321: Roman Emperor Constantine named Sunday which had been a Roman pagan day for honoring the sun as a day of rest. This was an attempt by Constantine to close the gap between pagans and Christianity and to isolate the Jews. Constantine’s day of rest should not be confused with the Jewish Sabbath which was a universal day of rest.
505: Rav Ahai ben Ray Huna, a member of the Saboraim, passed away
561: The Papacy of Pelagius I came to an end. He owed his election to Justinian I, the emperor whose religious program included placing restrictions on Jews and interfering with their practices by trying to force them to substitute the Greek Septuagint for the TaNaCh.
1186: Saladin takes control of the city of Mosul which at that time had a Jewish population of approximately 7,000 souls which had been led by Zakkai ha-Nais “who claimed to be a descendant of King David.” (As reported by the Jewish Encyclopedia)
1240: Seizure of all copies of the Talmud in France
1337: Levi ben Gershon, better known by his Latinised name as Gersonides or the abbreviation of first letters as RaLBaG Levi observed a solar eclipse today.
1431: Eugene IV began his papacy today. This was a less than positive move for Jews since the new pope would “decree and order that from now on, and for all time, Christians shall not eat or drink with the Jews, nor admit them to feasts, nor cohabit with them, nor bathe with them. […] They cannot live among Christians, but in a certain street, separated and segregated from Christians, and outside which they cannot under any pretext have houses.”
1455: Birthdate of John II, the King of Portugal whom Abraham Zacuto served as Royal Astronomer.
1554: Fifty year old John Frederick I, Elector of Saxony, whose issuance of “a mandate that prohibited Jews from inhabiting, engaging in business in or passing through his realm” sparked an episode in which Luther showed that he had become an anti-Semite passed away today.
1605: VIII, during whose Papacy Jews were forced to attend “conversionist sermons,” prohibited from “dealing in new articles of clothing” and forced to allow copies of the Talmud to be burned in 1601, passed away today at the age of 69.
1619(17th of Adar, 5379): Shlomo Ephraim ben Aaron Luntschitz passed away. Born at Lenczyk in 1550 he was “a rabbi, poet and Torah commentator, best known for his Torah commentary Keli Yakar.” (For more see Seeing with Both Eyes: Ephraim Luntshitz and the Polish-Jewish Renaissance by Leonard S. Levin)
1658: Dr. Jacob Lumbrozo, the first Jew to settle in Maryland was given amnesty by Oliver Cromwell. Lumbrozo had been indicted on charges of blasphemy which was a capital offense.
1732(6th of Adar, 5492): Isaiah Azulai, father of Isaac Zerahiah Azulai and the grandfather Hayyim Joseph David Azulai passed away in Jerusalem.
1779(15th of Adar, 5539): Shushan Purim
1799: The French army under the command of Napoleon Bonaparte reached the outskirts of Jaffa. The army had left for Palestine on the first of February in an attempt to forestall a Turco-British invasion through the Palestinian land-bridge. A division under the command of General Kleber deployed along the shores of the river Yarkon, 10 kms north of the town and was responsible for shielding the besieging forces from hostile interference. This military action had nothing to do with the Jewish people. It was another example of the land of the Jews being a battleground because it was the land bridge between Africa, Asia and indirectly, Europe.
1801: David Emanuel took office as the Governor of Georgia. Emanuel was the first Jewish person to serve as a governor in the United States. Emanuel was appointed to serve the last eight months of the term of his predecessor who had assumed a seat in the U.S. Senate. Born in Pennsylvania in 1743, he passed away in 1808.
1805(2nd of Adar II, 5565): Eighty-year old author Naphtali Hartwig Wessley passed away in Hamburg following which he was buried “in the cemetery of the Portuguese Israelites, whose rituals he had professed all his life.”
1808: In the Kingdom of Westphalia, ruled by Jerome Bonaparte, Israel Jacobson “was appointed president of the Jewish consistory which was established today.
1810: In Frankfurt am Main, Jacob Hirsch Kann, the son of Miriam and Isaac Jacob Kann, and Jetta Kahn gave birth to Fanny Sichel
1811: Birthdate of Bernhard Wolff, the German journalist and editor who founded Wolffs Telegraphisches Bureau which was the German version of Rueters (British) and Havas (French).
1813: Henry Moses married Esther Nathan today at the Great Synagogue.
1814: Birthdate of Charles Kensington Salaman, the native of London who gained fame as pianist and composer.
1819: Benjamin Cohen married Jestina Montefiore today at the Great Synagogue.
1822: In Baltimore, “Dr. Jonas Horwitz and his wife Debby Andrews” gave birth to Phineas J. Horwitz, the 1845 graduate of the University of Maryland who would become Surgeon General and Chief of the Navy Bureau of Medicine.
1824: Daniel Levy married Amelia Jacobs today at the New Synagogue.
1824: Isaac Vallentine married Sarah Green today at the Hambro Synagogue.
1833: Birthdate of Mendel Hirsch, the German born Bible commentator and poet who was the son of Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch.
1844: Birthdate of “Dreyfeusard” Clement Moras.
1845: Florida becomes the 27th state to join the Union.” In 1763, the first recorded Jews in Florida came to Pensacola, in the northwest corner of the territory. More Jews moved to north Florida in the next few decades, but the Jewish population remained small during this time, numbering no more than a dozen individuals. When Florida became a state, there were less than 100 Jews in a population of 66,500. The first U.S. Senator from Florida was a Jew, David Levy Yulee.” For more about the history of the Jews of Florida see
1846: The French Supreme Court declared the “Jewish Oath” unconstitutional in response to a case involving Rabbi Lazard Isidor of Pflazburg who was defended by Isaac Adolphe Crémieux, the Jewish lawyer and political leader.
1846: In Franklin, PA, Julius Marx Rieser and Clara Kahn gave birth to Hernai Rieser, the CCNY grad and husband of Carrie Rosenfeld who served as the Manager of the Clara de Hirsch Home and Superintendent of Beth Israel Hospital.
1849: The United States Department of the Interior is established. Joel D. Wolfsohn who served as Assistant Secretary of the Department from in the final months of the Truman Administration appears to be the highest ranking Jew to have served at the Department of the Interior. He served from July 10, 1952 through February 20, 1953.
1849: Israel’s Herold was published for the first time in the United States
1850: Aaron Lyons married Fanny Nathan at the Great Synagogue today.
1851: David Levy Yulee completed his first terms as a United States Senator from Florida. He was the first Jew to sit in the Upper Chamber of the U.S. Congress. Yulee was also the last Jew in his family line since he married a gentile and raised the children in the faith of their mother. Yulee would not only turn his back on his religion, he would turn his back on his country and join the Confederacy during the Civil War.
1852: Birthdate of Sir Ernest Joseph Cassel British merchant banker and capitalist. Born in Cologne, Germany, the son of Jacob Cassel, who owned a small bank, Cassel arrived penniless in Liverpool, England in 1869 and found employment with a firm of grain merchants. With an enormous capacity for hard work and a natural business sense, Cassel was soon in Paris working for a bank. The Franco-Prussian War forced him to move to a position in a London bank, as he was born in Prussia. He prospered and was soon putting together his own financial deals. His areas of interest were in mining, infrastructure and heavy industry. Turkey was an early area of business ventures, but he soon had large interests in Sweden, the United States, South America, South Africa, and Egypt. One of the wealthiest men of his day, Cassel was a good friend of King Edward VII as well as of Prime Minister Herbert Asquith and the young Winston Churchill. In 1878, he married Annette Mary M. Maxwell at Westminster He became a Roman Catholic at the behest of his wife, Annette, but was always thought of as a Jew. The establishment was shocked to find out on his death that he had converted many years before. A few months after his death in 1921, Cassel's estate was probated at £6,000,000
1852: Lionel Alman Myers married Julia Collins in the UK today.
1854: Birthdate of Moisei Yakelovich Ostrogorski, the native of Grodno who lived in France during the Dreyfus scandal and whose visits to the U.S. and the U.K. led to the publishing of his most famous work Democracy and the Organization of Political which did not keep him from returning to his native Russia where he dies “in 1919 during the chaos that followed the Bolshevik Revolution.”
1855: Philip Phillips, the son of a prominent Charleston, SC Jewish family completed a term representing Alabama’s First Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives.
1859: Henry Myer Phillips completed his terms as member of the House of Representatives in the 35th Congress.
1860: In France, “Babette Kahn (née Bloch), an uneducated homebound mother: and cattle dealer Louis Kahn gave birth to Abraham Kahn who gained fame as Albert Kahn was a millionaire Parisian banker and philanthropist whose plan to use his fortune to document the world in photographs was thwarted by the Great Depression.
1861: Marcus Jastrow repeated the sermon he had delivered yesterday on Shabbat so that those who had heard and impressed by the sentiments expressed could write it down.
1861: Alexander II of Russia signs the Emancipation Manifesto, freeing serfs.
1862: At a meeting of the Jewish community in Davenport, Iowa, Rabbi Lowenthal was “elected to serve Congregation B’nai Israel” whose President was Isaac Bernist, “as Chazan, Schoket and M’lamed” for which he was paid an annual salary of $350.
1862: During the American Civil War, David Yulee, barely avoided capture by Union troops who were attacking Fernandina FL. Yulee was the first Jew to be elected to the United States. When Florida left the Union and joined the Confederacy, Yulee resigned from the U.S. Senate and took a seat in the southern Congress.
1863: During the American Civil War, Alfred Mordecai, Jr. was promoted to the rank of Captain in the Union Army.
1869: In Widz, Russia Isaac Ginsburg and his wife gave birth to David Ginsburg the “Rabbi of Congregations Beth Israel and Beth Hakneses Hachodesh, Rochester, N. Y.”
1870: Arguments resumed this morning in the matter revolving around the will of the late Simeon Abraham, the New York physician and Jewish civic leader whose bequests exceeded the value of his estate. The executor is seeking a court order in how to resolve the shortfall while several of the beneficiaries are seeking to protect their interests.
1871: On his 49th birthday, while serving with the United States Navy, Dr. Phineas J. Horowitz was appointed medical inspector.
1871: Abraham Hoffnung married Esther Levey in Manchester, UK.
1871: In New York, the remodeled sanctuary of Shaarey Tzedek was dedicated today. The building, which is located on Henry Street, was bought by the Jewish congregation from Quakers in 1840. The remodeling was necessitated by the growth of the congregation.
1874(14th of Adar, 5634): Purim
1874: Theodore Minis Etting, the son of Philadelphia merchant Edward Etting was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant in the United States Navy.
1874: As a group of temperance crusaders marched through Columbus, Ohio looking for support it was rebuffed by various merchants and other locals including a group of German Jews who taughtened them with offers of free beer. [Could the beer drinking Jews have been Purim revelers?]
1875: William Sprague completed his 12 year career as a United States Senator from Rhode Island. During a debate in the United States Senate on the massacre of Jews of Romania, Sprague said “the facts would show that the Jews of Romania had possessed themselves of nearly all the land and of all of the trade of the that principality while a vast population of Christians there were deprived of their means of support..” He said that this “would be found to be the cause of the recent outbreak” and that that this experience should provide “food for profound reflection…in regard to conditions…in our own country.
1877: It was reported today that a Reuter’s dispatch from Constantinople the Greeks are upset with the outcome of the election held in that city to choose delegates for the Ottoman Parliament because the of the five non-Muslims chosen the Greeks got the same number as the Jews – one – with the other three going to Armenians
1877: It was reported that a dispatch from the Daily News that one Jew was among the 10 delegates elected to serve in the Ottoman Parliament. Of the remaining delegates, 5 were Turks and 4 were Christians – a result that the Daily News said “caused no excitement.” [Editor’s Note – no matter which version you prefer, for the Jews the important item was that they were an accepted part of the electoral process as the Porte lurched toward a more open form of government.]
1878: Following the Russo-Turkish War, Bulgaria regained its independence from Ottoman Empire. The rights of the Jews of Bulgaria, along with other religious minorities, were guaranteed by the Treaty of Berlin. The treaty guarantee did not protect from outbreaks of anti-Semitic violence, blamed in part on the erroneous notion that the Jews had supported the Ottomans. Bulgaria was never very hospitable to its Jewish population. On the other hand, Bulgaria managed to avoid shipping most of its Jewish population to concentration camps.
1878: In New York City, Meyer S. Isaacs presided over a meeting of prominent Jewish leaders including rabbis, synagogue presidents and representatives of Jewish benevolent societies. Those attending the meeting which was held at the 34th Street Synagogue discussed ways of raising funds to aid the suffering Jews of Turkey and the East during the current hostilities. A proposal to by the Ball Committee to hold a masked ball at the end of March as a fundraiser was rejected and a more direct approach for appealing for funds was adopted.
1878: Rabbi D.C. Lewin delivered a well-received lecture on “The Life and Character of Moses Mendelssohn” at the Young Men’s Hebrew Union in New York City this evening.
1878: Birthdate of German-born expressionist theatrical producer and director Leopold Jessner. Jessner left Germany in 1933. His life was saved but his career was over. He passed away in 1945.
1878: “Macklin in the Merchant of Venice” published today described the decision of great 18th century thespian Charles Macklin to play the role of Shylock in the manner of a serious character. Despite the doubts of others, Macklin was so successful that he reprised it hundreds of times. No other actor even came close to his portrayal of this Jewish figure until Edmund Kean took up the role in the 19th century. Of Macklin’s portrayal, Alexander Pope, the great English poet wrote, “This is the Jew, That Shakespeare Drew.”
1878: In Philadelphia, PA, “Hebrew School No. 2 opened today in a synagogue building” at “fifth and Catherine Streets. The school would later move to Wheatley Hall before finding its final home at Touro Hall. (As reported by Cyrus Adler and David Sulzberger)
1878: Charles Wessolowsky wrote to Rabbi Edward B.M. Browne today describing “the B’nai B’rith organization in Uniontown, Alabama and the value of B’nai B’rith to the survival of American Judaism” while praising “a Mrs. Ungar of Uniontown not only for her resistance to attempted conversions, but also for the raising of her family in Jewish lore.”
1879: Jewish financier and businessman Joseph Seligman was among the major stockholders of the St. Louis and San Francisco who arrived in St. Louis this morning prior to tomorrow’s meeting during which a new Board of Directors will be elected
1880: It was reported today that the first edition of the “Oriental and Biblical Journal” edited by Stephen D. Peet has been issued in Chicago, Illinois. [Peet served as a pastor to several Congregational and Presbyterian Churches in the Middle West. He had a passion for archeology which he used in his Biblical studies. He was one of a series of English and American clergyman who tied the study of Archeology with Biblical Scholarship; a connection that late would become a national pastime of the Zionists.]
1881: Edward Einstein completed his term as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York’s 7th Congressional District
1882(12th of Adar I, 5642): Sxity-seven Ludwig Kalishch, the German born author whose participation in the Revolutions of 1848 and 1849 forced him to move to France passed away today in Paris.
1883: Leopold Morse completed his service as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts’s 4th district.
1884: On his 62nd birthday, Phineas Jonathan Horwitz retired from the U.S. Navy after 38 years of service.
1885: Leopold Morse completed his service as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts’s 5th district.
1885: Fifty-year old Benjamin Franklin Jonas, a native of Williamstown, KY and 1855 graduate of the University of Louisiana (the future Tulane University) who served in several governmental and political positions after the Civil War completed his services a U.S. Senator from Louisiana today.
1886: It was reported today that banker Isidore Wormser had given his daughter, the former Miss Julia Wromser “$100,000 in Lake Shore 7 per cent sinking bond funds” as a wedding gift, while James Seligman had given Jefferson Seligman, his son and her new husband “a check for $50,000” which was supplemented by a check for $20,000 from the firm of J & W Seligman.
1887: Birthdate of Chasidic Rabbi Yehuda Meir Shapiro “a descendant of Rabbi PInchas Shapiro of Korets, on the students of the Baal Shem Tov” and French tosafist Rabbi Joseph ben Isaac Bekhor Shor, who was “known as the Lubliner Rav”
1888: Birthdate of František Langer Czech military physician and author who survived the Shoah because he was serving “as a member of the Czechoslovakian Army abroad (England) with the rank of brigadier general.
1889: Leopold Morse completed his service as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts’s 3rd district.
1889: Twenty-six year old Moses G. Zalinski who had joined the U.S. Army as a private, completed his service with the First Artillery with the rank of Sergeant.
1889: The Temple Emanu-El Sisterhood was incorporated today by several leading Jewesses including Mrs. Theodora G. Levy, Mrs. Cordeilia Schnitzer and Mrs. Theresa Sidenberg.
1890: The Trustees of Columbia College met today and “acknowledged and accepted “ several gifts including “a valuable collection of Hebrew manuscripts from” Oscar S. Straus, the former American minister to Turkey.
1890(11th of Adar, 5650): Seventy year old Rabbi Julius Landsberger who helped found “the Liberal Synagogue at Darmstadt” passed away today in Berlin.
1891: It was reported today that the New York Siberian Exile Petition Association will be forwarding a petition to the Czar in April “protesting against the present treatment of the Jews.”
1891: “Priests and Rabbis Barred” published today described an attempted Dr. T.T. Eaton, “a liberal Baptist preacher” to have the Louisville Ministerial Association admit Catholic and Jewish clergy as members. His motion failed in 14 to 12 vote.
1891: Prominent St. Louis Jewish leader Nathan Frank completed his service as U.S Congressman.
1891: Charles Baker completed his service in the House of Representatives during which he had protested the treatment of the Jews by the government of Russia.
1892: President James H. Hoffman presided over tonight’s meeting of The Hebrew Technical Institute which was held at Temple Emanu-El in New York City.
1892(4th of Adar, 5652): Joseph Ratner, a Russian Jewish immigrant who has been married for two months shot himself this afternoon. He was believed to have been despondent over health problems.
1893: Birthdate of Salvator Cicurel “an Egyptian Olympic fencer, who competed in the individual and team épée and team foil events at the 1928 Summer Olympics.”
1893: Forty-two year old Sigmund Hyman was taken from Mount Sinai Hospital and sent to North Brother Island because he was suffering from typhus fever.
1893: The New York Auxiliary to the Jewish Section of the Woman’s Branch of the Parliament of Religions is scheduled to resume its meeting today at the home of Mrs. Scholle where they will continue making plans for the papers they will be presenting at the upcoming World’s Fair. The members include Mrs. Oscar Straus, Mrs. Jacob Schiff, Mrs. Simon Borg, Mrs. Isidor Wormser, Mrs. Jesse Selgiman and Mrs. Alexander Kohut, the wife of Rabbi Alexander Kohut.
1894: Policemen Fay and Schultz came to Shearith Israel to investigate reports that “there was a crazy man in the synagogue.”
1895: “A Wedding Reception, 1471” published today described the wedding of the Duke Ferrara who hosted so many guests that he was ‘obliged to hire” “the mattresses and bolsters…from the Jews who kept a bank in Ferrara.
1895: “The Fate of a Financier” published today provided one version of the life and death of Joseph Suess Oppenheimer which is at odds with the facts as they are known today.
1895: Birthdate of Rabbi Moshe Feinstein. Born in Uzda, Belorussia "Reb Moshe" was the leading authority on Orthodox Jewish religious law (Halacha) during the last century. He served as a Rabbi of Luban, near Minsk starting in 1921 before coming to the United States in 1937. In 1938, he was named Rosh Yeshiva (Dean) of Mesivta Tiferes Yerushalayim, a New York yeshiva a position he held until 1986, the year he passed away. As his reputation grew, his rulings on religious law came to be accepted worldwide. A multi-volume collection of his letters, Igros Moshe, is considered authoritative among Orthodox Jews with regard to moral and ethical issues. He served President of the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of the United States and Canada, 1968-1986, Chairman, American Branch, Mo'ezet Gedolei ha-Torah of Agudat Yisrael, the Council of Torah Sages, and was acknowledged as the Gadol Ha-Dor, or preeminent individual of his generation of Jewish scholars.
1895: “Early Bible Printing in This Country” published today described the role of the city of Philadelphia has played “in this branch of bookmaking” including the fact that the first Hebrew Bible published in the United States was printed by Philadelphian William Fry in 1814. This was done five years after a Hebrew language copy of the Book of Psalms had been printed at Harvard.
1895: “B’nai B’rith Pioneers” published today traces the fifty year history of “the pioneer of all the existing Hebrew secret societies.”
1895: Isidor Straus completed his service as U.S. Congressman from New York’s 15th Congressional District.
1896: Professor Felix Adler will deliver a lecture entitled “Moral Aspects of the Question” at the opening session of a conference on Improved Housing being held at the United Charities Building.
1896: It was reported today the resolution Congress had adopted “which virtually denounced the attitude of the Russians toward the Jews” had caused “embarrassment” for the U.S. Minister to St Petersburg because he had to “present such expression from his own government to the nation to which he is sent.”
1897: Four lodges of B’nai B’rith hosted a party in honor of the birthdays of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln at the Tuxedo on Madison and 59th Street.
1898: “The Jews For Arbitrators” published today described Rabbi Pereira Mendes wish that the United States would consider submitting its claims against Spain following the blowing up of the battleship USS Maine to a court of international arbitration instead of resorting to war.
1899: Stanford Moses who had been serving aboard the USS Oregon, was promoted to the rank of Lt. Jr. Grade and transferred to serve on the U.S.S. Celtic, a “stores ship” that provided support for U.S. forces during the Philippine-American War.
1901: Jefferson Monroe Levy completed his services a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York’s 13th district.
1901: New York Democrat Mitchell May completed his service as a member of the 56th United States Congress.
1902(24TH of Adar, 5662): Isaac Conquy Abecassis, a native of the Azores born in 1840 passed away today at Var, France
1903: Congress passed legislation aimed at curbing immigration to the United States. The bill required immigrants to pay a two dollar head tax (a considerable sum in those days for poor immigrants). It also gave immigration officers the right to exclude those whom they deem anarchists or as people who believe in or advocate the overthrow of the United States government. The legislation was obviously aimed at immigrants from Southern and Eastern Europe, including the large Jewish populations in the Russian and Austro-Hungarian empires.
1903: Senator Joseph Simon, Oregon Republican, finishes his term in the U.S. Senate. Simon returned to Portland, Oregon where he resumed his law practice and would serve as may from 1909 to 1911.
1903: Lucius Nathan Littauer completed his service as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York’s 22nd district which began in 1897.
1903: Despite “all the pressure that has been brought to bear to induce him to reconsider,” the leaders of Temple Beth-El reluctantly accepted the resignation of Dr. Kaufmann Kohler from his position as Rabbi of New York’s leading Reform congregation.
1904: Birthdate of award winning sportswriter Jesse Abramson, “who was noted for his coverage of track and boxing.”
1904: In South Carolina, Rabbi J.J. Simenhoff officiated at the wedding of Jake l. Karesh and Minnie A. Ellison.
1905: In the wake of the defeat by Japan and the Russian Revolution, Czar Nicholas II agreed to create an elected assembly, the Duma.
1906: M.S. Snow delivered a lecture on “The Habit of Reading” before the Jewish Educational alliance.
1907: Charles Grosvenor completed his 14 year career as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Ohio’s 11th district. He was an opponent of immigration bills that specifically barred Russian Jews from coming to the United States.
1907: Birthdate of London native Joyce Black, who as Joy Finzi gave birth to Christopher and Nigel Finzi and founded the Finzi Trust “a foundation named for deceased husband composer Gerald Finzi
1907: After 4 years, Lucius Nathan Littauer completed his service as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York’s 25th district
1910: Dorothy Levitt “was booked to give a talk at the Criterion Restaurant today about her experiences learning to fly.
1910: Birthdate of Eddie “Kid” Wolfe, the welterweight from Memphis, TN, who fought his first bout in 1927.
1911(3rd of Adar, 5671): Rabbi Jacob de Botton leader of the Jewish community in Salonica passed away at the age 68.
1911: William S. Bennett, who would publicly support aid for the Jews Europe after the World War broke, completed his service as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York’s 17th District.
1912(14th of Adar, 5672): Purim
1912(14th of Adar, 5672): Eighty-six year old philanthropist William Wolf passed away today in San Francisco.
1912: The New York Times publishes a review of Die Juden und das Wirtschaftsleben (The Jews in Economic Life) recently published in Germany by Prof. Werner Sombart, Professor of Political Economy at the Commercial High School of Berlin that includes the insights of Dr. Solomon Shechter.
1913: Victor L. Berger completed his term representing the 5th Congressional District of Wisconsin
1913: Simon Guggenheim completed his term as U.S. Senator from Colorado.
1913: Jefferson Monroe Levy completed his services a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York’s 13th district.
1913: Birthdate of Harold Hochstein who gained fame as Harold J. Stone, the American actor who traveled from Broadway, to Hollywood to Television.
1915: As the 63rd session of the United States Congress came to an end, Jacob Cantor completed his term as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives. He had been elected on November 4, 1913 to fill the vacancy of Francis Harrison (who was not Jewish). He lost to Issac Siegel who was Jewish and returned to his New York law practice. Siegel in turn would be replaced by that most famous of all New Yorkers, Fiorello H. LaGuardia, the son of a Jewish mother who was raised as a Yiddish speaking Italian Catholic.
1915: “Needs of Jews in Russia” published today described the request for aid from the Jewish Colonization Association of Petrograd to aid the “tens of thousands:” of “new refugees from Poland” that have arrived in the Russian capital.
1915: As the 63rd session of the United States Congress came to an end, Henry Mayer Goldfogle completed his term as a member of the U.S. House of Representative which had begun with the 57th session of Congress.
1915: Jefferson Monroe Levy completed his services a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York’s 14th district.
1916: In Vienna, rabbis and communal leaders from Galicia met and formed a committee designed to find a “solution for the eastern Jewish problem.”
1916: Today, C.H. Rubenstein wrote to Simon Wolf, the Chairman of the Board of Delegates in Washington, DC, “I am glad to inform you that the bill before the Maryland Legislature, making the reading of the Bible compulsory in the public schools of the State…has been defeated” by a “constitutional majority.”
1916: After winning 15 straight bouts Benny Leonard (born Benjamin Leiner) fought today for the lightweight championship but lost when he failed to knockout the champ.
1917: Birthdate of Lou Labovitch, the native of Winnipeg who played right wing in six different hockey leagues from 1938 to 1948, none of which were the NHL.
1917: William H. King, who in 1927 “declared…that he favored the United States severing diplomatic relations with any country which failed because of anti-Semitism to protect its Jewish nationals” and “expressed the belief that eventually Palestine would be able to support a population of a million Jews” began serving as a U.S. Senator from Utah.
1917: William Stiles Bennet who in 1916 told 3,000 people attending a meeting at the McKinley Casino that it was “now necessary for the American Jew to assist his brethren in Europe” and “said that large sums of money would be needed in order to accomplish the desired relief” completed his services as a Member of the US. House of Representatives from New York’s 27th District today.
1917: Djemal Pasha offers to give the Jews free access to the Western Wall in Jerusalem to pray if they provide the sum of 80,000-100,000 Francs
1918: Birthdate of photographer Arnold Abner Newman.
1918: Germany and the new Communist government of Russia signed The Brest-Litovsk Treaty. This treat dismembered the Russian Empire and took Russia out of the war. This freed the German Army to shift all of its forces to the Western Front where the Kaiser’s forces tried for a knock-out blow that failed. The treaty helped bring on the Russian Civil War between the Whites and the Reds during which Jews were slaughtered by both sides. Also, the treaty resulted in western forces (U.S., English, etc.) sending troops to Russia. Once again, Jews were caught in the middle and suffered economic ruin and death.
1918: In New York City, Joseph and Lena Kornberg who had married in 1904 and emigrated to New York from Austrian Galicia gave birth to Arthur Kornberg US biochemist who synthesized artificial DNA. He received the Nobel Prize in 1959. He died in 2007 at the age of 89.
1919: Emir Faisel writes a letter to Felix Frankfurter expressing his support for the Zionist cause. ”We Arabs...look with deepest sympathy on the Zionist Movement....We will wish the Jews a most hearty welcome… The Arabs, especially the educated among us, look with the deepest sympathy on the Zionist movement. Our deputation here in Paris is fully acquainted with the proposals submitted yesterday by the Zionist Organization to the Peace Conference, and we regard them as moderate and proper." The boundaries of Palestine shall follow the general lines set out below: Starting on the North at a point on the Mediterranean Sea in the vicinity South of Sidon and following the watersheds of the foothills of the Lebanon as far as Jisr el Karaon, thence to El Bire following the dividing line between the two basins of the Wadi El Korn and the Wadi Et Teim thence in a southerly direction following the dividing line between the Eastern and Western slopes of the Hermon, to the vicinity West of Beit Jenn, thence Eastward following the northern watersheds of the Nahr Mughaniye close to and west of the Hedjaz Railway. In the East a line close to and West of the Hedjaz Railway terminating in the Gulf of Akaba [will serve as the boundary]; in the South a frontier to be agreed upon with the Egyptian Government; in the West the Mediterranean Sea. The details of the delimitations, or any necessary adjustments of detail, shall be settled by a Special Commission on which there shall be Jewish representation. Emir Faisel fought against the Turks alongside T.E. Lawrence. Faisal was expecting to be able to control a Caliphate based in Damascus. As we can see here he had even worked out a plan with Chaim Weizmann that would have allowed for the creation of a Jewish home in Palestine. Unfortunately, the French, who controlled Syria after the war, drove Faisal from Damascus, ending his power and the dream of peace in the Middle East.
1919(1st of Adar II, 5679): Abraham (Albert) Antebi, head of the Alliance Israelite Universelle in Constantinople passed away. He was born at Damascus in 1899.
1919: Meyer London, one of only two members of the Socialist Party to be elected to the U.S. House of Representatives completed his term representing the 12th District of New York. He had defeated Henry M. Goldfogle, a Jew, for the seat and Goldfogle returned the favor.
1920: Arabs attacked Kfar Giladi forcing the settlers to abandon their land and take refuge in “the Shia village of Taibe” before finding ultimate sanctuary at Ayelet Hashahar, a kibbutz settled in 1915 during the Second Aliyah.
1921: In Galveston, TX, “Russian Jewish immigrants Louis and Rose Paskowitz” gave birth to Dorian "Doc" Paskowitz the graduate of Stanford University School of Medicine who gave up his medical career to become “a professional surfer.
1921: Birthdate of Allen Ginsberg beat generation poet. In 1969 he received the Arts & Letters Award.
1922: An Arab delegation “held a meeting…at the Hyde Park Hotel in London to denounce Britain’s ‘Zionist policy.’” The Secretary of the delegation was reported to have declared “the necessity of killing Jews if the Arabs did not get their way.”
1922: The schedules in the estate of Jacob H. Schiff, banker and philanthropist, who died Sept. 25, 1920, prepared for submission to the State Tax Commission in the inheritance tax proceeding to begin shortly, fix the value of the property to be taxed in New York State at $35,257,008. The net estate on which the executors estimate a tax will be fixed is $34,426,282.
1923: Meyer London completed his second, non-successive term as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives representing New York’s 12th District. He was followed in office by another Jewish politician, Samuel Dickstein.
1923: TIME magazine was published for the first time by Henry Luce. Jews connected with America’s leading weekly news magazine have included managing editors Henry Grunwald (1968–1977) and Walter Isaacson (1996–2000) and contributors Lev Grossman, Joe Klein and Joel Stein.
1924:”Why Men Leave Home” a silent film directed by John M. Stahl and produced by Louis B. Mayer was released today in the United States.
1923: Fifty-six year old Republican Milton Kraus completed his service as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Indiana’s 11th congressional district.
1925: “Salome of the Tenements” a silent film adapted to the screen by Sonya Levien from the Anzia Yezierska novel produced by Jesse L. Lasky and Adolph Zukor and co-starring Jetta Goudal was released in the United States today.
1926(17th of Adar, 5686): Sixty-six year old Sir Sidney Lee, the author who specialized in the Elizabethian period and was the brother of Elizabeth Lee passed away today.
1926: The Lenox Quartette performed “String Quartette” by Leopold Mannes at the New York Public Library.
1926: Theatrical producer E. Ray Goetz returned to New York today on the line France and said that his brother-in-law Irving Berlin and his bride the former Ellin Mackay “are planning to make their home in London” at least until next fall.
1926: “Important Jewish manuscripts, relics, early printed books, antiquities, ceremonial objects and other items of Judaica” totaling 6,174 pieces “have been purchased in Germany for the Hebrew Union College at Cincinnati and are now on their way to “the United States” according to an announcement made today by Dr. Adolph S. Oko, who has been in Europe for ten weeks working on the project.
1926: Dr. William Filderman of Bucharest, the President of the Union of Rumanian Jews was met at the pier when his ship docked in New York by “a large delegation from the American Branch Branch of the Union of Rumanian Jews headed by Leo Wolf who heard the visitor say that while the “King depalored any anti-Semitic feeling in Rumania…the situation of the Jews…was very bad” and that economic help might be a remedy for their troubles.
1927: After ten years, Senator William King who “declared…that he favored the United States severing diplomatic relations with any country which failed because of anti-Semitism to protect its Jewish nationals” and “expressed the belief that eventually Palestine would be able to support a population of a million Jews” completed his service as Secretary of the Senate Democratic Caucus today.
1927: Nathan David Perlman completed his service as a member of the U.S. House Representatives from New York’s 14th District.
1928: A statement published today marking the passing of Max issued by Joseph C. Hyman, Secretary of the Joint Distribution Committee closed by say “The annals of the Joint Distribution Committee, as well as the record of American Jewry, united in this great humanitarian effort to save rebuilt the lives of our people across the sea, will for all time carry the name of his modest, simple, devoted leader who gave of his very best to the causes which he served”
1929: In the Old City of Jerusalem, Rabbi Salman Eliyahu, a Jerusalem Kabbalist from an Iraqi Jewish family and his wife Mazal gave birth to Rabbi Mordechai Tzemach Eliyahu
1930: U.S. premiere of “Madame Satan,” a “musical romantic comedy” co-starry Lillian Roth (b. Lillian Rutstein)
1931: A special screening of “1914” directed and produced by Richard Oswald, co-starring Reinhold Schunzel and filmed by cinematographer Mutz Greenbaum was held today at the Reichstag.
1932: Judge Cutherbert W. Pound addressed Benjamin Cardozo on his last as Chief Judge of the New York Court of Appeals saying of the man who was about to become a U.S. Supreme Court Justice, “We shall miss not only the great Chief Judge whose wisdom and understanding have added glory to the judicial office but all the true man who has blessed us with the light of his friendship, the sunshine of his smile.”
1932: “In a unanimous opinion written by Chief Judge Benjamin N. Cardozo as his final judicial act before taking his place on the United States Court bench, the court held” today “that the issuance of a subpoena to Senator Hastings was legal but that the efforts to penalize him were improperly conducted.”
1933: Birthdate of Harry Oscar Triguboff, the native of Dalian whose parents had fled from Russia to northeastern China after the Russian Revolution who became an Australian billionaire residential property developer known as “high-rise Harry.”
1933: About a month after Adolf Hitler became chancellor of Germany and about a week after the burring of the Reichstag 100 prisoners were taken to a school in the small town of Norha near the city of Weimar. They were interrogated and sent into three large rooms where they guarded by policemen and students from the school. This was the start of Germany's first Concentration camp.
1934: “Heat Ligthning,” the film version of the Broadway play by the same name, directed by Mervyn LeRoy and produced by Samuel Bischoff was released today in the United States.
1934: At the 102nd Engineers Armory, the undefeated City College of New York basketball team led by Abe Weissbrodt lost to the undefeated NYU team led Willie Rubenstein.
1935: Birthdate of New York native, Brandeis Alum and Harvard Ph.D Michael Walzer, the Professor Emeritus for Advanced Study in Princeton who is the husband of Judith Borodovko Walzer with whom he had two daughters – Saran Esther and Rebecca Leah – and “older brother of historian Judith Walzer Leavitt.
1936: Birthdate of Eva Kleinova who was transported from Prague in 1942 to Ujazdow where she was murdered.
1936: Paul Bekker, the former director of the Wiesbaden opera whom “officials said ‘favored Jews and showed Bolshevik opposition” was among those deprived of their citizenship today by the German government.
1936: Funeral services are scheduled to take place at the family residence for Rabbi Isaac Brill which will be attended by his four children – Jacques, Ray, Nellie and Jessie Brill.
1936: Eighty-five Jewish refugees from Germany arrived in New York aboard the Cunard White Star Line Berenaria.
1936: “Twenty-five more German intellectuals, led by Arnold Zweig” who “was denounced as Jewish author” “were denationalized today by order of Dr. Frick in agreement with…the Foreign Minister on the ground that they had violated their duty of loyalty to the Reich…”
1936: It was announced today that “the United Palestine Appeal will be opened in New York City” on March 4” with a tea at the Hotel Astor.”
1936: A dispatch from Berlin “today reported that an agreement has been reached between the German and Netherlands Governments enabling Netherlands citizens of Jewish descent living in Germany to be repatriated with part of their capital in order to be in a position to start anew in the Netherlands.”
1937: Benjamin Winter announced today that “Professor Albert Einstein has accepted the honorary chairmanship of the American Appeal for the Jews in Poland” which is trying to raise one million dollars in the United States to provide relief for destitute Polish Jews. (Editor’s Note – Due to the Shoah we often lose sight of the fact that during the 1930’s many countries in Europe, including Poland, were in the grip of a virulent anti-Semitism that had nothing to do with Hitler)
1937: In an address at the annual luncheon of the Women’s Division of the American Jewish Congress, Fiorello La Guardia suggested that Hitler’s effigy be placed in a chamber of horrors at the World’s Fair.
1938: Oil is discovered in Saudi Arabia. The connection with Jewish history should be self-evident.
1938(30th of Adar I, 5698): Rosh Chodesh Adar II
1938: Sholem (Samuel) Schwarzbard a Bessarabian-born Jewish poet and anarchist, known primarily for the assassination of the Ukrainian nationalist leader Symon Petliura who wrote poetry in Yiddish under the pen name of Baal-Khaloymes (English: The Dreamer) passed away today in Cape Town, South Africa.
1938: The Palestine Post reported from London that the Colonial Secretary, Mr. Ormsby Gore, assured the House of Commons that Palestinian police, assisted by British troops, were doing everything possible to contain the deeply seated and widespread Arab terror.
1938: The Palestine Post reported that Yacoub Marata, an Arab police corporal, and Alfred Koblenz, a Jewish constable, were shot and badly wounded by Arab terrorists at a Haifa market.
1938: The Palestine Post reported that the Haifa Port inaugurated a new, extensive cargo jetty.
1939: Cardinal Pace III, a long time semi-supporter of the German government, became Pope Pius XII. He was later greatly criticized for his passive acceptance of the Final Solution.
1939: Thirty-three year old Jenny Marx who was caring for ailing parents wrote to her younger brother Max who had taken refuge in Palestine today that, “It makes little sense to you about the same subject over and over, yet there is nothing else to write about. I am so sired of life that I have often wished it would end. In your case it is quie different. You are held in esteem and you have a fantastic position, for which I congratulate you. You enjoy life. In my case all is finished. The tragedy with our parents, the long separation from you, everybody loaded down with sorrows, so interest in life is not great.” (Editor’s Note – In a decision that we might not understand, men were thought to be a greater risk in the 3rd Reich so women stayed behind when family matters forced them to make such a decision. Jenny’s engagement in April to Sigmund Mayer, “a plain workman, baker and confection” brought her renewed hope.”
1939: “The first contingent of about 500 Jews who had been expelled from Danzig left early this morning for an unknown destination. In a departure marked by “distressing farewell scenes” the contingent of men, women and children were taken to a German railway station by a convoy of buses and trucks. There are unconfirmed rumors that these homeless Jews will pass through Hungary to Constanta, Romania where a ship is waiting to take them to Tel Aviv. The Jews face the double whammy of the Nazis and the Arab inspired limits on Jewish immigration to Eretz Israel since no valid visas are available for this wretched contingent.
1940: When hundreds of Jewish women took to the streets of Tel Aviv today chanting “anti-land law slogans,” the British military commander issued an order imposing a total curfew that was scheduled to last for three days until.
1941: Ice cream parlor owner Ernst Cahn was executed by a Nazi firing squad today in the Netherlands.
1941(4th of Adar, 5701): Adolph Schwartz died from a heart attack today at the age of 74.
1943(26th of Adar, 5703): Betty Diana Aarons passed away today after which she was interred in the Rainham Jewish Cemetery.
1943(26th of Adar I, 5703): Judikje Simons, later Judikje Themans- Simons, died today at Sobibor, together with her husband, Bernard, their five-year-old daughter Sonja, and their three-year-old son Leon. Simons was one of six Jewish members of the Dutch Ladies’ Gymnastic Team that won the Olympic title at Amsterdam in 1928, Simons, who ran an orphanage with her husband in the city of Utrecht that housed 83 children, had apparently been warned that the Nazis were heading her way, and was offered a hiding place by Dutch friends. However, Simons had no intention of forsaking her orphans, sealing her fate, and that of almost all of the children.
1944: “The Iraqi Government today announced through the Arab News Agency that its protest to Washington with regard to the Palestine resolution “has had satisfactory results.” (As reported by JTA)
1944: Birthdate of Yoram Jerrold Kessel, the South African born Israeli journalist and correspondent who gain fame with American audiences as the CNN correspondent reporting on the Middle East from Jerusalem.
1944: “The Jewish Agency for Palestine today announced that David Ben-Gurion, chairman of its executive, has withdrawn his resignation and resumed work in the Agency’s headquarters.” (As reported by JTA)
1944: Birthdate of Fred Goldsmith “the 1992 Sports Illustrated National NCAA Football Coach of the Year and the 1994 Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award.”
1944: Emir Abdullah Ibn Husseein, ruler of Transjordan…cabled a bitter protest to President Roosevelt against the pending Senate resolution reaffirming United States approval of Palestine as Jewish national homeland.”
1944: Jermie Adler, a Jewish father of three who was hiding in village outside of Liege, Belgium became so ill that he checked himself into a hospital today. “While he was in the hospital, the Gestapo arrested his wife, two daughters, and a nephew.” Only his oldest daughter survived the war.
1945: The Jewish Infantry Brigade was activated as part of the British Army. Jewish military groups fought with distinction during World War II. These soldiers were drawn from the Yishuv - the Jewish community in what was then called Palestine. At the end of the war, some of these soldiers participated in daring rescue activities that brought survivors of the Holocaust from central Europe, through Italy and eventually to ships bound for Palestine. Military training gained by the Jewish troops proved useful when the Israelis converted from the small military unit tactics of the pre-Independence period to the larger operations necessary to defeat the invading armies they faced in 1948 and 1949.
1945: Eri Jabotinsky, son of the late Zionist Revisionist leader, Vladimir Jabotinsky, was released after two days in custody for interrogation concerning his “activities.”
1945: Over two thousand Jews from Ebensee, a sub-camp of Mauthausen were sent from Gross Rosen. Of them 49 died in the trains on the way and 182 more died upon arrival.
1946: The Union of American Hebrew Congregations, parent body of Reform Judaism in the United States, was urged today by Dr. Maurice N. Eisendrath, executive director, "to disassociate itself from dogmatic anti-Zionism."
1946: In an article about the appropriate ways to rehabilitate disabled WW II GI’s Dr. Howard Rusk reported that the number of “working-age males, who are either unemployable or marginally employable because of handicaps exceed, numerically, the Jewish population.” Such a comparison would indicate that the average American knows how many Jews live in the United States.
1947: Having left Poland for Paris in 1946 and Paris for the United States in February 1947, future novelis Louis Begley and his family arrived in New York City.
1947: The four hundred ton “motor ship Susanna” left Italy carrying 800 Jewish refugees who hope to avoid the British blockade and find a home in Palestine.
1947: The Irgun gave proof to its announcement that open warfare exists between its forces and the British by attacking British military installations in Haifa with a barrage of 500 hand grenades.
1947: The Haganah accused the British of “deliberately destroying the Jewish economy” by imposing martial law on “thousands of people who have nothing whatsoever to do with terror or crime.”
1947: Lieutenant General G.H.A. MacMillan announced that the word “terrorist” would no longer be used to describe those Jews attacking the British in Palestine. The term had acquired a sense of “glamour” which should not be ascribed to people he said were no better than the gangsters from Al Capone’s Chicago.
1947: Lazar Kagnovich began serving as First Secretary of the Communist Party of Ukraine.
1948: “Black Bart,” a cowboy biopic filmed by cinematographer Irving Glassberg was released in the United States today.
1948: The executive board of the Parent-Teacher Association at DeWitt Clinton High School registered their protest “again the banning of Gentleman’s Agreement and Focus.
1948: “Pleading for a supreme for effort at conciliation, Canada today called on the five permanent members of the Security Council” – US, UK, USSR, France and China – “to make a last-minute attempt to find an agreed solution to the Palestine problem.”
1949: “At the Theatre” published down provided review of “Two Blind Mice” starring Melvyn Douglas.
1949: In Brooklyn, discount store owner and stock broker Israel Chernow and Ruth Chernow, a bookkeeper gave birth to Pulitzer Prize winning historian and biographer Ronald “Ron” Chernow whose subjects have included George Washington, J.P. Morgan and Warburg family.
1950(14th of Adar, 5710): Purim
1950: In the San Fernando Valley, California, Elaine Edelman, and Jay Ziskin gave birth to Laura Ziskin, the producer of “Spider Man” and “Pretty Woman.”
1950: In Jordan the cabinet has reportedly resigned because it was opposed to the non-aggression pact which has been secretly negotiated with Israel. King Abdullah is said to be the major supporter of the agreement.
1953: The Jerusalem Post reported that seven infiltrators from Jordan were killed in two separate incidents on Israeli territory. The Soviet ambassador to Egypt, Semyon Kozirev, invited the former mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin el-Husseini, to visit Moscow. The increased food rations for Pesach included an extra 100 grams of meat, a welcome addition to the monthly rate of 200 grams, and 290 grams of olive oil to every consumer. (As you can see from this entry, even without the attacks from Arab terrorists and the threat of attack from the surrounding Arab nations, the early settlers of Israel had a rough time of it.)
1954: “Rose Marie” an adaptation of the 1924 operetta with lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II with a script by George Froeschel and directed by Mervyn LeRoy premiered in Chicago, Illinois today.
1956: Morocco gained its independence from France. "One of the first actions of the government was to order the Jewish agency to halt its emigration activities."
1956: After 461 performances, the curtain came on the original Broadway production of “Plain and Fancy” with a book co-authored by Joseph Stein and music by Albert Hague in which Bea Arthur understudied for the role of “Ruth.”
1957(30th of Adar I, 5717): Controversial Holocaust survivor Rudolf (Israel) Kastner, the man who negotiated with Eichmann to save Hungarian Jews was shot by by Zeev Eckstein, 24, a Holocaust survivor, and died of his injuries nine days later.
1959: Birthdate of Ira Glass, host of public radio’s “This American Life.”
1960: U.S. premiere of Home From the Hill with a screenplay by Irving Ravetch, the son of a rabbi and his wife Harriet Frank, Jr.
1961(15th of Adar, 5721): Shushan Purim
1961: Hassan II becomes King of Morocco. When he came to the throne, Hassan II had a reputation as a playboy. Nobody would have predicted the positive role he would play in relations with Israel. The following story written when the King died in 1999 describes the impact of the Moroccan Monarch. “Tens of thousands of Israelis are mourning the death of Morocco's King Hassan II, a man they considered "their" king, leaving them homesick for the land their families left. Young Israelis of Moroccan origin placed the Moroccan flag on top of their cars, while others displayed huge posters in their homes of the king, who died last Friday of a heart attack at the age of 70. The Moroccan Jewish community in Israel declared a seven-day period of mourning for the king. A delegation led by Israeli President Ezer Weizman, Prime Minister Ehud Barak and former Prime Minister Shimon Peres joined 30 other world leaders, including President Clinton and Palestinian Authority leader Yasser Arafat, in remembering a man who played a vital role in bridging the gap between the Jewish state and the Arab world. In a condolence message, Weizman called Hassan a "true partner in the peace process.” Attending the funeral, Barak called Hassan a "great leader" and a "farsighted man, a friend to the governments of Israel in their voyage toward peace with the Arab people." In Israel, Moroccan Jews have traditionally supported parties, such as Likud or Shas that espouse hard-line policies toward the Arab countries. That is partly to compensate for the fact that they felt "Ashkenazi Jews regarded them as Jewish Arabs," according to Haim Shiran, director of Inbal, an ethnic center in Tel Aviv. He said anti-Arab political views were a kind of self-defense mechanism, a way to distinguish themselves from the Arabs. But when it came to the king's death, the reaction of Israel's estimated 300,000 Moroccan Jews appeared similar to Morocco's Arab residents, many of whom consider the king to be a direct descendent of the Muslim prophet Mohammad. "I know that it may sound ridiculous," said Shiran, "but when on Friday, I saw the Moroccan announcer on television announcing the death of the king, I broke out in tears." Hassan took power in 1961 after the death of his father, Mohammed V. When Hassan ascended to the throne, he was an unknown quantity with a reputation as a playboy. But ruling with a deft mixture of pro-Western democracy and traditional autocracy, he earned the respect of his people. He also survived several coup attempts. Mohammed V was widely credited with having saved Morocco's Jews from deportation during World War II, and Hassan continued the philo-Semitic policies of his father. Although there was an outbreak of anti-Jewish incidents following the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948, the Jewish community was generally safe under the protection of both Mohammed and Hassan. When tens of thousands of Jews left Morocco in a massive aliyah that began after Morocco gained its independence in 1956 -- and accelerated after Hassan II gained power -- it was due as much to Zionism and a desire for economic opportunity as it was to a fear of anti-Semitism. Along with the recently deceased King Hussein of Jordan, Hassan was considered a moderate in the Middle East. During his 38-year reign, he discreetly, and later openly, promoted ties with Israel at a time when most of the Arab world rejected such contact. In the 1967 and 1973 Middle East wars, he contributed only a nominal number of troops to support Arab forces. His mediation efforts, including secret meetings with Israeli intelligence officials and political leaders, helped pave the way for the 1978 Camp David accord between Israel and Egypt. Hassan also played a role in preparing for the 1991 Madrid peace conference and welcomed Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in September 1993, making Morocco the first Arab nation outside of Egypt to officially host an Israeli leader. In 1994, Hassan hosted the first Middle East regional economic conference, which included Israel, in Casablanca. After the euphoria of the 1993 Oslo accords between Israel and the Palestinians, Israel was allowed to establish a consular office in Rabat, and an estimated 40,000 Israeli tourists visited Morocco in 1995 and 1996. Even in death Hassan provided an opportunity for Israeli and Arab officials to meet -- in this case, an unprecedented exchange among Barak, Israeli Foreign Minister David Levy and Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika. Speaking in French, Bouteflika asked Levy whether Israel was serious about peace, to which the Moroccan-born minister responded, "Yes." Levy added that it was in Israel's interest to do so and was ready to work hard to achieve it. Turning to Barak, Bouteflika said his country was willing to help in any way it could.
1962: Art Heyman led Duke to victory over South Carolina in the ACC tournament semi-finals. (As reported by Bob Wechsler)
1966: “The Lion in Winter” a play depicting the lives of Henry II and his wife Eleanor written by James Goldman opened on Broadway at the Ambassador Theatre.
1967: Stan Lee was a special guest on WBAI’s broadcast of “Will Success Spoil Spirderman?”
1968: Birthdate of Scott David Radinsky, the native of Glendale, CA who spent eleven years in the majors as a pitcher and pursued a career as a “punk rocker.”
1968: Iraqi Prime Minister, Tahir Yahya, instituted a law that impoverished the Jews. "Jews couldn't sell their cars or furniture. All licenses given to Jewish pharmacists were canceled" and their pharmacies were ordered to close. "All commercial officers in Baghdad had to dismiss their Jewish employees. Muslim owned businesses were warned not to engage in commerce with Jews.
1969: In a Los Angeles, California court, Sirhan Sirhan admits that he killed presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy. According to his diaries, he killed Kennedy because he was a supporter of Israel.
1970: Thirty-two “local, independent groups in the U.S. join together to create the Union of Councils for Soviet Jews…”
1970: Gabriel Oliver Koppell “was elected an Independent to the New York State Assembly.”
1971: After opening on Broadway at the Martin Beck Theatre, today “Man of La Mancha” a musical adaptation of Dale Wasserman’s “non-musical 1959 teleplay I, Don Quixote” with music by Mitch Leigh moved to the Eden Theatre.
1972(17th of Adar, 5732): Seventy-seven year old Rabbi Morris Silverman, best known for the creation of the black book affectionately known as the “Silverman Prayer Book” passed away today.
1973: Senator Guy Gillette passed away. While serving in the Senate during World War II, Gillette spoke out in favor of caring for the Jewish refugees in Europe and in favor of Jewish aspirations in Palestine. After he lost his bid for re-election he served as “president of the American League for a Free Palestine, serving until the Committee's work ended with the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948.” [Why a senator from Iowa, a state with a miniscule Jewish population, would adopt such views is a mystery awaiting further study.]
1974(9th of Adar, 5734): Fifty-eight year old Bernard Phillips, the native of Minneapolis who earned PhD at Yale and became a Professor of Philosophy and Religion passed away today.
1978: The Jerusalem Post reported from Washington that US President Jimmy Carter warned that “the abandonment” of UN Resolution 242 by any of the parties in the Middle East “would put us back many months or years.” Observers, however, noted that on the eve of the expected Carter-Begin summit meetings, the American position on many issues was seen to be much more supportive of Egypt than of Israel. In Jerusalem, the 91-year-old Notre Dame Hospice, uninhabited for years, had quietly begun a new life as a modern hostel for pilgrims.
1978(24th of Adar I, 5738): Seventy-two year old “American industrial psychologist, executive, civil rights leader, and philanthropist” Alfred J. Marrow passed away.
1980: In “Tens of Thousands of People Attend Funeral of Yigal Allon” Yitzhak Shargil described the final ceremony honoring the fallen Israeli leader.
1981: Israeli planes raided Palestinian positions northeast of Tyre today, according to the Lebanese radio. The raid came a day after rockets from Lebanese territory struck several homes in the Galilee town of Qiryat Shemona today, wounding three people.
1981(27th of Adar I, 5741): Eighty-three year old Hugh Harris the educator and journalist who was the brother of Leslie Julius Harris and the son Rabb John Solomon Harris passed away today.
1983(18th of Adar, 5743): Hungarian born author Arthur Koestler passed away. Two of his more famous works were Darkness at Noon and Thirteenth Tribe, which highlighted his view of the role the Khazars played in the life of European Jewry.
1985(10th of Adar I, 5745): Seventy-one year old Sándor Scheiber who served as director of the Rabbinical Seminary in Budapest from 1950 until his death passed away today.
1985: After “767 performances and 37 previews” the curtain came down on the original Broadway production of “My One and Only” a George and Ira Gershwin musical.
1986: The final performance of a revival of “Jubilee” a musical with a book by Moss Hart is scheduled take place at the Town Hall in New York.
1987(2nd of Adar, 5747): Multi-talented performer Danny Kaye passed away. Born David Kominsky in 1913, the red-headed comedian and vocalist enjoyed success in a variety of entertainment formats. His hit movies included The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and Hans Christian Andersen. He also starred in his own television variety show. He used his fame for the betterment of mankind serving as a champion for UNICEF when that organization was dedicated to welfare of the world's children without consideration to politics. (As reported by Eric Pace)
1987: Israeli Air Force Colonel Aviem Sella was indicted today for his alleged role in the Pollard spy operation.
1988(14th of Adar, 5748): Purim
1988(14th of Adar, 5748): Sixty-nine year old Polish-born Mexican violinist Henryk Szeryng who donated his Stradivarius “King David” violin to Jerusalem in 1972 in honor of 25 years of Israeli independence passed away today.
1988: Today the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith and the American Jewish Committee protested the designation of Dr. Inamullah Khan, secretary general of the Pakistan-based World Moslem Congress, as the winner of the $369,000 Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion because he has been associated with anti-Semitic and anti-Israel causes. The league said Dr. Khan and the congress were linked to anti-Semitic groups, including those that deny the Holocaust occurred, and that Dr. Khan had rejected Israel's right to exist. Dr. V. A. Hamdani, the congress's representative at the United Nations, where the Islamic group has observer status, called the league's complaint a ''rehash'' of old charges. He said his organization had not supported denials of the Holocaust. ''To my knowledge,'' he added, ''we have never denied Israel's right to exist.''
1991(17th of Adar, 5751): Arthur Murray passed away at the age of 95. Born Arthur Teichman, Murray became "America's dance instructor" through a string of dance studios and a hit television show featuring his wife and partner, Catherine. (As reported by Eric Pace)
1991: As the war with Iraq came to an end Air France is scheduled to resume service to Tel Aviv today.
1991: “THEATER; Music? Lyrics? He Can Get Them for You” published today described the career of Harold Rome
1993(10th of Adar, 5753): Albert Sabin passed away at the age of 86. Born in 1903, Sabin developed an oral polio vaccine which supplanted the earlier Salk Vaccine. Sabin was 86 at the time of his death.
1995: “Roommates” a comedy based on a story by Max Apple who co-wrote the screenplay, with music by Elmer Bernstein and starring Peter Falk was released today in the United States.
1995: Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb's She Who Dwells Within, which she describes as "a practical guide to nonsexist Judaism," was published. In 2004, Gottlieb left the pulpit to become director of a California organization dedicated to interfaith work.
1995: Steven T. Katz, “the man chosen to lead the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum resigned today “citing recent news reports over his misrepresentation of his scholarly accomplishments and a violation of leave policy while a faculty member at Cornell University.”
1996(12th of Adar, 5756): In Jerusalem a Palestinian terrorist boarded a No. 18 bus, detonated an explosive belt murdering 19 people and wounding another seven.
1996 (12th of Adar, 5756): Ninety-one year old Dr. Meyer Schapiro, university professor emeritus at Columbia University, multi-disciplinary critic and historian, galvanic teacher, lifelong radical and for more than 50 years a pre-eminent figure in the intellectual life of New York, died at the Greenwich Village house that had been his home for more than 60 years.
1998(5th of Adar, 5758): Eighty-two year old Fred Friendly, the CBS broadcast executive who teamed with Edward R. Morrow to make television news a meaningful part of the 20th century passed away today.
2001(8th of Adar, 5761): Parashat Terumah and Shabbat Zachor
2001(8th of Adar, 5761): Ninety-one year old Deborah (Pessin) Margolis, the widow of Dr. Benjamin D. Margolis passed away today.
2002: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including Summer in Baden-Baden by Leonid Tsypkin; translated by Roger Keys and Angela Keys and Soros: The Life and Times of a Messianic Billionaire by Michael T. Kaufman
2002(19th of Adar, 5762: Capt. Ariel Hovav (25), Lt.(res.) David Damelin (29), 1st Sgt.(res.) Rafael Levy (42), Sgt.-Maj.(res.) Avraham Ezra (38), Sgt.-Maj.(res.) Eran Gad (24), Sgt.-Maj.(res.) Yochai Porat (26), Sgt.-Maj.(res.) Kfir Weiss (24), Sergei Birmov (33), Vadim Balagula (32) and Didi Yithak (66) were murdered by Fatah terrorists at an IDF roadblock.
2003: Natan Sharansky began serving as Jerusalem Affairs Minister.
2005(22nd of Adar I, 5765): Max M. Fisher, the Detroit oil and real estate magnate known for his philanthropy and for the advice he gave Republican presidents on the Middle East and Jewish issues, passed away at his home in Franklin, a Detroit suburb at the age of 96. http://www.nytimes.com/2005/03/04/national/04fisher.html
2006(3rd of Adar, 5766): William Herskovic who was a Holocaust survivor and humanitarian passed away at the age of 91. His escape from Auschwitz in 1942 and early eyewitness testimony inspired Belgium's opposition to Nazi Germany during World War II, and alerted the Resistance to the atrocities that were taking place in the concentration camps. Because of Herskovic's escape and testimony, hundreds of lives were saved. Herskovic is also the founder of Bel Air Camera, a veritable landmark in Los Angeles, which he established in 1957, and has received numerable awards for his philanthropy.
2006(3rd of Adar, 5766): Eighty-three year old “Scottish poet, songwriter and humorist Ivor Cutler (born Isadore Cutler) passed away today.
2007: Shabbat Zachor
2007: In the evening, Jews fulfill the mitzvah of hearing the Megillah as Purim begins
.2008: This evening, Israel pulled its troops out of the Gaza Strip marking the end of operation Hot Winter.
2008: Agudas Achim, the Shulman Hillel and Chabad Lubavitch of Iowa City sponsor “An Evening in Tribute to Michael Balch” (devoted member of the Iowa City Jewish Community and Professor Emirtus of Economics at Iowa University) featuring an address by Rabbi Dov Greenberg from Stanford University entitled “Death and Afterlife in Judaism.”
2008(26th of Adar I, 5768): Eighty-six year old artist William Brice the son of Fannie Brice and Nick Arnstein passed away today in California.
2009: David Polonsky discusses “Waltz With Bashir” at the Society of Illustrators. David Polonsky is the art director and chief illustrator for Waltz With Bashir, written, produced and directed by Ari Folman.
2009: The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research presents a lecture by Dr. David Berger, author of The Rebbe, the Messiah, and the Scandal of Orthodox Indifference, entitled “The Lubavitcher Rebbe as Messiah: Turning Point in Judaism?” in which he will examine whether the Lubavitch messianic movement represents a fundamental transformation of Judaism or is merely a passing development of little moment.
2009: The Believers, Zoë Heller’s latest novel appears in American bookstores.
2009: Hillary Clinton makes her first visit to Israel as Secretary of State meeting with a variety of Israeli leaders.
2009: A press release issued today confirmed that Julius Genachowski was President Obama’s choice to serve as Chairman of the Federal Communication Commission.
2010: The Jewish Women's Archive’s tour of Santa Fe is scheduled to begin today.
2010: Israeli musicians Asaf Avidan &cellist Hadas Kleinman of Asaf Avidan and the Mojos leading rock/folk band are scheduled to perform at the City Winery in New York City.
2010: In Columbus, Ohio, Congregation Tifereth Israel is scheduled to host “Interfaith Study of Genesis” in conjunction with First Congregational Church and Noor Islamic Center.
2010: After years of drought-like conditions that saw the water level of the Dead Sea plummet by 15 meters, this winter the water level rose by 8 centimeters, the Water Authority said today.
2010: Canadian businessman and Brandeis graduate Leonard Asper stepped down as Canwest CEO today.
2010: A documentary entitled “Harlan – In the Shadow of ‘Jew Suss’” opened today in Manhattan
2011: The Wiener Library, “the world’s oldest Holocaust memorial institution,” is scheduled to sponsor an exclusive gala fund raising event that will feature a recital by Andras Schiff and a talk by Misha Aster about the Berlin Philharmonic under the Third Reich.
2011: Amit Peled and Dina Vainshtein are scheduled to perform at Symphony Space in New York City.
2011: Today Prime Minister Netanyahu met with White House senior advisor Dennis Ross, who is in the country with a team of Middle East experts – including Fred Hoff and Mara Rudman from US envoy George Mitchell's team – for talks.
2011: Today, Canadian Historian Catherine Chatterley, who has said that “the accusation that Zionism is racist and imperialist by nature is as old as Israel” wrote an editorial for the National Post outlining the history of Israel Apartheid Week and its relationship to the BDS movement
2011: The 7th Annual Charlotte, NC Jewish Film Festival opened today.
2011(28th of Adar I, 5771): Holocaust survivor Gina Borchardt Nencel passed away today in Israel at the age of 100.
2011: In “Yankees remember late baseball author Harvey Dorfman” Marc Carig described the impact that the Jewish sports psychologist had on the National Pastime.
2012: A conference entitled "One State Conference: Israel/Palestine and the One-State Solution” hosted by Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government is scheduled to open in Cambridge Mass.
2012: “Mahler on the Couch” is scheduled to be shown at the Denver Jewish Film Festival sponsored by the Mizel Arts and Culture Center
2012: “Making Trouble: Three Generations of Funny Jewish Women” at Florida Atlantic University’s Jewish Kultur Festival in Boca Raton, Fl
.2012: “Camera Obsucra” is schedule to be shown at Temple Beth Israel’s Fresno Jewish Film Festival in Fresno, CA
2012: “Ahead of Time” is scheduled to be shown at Congregation Beth Israel Judea in San Francisco, CA.
2012: “Yoo-Hoo, Mrs. Goldberg” is scheduled to be shown at Congregation Kerem Shalom in Concord, MA.
2013: “My Name is Asher Lev,” Aaron Posner’s dramatic adaptation of Chaim Potok’s novel of the same name is scheduled to have its final performance tonight at the Westside Theatre.
2013: The Maccabeats are scheduled to perform at West Side Institutional Synagogue
2013: An evening concert is scheduled tonight as part of the Preliminary Program for Jewish Music in New Orleans hosted by Tulane University.
2013: The AIPAC Policy Conference is scheduled to open in Washington, DC
2013: Rebekka Helford and Bruce Bierman are scheduled to lead the Klezmer Jam Session and Dance at The Talking Stick in Venice, CA.
2013: A young couple expecting their first child was on their way to a hospital early Sunday when the car they were riding in was hit, killing them both, but their baby boy was born prematurely and survived, authorities said.
2013: Michael Oren, Israel’s ambassador to Washington, opened the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual policy conference with an appeal for pro-Israel outreach to African Americans, Latinos and Muslims, and others.
2013: In “The Holocaust Just Got More Shocking.” Eric Lichtblau lets us know that the worst event in Jewish history was even worse than we had thought it was.
2013: The New York Times features reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including Russ & Daughters: Reflections and Recipes from the House That Hearing Built by Mark Russ Federman the grandson of the founder who made each trip to his store a most memorable occasion for two Jews from Iowa.
2013: In New York City, the City Winery is scheduled to host a Kosher Wine Tasting
2013(21st of Adar, 5773): Ninety-one year old Abe Baum the leader of ill-fated Task Force Baum in WW II passed away today.
2014(1st of Adar II, 5774): Rosh Chodesh Adar II
2014(1st of Adar II, 5774): Eighty-three year old physician and author Sherwin B Nuland passed away today. (As reported by Denise Gellene)
2014: “Women of the Wall founder Bonna Devora Haberman attended a Women of the Wall prayer service today.
2014: The HEA All-Judaic & Israeli Art and Jewelry Festival is scheduled to take place in Denver, CO.
2014: David Broza is scheduled to appear in concert at the AIPAC Policy Conference.
2014: “Master of a Good Name” and “Nothing Old About This Testament” are scheduled to be shown at the 24th Jewish Film Festival.
2014: Shelter Studious is scheduled to host a reading of “Suddenly a Knock at the Door” by Robin Goldin based on stories by Etgar Keret
2014: In London, JW3 is scheduled to co-sponsor a showing of “Flash Faith.”
2014: Senator John McCain, US Secretary Jack Lew and Senator Chuck Shumer addressed the AIPAC Policy Confernece with each of them using the “Jewish issues” to promote their American domestic political agenda – a point that apparently was lost to the attendees who mistake pandering for policy.
2014: “Israeli aircraft fired at Gaza terrorists (mortally wounding one) as they were preparing to launch rockets at southern Israel.
2014: “France’s Jews demand the election of new chief rabbi (the post had been filled by two interim chief rabbis since April 2013), in a letter that cites the need of a leader “to express the voice of Judaism during the difficult period we are experiencing.”
2014: Some 20 Israelis who were making their way to India today found themselves for a short time in Tehran
2015: For two hours this morning, students at Oxford (UK) are scheduled to have a chance to make hamantaschen while raising money for The Gatehouse and Camp Simcha.
2015: In a display of cultural diversity the Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia is scheduled to offer programs on “Jews in Sports” and “The Evolution of the Passover Seder.”
2015: Marc Caplan, 2014-15 Cahnman Senior Scholar at CJH, is scheduled to present his groundbreaking research on Jewish modernity in conjunction with a screening of Arnold Schoenberg’s Moses und Aron at the Center for Jewish History.
2015: Having created crisis atmosphere in relations between Israel and the United States Prime Minister delivered a speech to a joint session of Congress where he “argued that the proposed nuclear deal being negotiated with Iran will lead inexorably to a nuclear-armed Iran and war in the Middle East.” (JTA)
2016: “Remember” directed by Atom Egoyan is scheduled to be shown for the last time at the UK Jewish Film Festival.
2016: JCC Manhattan is scheduled to host “Shulamit, a new opera with music and libretto by Dina Pruzhansky”
2016: “Strong ties between Israel and US will be needed to confront the “instability in the region,” according to Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford Jr., who met in Tel Aviv” today. (As reported by Judah Ari Gross)
2016: Screening of Three Episodes of the Israeli TV Show Fauda is scheduled to take place at the Ninth Annual Ring Family Wesleyan University Israeli Film Festival.
2017: Fifty-one year old author Amy Krouse Rosenthal “announced that she was terminally ill with ovarian cancer, by way of a New York Times "Modern Love" essay” which “was in the form of a dating profile for her husband Jason, to help him remarry after her death.”
2017: Today thirty-one year old Juan Thompson of St. Louis, “a reporter for a news website was charged on Friday with making more than a half-dozen bomb threats against Jewish community centers, schools and a Jewish history museum, federal authorities said.”
2017: “Hautey: Memory of Fire” “a new Yiddish opera composed by iconic Klexmatics trumpeter Frank London” “based on an epic poem written in 1931…by Oscar Pinis” is scheduled to have its inaugural performance in Havana, Cuba.
2017: Penultimate day for New Yorkers and out of town visitors to view “State of Deception: The Power of Nazi Propaganda” on view at the United Nations headquarters.
2017: The Oxford University Jewish Society is scheduled to host Shabbat evening dinner.
2018(16 of Adar, 5778): Parashat Ki Tissa; for more see http://downhomedavartorah.blogspot.com/
2018: Jack and Jennifer Benjamin, Jr.,John Haspel and Amy Gainsburgh-Haspel and Rob and Pamela Steeg are scheduled to be honored this evening in New Orleans at Temple Sinai’s Spring Gala.
2018: Israeli pianist Inon Barnatan is scheduled to perform this evening at the 92nd Street Y.