Friday, August 3, 2018

This Day, August 4, In Jewish History by Mitchell A. Levin

August 4

70: According to some record, the date on the secular calendar when the Second Temple was destroyed by the Romans.

367: Gratian, son of Roman Emperor Valentinian I, is named co-August by his father and associated to the throne aged eight.  The reign of Valentinan I was a period of religious toleration where all cults, including Judaism, were practiced with little or no interference from the state.  Gratian would reverse his father’s policy of toleration, although most of his actual edicts were aimed against the Pagans.

1060: The reign of King Henry I of France ended today when his most famous Jewish subject, Rashi, was 20 years old. 

1265: During the Baron’s War, Prince Edward (the future King Edward I of England), leading the armies his father, King Henry III defeated the forces of rebellious barons led by Simon de Montfort, 6th Earl of Leicester at the Battle of Evesham killing de Montfort and many of his allies. “During the Barons Wars, the Jews were seen as instruments of royal oppression and one Jewish community after another was ransacked and many of its inhabitants killed during the fighting” which had begun in 1263.  In 1264, the violence became so bad, that many Jews fled to Normandy.  As bad as things were under King Henry III, life would be worse under the reign of Edward who would order their expulsion in 1290.

1278: Nicholas III issued a Papal Bull ordering Jews to hear sermons on conversion. 

1442: Eugene IV issued “Dudum ad nostrum audientam” a Papal Bull that “forbade Jews to live with Christians or fill public functions.1558: The first printed edition of the Zohar appeared. This popularized the study of Kabbalah, mysticism and Messianism. 

1578: This date is considered a Moroccan Purim (Purim de Los Christianos); a celebration of a time when Jews there faced near disaster because forces led by King Sebastian of Portugal nearly succeeded in conquering the country. The Portuguese were defeated at al-Qasr al-Kabir. Their defeat meant that the Inquisition would not be coming to Morocco. The Jews of Morocco saw themselves as being delivered from a Portuguese Haman, hence the name of the celebration. 

1704: During the War of the Spanish Succession, a joint Anglo-Dutch force attacks and captures Gibraltar.  Under the terms of the treaty ending the war, the British will gain control of Gibraltar but the British are enjoined from allowing Jews to settle on this newly acquired possession.  The British ignore the prohibition and Jews are allowed to live there.

1769: Herz Wesel Gumperz and Abraham Wesel Gumperz gave birth Ruben Samuel Gumperz the husband of Roeschen Gumperz

1776: Colonel William Thomson wrote a letter to William Drayton from the banks of the Keowee River in which he described the death of 29 year old Francis Salvador.  Salvador, a Jewish patriot had been killed in South Carolina on the first of the month.  After having been wounded he was scalped.  He died of his wounds and according to Thomson, was lucid to the end.

1780: In London, Solomon da Silva Solis and Benvenida de Isaac Henriques Valentine gave birth to Jacob da Silva Solis who arrived in the United States in 1803 married Charity Hayes with whom he had seven children and still found time to found “Congregation Shanarai Chasset in New Orleans” and later became active in Congregation Shearith Israel in Mt. Pleasant, NY.

1784: Zipporah Phillips, “daughter of Jonas and Rebecca Mendes ‘Machado’ Phillips” became Zipporah Phillips Noah today when she married Manuel Noah with whom she had two children – “Mordecai Manuel Noah and Judith Noah.”

1785: Joseph de Palacios a Sephardic Jew living in Charleston, SC, married Mrs. Nathan Harris, a widow from the Island of St. Eustatius.

1789: Almost a month after the storming of the Bastille on July 14, today “members of the Constituent Assembly took an oath to end feudalism” – an action that would help move the Jews one step closer to full citizenship in a future French Republic.

1790: A newly passed tariff act creates the Revenue Cutter Service (the forerunner of the United States Coast Guard). Some of the Jews were members of, or associated with this valiant force were: musician and vocalist, Mel Torme,; Arthur Fiedler who “volunteered during the early days of World War II for the Temporary Reserve of the U.S. Coast Guard and was later a member of the Coast Guard Auxiliary” and comedian and television star Sid Caear who joined the Coast Guard in 1939. This proved to be a boon to his career. Assigned to play in military shows, he caught the attention of producer Max Liebman, who was impressed by his ability to make other musicians laugh. Liebman took him out of the orchestra and cast him as a comedian, jump-starting his career upon release from the Coast Guard in 1945. And the rest is show biz history. When Sid Caesar was celebrating his 80th birthday, The Coast Guard presented him with a public service award that read as follows:


"The Commandant of the United Stated Coast Guard takes great pleasure in wishing a joyous 80th birthday to Coast Guard veteran Sid Caesar and presenting to him this Coast Guard Certificate of Appreciation, in recognition of his public support of the Coast Guard, most notably in the early days of his career as an actor, musician and comedian and more recently as public spokesperson for the U.S. Coast Guard. Mr. Caesar joined the Coast Guard in 1939, after studying saxophone at the Julliard School of Music and playing in a number of prominent big bands. In the Coast Guard, he was assigned to play in military revues and shows, such as "Tars and Spars," but he showed a natural penchant for comedy by entertaining other band members with his improvised routines, prompting show producer Max Liebman to move him from the orchestra and cast him as a stand-up comedian to entertain troops, jump-starting his career upon his release from the Coast Guard in 1945. After leaving the Coast Guard, Mr. Caesar went on to perform his "war routine" in both the stage and movie versions of the revue, and continued under Liebman's guidance after the war, in theatrical performances in the Catskills and Florida, but he never forgot the service that launched his career. Mr. Caesar's performance distinguished the Coast Guard as an honorable and valuable service. Friends and acquaintances say he always kept the Coast Guard close to his heart, especially its hardworking enlisted members. Each and every time the Coast Guard asked Mr. Caesar for a favor, he came through for us, whether it was speaking before the Coast Guard Chief Petty Officers Association or recording audio public service announcements for Coast Guard recruiting campaigns. His respect, admiration and fondness for our service shines bright. Mr. Caesar's years of generosity, concern and dedication to the Coast Guard family are deeply appreciated and are in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Coast Guard and public service."


1814: Samuel Marx confirmed with seven other witnesses that his brother Heinrich was born in April 1777 Saarlouis.

1817: Birthdate of Max Ring, the native of Silesia who gained fame as a German poet, author and playwright.

1819: Lewis Emanuel married Rachel Henriks today at the Great Synagogue.

1819: Michael and Catherine Solomon were married today at the New Synagouge..

1821: Birthdate of Louis Vuitton, French designer and founder of the French fashion house that bears his name. According to Louis Vuitton, A French Saga, by French journalist Stephanie Bonvicin the fashion house collaborated with the Nazis during the German occupation of France. Reportedly, “members of the Vuitton family actively aided the puppet government led by Marshal Philippe Pétain and increased their wealth from their business affairs with the Germans. The family set up a factory dedicated to producing artifacts glorifying Pétain, including more than 2,500 busts. Petain's Vichy regime was responsible for the deportation of French Jews to German concentration camps.”

1823: Birthdate of Oliver P. Morton, who as Governor of Indiana during the Civil War gave Frederick Knefler his first “leg up” on a military career that would lead to him becoming a Major General by the end of the war. Morton showed that in America, a man’s patriotism was more important than his religious background.

1827: In Romania, untold numbers of Jews perished when the Jewish quarter of Jassy was swept by fire.

1835(9th of Av, 5595): Tish’a B’Av

1847: Ralph Levy and Phoebe Abrahams were married today at the Great Synagogue.

1856: The "Literary Items" column reported that a soon to be published 8 volume work about the religious and scholastic learning of the Jews by J.W. Etheridge is to be called Jerusalem and Tiberias, Sora and Cordova.  According to the title page, the book was designed to be “A survey of the religious and scholastic learning of the Jews; designed as an introduction to the study of Hebrew Literature.”

1857:  According to handbills which had been posted today is the deadline for all Germans and all Jews to leave Goldsboro, N.C. The order, from parties unknown, stemmed from a violent outburst that had taken place during a trial that pitted Dr. John W. Davis, a popular local physician, against Falk Odenheimer, a German-Jewish merchant.  During the trial Windal T. Robinson, a nephew of Dr. Davis, struck Odenheimer on the head with a spade, or shovel, breaking his skull. In the ensuing mêlée Charley Spaght, a step-son of Odenheimer shot Dr. Davis, seriously wounding him. Even though Davis’ nephew had started the trouble, a crowd formed that wanted to lynch Odenheimer.  Odenheimer had to be taken jail for his own safety where he was protected by a brave local citizen named T.T. Hollowell. Odenheimer and Davis both recovered from their wounds and many of the Jews who had gradually returned to Goldsboro.

1858: Solomon Harris married Elizabeth Hart today at the Great Synagogue.

1858: A report published today describing the impact of the final passage of the Oaths Bill in Great Britain said that “Henceforth Jews may sit in Parliament. The Oaths Bill from the House of Lords has passed in the Commons, and is the law of the realm. A Jew may now qualify without swearing to uphold the Christian religion.” The final passage took place on July 21.  Word of the passage was brought by ship from England.

1860: It was reported today that the Times of London no longer has a “special advantage” or “monopoly on information” which would make a sought after journal because Mr. Reuters, “that clever and far-seeing German Jew” has used his control over “telegraphic communication to see to it that all newspapers receive the same domestic and foreign news make The Daily News the equal of the Times or its other high priced rivals. (Reuters actually converted shortly after he arrived in England from Germany, but the impact of his news service is accurately described)

1861: In Bischofstein, Prussia, Rabbi Goldreich and his wife gave birth to Samuel Goldreich, the resident of Nottingham, UK and President of the South Africa Zionist Federation who was “publicly thank by the High Commissioner for South Africa for services rendered to the Government.”

1864: In accordance with the Proclamation issued by President Lincoln, today was observed as a day of fasting and prayer. All business was voluntarily suspended, the public offices, the banks and stores were closed, and citizens flocked to such places of worship as were open for services.  At the Wooster Street Synagogue, Rabbi S.M. Isaacs, “after the usual morning service, read the Prayer for the Government, and delivered a discourse from Jonah, 3d chapter, 8th verse: "Let men and beast be covered with sackcloth, and let man call unto God with might, and let them turn everyone from his evil way, and from the violence which is in his hands." He referred to the proclamation of the President calling upon all loyal and law-abiding people to convene at their usual places of worship and implore the Almighty not to forsake the nation. He alluded to these days of fasting and humiliation recommended to be observed by the Executive authorities as losing their value from the circumstance that fasting and prayer are too often devoid of meaning; that they are unaccompanied by practical amendment. This idea was predicated on the Book of Jonah, where it is recorded that God repented of the evil he intended the Ninevites, because He observed that they forsook their evil ways and became truly penitent. He adverted to the critical condition of the country and the singular appropriateness of our national appeal to the never-ceasing mercy and goodness of Heaven. Israelites, especially, have reason to sincerely pray for the restoration of the Republic to its former greatness, prosperity and harmony. While recognizing the unspeakable happiness they had enjoyed under the protection of the Stars and Stripes, they should gaze hopefully heavenward, and their supplication would not be in vain. He prayerfully invoked Heaven to endow the rulers and the people of the land with the proper spirit -- the spirit of genuine, earnest patriotism -- that the severe trial to which our capacity for self-government and our professed loyalty to the principles of liberty and right may be for our ultimate benefit and regeneration; that the war which is now desolating the land may be speedily terminated by the return of the disaffected to the embrace of the banner whose far-spreading folds yearned to receive them as of old. He concluded his address with a suitable prayer. "

1865: A Jewish cigar peddler, hailing from New-York, was arrested and taken before Recorder Avery, of Hoboken, today, charged with peddling cigars without a license, and for which he was required to pay a fine of $5. The accused, who gave his name as Louis, pleaded and begged to be let off, declaring that he was poor; had only a dollar and a quarter; that he got married only six months since and that his wife had a baby, etc. When Wolfksy realized that the Recorder was unmoved by his plea for mercy, and that he would have to go to jail if he did not pay the fine, he very quickly produced the money and paid the fine.

1872: A group of Jewish immigrants from Alsac and Lorraine met at Mehl’s Assembly Rooms in New York.  They appointed a committee that was to organize a congregation made up of members from these two former French provinces.

1878: “Ill-Treating A Faithful Wife” published today described eventful life of Mrs. Josephine Lewinski who is seeking a divorce from Phillip Lewinski “one of the members of the notorious Lowery gang of gang of counterfeiters” who were arrested in Brooklyn.

1878: Mr. Ottinger is President of a new Jewish organization in New York that has been formed to provide free trips up and down the Hudson River for poor and sick children during the summer.  If the group can raise more than the $1,200 it already has, it will provide “seaside” recreation for poor Jewish girls working in local shops and factories.

1878:  The facts surrounding the condition of Jennie Minster which has been described as a “case of insanity” were revealed at Bellevue Hospital tonight.  Miss Minster, an 18 year old Jewess, went to work for Simon Metzger, a prominent Jew living in New Haven, Connecticut. Given her beauty and accomplished nature, Metzger made her the governess for her children.  Last week she was brought back to her parents’ home in New York by Mr. Metzger who said she was “a violent lunatic.”  According to Metzger, Miss Minster had been bathing with the family at the summer resorts called Savin Rock when she sank in the water.  She was rescued and when she regained consciousness, “it was found that her fright had entirely robbed her of her sanity.”  Her parents took her to Bellevue where she was placed in a padded cell due to her violent nature.  Authorities accept Metzger’s version of events but are still puzzled as what to do next.

1878: The San Francisco Chronicle reported that the estate of the Jewish businessman Michael Reese is valued at somewhere between five and ten million dollars. The bequests show the same broad generosity that he had displayed during his lifetime. Among the beneficiaries are the University of California which is to get $650,000 and the Hebrew Orphan Asylum which is to get $25,000.

1878: It was reported that “a number of charitable Hebrew gentlemen” in New York “have formed an association for the purpose of taking” sick and poor Jewish children on excursions on the Hudson River.  So far they have raised $1,200.  If they can raise more money they plan to include “poor shop or factory girls” in the excursions.

1881(9th of Av, 5641): Tish’a B’Av

1881: In what would seem to be a strange choice of date, the Young Men’s Hebrew Association is scheduled to host an outing aboard the SS Long Branch will sail out to and around Staten Island.

1881: After the deputy coroner performed an autopsy on Samuel Alt, an elderly Jewish man found floating in the water at the foot of east 76th Street, the coroner concluded  that “death resulted from concussion of the brain and compression due to serious effusion caused by violence.”  The deceased had probably been knocked down by a “violent blow over the left eye” and after being rendered unconscious was “thrown or pushed into the water.”

1882: Birthdate of Jerusalem native Dr. Nima H. Adlerblum, a promoter of the works of John Dewey as well and active member of the world’s Jewish community as can be seen in her role as “a founder of the national cultural and educational program of Hadassah and her authorship of such works as A Perspective of Jewish Life Through Its Festivals

1882: In New York State Supreme Court, Judge Donahue granted Fannie Warburg a limited divorced from her husband August Warburg “on the grounds of inhuman conduct toward her…”  The judge awarded her custody of the four children and appointed a Referee to recommend that amount of alimony she should receive.

1883(1st of Av, 5643): Rosh Chodesh Av

1883: It was reported that the ten Hungarian Jews who have been standing trial on charges that they killed a Christian girl so they could her blood “in their Passover bread” have been acquitted. While the prosecution had not case, the defendants would have been found guilty were it not for the fact that the “abundant perjury” prosecution witnesses had been exposed to the world “under the bright light of publicity.”

1883: Charles A.L. Totten, one of those who supported the plan for the Jews to return to “their old homes in Palestine” “through an international conference” began serving as Professor of Military Science and Tactics at the Cathedral School of St. Paul in New York

1884: It was reported today that Solomon Rintel, a Jewish immigrant from Hungary had taken his own life because he was despondent about having lost his job.  In a note found by Max Schack, his brother-in-law, Rintel had tried to commit suicide three years ago while he was living in Gratz. [Adjustment to a new land was tough on immigrants as stories like this remind us.  The streets were not paved with gold.]

1884: Herzl enters his law practice in the service of the state.

1884: Birthdate of Benjamin Antin, the Russian born American lawyer who served in the New York State Assembly and New York State Senate.

1885: It was reported today the Cassell & Co will soon be published a new novel – As It Was Written: A Jewish Musician’s Story by Sidney Luska. “The name Sidney Luska is a pseudonym.  The author is said to be a young man, the son of a noted lawyer” who has spent so much time with the Jews “that he fairly thinks as a” Jew. (For more about this from an non-contemporaneous source see Josh Lambert’s “As It was written: A Jewish Musicians Story”

1887: Birthdate of Minneapolis native Louis H. Phillips, the WW I veteran, lawyer and National Commander of the United Veterans of the Republic.

1888: At least 20 people died today when the Stern Building in the Bowery went up in flames. The fire probably began in the stove of a loft occupied by Solomon Cohn. At first the authorities thought that the fire was set intentionally but when they discovered that none of the tenants had insurance they discounted that theory.  Mr. Stern, the owner of the building has asked the United Hebrew Charities to take of the funeral arrangements, which along with any medical expenses, he will pay for out of his own pocket.

1888: Rabbi Tabenahus preached his first sermon at the Temple Gates of Hope based on the teachings of Isaiah, “And then thy children shall be taught of the Lord and great peace shall come to thy children.”

1888: “Mistaken Quotations” published today described the repeated attempts to attributed to the Bible stories that are not actually there, including the one that the Hebrews in the Bible were commanded to make bricks without straws. “If men would examine the Bible text more carefully before they assail it or before they attempt it defense, there would fewer blunders made in both directions.” (For those of you living in the United States, you realize that this advice is still very valid in the 21st century.)

1889: In Ulster County, NY, a gang of thugs calling themselves the “Yellowstone Cowboys” were arrested this morning when they returned to a Mr. Epstein’s boarding house with the intent of forcing him to feed them a free breakfast.

1889(7th of Av, 5649): Seventy-seven year old Isaac Phillips, the fifth child of Naphtali Phillips and Rachel Hannah, the husband of Miriam Timble who had converted to Judaism before her marriage, who “served as president of Congregation Shearith Israel” and co-founder of Mount Sinai Hospital passed away today.

1890: In Jerusalem, Rabbi Chaim Hirschenson, originally of Safed, and Eva (Cohen) Hirschenson gave birth to Tamar de Sola Pool.

1891: Twenty-one of the Russian Jews who had been detained at the Barge Office, New York’s entry point for immigrants, were allowed to leave and continue on their respective destinations.

1891: Thirteen Jewish immigrants who arrived at Locust Point, MD aboard a Dutch ship were allowed to land today.

1891(29th of Tammuz, 5651): Seventy-three year old Salvatore de Benedetti, the Italian scholar who took advantage of the news granted to the Jewish people under Victor Emmanuel to pursue an academic career that included becoming a Professor of Hebrew at the University of Pisa where he wrote Vita e Morte di Moses, a compilation of “the legends concerning the great Hebrew legislator.”

1891: “The Russian Jew Exodus” published today described the plans sponsored by Baron Hirsch and supported by Western Jews to deal with wave of immigrants leaving the Czar’s Kingdom.  A delegation will be sent to St. Petersburg to serve as a central committee and will establish provincial committees which will be “charged with regulating the exodus.”  Russian Jews who leave “without the sanction of the Central Committee” will not receive the benefits offered by Baron Hirsch. (Compare the 19th century response to the crisis of Russian Jewry with the 20th century response to the crisis of German Jewry)

1892: “Sanitarium for Hebrew Children” published today provided a summary of the society’s including the fact that from June 28 to July 31, it has provided free excursions for 3,481 mothers and children.

1892(11th of Av, 5652): Eighty two year old Ernestine Louis Rose, the daughter of a Polish rabbi who became a leading feminist, abolitionist and self-declared atheist, passed away.

1893: Abraham Finberg, the President of a small Orthodox congregation at 44 Orchard Street said he is prepared to go to court to retrieve the synagogues records that had been taken Louis Cohen, who had been deposed as the rabbi.

1894: As evidence of the acceptance of Jews at the highest level of British society, Lord Rothschild nominates six horses for the upcoming Derby.

1895: Birthdate of “Brailov, Russia” native Samuel L. Calechaman who came to New Haven, CT in 1897 where he attended Yale, worked as an “insurance agent and chemist” who was an active member of the Jewish Community Center.

1895: Birthdate of New York native Edward Anthony, a reporter for the New York Herald, press director for Herbert Hoover’s 1928 presidential campaign and the publisher of two leading magazines – “Woman’s Home Companion” and “Colliers.

1895: The Jewish citizens of Yonkers, NY, were reported today to have chosen B.H. Shulman to serve as president of their newly formed “religious organization” which hold High Holiday Services at the Odd Fellows Hall this September.

1895: Attorney Meyer J. Stein filed a suit in replevin in Kings County on behalf of a client who had a dispute over a hotel bill from a stay at the Hotel Lowry owned by J.L. Lowery which had sign saying “No Jews” posted.

1895: Aaron Drucker was fined five dollars in the Essex Market Court today  after the Magistrate “told him he had acted wrongly” when he interrupted the services Church of Sea and Land denouncing them as a vehicle for converting Jews to Christianity.

1895: “Jewish Women’s Council” published today provided a history and description of the National Council of Jewish Women which was formed following “the Woman’s Congress held at Chicago in 1893” during the Columbian Exposition. The council was formed in Chicago in 1894 and currently has chapters in 13 cities. Mrs. Rebekah Kohut is President of the New York Council. Miss Rosa Sonneschein is the editor of The American Jewess, the council’s monthly magazine. The next national convention is scheduled to take place at New York in May, 1896.

1896: Rehearsals began today at the Olympia Theatre for Oscar Hammerstein’s “new romantic comic opera ‘Santa Maria.’”

1896(25th of Av, 5656): Bertha Lewis (née Cohen), the daughter of Rabbi Raphael Isaac Cohen, sister of Theresa Otterbourg (née Cohen) and wife of David Lewis with whom she supported many Jewish institutions including “the Seel Street and Princes Road synagogues of the Liverpool Old Hebrew Congregation” passed away today. Her obituary in the Jewish Chronicle states: “She had friends everywhere – in France and Germany as in England. During the last few years, she resided at Devonshire Lodge, Landbroke Terrace, and at her home one was almost sure of meeting somebody interesting – a painter or a sculptor or a professor.”

1897: “The Pan-Anglican or Lambeth Conference issued an encyclical today that, among other things expressed “a wish for an increase in proselytizing among the Jews.” (Ah the 1890’s – the Russian are trying to kill the Jews and the English are trying to convert the Jews)

1898: Joseph Purzin began teaching at a summer school funded by the Baron de Hirsch Fund at Osborn Street and Sutter Avenue in Brownsville.

1898: Corporal Moses Blum, 1st Sergeant John F. Wolfson and Private Charles Myer were among those who became part of the United States Military when the 3rd Mississippi Volunteer Infantry was mustered into service today at Jackson, Mississippi.

1898: Mrs. Bella Pesin and her husband gave birth to Samuel Pesin a graduate of NYU Law School and New Jersey state legislator who served as the Secretary of the Young Men’s Hebrew Association in Hudson, NJ and was the husband of Libby Pessin with whom he had two children – Edward and Ada.

1899:”Actors Get Engagements” published today provided information about the upcoming theatrical season including the fact that Jacob LItt has hired Sidney Herbert to play a leading part in “The Ghetto” which will open at the Broadway Theatre in October.

1900: Birthdate of George Himmelfarb, the son of a Lodz shoe manufacture and the hold of a Ph.D in Comparative Religion who settled in London in 1937 where he gained fame as George Him the “freelance designer and design consultant” whose clients included El Al and illustrator of children’s books including The Little Red Engine Gets a Name.

1900(9th of Av, 5660): Russian-born artist Isaac Levitan died days before his fortieth birthday. For a look at some of his works see

1901(19th of Av, 5661): “Simon Rice of Scranton, PA,” passed away today “in a hospital in Philadelphia” leaving behind bequests that included “$100 each to the Deborah and Jewish Relief Societies of Scranton” and a provision in his will that “the residue of the estates, amounting to $40,000 or $50,000 to be equally divided – after his wife’s demise – between the Hebrew Union College, the Jewish Hospital for Consumptives in Denver, CO and the Farm School in Doylestown, PA.

1902(1st of Av, 5662): Rosh Chodesh Av

1909: In São Paulo, Brazil, “Cecilia Burle, an upper class Brazilian Catholic woman whose family came from Pernambuco and France, and Wilhelm Marx, a German Jew, born in Stuttgart and raised in Trier gave birth to landscape artist Roberto Burle Marx.

1910: Birthdate of Hedwig Lindenberg, the Bucharest native who gained fame as “Hedda Sterne, an artist whose association with the Abstract Expressionists became fixed forever when she appeared prominently in a now-famous 1951 Life magazine photograph of the movement’s leading lights”  (As reported by William Grimes)

1910: Birthdate of American composer and educator William Schuman. Schuman passed away in 1992 at the age of 81. 

1911(10th of Av, 5671): Seventy year old Heinemann Vogelstein a leader of the Reform Movement who served as the rabbi in Pilsen and then Szczein and expressed his opposition to Zionism in a pamphlet entitled “Zionism, A Threat to the Prosperous Development of Judaism” passed away today in St. Moritz.

1911: Birthdate of Jacob Mortimer Rothschild the son of Pittsburgh, PA residents Lillian and Meyer Rothschild.

1911: In Russia, the St. Petersburg Jewish community opened a Teacher’s Training College and Museum in memory of two deceased Jewish communal leaders, Barons Horace and David de Gunzberg.

1911: The Jewish community of Ekaternioslaff, a Russian city on the Dneiper River, petitioned the government for the right to build a medical school next to the local Jewish hospital.  The government agreed if the Jewish enrollment was limited to fifteen per cent.  By October, the governor of the province would be attempting to ban Jews from the town.

1911: In Great Britain, American Reform Rabbi Israel I. Mattuck was named as the first spiritual leader of the Liberal Jewish Synagogue.  Born in 1883, Mattuck, who passed away in 1954, was an author, commentator and proponent of Classical Reform Judaism

1911: At a conference in New York, the Seventh Day Adventists adopted resolutions condemning the mistreatment of Jews.

1911: Birthdate of Bernardo Segall, the native of Campinas Brazil who became a popular American composer and pianist.

1911: Samuel Oppenheimer was elected professor of Astronomy at the University of Vienna.

1912: Birthdate of Raoul Wallenberg, one of the truly great, brave people of history. A Swede, Wallenberg risked his life by going to Hungary in 1944 and literally yanking thousands of Jews from the jaws of death. He disappeared into the hands of the Red Army when it liberated Budapest. Some claim that he passed away in a Soviet prison in 1947. But nobody really knows what happened to him other than the fact the world did nothing to save him.  

1911: Rabbi Israel I. Mattuck was “elected as the first minster of the Liberal Jewish Synagogue” in London.

1912: In Donora, PA, founding of Congregation Ohab Sholom

1912: Birthdate of historian Daniel Baruch Aaron.

1912: In Trenton, NJ, founding of People of Truth Synagogue

1912:  Birthdate of composer and writer David Raskin who wrote the scores for numerous films, many of which were famous in their day but now are only seen on TCM or other such venues.  Raskin was caught up in the Red Witch Hunt of the late 1940’s and 1950’s.  He was not a victim of the blacklist since he gave the investigators the one thing they wanted, the names of more people they could investigate. He passed away in 2004.

1913(1st of Av, 5673): Rosh Chodesh Av (Unbeknownst to anybody, Europe is starting its last twelve months of peace.  A year from now WW I will have begun. To paraphrase one English statesmen, the lights of the world were about to go out and we do not know when they will come back on again.

1914: After Great Britain had declared war on Germany at the start of World War I, Sir Edgar Speyer resigned as a partner in the Frankfort branch of his family’s banking business.   Speyer, the American born son of German parents had become a naturalized British citizen in 1892. Speyer would spend the war defending himself against charges of being disloyal and accusations that he was supporter/spy for Germany.  

1914: “When war was declared” today, “the Jewish Chronicle front page headline proclaimed: “England has been all she could be to Jews; Jews will be all they can be to England” and as proof of that statement “within a year 10,000” Jews had signed up “including Lieutenant Frank De Pass, who was to become the first Jewish soldier awarded the Victoria Cross – and the very first soldier in the Indian Army to be awarded a VC.” (As reported by Lord Sterling, president of the Association of Jewish Ex-Servicemen and Women (AJEX))

1914: Germany invades Belgium which forces Great Britain to declare war on Germany since the British are guarantors of Belgian independence and neutrality.  It was the invasion of Belgium that “sealed the deal” and turned the nascent European hostilities into World War I.  From the vantage point of the 21st century, we can see so many places where this war might have been avoided and all that flowed from it including the Shoah.  In other words, if the Germans had viewed treaties as more than “a scrap of paper” (the way one German leader reportedly described the treaty guaranteeing Belgium’s independence, six million Jews might not have been smoke and ashes.)

1915: “On the Lower East Side of Manhattan, Max Schwartz, “a carpenter who sang in local choirs” and his wife Eva gave birth to Yitzhak Schwartz, the youngest of their six children who gained fame as pianist and band leader Irving Fields who “pioneered the melding of Cuban sound with Jewish rhythm via his Bagels and Bongos series in the 1950's to create a vibe which is equal parts Havana, Harlem, and the Catskills.”

1915: It was reported today that among the ten thousand prisoners being held by the Germans in a camp “near the university town of Giesen in Upper House includes “Russian Jews.”

1916: During the Battle of Romani, the last attempt by the Central Powers to cross the Suez, the Anzac Mounted Division engaged the German Pasha I formation and the Ottoman 3rd Infantry Division slowing their advance and giving other units of the British Army to mount a defense.

1917(16th of Av, 5677): Shabbat Nachamu is observed for the first time after the U.S. began fighting in WW I.

1917: “Late reports from the local exemption boards in all parts of New York tonight indicated that the 30,000 men for the National Army to be supplied by New York City,” a significant number of whom will be Jewish according to Benjamin Swartz, will be met by the end of this week.

1918: Birthdate of Sidney Harman the Montreal native an audio pioneer who built the first high-fidelity stereo receiver, dabbled in education and government, and made a late-in-life splash by acquiring an antiquated Newsweek magazine and wedding it with a sassy young Web site, The Daily Beast…(As reported by Robert McFadden)

1918: “An Allied force landed at Arkhangelsk, Russia, beginning a famous military expedition dubbed Operation Archangel with the professed objective of which was to prevent the German Empire from obtaining Allied military supplies stored in the region” but was really thought to be a way of thwarting the Bolshevik Revolution.

1918: “Mrs. Moses Mielzner, he widow of the late Dr. Moses Mielziner, dean of the faculty of Hebrew Union College…celebrated her 80th birthday anniversary at the home of her son Benjamin Mielziner” where she was joined by “her son Leo Mielziner, the artist from New York City, her daughters Belle and Ernestine, the latter of whom is a Red Cross Nurse at Camp Sherman” but not by her son Rabbi Jacob Mielziner, the 1900 graduate of Hebrew Union College “who is ow living in Copenhagen” with his wife.

1918: Corporal Adolf Hitler was award the Iron Cross, First class, based on the recommendation of his regimental adjutant, Captain Hugo Guttman who was Jewish.

1918: In “East Side’s Patriotic Upheaval” published today, Richard Barry described the change in this predominately Jewish neighborhood from Socialism to American patriotism in the last six months.

1919: Dr. Joseph Silverman, the rabbi of Temple Emanu-El delivered the eulogy at the funeral of Oscar Hammerstein which was attended a large throng including “men and women of theatrical and operatic prominence.”

1919: Abraham Goodman Jacobs and Sarah Jacobs, the daughter of Abraham Simcha (Simon) Flashtiq and Rebekah Flashtiq, gave birth to David Samuel Jacobs

1919: It was reported today that “Hetman Gregorieff who commanded the troops in the capture of Odessa a month ago” where there was a massacre of those living in the Jewish quarter “has been shot with a revolver by a rival commander of the Ukrainian insurgent forces.”

1921(29th of Tammuz, 5681): Seventy-three year old “Alfred Neymarck,” the son of “Mayes and Henriette Neumark” and the “husband of Jeanne Neymarck” with whom he had one child “Henriette” passed away today in “La Tronche sur Isere, France.”

1922: In the Bronx, David Winick, a house painter and his wife the former Sadie Brussel gave birth to “Charles Winick a professor of anthropology and sociology who wrote a book bemoaning the blurring of lines between the sexes and who challenged prevailing views about the dangers of drug abuse.”

1922: “A young Zionist named Zalker was killed by an Arab in the outskirts of Haifa.” Early in the day, five Jewish porters had been injured in a clash with Arabs over who would carry the luggage of tourists arriving at the port.

1922 (10th of Av): Jewish author David Frischmann passed away today

1928: “Warming Up,” a baseball movie produced by Adolph Zukor and Jesse Lasky based on a story by Sam Mintz was released today by Paramount Pictures.

1929: Founding of the Jewish agency for Palestine

1933: In France, An International Committee for the Protection of Academic Freedom and the Rights of Savants in all countries is formed to help German Jewish scholars and students in jeopardy in Germany.

1933: In Austria, President Miklas appoints four Jews as university professors out of nine new appointments.

1933: In the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston, Sarah (née Tonkin) and Arthur Adelson gave birth to Sheldon Adelson, who in 2011 “was ranked as the world's 16th-richest man with a net worth of $23.3 billion.”

1933: In Moscow, an official map of Soviet nations and nationalities, shows that the Jewish population is two and a half million or 1.7% of the total.

1936: In Danzig, “the Free City’s Supreme Court in a judgement rendered today” “an anti-Jewish boycott was officially sanctioned.”

1936: “Judge William Allen of General Sessions, following a half-hour argument today reserved decision on a motion to inspect and minutes of the June grand jury that indicted Robert Edward Edmondson, pamphleteer on allegations that he libeled the Jewish religion” among others.

1937: Zurich was in a holiday mood with thousands of visitors arriving hourly for the 20th Zionist Congress. Hotels and pensions were filled to capacity. Only one Swiss paper, Die Front, a Nazi organ, published a venomous attack on Jews. Dr. Franz Kahn opened the Congress with the same gavel used by Theodor Herzl at the First Congress in 1897. Dr. Chaim Weizmann delivered his 40-minute opening address. He pointed out the need to decide whether to accept or reject the Royal (Peel) Commission¹s Report on Palestine, pointing out to the advantages and disadvantages of the scheme. 

1937: In Geneva, the Permanent Mandate Commission of the League of Nations examined both the Peel and Palestine administration¹s reports and tried to determine whether the Palestine Mandate, drafted in 1922, was indeed no longer workable and whether the necessary fundamental changes, as requested by Great Britain, ought to be carried out. 

1937: “Artists and Models” a comedy starring Jack Benny, featuring Ben Blue and with music by Victor Young, Leo Robin and Frederick Hollander  was released today in the United States.

1938: Birthdate of Judith Smith Kaye, the first woman to serve as Chief Judge of New York, “the State Judiciary’s highest office.”

1938: In Philadelphia, Edwin and Margaret Dannenbaum Wolf gave birth to Ellen Wolf Schrecker the graduate of Radcliffe and Harvard who is “an American professor emerita of American history at Yeshiva University” and considered by some to be “the dean of the anti-anti-Communist historians.”

1938: The New York Round Table of the National Conference of Jews and Christians” at Hunter College sponsored a “mass meeting” where the topics covered were “The Jew In America,” “Catholicism and Fascism “ and “Students and the Interfaith Movement.”

1938(7th of Av, 5698): Seventy-eight year old Austrian native and “clothing merchant” Leon Tuchman, “the treasurer of the Uptown Talmud Torah,” “a member of Congregation Ohab Zedek” and father of Aaron Tuchman and Rebecca Weil who eight years ago “gave $50,000 to the endowment fund of Yeshiva College” passed away today.

1938: Rabbi Benjamin Plotkin spoke at mass rally this evening sponsored by the New York State International Labor Defense.

1938: It was reported by the official news agency in Germany, that “the City Council has expropriated the old synagogue and administrative buildings of the Jews Cultural Society on Hans Sachs Platz” so what Julius Streicher described as “the disgrace of Nuremberg” can be demolished before the Nazi Party’s annual convention in September.

1938: While on a boating trip, Italian dictator Benito Mussolini discussed Adolf Hitler’s new anti-Semitic laws with his mistress, saying “We must give Italians a feeling of race so that they don’t create half-castes, so that they don’t spoil what is beautiful...

1940(29th of Tammuz, 5700): Just months before his 60th birthday, Ze'ev (Vladimir) Jabotinsky passed away while inspecting a Betar Camp in New York. 

1940: Margret and Hans Rey arrive in Rio de Jeneiro aboard the Angola.

1940: Hugo Gutmann (aka Henry G. Grant) who during WW I served as an officer in a regiment that included Adolf Hitler and his family reached Lisbon and safety after having fled from Brussels across France ahead of the advancing Nazi forces.

1941: The Jewish community of “Varklan, a small town north of modern-day Daugavpils in Latvia” which had been the home to many of the Jews who began arriving in Tulsa, OK in 1902 “was exterminated today by the Nazis.”

1942: The first train with Jews from Belgium went to Auschwitz. The train contained 998 Jews. Normally the Germans would wait until they had an even thousand before sending a train from Belgium to Auschwitz. (On April 19, 1943, three Jewish resistance fighters would stop the Twentieth Train with Jews bound for Auschwitz. Several hundred Jews would escape, although many were caught in later round-ups and sent to the camps. This episode teaches us many valuable lessons. One of them is about Jewish courage in the face of almost certain death. Another of them is that history is not made up of events, but of the events we know about. The ambush took place on the same day as the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. Both were events of great courage. But we only celebrate the events at Warsaw because that is the one that most people know about.)

1942: One thousand Jews were deported from Theresienstadt. 

1942: In Warsaw, Chaim Kaplan wrote the last entry in his diary before he was murdered: “If my life ends - what will become of my diary?”  Saul Friedlander would see to it that the material covered in the diary would survive the killers and the victims when he would he use it as resource material for The Years of Extermination: Nazi Germany and the Jews, 1939-1945

1942(21st of Av, 5702): In Radom, Poland, 10,000 Jews were assembled for deportation to Treblinka. The Germans began shooting them as they gathered.  

1942: An additional 13,000 Jews were rounded up in Warsaw as Operation Reinhard continued into its second month.  

1942: “My Sister Eileen,” a comedy written by Joseph A. Field and Jerome Chodorov and produced by George S. Kaufman which had opened on Broadway at the Biltmore Theatre, transferred to the Martin Beck Theatre where it opened tonight.

1943: “The Man from Down Under” a movie set in post WW I Australia directed and produced by Robert Z. Leonard was released in the Unites States today.

1944: A limited number of Jewish war refugees arrived in New York Harbor.  They then moved to a decommissioned army camp in Oswego New York. Ruth Gerber, an American journalist was selected “to go on a secret mission to escort the refugees to the United States. This journey became ‘the defining Jewish moment’ of Gruber's life.  In her role as a spokesperson for the refugees, Gruber presented the refugees' journey as a human interest story for the press. She told the New York Times that the refugees represented "a cross-section of every refugee now pouring into Italy," including Jews, Catholics and Protestants for whom religious services were held onboard the ship. In a touching moment in Haven, her book recounting the voyage, Gruber recalls a rabbi conducting a service as the boat passed the Statue of Liberty, and her pride in telling the Jewish refugees of the Holocaust that the poem on the base was written by Emma Lazarus, an American Jew. The story of these European refugees stands out as a momentary relaxation of America's restrictive immigration policy. President Roosevelt's decision provided the refugees with a safe haven as "guests" in the United States during the war, with the assumption that "they were destined to be sent back to their homelands when the peace comes." While Roosevelt planned to allow the nearly 1000 refugees to reside in the United States only until the end of hostilities, when the end of the war came, Gruber lobbied the President and Congress—with the help of Catholic, Jewish and Protestant clergy—and convinced the officials to let the refugees stay. While the story ended happily for these refugees, sadly it came at the expense of others waiting in displaced persons camps in Europe. Since the overall immigration laws and quotas remained unchanged, the close to 1000 refugees were just subtracted form that year's quota.

1944(15th of Av, 5704): Tu B’Av – Editor’s note: there are times when the calendar seems to be mocking us.

1944(15, of Av, 5704: “On only the fourth day of the Warsaw Uprising, the 23 year old poet Krzysztof Kamil Baczyński was killed by a German sniper in the city’s Old Town.” (As reported by Benjamin Paloff)

1944: Anne Frank was arrested with her parents and sister. Anne, 15 years old, was sent to Bergen-Belsen where she died in March 1945. 

1944: Victor Kugler, one of the people who helped to hide Anne Frank was arrested by Karl Silberbauer and taken to Gestapo headquarters where he was interrogated and ten transferred “to a prison for Jews and 'political prisoners' awaiting deportation on the Amstelveenseweg.”

1945(25th of Av, 5705): Fifty-five year old Eugene E. Sperry, a native of New York and the son of Levi and Bertha Spiegelberg passed away today in Deal, N.J.

1945: In Haifa Miriam and Shmuel gave birth to Benjamin Zeev Kol-Kari who lost his life when the Dakar, an Israeli submarine sank with all hands on board.

1945: British movie producer Sydney Bernstein received a memo from the British Foreign Office which put an end to the documentary he was making “German Concentration Camps Factual Survey” although the footage he had gathered was used in the war crime trials at Nuremberg.

1945: Birthdate of actor and comedian Richard Belzer 

1947: In the wake of yesterday’s anti-Jewish violence Walter Lever, a working-class Jewish resident of Manchester said that “today, “all premises belonging to Jews for the length of a mile down” Cheetham Hill Road “had gaping windows and he pavements were littered with glass.”

1947: “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” a movies based on the short story character of the same name produced by Samuel Goldwyn, starring Danny Kaye and featuring songs by Sylvia Fine and a score by David Raskin, premiered in Chicago today.

1948: Today, Lee Pressman, a labor lawyer and son of Jewish immigrants, “characterized” the testimony of former Communist Party member Whittaker Chambers as “smering me with the stale and lurid mouthinings of a Republican exhibitionist who was bought by” Time/Life publisher Henry Luce.

1948: “Regulations of the activities of the recognized religions, including Judaism, were set down in the today’s order of the presidium of the Grand National Assembly (which also served as the presidency of the state)

1950: Sixty-four year old Norihiro Yasue “an Imperial Japanese Army colonel who played a crucial role in the so-called Fugu Plan, in which Jews were rescued from Europe and brought to Japanese-occupied territories during World War II” passed away today in Soviet labor camp.

1950: In Rehovot, Daniel and Tzipora Gov gave birth to Israeli entertainer Gidi Gov who “was married to playwright Anat Gov with whom he has three children.”

1951: Birthdate of Yona Metzger, the native of Haifa and IDF veteran who served as Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of Israel.

1952: In Malibu, CA, movie director Don Siegel and actress Viveca Lindfors gave birth to Christopher Donald Siegel who gained fame as actor and director Kristoffer Tabori

1952: Rishon Lezion or First for Israel celebrated its 70th anniversary. Rishon is approximately seven miles southeast of Tel Aviv.  By the time of its 70th century, several well-known Israelis had worked or lived on the Moshav.  Two future prime ministers of Israel, David Ben Gurion and Levi Eshkol worked in the winery at Rishon Lezion. Eliezer Ben-Yehuda, the father of the Modern Hebrew language taught at Rishon LeZion.

1956: “The Indian Fighter” starring Kirk Douglas and Walter Matthau with a script by Ben Hecht and music by Franz Waxman was released in the United States today by United Artists.

1958: In Gabès, Tunisia, Shimon Shalom gave birth to Silvan Shalom, who came to Israel a year later where his political career has included in several ministerial positions including Vice Prime Minister.

1959: “Some five months after its Broadway opening, a Philip Rose production of “Raisin in the Sun” opened at the Adelphi Theatre in London’s West End.

1959: “The Big Fisherman” a Biblical biopic co-starring Susan Kohner and Herbert Lom was released in the United States today.

1961: Birthdate of Barak Obama whose Presidential campaigns were run by David Axelroad; whose first chief of staff was Rahm Emanuel; whose use of Jack Lew, a Sabbath Observant Jew, has filled many positions including Secretary of Treasury. He was willing to triple down on Jewish Justices when he nominated Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court.  While he has been criticized by some for his failure to visit Israel until his second term in office, Obama has fully funded Iron Dome during the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.  He has so many Jews on his staff that he has been hosting a Seder since 2009 making him the first President to recline and dine while hoping not leave a stain from the chrain. Of course, it will be up to history and the historians to evaluate his ultimate impact on the Jews as well as everything.

1962: Birthdate of television executive Michael Gelman

1964: Civil rights workers Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney were found buried inside an earthen dam in Mississippi. Schwerner and Goodman were two Jewish youngsters who had come to Mississippi to work in a drive to register Black voters. Chaney was an African-American from Mississippi. Their deaths helped to galvanize support for what would become the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

1966(18th of Av, 5726): Sixty-four year old Helen Tamaris, “the dancer and choreographer” who “put a stress on social responsibility” in a career that spanned forty years and was the wife of her “dancing partner, Daniel Nagrin” lost her fight with cancer and passed at the Jewish Memorial Hospital.

1972: “Alfredo, Alfredo” an Italian language comedy starring Dustin Hoffman was released today in Italy.

1973(6th of Av, 5733): Parahsat Devarim; Shabbat Chazon

1973(6th of Av, 5733): Sam Katzman an American film producer and director passed away Born  in 1907,into a poor Jewish family, Katzman went to work as a stage laborer at the age of 13 in the fledgling East Coast film industry. He would learn all aspects of filmmaking and become a highly successful Hollywood producer for more than forty years.

1977: US President Jimmy Carter signs legislation creating the United States Department of Energy. Dr. James Schlesinger, the son of Russian and Austrian Jews, was named the first secretary of the Department.  Unlike another famous Harvard PhD. named Henry Kissinger, Schlesinger converted to Christianity, when, according to some sources, he discovered that the “faith of his father’s was an impediment to his budding academic career.

1977: "Nobody Does It Better" “a song composed by Marvin Hamlisch with lyrics by Carole Bayer Sager. It was recorded by Carly Simon as the theme song for the 1977 James Bond film The Spy Who Loved Me” was released today.

 1977: Three terrorists who were on their way to Kibbutz Ashdod Ya'acov were killed and two captured after they crossed the Jordanian border. 

1977: Syria rejected the American initiative to hold a Middle Eastern mini-summit in the US and asked for the reconvening of the Geneva Peace Conference instead. 

1978(1st of Av, 5738): Rosh Chodesh Av

1978(1st of Av, 5738): Lilya Yuryevna Brik, the so-called "muse of Russian avant-garde" died at the age of 87.

1981: Birthdate of Ariel Glaser

1981(4th of Av, 5741):  Famed American actor Melvin Douglas passed away. Born Melvyn Edouard Hesselberg in Macon, Georgia, Douglas began his film career in 1931.  Some of his more memorable films include “Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House” and the “Americanization of Emily.”  He won two Oscars, including one for best supporting actor as the crotchety old rancher in “Hud.”  He has an additional claim to fame as the husband of Congresswoman Helen Cahagan Douglas.  Rep. Douglas ran against Richard Nixon for the Senate in 1950.  She was an early victim of Nixon and the right-wing Republicans smear tactics in which all liberals were equated with Communists.

1986: Roz Chast’s first cover for The New Yorker appeared today “showing a lecturer in a white coat pointing to a family tree of ice cream.”

1990 (5750): Shabbat Nachamu

1992: Ran Cohen began serving as Deputy Minister of Housing and Construction.

1992: Eli Ben-Menachem was appointed Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s office.

1992: Mordechai Gur began serving as Deputy Minister of Defense.

1993: Harvey Weinstein, a formalwear manufacturer and chairman of Lord West Formal Wear was kidnapped in New York.

1994: Playwright Arthur Miller’s “Broken Glass” was performed for the first time in Great Britain at “the Royal National Theatre's Lyttelton Theatre.”

1994(27th of Av, 5754): Two days before his 86th birthday Solomon Adler, a U.S. Treasury Employee who served in China during World War II and was later accused of being “a Soviet intelligence source” passed away today.

1994: Actor Richard Lewis has been sober from this date forward.

1996: The Los Angeles Times featured a review of Rich Little Poor Boy: A Ghost of a Chance by Peter Duchin with Charles Michener. Duchin was the son of socialite Marjorie Oelrichs and musical genius Eddy Duchin, the son of Jewish immigrants. When Oerlichs was kicked out of the Social Register for marrying the Jewish Duchin she reportedly said, "Who cares?" "It's only a telephone book." [“The Eddie Duchin Story” with Kim Novak and Tyronne Power left the Jewish part.]

2000: David Levy completed his term as Foreign Minister.

2000: “Running on the Sun: The Badwater 135,” a documentary film directed by Mel Stuart (born Stuart Solomon) was released today.

2001(15th of Av, 5761): A triple header – Parashat Vaetchanan, Sabbat Nachamu and Tu B’Av

2002: On the 110th anniversary of the death of Ernestine Rose, the Ernestine Rose society “held a memorial service at London’s Highgate Cemetery to dedicate the restored headstone of Ernestine and William Rose, fulfilling the group’s mandate to ensure that this “courageous and pioneering woman… would no longer rest in an unmarked grave.”

2002(26th of Av, 5762): Mordechai Yehuda Friedman, 24, of Ramat Beit Shemesh, Sari Goldstein, 21, of Karmiel, Maysoun Amin Hassan, 19, of Sajur, Marlene Miriam Menahem, 22, of moshav Safsufa, Sgt.-Maj. Roni Ghanem, 28, of Maghar, Sgt. Yifat Gavrieli, 19, of Mitzpe Adi, Sgt. Omri Goldin, 20, of Mitzpe Aviv, Adelina Kononen, 37, of the Philippines and Rebecca Roga, 40, of the Philippines were killed and 38 others were injured during a suicide bombing aboard Egged Bus 361 at the Meron Junction for which Hamas took credit.

2002: The New York Times book section featured a review of Stravinsky and Balanchine: A Journey of Invention about the relationship between the gentile and his Jewish apprentice by Charles M. Joseph, I’ll Be Short: Essentials for a Decent Working Society by Robert B. Reich, Bill Clinton’s first and Jewish, Secretary of Labor and Elvis In Jerusalem: Post-Zionism and the Americanization of Israel by Tom Segev.

2005(28th of Tammuz, 5765): Eden Natan Zada, age 19, who was absent without leave from the Israeli army opened fire on a public bus traveling to an Arab town in northern Israel, killing at least four people and wounding 10. In the immediate aftermath, passengers swarmed the gunman, killing him before he could leave the bus.

2005: Eliat Mazar announced she had discovered in Jerusalem what may have been the palace of King David,

2005:  The Jerusalem Post reported that for the second year in a row, Canadian hockey Jean Perron legend is conducting camp at the Canada Centre, in the town of Metulla near the border with the Lebanon..

2005: Israeli archaeologist Eliat Mazar announced the discovery the site of Palace of David, a 10th Century BCE building in the Old City of Jerusalem.  The site is widely recognized as a major find but there is dispute over the identification of the building as being David’s Palace which is described in the Bible.

2006: Marissa Carson leads Friday Night Services at Temple Judah in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, as part of the rituals marking her Bat Mitzvah.

2006: “Three rockets fired by Hezbollah hit Hadera.”

2006: Over 200 rockets were fired at northern Israel, killing three people. At least 86 more were wounded, one critically and five seriously. A barrage of rockets landed near Karmiel just before 6 p.m., killing two people in the villages of Majdal Krum and Dir el-Assad.

2007(20th of Av, 5767): Eight-one year old Raul Hilberg, one of the historians who created the field of Holocaust Studies passed away today (As reported by Douglas Martin)



2007: To his everlasting credit, Chet Culver, Governor of the state of Iowa, officially proclaims this day as Raoul Wallenberg in honor of the Swedish Diplomats work in saving thousands of Hungarian Jews and as an example of a great humanitarian who provided living proof that one person’s efforts can make a difference in the fight against evil.

2007: The Indianapolis Colts place Mike Seidman on the inured reserved list.

2008: Taking time from dealing with aftermath of the floods and tornadoes that have struck Iowa, Chet Culver, Governor of the state of Iowa, officially proclaims this day as Raoul Wallenberg Day in honor of the Swedish Diplomats work in saving thousands of Hungarian Jews and as an example of a great humanitarian who provided living proof that one person’s efforts can make a difference in the fight against evil.

2008: In a testament to the involvement of Jews in diverse strata of American life, U.S. News & World Report discloses that Henry Kissinger, the first Jewish U.S. Secretary of State has agreed to lend his name to a foreign policy think tank (at the Woodrow Wilson Center) while Sports Illustrated reports on the recent death of legendary baseball writer Jerome Holtzman and marvels at re-emergence of basketball great Nancy Lieberman, who at the age of fifty had two assists in playing nine minutes for the Detroit Shock

2009: During the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival is scheduled to show “Rachel” at the Berkeley Repertory’s Roda Theater.

2009: Despite being forced to deal with worst economic downturns since the Great Depression, Iowa Governor Chet Culver still finds the time to proclaim today Raoul Wallenberg Memorial Day on the 97th anniversary of the great Swede’s birth.  This is the third year in a row that the Governor of Iowa has issued such a proclamation.

2009: Rashi’s Daughters: Book III – Rachel by Maggie Anton goes on sale today.  This is the third and final volume in a fictional trilogy based on the lives of the daughters of the great sage.

2009: Israeli police have broken up an Israeli-American crime ring specializing in tax fraud and money-laundering in an operation codenamed "American Pie."

2009(14th of Av, 5769: Eighty-two year old Israeli author and gadfly, Amos Kenan passed away today. (As reported by William Grimes)

2009: Two years after the death of novelist Sidney Sheldon, the author of Master of the Game, William Morrow and Company released a sequel entitled Sidney Sheldon's Mistress of the Game

2009: The Russian gentile who saved former chief Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau during the Holocaust was posthumously honored at Yad Vashem with the prestigious Righteous Among the Nations award today. As a young adult, Feodor Mikhailichenko risked his life to feed, clothe and protect the young Lolek Lau, who was 10 years his junior, in the Buchenwald concentration camp in Germany. Last year, Lau, chairman of the Yad Vashem Council, finally succeeded in identifying Mikhailichenko after decades of searching. The deceased Mikhailichenko's two daughters accepted the award, which honors non-Jews who helped Jews during the Holocaust, on their father's behalf. More than 22,700 gentiles have been recognized as Righteous Among the Nations. Mikhailichenko is the 164th Russian gentile to receive this honor. About 200 people, including Lau's family and Israeli and Russian officials, gathered at the Jerusalem museum's Hall of Remembrance, synagogue and Garden of the Righteous Among the Nations for a memorial service and ceremony and to view Mikhailichenko's name on the wall listing the honored gentiles. "I don't know if you can understand the feeling of a child all alone, and here is a man who owes him nothing," Lau told those at the ceremony about Mikhailichenko's heroic deeds. "There are angels of death, but also angels of life, no matter how few, and one of the most prominent among them is this Feodor," said Lau. Mikhailichenko, a Russian prisoner-of-war, and Lau, who had been separated from his brother in Buchenwald, were in the same barracks in the camp. Mikhailichenko used to steal potatoes, collect small rocks in the courtyard near their barracks and cook Lau soup. He also once took a beige sweater from a corpse, unraveled the thread and used it to sew Lau flesh-colored earmuffs so that when Lau removed his hat as per the Nazis' command, his ears wouldn't freeze. When Buchenwald was liberated in April 1945, Mikhailichenko covered Lau's body with his own, acting as a shield to protect him from the gunfire. After the war ended, Mikhailichenko wanted to take Lau back with him to Rostov-on-Don, his hometown in Russia. But Lau, who was eight years old when Buchenwald was liberated, had promised his brother Naftali that he would go to Israel, so he and Mikhailichenko separated. "I must not forget there is a place in the world Israel. He made me repeat the word 'Israel,'" Lau remembered, describing what Naftali had told him. "Tell people to take you there." Over the years, Lau tried to locate his savior. Unfortunately, he had neither a picture nor a last name. Lau asked various people for help, and at one point a notice was printed in a local paper, but to no avail. One Russian dignitary told him point-blank, "There are more Feodors in Rostov than Danis in Tel Aviv," but Lau still hoped that one day he would succeed. "He always spoke about him," Lau's son Rabbi David Lau told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday. "We always heard about the fact that he wanted to see him." In fact, at one family birthday party, the children put on a play, and one of them played the part of Mikhailichenko.Then in June of last year, 63 years after the end of the Holocaust, someone contacted Lau with the news: An American researcher studying Gestapo documents about Buchenwald had identified his rescuer. For the first time, Lau said, he had known Feodor's last name. He got in touch with the Chabad emissary in Rostov, who found a lifelong friend of Mikhailichenko. The friend told him Mikhailichenko had died of illness in 1993 at age 66. The friend knew of the little Jewish boy Mikhailichenko had saved and told the Chabad emissary that Mikhailichenko used to tell his daughters, "If he had not gone to Israel, you would have had a brother." Soon after, Mikhailichenko's two daughters, Yulia Selutina and Yelena Belayaeva, came to Israel to meet the person about whom their father had spoken so fondly. "Lolek, who father was so attached to - the child who he loved so much," Selutina told the crowd on Tuesday. Selutina said her father had also tried looking for Lau, but had not been successful. Lau spoke of the debt he owed Mikhailichenko for his selfless deeds, a debt of gratitude he could not quantify. Even though the gates of Buchenwald were inscribed with the words "Jedem das Seine," or "to each his own," Mikhailichenko had not lived like that, Lau said. Pointing first to Mikhailichenko's two daughters, and then to his own son David and his nine-month-old granddaughter, Lau told a group of attendees outside the hall, "If not for their father, both this one and this one would not be here."

2009: Raoul Wallenberg Day

2010: “Surviving Hitler: A Love Story,” a documentary about a young Jewess named Jutta who joined the Resistance and plotted to kill Hitler, is scheduled to be shown at the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival

2010: The United Nations peacekeeping force in South Lebanon, Unifil, said today that it had concluded that Israeli forces were cutting trees that lay within their own territory before a lethal exchange of fire with Lebanese Army troops yesterday, largely vindicating Israel’s account of how the fighting started. 

2011: The Jewish community of Cedar Rapids, proudly awaits today’s opening of “13: The Musical” starring one of its youthful and talented members, Bentlee Birchansky.

2011: The 2011 Security Briefing For Jewish Institutions in Northern Virginia is scheduled to place at Northern Virginia Hebrew Congregation.

2011: “Next Year in Bombay,” film that “profiles the surprising diversity of India’s Jewish communities, some of which have existed for over 2,500 years” is scheduled to be shown at the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival.

2011: IDF aircraft struck targets in the Gaza Strip in the early hours this morning, a day after Palestinians fired at least two Grad rockets, striking deep into Israel.

2011: Israel Medical Association chairman Dr. Leonid Eidelman said today that although progress has been made in negotiations with the Treasury on the doctors' work dispute, sanctions would continue in hospitals and clinics until a final agreement is reached

2011: Tomer Rotem, a Chabad rabbi working in Quito, Ecuador, who was kidnapped on August 1 and held for four days, was released tonight.

2011: Hundreds of Wikipedia activists from around the world will descend upon Haifa today for the seventh annual Wikimania conference, to discuss debate and deliberate all things Wiki.

2011: Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak approved the appointment of Ram Rothberg as the next head of the Israel Navy,after being nominated by IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz

2011: Under the leadership of Irene Rosenfeld Kraft Foods said it plans to split into two publicly traded companies, with one focusing on its international snack brands like Trident gum and Oreo cookies and the other on its North American groceries business that includes Maxwell House coffee and Oscar Mayer meats.

2012: Raoul Wallenberg Shabbat

2012: Actress Roseanne Barr won the 2012 presidential nomination of the Peace and Freedom Party.

2012: Sam Kringlen is scheduled to be called to the Torah this morning as a Bar Mitzvah at Temple Judah in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

2012: Yemen Blues, a group that originated in Tel Aviv, is scheduled to perform at the City Winery in New York City.

2012: In Auburn, ME, Temple Shalom Synagogue is scheduled to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birthday of Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg with a special Saturday morning service and screening of a film later in the evening about his rescue work.

2012:Israeli windsurfer Lee Kurzits finished first in race eight of the women’s RS-X competition this afternoon at the Olympic Games, and was in second place overall at the end of the day with strong prospects of a medal.

2012: Bearing banners, shouting slogans and calling for a better Israel and a brighter tomorrow, thousands gathered in Tel Aviv on Saturday evening for a major protest organized by the social justice movements, which put aside their differences to join forces for the event.

2012: IDF forces shot a Syrian man who crossed into Israel through its northern border today. The infiltrator, who was carrying a pair of wire cutters, was identified during a routine patrol and asked to stop; when he didn’t, the troops on patrol opened fire on him, injuring him in the leg.

2013(28th of Av): Yarhrzeit for Larry Rosenstein, of blessed memory, husband of Judy Levin Rosenstein, of blessed memory.  Gone to soon but always remembered! 

2013(28th of Av, 5773): Centenarian Yitzhak Berman, Israeli political leader passed away today.

 2013: “50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. & Mrs. Kraus” a documentary about Gilbert and Eleanor Karus’ successful effort to save 50 Jewish children from Austria.

2013: The Alexandria Kleztet is scheduled to perform at the Washington DC Jewish Community Center.

2013: A group of 36 Democratic members of the House are expected to arrive in Israel for a one week visit to the Jewish state.  A group of 26 Republicans are expected to visit next week. (As reported by Herb Keinon)

2013: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including a novel by Louis Begley, Memories of a Marriage  and Love, Dishonor, Marry, Die, Cherish, Perish by David Rakoff of blessed memory.

2013: Generall Martin Dempsy, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, arrives in Israel as the guest of Major General Benny Gantz, Israel’s Chief of Staff who will host meeting meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ya’alon.

2013: Igal Brightman, the chairman and CEO of the major local accounting firm of Deloitte Brightman who died in light plane crash is scheduled to be buried today in Tel Aviv.

2013: At Bloomfield Stadium in Jaffa 12,000 youngsters joined President Shimon Peres, Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai and Education Minister Shai Piron enjoyed an evening with soccer superstran Lionel Messi and his Barcelona Football Club.

2013: American journalist Steven Sotloff was kidnapped by terrorists near Aleppo.

2014: “Aftermath Poland” is scheduled to be shown at the Berkshire Jewish Film Festival.

2014(8th of Av, 5774): “Rabbi Abraham Wallis, a 29-year-old resident of Mea Shearim in Jerusalem, was killed in what has been described as  terrorist attack earlier today while working at a construction site for Atra Kadisha, an organization which assures graves are not disturbed during building.”  (In life he was loved and admired. He was swifter than eagles and stronger than lions.)  

2014(8th of Av, 5774): Eighty-six year old physician and Holocaust survivor Emanuel Emek Tanay lost his battle with prostate cancer today.

2014: “An Israeli man was shot in the stomach at the entrance to the Har Hatzofim (Mount Scopus) tunnel in Jerusalem, in what looks to be the capital's second terror attack in a matter of hours.” (As reported by Gil Ronen)

2014: President Barack Obama signed a bill today granting an additional $225 million in US taxpayer dollars for Israel's Iron Dome missile defense system.

2014(8th of Av): In the evening fast of Tisha B’av begins

2015(19th of Av, 5775): Seventy-three year old Hungarian-born  American Jewish historian Yosef Goldman, the son of Rabbi Lipa Goldman who came to the U.S. in 1950 and who was the co-author of Hebrew Printing in America 1735-1926: A History and Annotated Bibliography passed away today.

2015(19th of Av, 5775): Ninety-nine year old “pop art furniture designer” Irving Harper, born Irving Hoffzimer, passed away today. (As reported by Sam Roberts)

2015: Steve Gimbel, author of Einstein: His Space and Times” is scheduled to speak at the Washington DC JCC as part of its Brilliant Minds, Great Thinkers program.

2015: YIVO and the Yiddish League are scheduled to present the New York Premiere of “Chava Rosenfarb: That Bubble of Being”

2016: The 92nd Street Y is scheduled to present “The Power of Habit” in which Uri Galimidi will help attendees “learn simple yet highly effective interventions to help you conquer undesired habits and adopt new healthier ones.”

2016: “Australia said it was suspending funding for major charity World Vision late today, hours after Israeli officials accused the group’s manager in Gaza of funneling tens of millions of dollars in aid money to terror group Hamas.”

2016:“Muhammad Halabi, a Hamas member and manager of operations for World Vision in Gaza, was indicted in a Beersheba court today on a number of security-related charges for his alleged role in the scheme to divert “tens of millions dollars to fund the Hamas war machine in Gaza.”

2016: One hundred sixth anniversary of the birth of Raoul Wallenberg

2016: Noam Banai, son of Meir and cousin to Ehud, Yuval and Elisha continued his tour of Israel tonight a performance at the HaArbaim Pub at Kibbutz Talilim.

2016: Anniversary of Iowa Governor Chet Culver proclaiming today Raoul Wallenberg Day, in response to the efforts spearheaded by members of Temple Judah in Cedar Rapids , IA.

2017: This evening, a Shabbat Nachamu Shidduch is scheduled to take begin Kew Garden Hills, Queens, NY.

2017: A Shabbat Nachamu weekend sponsored by the Association of Orthodox Jewish Scientists is scheduled to open this evening at the Crowne Plaza in Stamford, CT.

2017: Yiddish comedians, Mendy Cahan and Yuri Vedenyapin are scheduled to host a “late-night open stage at the OMA café at the Yiddish Summer Weimar in Germany.

2017: “Left-handed reliever Craig Brewslow was signed “to a minor league deal” today.

2018: “Hitler’ Hollywood” and “The Price of Everything” are scheduled to be shown today at the Jerusalem Film Festival.

2018: “Classical Bridge, an international musical festival, academy and conference designed to build bridges through music” featuring “Israeli musicians Pinchas Zuckerman and Alexander Fiterstein” is scheduled to open today.

2018: Lior Milliger, the Israeli Saxphonist is scheduled to bring his Lior Milliger Trio to New York for their first ever appearance at The Shrine.

2018: “The Israeli Jazz Spotlight festival, curated by Nadav Remez” and “featuring some of the best NYC based Israeli Jazz acts” at the Cornelia Street is scheduled to come to an end this evening.

2018(23rd of Av, 5778): Parashat Ekev; for more see





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