starring Elliot Gould
1980: U.S. premiere of “Up the Academy” a comedy co-starring Ron Leibman and Barbara Bach whose father was Jewish but whose mother was not.
1981: Final plans were completed for “Operation Opera” the Israel attack on an Iraqi nuclear reactor that Iran had tried and failed to destroy.
1982: 1982: Israeli troops enter Lebanon to drive out PLO. The PLO had established itself as a "state within a state." The government of Lebanon was incapable or unwilling to put an end to this source of terror so the Israelis acted accordingly. The triggering event was the attempted assassination of the Israeli ambassador in London. The invasion would become a divisive and corrosive event for the Israelis that, to put it mildly, was not one of their shining moments.
1982: Members of the famous Golani Brigade attacked Beaufort Castle which was held by the PLO.
1984(6th of Shavuot, 5744): Shavuot
1985: The grave of "Wolfgang Gerhard" is exhumed in Embu, Brazil; the remains found are later proven to be those of Josef Mengele, Auschwitz' "Angel of Death". Mengele is thought to have drowned while swimming in February 1979.
1986(28th of Iyar, 5746) Yom Yerushalayim
1986: U.S. premiere of “Raw Deal” written by Norman Wexler and co-starring Steven Hill and Sam Wanamaker.
1987: “Poet, essayist and critic” Katha Pollitt “married Randy Cohen, author of the New York Times Magazine column ‘The Ethicist’” today.
1988(21st of Sivan, 5748): Twelve days before his 87th birthday Wellesley (Pinchas) Aron the London born graduate of Cambridge, founder of Habonim who as a Major in the British Army “assumed commanded of a Jewish Palestinian unit, later absorbed into the Jewish Infantry Brigade passed away today.
1988: Pitcher Steve Rosenberg makes his debut with the Chicago White Sox.
1991: David John Pleat began serving as the manager for Luton Town football team.
1991(24th of Sivan, 5751): Stan Getz passed away. Born Stanley Gayetzky in 1927, Getz was the leading tenor sax player of his time. Even people who did not like jazz enjoyed listening to the smooth sound of Stan Getz.
1992(5th of Sivan, 5752): Eighty-four year old Marvel comic founder Martin Goodman passed away today.
1994(27th of Tammuz, 5754): Sixty-nine year old Yohai Ben-Nun, the sixth commander of the Israeli navy passed away today.
1997: “Crash” a thriller directed and produced by David Cronenberg who also wrote the script and with music by Howard Shore was released today in the United Kingdom.
1999: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including the recently released paperback editions of Confederates in the Attic: Dispatches From the Unfinished Civil War by Tony Horwitz, Damascus Gate by Robert Stone and Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table by Ruth Reichl.
1999: Deb and Mitchell Levin marry at Temple Judah in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He moved up in class and she got an adult child to try and housebreak. For those of you who have not figured it out, she is the one who makes this daily work possible. On top of being an Ayshish Chayel in the truest sense of the word, she is also is great at everything from creating blogs to making homemade Kosher pizza, to creating memorable siddurim to hosting the visiting chazzan who is a kosher vegetarian.
2001: An Arab suicide bomber massacred 21 young Jewish teenagers and injured a hundred more outside a Tel Aviv discotheque.
2001: Joe Lieberman began serving as Chairman of the Senate Committee on Homeland Secruity.
2004: First day of a Birthright trip to Israel - Towards a Sustainable Future for Israel: An Environmental Leadership Seminar for Students and Young Professionals – focused on the environment sponsored as a joint project of COEJL, the Heschel Center for Environmental Leadership and Learning, the Jewish Agency for Israel, and Hillel.
2004: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including the recently released paperback edition of “Sloan-Kettering: Poems” the Israeli poet and famed partisan Abba Kovner’s poetic chronicle of his losing battle with cancer which he describes with ruthless honesty, even as he celebrates his tenacious grip on the world he is leaving.
2004: Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s government approved an amended plan for disengagement form Gaza.
2004: Avigdor Lieberman completed his term as Minister of Transport, National Infrastructure and Road Safety
2005: Majdi Halabi was officially listed as M.I.A. (missing in action).
2005 (28th of Iyar): Observance of Yom Yerushalayim (Jerusalem Day). Jerusalem Reunification Day celebrates the reunification of Jerusalem on June 7, 1967 which was the 28th day of the month of Iyar. The observance follows the Jewish calendar so it seems to “float” on the secular calendar. On the 28th of Iyar, soldiers of the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) reunited the Old City of Jerusalem which had been illegally occupied by the Jordanian Army since 1948 with what was then referred to as the New City of Jerusalem. (Please note, there never was a city called “East Jerusalem.” The term east Jerusalem is strictly geographic as in the southeast side of Cedar Rapids.) This was the first time that all of Jerusalem was under Jewish sovereignty since the days of the Second Temple.
2006: The New York Times and The Washington Post reported that “the C.I.A. knew where Eichman was hiding” and made no attempts to inform the government of Israel, which was actively looking for him and other Nazi war criminals. This revelation came to light as large quantities of government documents describing U.S. relationships with ex-Nazis after World War II were declassified. While it had been known for some time that the U.S. and later the West German government employed former Nazis in their intelligence agencies, these documents show the depth and the folly of the involvement. Apparently many of these former Nazis turned out to be double agents who working for the Soviets and who did a great deal of harm to Western intelligence efforts during the Cold War.
2006: British author Naomi Alderman has won the 2006 Orange Award for New Writers with her debut novel Disobedience. The novel is set in the Orthodox Jewish community of Hendon, London where Alderman grew up.
2007: Professor Norman Finkelstein is a guest on daily global affairs program produced by Chicago Public Radio station WBEZ (91.5) where he presents a “revisionist view of the Six Day War.”
2007: Jack Markell officially launched his candidacy for Governor of Delaware
2007: An exhibition styled “Image of His Soul" Max Liebermann – Works on Paper opens at the Hecht Museum in Haifa.
2007: The Sir Zelman Cowen Prize in medical research is awarded to Prof. Nir Friedman at the Hebrew University's Board of Governors' meeting by fund trustee Michael Dunkel, a member of the Board of Governors.
2008: At the JCC in Washington, D.C. cantor, composer, arranger, choral conductor, and director of the ensemble Vocolot, Linda Hirschhorn will co-lead a musical Erev Shabbat service with Rabbi Robert Saks of Congregation Bet Mishpachah, the event’s co-sponsor. Linda Hirschhorn will play the guitar during the service.
2008: Opening of “You Don’t Mess with the Zohan” starring Adam Sandler playing an Israeli assassin turned hairdresser.
2009: Alysa Stanton the first African-American female rabbi is ordained at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati. Stanton, a convert and mother to an adopted 14-year-old daughter, is a trained psychotherapist who specializes in trauma and grief. In August, she will become the spiritual leader of Congregation Bayt Shalom in Greenville.
2009: At Temple Judah, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Sophie Shiffman, daughter of Howard Shiffman of Toronto, Ontario and Peggy and Don Aungst of Independence, IA is called to the Torah as a Bat Mitzvah.
2009: The Vatican says it has "taken action" to track down Jewish children who were hidden by the Church and Catholic families during the Holocaust and later disappeared.
2010: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including Alone With You by Marissa Silver
2010: I wish the American Jews who feel misrepresented by the lobby would stand up by Philip Weiss
2010: Members of the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington are scheduled to lead a special tour of Jewish sites in Old Town Alexandria that will include visits to the sites of two former synagogues and several Jewish businesses.
2010: The Washington Jewish Music Festival is scheduled to open with a screening of the Jazz Baroness and a performance by Danny Sanderson.
2010(24th of Sivan, 5770): Rabbi Jacob Milgrom passed away today in Jerusalem at the age of 87. He was “considered by many the worlds’ foremost authority on the biblical Book of Leviticus. Milgrom’s three-volume series on Leviticus, interpreting Jewish dietary and purification rituals and the Bible’s position on homosexuality, concluded that the ban on homosexuality applies only to Jewish men.”
2011: “Music and Healing” a program designed to acquaint attendees with “contemporary, folk and traditional songs that can help them through times of need and comfort is scheduled to take place at Tefereth Israel in Washington, DC.
2011: The Children of Israel Journeyed: Selections from the Chagall Bible Series, an exhibit at the Jewish Museum of Milwaukee, “showcasing twenty-one hand-painted etchings by Marc Chagall” and The Haggerty Museum’s massive Chagall Tapestry is schedule to come to a close. The Haggerty is part of Marquette University.
2011: Israeli military officials disputed today the casualty figures announced by Syria a day earlier, after Israeli forces fired on protesters who had tried to breach the Syrian frontier with the Israeli-held Golan Heights, the discrepancy in numbers underlining the messages being conveyed by both sides.
2011: Dominique Strauss-Kahn pleaded not guilty today in a New York court appearance.
2011: New York Congressman Anthony Weiner admitted that his twitter account had not been hacked and that he had been sending pictures of himself to at least six female followers.
2011: Eighty-five year old Zev Birger, the concentration camp survivor who reinvigorated the Jerusalem International Book Fair passed away today. (As reported by Isabel Kershner)
2012: A Young Leadership Concert featuring Itamar Zora and the Salome Chamber Orchestra is scheduled to take place at Congregation Shearith Israel (The Spanish & Portuguese Synagogue)
2012: The Los Angeles dance company BODYTRAFFIC is scheduled to perform the world premiere of the latest work by Israeli choreographer Barak Marshall with guest artist Margalit Oved at the Joyce in New York City.
2012: In Chevy Chase, MD, Ohr Kodesh is scheduled to host a concert presented by Zemer Chai.
2012: The Wiener Library in the UK is scheduled to present ‘Target Heydrich: Laurent Binet on HHhH’ in which the author will talk about her historical novel about the two men who killed the man known as “Himmler’s Brain.”
2012: In an interview today Robert Levine “discusses moving to Saint Louis Park, Minnesota in the early 1950s and Jewish life there.”
2012: In an interview today Avis Held “discusses moving to Saint Louis Park, Minnesota in the early 1950s and Jewish life there.”
2012: It is lucky 13 for me as we celebrate our anniversary. And it is lucky for anybody who reads this because if it weren’t for Deb none of this would exist!
2012: Israel's Knesset voted down a bill that aimed at legalizing homes on the Ulpana Hill neighborhood in the West Bank settlement of Beit El, which were built on privately owned Palestinian land. (As reported by Jonathan Lis and Oz Rosenberg)
2012: Defense Minister Ehud Barak acknowledged Israel's offensive cyberspace operations for the first time. (As reported by Gili Cohen and Oded Yaron)
2012: Opening of National Hebrew Book Week
2012: “Adam Richman's Best Sandwich in America,” an American food reality television series premiered today on the Travel Channel
2013(28th of Sivan, 5773): Ninety four year old Nobel laureate Jerome Karle passed away today.(As reported by Kenneth Chang)
2013: The Associates of AFIPO are scheduled to present “Vintage Thursday,” a winetasting and silent auction evening to benefit the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra,
2013: In London, the Weiner Library is scheduled to present “Film Talk” ‘Kosher Nostra’ – Screening the Memory of the Jewish-American Gangster in ‘The Godfather Part II’”
2013: Israel’s Gesher Theater is scheduled to perform “Enemies, A Love Story” by Isaac Bashevis Singer at New York’s Lincoln Center.
2013: Syrian opposition and government forces today were engaged in hours of fierce battles at and around the Quneitra border crossing, the only crossing between Israel and Syria.
2013(28th of Sivan, 5773): Ninety-two year old Berlin born physicist Eugen Merzbacher who fled Nazi Germany passed away today.
2013: “Spertus Institute screens Hava Nagila (The Movie), the definitive, glorious, musical story of how a traditional melody from Ukraine became a Jewish staple and worldwide hit.”
2013: US military aircraft and an Israeli passenger plane nearly collided over Eilat today.
2014: The 92nd Street Y is scheduled to host “Edward Henkel's MovementTalks: The Power of Women Minding the Dance with Christine Dakin, Dawn Paap and Catherine Peila”
2014: Rabbi Shira, Rabbi Laurie Green of Bet Mishpachah, and members of GLOE are scheduled to lead an inclusive service celebrating the diversity of our community at the Historic 6th & I Synagogue.
2014: On the 70th anniversary of the Normandy invasion as special homage is paid to the dwindling number of veterans who hit the beach on D-Day, residents of Cedar Rapids in general and members of the Jewish community in particular an honor Bert Katz. As a young captain, Katz led his unit on to Easy Red sector of Omaha Beach seven minutes after the start of the invasion. Despite the fact he was wounded and lost 23 of his men to murderous enemy fire, Katz saw to it that his unit performed their vital mission on “The Longest Day” and the many days and months that would follow until the war’s end.
2014: Today, “Spain’s cabinet approved a bill allowing descendants of Jews forced into exile centuries ago the right to dual citizenship, but said applicants will have to take a Spanish culture test in addition to having their ancient ties to the nation vetted by experts.
2014: “Labor Party MK Binyamin Ben-Eliezer’s bid for the presidency seemed to have gone up in smoke
today after police questioned him for nearly five hours on suspicion that he illegally received millions of shekels from various sources, using some of the money to purchase a luxury apartment home in Jaffa. (As reported by Advi Sterman)
2015: “Is That You?” is scheduled to be shown at the Israel Film Center Festival at the JCC Manhattan.
2015: In Cedar Rapids, the traditional minyan observes D-Day Shabbat followed by “a special Kiddush celebrating the 81st birthday of Murray Wolf “complete with his favorite homemade delicacies” prepared by his wife Charlene.”
2015: “Gender, Memory and Genocide” an international conference marking the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide co-sponsored the Pears Institute of the Study of Ant-Semitism is scheduled to come to an end today.
2015: “American Pharaoh” owned by Ahmed Zayat won the Belmont Stakes today which made him the winner of racing’s Triple Crown.
2015: As we contemplate the miracles of Shabbat, on this Shabbat I cannot help but be overwhelmed by the miracle that Deb Levin married me 16 years ago today!
2016: Ori Ronen, whose newest single is “I Have a Friend” is scheduled to perform at the Cinema South Festival is Sderot.
2016: The 25th Annual Summer on Teaching the Holocaust is scheduled to begin at The Lillian and A.J. Weinberg Center for Holocaust Education.
2016: Yemen Blues is scheduled to present their new show “Insaniya” (Humanity) at Joe’s Pub.
2016: “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today reiterated his rejection of the allegation that he received €1 million in campaign funding from Arnaud Mimran, but acknowledged for the first time that he had received a smaller sum from the accused French fraudster.”
2016: The 17th Annual Washington Jewish Music Festival is scheduled to host “Musical Soundscapes of Morocco: From Africa to America” and the New York Andalus Ensemble which “performs in Arabic, Hebrew, Spanish and Ladino.”
2016(29th of Iyar, 5776): Ninety year old Tony award winning playwright Peter Shaffer passed away today.
2016(29th of Iyar, 5776): Ninety-eight year old children’s author Rhoda Blumberg passed away today. (As reported by Sam Roberts)
2016: “Fire Birds” and “Afterthought” are scheduled to be shown at the Israel Film Center Festival.
2017: “Haim Naggar, who was 20 at the time of the Six-Day War” and Dr. Joseph Shinar who “was wounded during the Six-Day War” are among those scheduled to address those attending “50 Years – Remembering The Six Day War” sponsored by Iowans Supporting Israel.
2017: “A special screening of ‘Denial’ is scheduled to take place at the Imperial War Museum in London” which includes a special “Holocaust exhibition.”
2017: A preview screening of “Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer” which is Joseph Cedar’s first English speaking film” and co-stars Lior Ashekenazi.