309 B.C.E.: Traditional date for the start of the Seleucid Dynasty. The Seleucid dynasty was one of the dynasties founded after the death of Alexander the Great. Its territory included Syria and Babylonia. In 198 B.C.E. the Seleucids took control of Palestine from the Egyptian based Ptolemy dynasty. This change in dynastic role would lead to the uprising thirty years later that we celebrate as part of the Chanukah Story.
33: According to some scholars, the actual date when a Jewish carpenter was crucified by the Romans for inciting rebellion.
1287: Honorius IV, the Pope who played a key role in the expulsion of the Jews from England passed away. “In November 1286 Pope Honorius wrote to the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, reaffirming the decision of the Lateran Councils. He enlarged on the evils of relations between Christians and Jews and warned of the pernicious consequences of the study of the Jews' Talmud. The King joined in the dialogue and condemnation by reviving the crimes of ritual murder. Jewish writers use the word "allegation" with regard to ritual murder with boring regularity.”
1473: Sixty-three year Italian noble man Alessandro Sforza, the patron of “Jewish Italian dancer and dancing master Guglielmo Ebreo da Pesaro” who converted to Roman Catholicism under his influence passed away today.
1544: Charles V, Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire confirmed the privileges of Austrian Jews. The Emperor was anti-Jewish and a persecutor of the Marranos. But he was convinced by Josel of Rosheim to condemn the accusations of ritual murder. The fate of Jews under Charles appeared to have been a matter of geography. In 1541 he expelled the Jews from Naples and Flanders he instituted the Inquisition in Portugal in 1543. But in his Germanic holdings, Charles found the Jews to be useful and confirmed their rights in Augsburg, Speyer and Regensburg as well as Austria. As we will see when we study the Reformation and the Counter-Reformation, Charles treatment of the Jews must be viewed in terms of the clash between the Catholics and the Protestants and not just in terms of Jews versus Christians.
1546(21st of Nisan, 5306): “Rabbi Jacob Berab, leader of a movement to restore the ancient rite of semichah died today at the age of seventy-two.” (As reported by Abraham Bloch)
1637(9th of Nisan): Rabbi Joseph ben Phinnehas Haan of Cracow author of Yosef Ometz passed away today.
1637(9th of Nisan): Rabbi Yosef Hahn, author of “Yosef Ometz”, passed away.
1673(17th of Nisan): Rabbi Reuben Hoeshke Katz of Prague passed away
1681(15th of Nisan): Rabbi Abraham Kalmansk of Lemberg, author of “Eshel Avraham” passed away
1714: Italian rabbi David ben Solomon Altaras the author of a Hebrew grammar and editor of daily prayer book passed away today in Venice.
1722: In New York City, Abraham Pinto and his wife gave birth to Rachel Pinto “one of the chief benefactors of Polonies Talmud Torah at Congregation Shearith Israel.”
1751: Twenty-seven year old Hannah Levy, the daughter of Moses Raphael Levy and Grace Mears passed away today.
1764(1st of Nisan, 5524): Rosh Chodesh Nisan
1764: Meyer Hart, one of the founders of Easton, PA took the oath of allegiance to the colonial government today.
1774(22nd of Nisan, 5534) Eighth Day of Pesach is celebrated for the last time in peace in the thirteen colonies because a year from now the British and the Americans would have clashed at Lexington and Concord on the Fifth Day of Pesach, marking the start of the Revolutionary War.
1777: Ester Alvares and Bordeaux, France native Daniel Nones gave birth to Sipora Nones.
1778: In Easton, PA, Reyna Levy and Isaac Moses gave birth to Rebecca Moses.
1779(17th of Nisan, 5539): Shabbat Shel Pesach; 2nd day of Omer.
1780: Birthdate of Holland native David Cromelien, who had six children with his first wife, Henriette Nathan and six children with his second wife with Adeline Cromelien.
1787: In Portsmouth, UK, Bohemia native Solomon Lyon and Rachel Hart gave birth to Isaac Leo Lyon today.
1787: Birthdate of Baden, Germany, native Sara Baer, the wife of Moses Lemle Heinsheimer and mother of Karoline, Regina and Julius Heinsheimer.
1790(19th of Nisan, 5550): Ephraim Moses Kuh, the nephew of Veitel Ephraim, Frederick the Great’s jeweler, whose poetry “vividly expresses his patriotism and his reverence for Frederick the Great; but also expresses his resentment at the bad treatment of Jews in Germany and scorn at his own and others' failures and weaknesses” passed away today in his hometown of Breslau.
1804: In Philadelphia, PA, Miriam Marks and Bordeaux, France native Benjamin Abraham Nones gave birth to Henry Benjamin Nones, the husband of Anna M. Nones, with whom he had nine children.
1818: In Silesia, Schiee Jaffé and his wife gave birth to Samuel Jaffé
1822: In Surrey, Deborah and Solomon Bennett gave birth to Gabriel Bennett.
1823: Birthdate of Galicia native Solomon Rubin, the rabbi whose attraction for the Haskalah movement led him to become a school principle and tutor as well as “a prolific author ‘ who produced more than twenty-five works including “a Hebrew translation of Spinoza’s ‘Ethics’” which is considered to be his “most important contribution to Neo-Hebrew literature.”
1825(15th of Nisan, 5585): Pesach is observed for the first time during the Presidency of John Q. Adams.
1830(10th of Nisan, 5590): Parashat Tzav; Shabbat HaGadol is celebrated for the last time before Mexico acting out of fear of annexation forces in the United States, banned “any additional American colonist from settling in Mexican territory which included parts of the whole of the states of California, Texas, Arizona Colorado, Nevada, Utah and New Mexico.
1833(14th of Nisan, 5593): Ta’anit Bechorot is observed for the first time while Martin Van Buren was Vice President.
1834: Nathan Baeck, a Rabbi in Kromau, Moravia and his wife gave birth to Rabbi Samuel Baeck the father of Leo Baeck.
1841: Birthdate of German native Wolf Landau, who served as the Rabbi at several U.S. congregations before finally settling in Bay City, MI, where he led Anshe Chesed, a Reform congregation founded in September of 1879 that met on Adams Street and offered Sunday School classes as well as regular Saturday morning services.
1844(14th of Nisan, 5604): Ta’anit Bechorot; Erev Pesach
1844: A newspaper report states that a census was conducted at Constantinople and there were 900,000 people living in the city including 100,000 Jews.
1847(17th of Nisan, 5607): Shabbat Shel Pesach; Third Day of Pesach
1847(17th of Nisan, 5607): Sixty-four year old Tobias Asser died in his native Amsterdam today.
1850: In Durbach, Germany, “Herman (Hirschel) Bodenheimer,” a baker and Elka Hirschfelder gave birth to Pauline Bodenheimer who would pass away before her second birthday.
1857: Löw Schwab, the rabbi at Budapest passed away today and would ultimately be replaced by Dr. W. Alois Meisel.
1862: Fifty-eight year old Annie Schlesinger, the wife of Michael Samuel Schlesinger with she had had seven children, including one set of twins was buried today at the “Balls Pond Road Jewish Cemetery.
1863(14th of Nisan, 5623): Fast of the First Born and Erev Pesach
1865: In Philadelphia, PA, “Laemmlein Buttenweiser and Leah Buttenweiser” gave birth to CCNY grad and NYU trained attorney Joseph L. Buttenweiser, the President of the Federation for Support of Jewish Philanthropic Society, the President of the Hebrew Technical Institute and a member of both Temple Israel and the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue who with his wife Caroline raised five children.
1865: Eighty-two year old Lydia Lyons, the wife of Sampson Samuel and the mother of Fanny, Lewis and Saul Samuel was buried today at the “West Ham Jewish Cemetery.”
1866(18th of Nisan, 5626): Fourth Day of Pesach
1870: Fifty-one year old Philipp Jaffé, “one of the most important German medievalists of the 19th century” who “was appointed assistant professor of history at Humboldt University of Berlin” in 1862 and who converted to Christianity in 1868 passed away today.
1870: “Reformed Judaism: Advanced ideas in the Ancient Religion--Doctrines and Tenets of the Reformers--The New Temples in Brooklyn” published today reports on the growth of the Reform movement. It describes the activities of New York’s well-established Temple Emanuel including its purchase of the cemetery at Cypress Hill as well as the birth of Temple Israel, Brooklyn’s first Reform congregation. The Temple is led by Raphael Lewin who had served as Rabbi for the Reform Temple in Savannah, Georgia. The article also discusses the doctrines of Reform Judaism based on Lewin’s book, “What is Judaism; Or a Few Words to the Jews.
1871: The New York Times reported that “the Jewish people of Newark are preparing for the celebration of the Feast of Passover, which begins on the 6th of April and last eight days It is calculated that during the feast more than 15,000 pounds of unleavened bread will be consumed.”
1873(6th of Nisan, 5633): Lewin Aron (`Libesch') Pinner passed away today.
1873: In London, Blema Blumenthal and Prussian native Salomon Albu gave birth to Henry Martin Albu.
1875: Two days after she had passed away, 53 year old Elia Esther Hart, the wife of Frederic Baruch Barnett and the mother of Joel Barnett who had passed away in infancy, was buried today at the “Brompton (Fulham Road) Jewish Cemetery.”
1878: Irish-American playwright James A. Herne whose first successful play, “Hearts of Oaks” was written with and produced by David Belasco married Katherine Corcoran today.
1880(22nd of Nisan, 5640: 8th day of Pesach
1880: Birthdate of Austrian philosopher and author Otto Weininger
1882(14th of Nisan, 5642): The New York Times reported that “the Jewish festival of ‘Pesach,’ or the Passover, commences at sundown this evening and will continue for eight days…The festival was instituted to commemorate the miraculous deliverance of the Children of Israel from the bondage to which they had been subjected in Egypt.”
1884(8th of Nisan, 5644): Less than a month before his 72nd birthday Ignaz Karunda, the son and grandson of Czech second-hand book dealers who became a successful writer and Austrian parliamentarian passed away today in Vienna.
1884: Birthdate of Donaldsonville, LA native and Tulane undergrad Monte Lemann, the Harvard trained lawyer, the Tulane University Law School professor who in 1931 was the only member of President Hoover’s Wickersham Commission to refuse to sign the report recommending “further and stricter efforts to enforce prohibition” and who with his wife Mildred raised two sons Thomas and Stephen Lemann.
1884: German painter Gustave Karl Ludwig Richter whose works included a portrait of his wife Cornelie Meyerbeer, daughter of composer Giacomo Meyerbeer and their son passed away.
1886: Today, in Philadelphia, one week before his 30th birthday Lee Levy, the New York City born son of Meyer and Caroline Levy, who was a wholesale liquor distributor, married Zetta Sproesser with whom he had three children – Irene, Beebe and Milton.
1888(22nd of Nisan, 5648): Eighth Day of Pesach is observed on the day when Emma Elizabeth Smith was murdered in what would be the first killing by the legendary “Jack the Ripper
1890: It was reported today that “Count Dleianoff, Minister of Public Instruction, has refused to receive the petition recently prepared by” university students “asking for…the unrestricted admission of Jews.”
1890(13th of Nisan): Aron Arnaud, chief rabbi of Strasbourg, Alsace, author of “Prieres d’un Coeur Israelite passed away”
1890: In Bavaria Karoline and Leopold (Lehmann) Schloss gave birth to Isidor Schloss
1890(13th of Nisan, 5650): Eighty-thee year Arnaud Aron, the Grand Rabbi of Strasbourg, passed away today. (According to some sources he was born in March and not May which means he would have been 82. I have not been able to resolve the dispute)
1890: Almost two years after its founding the Leopold Morse Home for Infirm Hebrews and Orphanage was dedicated today in Mattapan, Massachusettes.
1890(13th of Nisan, 5650): On the day before Jews are scheduled sit down to their Seders on the first night of Passover, hundreds of people received free meat today thanks to the generosity of Mrs. Paulina Rosendorff. While most of the recipients were poor Polish Jews, several poor gentiles also lined up to get the free meat. Mrs. Rosendorff said she did not care because poverty knows no religious boundaries.
1892: Birthdate of Frantisek Klein who was transported from Prague in 1942 to Ujazdow where he was murdered.
1892: It was reported today that while Jewish refugees have been prevented from crossing the border between Russia and German, 5,000 Russian Christians have been allowed to cross into Germany in the last two weeks.
1892: It was reported today that there “there is a growing belief that” Russian Jewish exiles are not “desirable as immigrants” to United States because “many of the immigrants have been shown to accept a permanent state of dependence and pauperism as a consequence of the immediate relief and help that were…extended to them.” (Editor’s Note – For those following the immigration debate in the United States, these comments have an eerily familiar ring; the only change is in the name of the immigrant group)
1892: It was reported today that “the opinion of Baron Hirsch that the proportion of the Hebrew population of the United States was already as great as was desirable will be shared by most thoughtful Americans, Hebrews or otherwise. In truth the only solution of the problem raised by the persecution of the Russian Jews is that of Baron Hirsch of a Hebrew colony which might ultimately become a Hebrew state.
1893(17th of Nisan, 5653): Third Day of Pesach
1893: In Forest Hill, London, Lilian Blumberg and Ferdinand Steiner gave birth to Leslie Howard Steiner, who gained fame as actor Leslie Howard. Yes, the blue-eyed blond who played the quintessential Southern gentlemen Ashley Wilkes in Gone With the Wind was Jewish. Lelies Steinner was born in England, the son of a Hungarian Jewish father, Ferdinand Steiner, and Lilian Blumberg daughter of a barrister named Charles Blumberg. The middle class Blumbergs did not approve of the marriage. However, they mellowed after the birth of young Leslie who was an officer in the cavalry during World War I. After the war, Steiner, now Howard built a career on the stage and later in films. He changed his name to avoid ant-Semitism, a not uncommon need among theatrical people of the time. Howard's death in June of 1943 is still shrouded in mystery. German fighters shot down the civilian plane, which was carrying him from neutral Portugal back to England. According to some, Howard was a British spy and the target of the attack. The mystery may be solved until 2025 when papers concerning the matter will finally be declassified
1895: Percy Benedict Lewis, the son Regine and Frederick Hy Lewis was buried today at the “Balls Pond Road Jewish Cemetery.”
1895: In Albany, state Senator Wolf introduced a bill “empowering the Hebrew Benevolent Orphan Asylum Society of the City of New York to convey certain property transferred to the society by the city.”
1896: Among the institutions named to receive bequests from the late Charles S. Friedlander are Home for Aged and Infirm Hebrews, $1,600; Society of Shevet Juda, $600; Hospital of Beth Israel, $600; Mount Sinai Hospital, $600; Hebrew Technical Institute, $600; Ladies Deborah Nursery Sanitarium for Hebrew Children, $600; Montefiore Home for Chronic Invalids, $600 and the Hebrew Benevolent and Orphan Asylum, $600.
1896: In describing the virtues of Rabbi Aaron Wise who was buried yesterday, Rabbi Gustav Gottheil said “The spirit of his words cannot die. The influence of the teacher has no limits as to time or space.”
1897(1st of Nisan, 5657): Parashat Tazria; Rosh Chodesh Nisan; Shabbat HaChodesh
1897: It was said today that Jewish philanthropist and Republican politician Edward Lauterbach “would have been pleased if Colonel George Bliss had been selected by the Governor” to serve as a member of the State Board of Charities.
1897: Rabbi Rudolph Grossman of Temple Beth-El delivered an address on ‘The Talmud’ “at a meeting of the Alumni Association of the Hebrew Technical Institute.”
1898: Birthdate of George Jessel, the self- proclaimed toastmaster general. Jessel gained early fame as the star in the Broadway production of the Jazz Singer. The movie version was the first talking motion picture but it starred Al Jolson. As he aged and survived his contemporaries, Jessel became famous for his eulogies. During the Viet Nam War, he "wrapped himself in the flag" going so far as to equate the New York Times with Pravda and provoking the normally mild-mannered Ed Neuman to literally pull the plug on an interview on a live broadcast. Jessel died in 1981.
1898: Birthdate of Harry Ferman, the native of Ukraine who came to Canada in 1912 where he worked as a farmer and retail trader before joining the Jewish Legion in 1918.
1898: The New York Times published a lengthy, laudatory article about Rabbi Isaac Meyer Wise on the 90th anniversary of his birth.
1899: It was reported today that Jesse Lewisohn had presented a check for one thousand dollars to the Hebrew Sheltering Guardian Society Asylum in memory of his late brother Samuel.
1899: “Judaism and Christianity” published today contain the views of Dr. John Hall on the relationship of these two faiths including that “it would be almost impossible for us to understand” the Epistle to the Hebrews” unless we had the books of Leviticus to refer to.”
1899: “The third of the series of model lessons conducted by Isaac C. Noot, Principal of the Hebrew Schools of New York will be held this afternoon in the vestry of Temple Beth-El.”
1900: Birthdate of Shelomo Dov Goitein, “a German-Jewish ethnographer, historian and Arabist known for his research on Jewish life in the Islamic Middle Ages.
1901(14th of Nisan, 5661): Ta’anit Bechorot; Erev Pesach
1903(6th of Nisan, 5663): Seventy-five year old Moses Ha-Kohen Reicherson, the Polish born Hebrew grammarian and teacher who moved to New York in 1890 passed away today leaving behind a number of unpublished works including commentaries on the Pentateuch, on the books of Samuel, Kings, Isaiah, Ezekiel, the Twelve Prophets, Psalms, Job, and Proverbs; and a prayer-book, "Tefillah le-Mosheh."
1904(18th of Nisan, 5664): Fourth Day of Pesach
1904: A thirteen-year-old Jewish girl and her mother arrived at the White House with a supply of Matzoth. While her mother waited in anteroom, the young girl went into the President’s office and presented the unleavened bread to a thankful Theodore Roosevelt. The President thanked the girl for the gift and complimented her on her tact and courtesy.
1905(27th of Adar II, 5665): Seventy-four year old Levi Spiegelberg, the native of Prussia and husband of Bertha Spiegelberg passed away today in New York City.
1906: Today, in the House of Lords, “Lord Northbourne asked the Government if would lay on the table any consular or other reports concerning the anti-Jewish outrages in Russia” because “he said that the publication of such reports might indirectly have some effect inducing the Russian Government to do its best to remedy conditions that outraged the civilization of the 20th century.
1906: Today, in the House of Lords, Lord Fitzmaurice, speaking on behalf of the Foreign Office said the Government could not grant Lord Northbourne’s request to make reports of anti-Semitic activities in Russia public “without committing a grave impropriety” and besides which “Great Britain could not interfere in the internal affairs of Russia.
1906: At Algeciras, at the Conference on Moroccan Reforms, unanimous support was obtained for the resolution that U.S. Ambassador White had introduced “on behalf of the Jews in Morocco.”
1907: Today,,Alois Grossman, the chairman of the Committee on Synagogue Music of the Central Conference of American Rabbis addressed a letter to the individual members of the committee – Rudoph Grossman, I.L. Leucht, I.S. Moses, J.L. Magnes, William Loewenberg, A.M. Radin and Nathan Stern – on the issue of the role of traditional music in Reform services which elicited responses all of which were favorable to “the employment of more traditional music in the reform service” with one respondent going so far as to say “I hate church music in the synagogue” while another said that “I am heartily in favor of traditional music…”
1907: Birthdate of Isaac Deutscher, the native of Galicia who left Poland in 1939 to work as newspaper in London and who wrote biographies of Trotsky and Stalin.
1909(12th of Nisan, 5669): Parashat Tzav; Shabbat HaGadol
1909: “History of the Jews” published today described a circular letter that has been by Rabbi Frederick de Sola to Rabbis and Jewish scholars that explains the reason for creating “The History of the in Monographs,” a multi-volume work that will serve “as a literary supplement to the Jewish Encyclopedia” and which will be overseen by an editorial committee consisting of himself, as chairman, and Dr. David Phillipson and Dr. Isidore Singer.
1910: The Ninth Quinquennial Convention of the Independent Order of B’nai B’rith took place at Washington, D.C.
1911: After having been introduced by Isidore Blum, as the “honorary president of the Harvard Menorah Society,’ Jacob H. Schiff delivered a speech to about “200 Jewish students from Columbia University” at tonight’s meeting of the Columbia Menorah Society in which he “declared that the first duty of Jews is to work for the weal of the community in which they live, and that, despite insistence in some quarters that the Jews are more than a people and still a nation, he could not emphasize too strongly the fact that those who have come here belong to the American Nation, and never will politely seek or hope for a future in another.”
1912: Birthdate of Willie Rubenstein, who in 1934 led the undefeated NYU Violets to victory over the undefeated CCNY Lavenders.
1913: Two days after he had passed away, Marcus Israel Landau who had had five children with his first wife Hannah and thirteen children including Annie Edith Landau, the principal of the Evelina D. Rothschild School in Jerusalem with his second wife of 40 years, Chaja Kohn and the inventor of the Landau Miner’s Safety Lamp was buried today at the “Plashet Jewish Cemetery” in London.
1914: Henry Berlin, Chairman of the Arrangements Committee for the Passover celebrations to be held in this city under the auspices of the Jewish Soldiers and Sailors Passover Committee, reported today that with Capt. Lewis Landes of the committee he had called on Commander Moses of the United States battleship Texas and Commander Jackson of the United States battleship North Dakota. They extended invitations to attend the Passover dinner at Tuexedo Hall on April following the regular Passover services. The commanders of the two battleships promised to lend their aid in making the celebrations a success.
1915(19th of Nisan, 5675): Shabbat Shel Pesach; Fifth Day of Passover
1915(19th of Nisan, 5675): Sixty-two year old I.L. Peretz the failed whiskey distiller who became a leading poet, playwright and author passed away today in Warsaw.
1915: Birthdate of Paul Claude Marie Touvier the French collaborator whose crimes included murdering seven Jewish hostages near Lyon.
1916: The bazaar and fair sponsored by the People’s Relief Committee for the Jews suffering in the war zone which is being held at the Grand Central Palace is scheduled to come to an end today.
1916: Birthdate of Ralph Glasser the Scottish psychologist, economist, advisor to developing countries and author of an autobiographical trilogy
1917: Louis Marshall was reported to have said that the cable message from Baron Gunzburg confirmed that all of the restrictions that have been placed on the Jews “are to be repealed with the result that full, equal rights will be guaranteed to the Jews of Russia.”
1918(21st of Nisan, 5678): Seventh Day of Pesach; Final Day of the holiday for Reform Jews
1918: “In view of the Government’s suspension of wheatless regulations in is relation to the consumption of matzoths during the Passover season, Rabbi Isaac Landman of Temple Israel of Far Rockaway suggested that the Jews” of the United States “make up for the amount of wheat which they consumed in their matzoth during the festival season by imposing a ‘wheatless week’ upon themselves.”
1919: In Cincinnati, at the Hebrew Union College Rabbi Julian Morgenstern delivered an address on “Were Isaac M. Wise Alive Today” at the afternoon session of the Central Conference of American Rabbis in which he made “a plea for the maintenance of American Judaism, devoid of all foreign elements” and that “for the Jews, the goal should the inculcation of the American element thoroughly into the Jew’s religion,” making “American ethics and Jewish ideals inseparable” while understanding that “no Palestinian Judaism will answer this purpose.”
1920(15th of Nisan, 5680): First Pesach of “the roaring twenties” and the last Pesach of the presidency of Woodrow Wilson
1920: At Temple Israel of Harlem, Rabbi Maurice delivered a sermon on “Liberty” in which he “said that each Passover Jews should be reminded not only their ancestors escaped bondage, but that those of today should be inspired to reach yet higher stages of liberty.”
1920: At Congregation B’nai Jeshurun, Rabbi Israel Goldstein delivered a sermon on “Freedom Then What?”
1920: At the Institutional Synagogue, Rabbi Herbert S. Goldstein delivered a sermon on “The Need of a Religious Revival” in which that “our only hope for the future to bring back our young people to the faith of our fathers rests in the creation of institutional synagogues.
1921: Birthdate of David Arguete, the native of Aydin, Turkey who gained fame as Turkish “composer, lyricist and guitarist” Dario Moreno who was buried in Holon, Israel when he died suddenly in December, 1968.
1922: Joseph Stalin became the first General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Stalin’s anti-Semitism would prove to be stronger than his sense of brotherhood for his fellow Socialist brethren. From his attacks on Trotsky to the Doctors’ Plot that came at the end of his life, Stalin displayed an attitude towards the Jewish people that would have made the Czars proud.
1923: In Cincinnati, OH, William Jacob Mack, Sr. the son of Lydia and Millard Mack and Henriette Segal gave birth to William Jacob Mack, Jr.
1924: Birthdate of Marlon Brando. See below for Louis Kemp’s account of attending a Seder with the great American method actor.
1925: In Nuremberg, a member of a minor German political group, Julius Streicher, gave a speech calling for the annihilation of the Jews. Eight years leader he would join his mentor Adolf Hitler in making this seeming empty threat a reality.
1926: Rufus Daniel Isaacs, 1st Marquess of Reading, completed his service as the Viceroy and Governor-General of India.
1927: At the Free Synagogue meeting today in Carnegie Hall, Dr. Stephen S. Wise delivered a sermon on “The Jew In American Colleges in which he declared that “few institutions in existence today are more hostile toward the spirit of true American democracy than Greek letter fraternities and sororities” and that “no one thing has been so damaging to the morale of the young Jews as the mere raising of the quota system question at Harvard.”
1927: “Plans for a conference of a representatives of the two million Orthodox Jews in the United States for form an organization to prevent reform Jewry from deciding Jewish religious matters…were discussed” today “by representatives of more than 200 0rthodox Congregations of Greater New York at the Central Jewish Institute.”
1927: The new home for Temple of Israel of Washington Heights, a neo-Georgian synagogue at 560-66 West 185th Street, designed by Sommerfeld & Steckler that cost $400,000 was dedicated today.
1927: “The Carousel of Death” a silent drama produced by Lothar Stark was released today in Germany.
1928: “Halt Deportation Of Jews” published today described the promise that the Hebrew Sheltering and Immigration Aid Society “had obtained from the immigration officials that the 150 Jews now on Ellis Island will be permitted to remain until the” Passover “holiday season ends.
1929: In New York City, “Daniel Lefkowitz and Estelle (Cohn) Lefkowitz, a beautician” gave birth to Maxwell Lefkowitz who gained fame as Lee Leonard, one of those responsible for the debut of ESPN
1930: According to Census records, on this date Joseph Gelman was an architect living and working in Hartford, CT.
1932: Birthdate of Chicago native and noted American Architect Norman Jaffe.
1930: Birthdate of Max Frankel the native of Gera, Germany who came to the United States in 1940 and became “one of America’s preeminent journalists. He worked for The New York Times for fifty years, rising from college correspondent to reporter, Washington bureau chief, editorial page editor, and ultimately executive editor 1986—1994. He won the Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of President Nixon’s trip to China in 1972 and is the author of a nationally bestselling memoir, “The Times of My Life and My Life with the Times.” He lives in New York City.
1933: In the wake of the Reichstag Fire, Time published “Germany: Hitler Enabled.”
Before Berlin's Kroll Opera House swarmed a crowd of young Nazis last week. "Give us the Enabling Act!" they chanted, "give us the Enabling Act or there will be another fire!" The Reichstag was meeting in the Opera House because the central hall of the Reichstag building had been gutted by incendiary fire, a fire that despite popular murmurings the Nazis have persistently blamed on Communists. Because of the fire every Communist deputy was in jail. So the young Nazis' cry was easily answered : The Reichstag passed the Enabling Act 441-94. Adolf Hitler became Dictator of Germany for four years to come. Socialists did not let the bill go through without one word of protest. Cried Deputy Otto Wels: "Take our liberty, take our lives, but leave us our honor! If you really want social reconstruction you would need no such law as this." In full Nazi uniform Chancellor Hitler popped from his seat, his little mustache twitching with excitement. "You're too late!" he roared. "We don't need you any longer in molding the fate of the nation!" Not a few U. S. editors, rapidly scanning the Enabling Act for early editions, headlined their stories END OF THE REPUBLIC. Well they might, for the Enabling Act contained the following provisions
1) Emergency decrees no longer need be signed by President von Hindenburg. Chancellor Hitler will proclaim them on the authority of his own Cabinet.
2) Emergency laws need the approval of neither the Reichstag nor the Reichsrat (Federal Council of States). The right of popular referendum on them, expressed in the Weimar Constitution, is specifically set aside.
3) Treaties with foreign powers no longer need Reichstag or Reichsrat approval.
4) The Cabinet can decree the annual budget and borrow money on its own authority.
5) Any law proclaimed by the Chancellor may deviate from the Constitution, becomes effective 24 hours after its publication in the Federal Gazette.
Since the rights of free speech, public assembly and inviolability of the home have long been suppressed, here was more power in the Chancellery than even Bismarck dreamed of, but careful investigation showed that canny old Paul von Hindenburg still held two aces up his detachable cuffs: The President still has power to dismiss any or all members of the Cabinet including Handsome Adolf himself. He still remains Commander-in-Chief of the Reichswehr, with sole power to proclaim martial law. The Reichswehr is not yet a Nazi organization. If told to turn Adolf Hitler out of office it could theoretically do so. Observers agreed that these two cards had been shoved up the President's sleeve by Vice Chancellor von Papen. At the week's end lean-jawed Lieut.-Colonel von Papen was fighting hard for yet another check on the Nazis: the vital post of Prussian Premier. He was holding his own at the week's end. Chancellor Hitler let it be known that the Premiership would not be definitely awarded for some time yet; possibly until after May 1. Before the vote on the Enabling Act, Chancellor Hitler read a declaration of policy to the Reichstag that was mild as buttermilk compared with his former utterances. There was the old insistence on "rooting out Communism to the last vestige" but on the other hand "the Government regards the question of monarchistic restoration as indiscussible at present." Germany was pledged to refrain from arming if other nations disarmed radically. Hitler welcomed the Mussolini-MacDonald peace projects. To the general surprise he announced that Germany "looks forward to friendly relations with Soviet Russia." Despite world protests over anti-Semitic outrages in Germany and boycott murmurings that offer grave threats to German commerce and industry (see below), German business seemed to approve the Nazi dictatorship last week. In Berlin tycoons of the Reichs Federation of Industry signed a manifesto promising the Government their fullest support. Led by chemical and brewing stocks, the Berlin Bourse continued a boom that had been three weeks under way. carrying some stocks 300% to 400%, above their crisis lows.
1933: Time magazine published “Prayers & Atrocities” which includes a description of the British reaction to the rise to power of the Nazis in Germany
1934: In the Bronx, Benjamin and Esther Hanft gave birth to actress Helen Hanft, "the Ethel Merman of off-off Broadway"
1935: At the Maccabiah in Tel Aviv, American Syd Koff finished first in the 60 meter dash and second in the broad jump. New York prize fighter Solly Hornstein won his first round test while A. Horowitz of South Africa won the 10,000 meter race.
1936: “Support to the Greater New York campaign of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee was pledged by representatives of 200 Jewish women’s organizations have a membership of 100,000 in the five boroughs” of New York City “and Westchester at a breakfast meeting” today “at the home of Mrs. Roger W. Straus” where attendees heard from several speakers including Mrs. Milton Wyle, Mrs. David Goldfarb and Carl J. Austrian..
1936: After almost a year of being on the air, the Blue Network and NBC broadcast the last of Al Pearce’s radio shows sponsored by Pepsodent Toothpaste.
1936: Dr. Hjalmar Schact, the German Minister of Economics advanced the argument that “whether Germany devalues” its currency “or not, she would still have to maintain rigid control of capital movements because of the ’12,000,000,000 to 20,000,000,000 marks of Jewish capital that would otherwise strive to leave the country.”
1937: According to a report received in New York today by Dr. Stephen S. Wise from the Jewish Agency for Palestine, “a total of 34,500 German Jews settled in Palestine during the four year period since” Hitler came to power.
1937(22nd of Nisan): Author and folklorist Judah Loeb Cahan passed away.
1938: Birthdate of Brooklyn native Joel Adelberg who as Jeff Barry wrote such “immortal” hits as "Do Wah Diddy Diddy", "Da Doo Ron Ron", "Then He Kissed Me", "Be My Baby", "Chapel of Love", "River Deep - Mountain High", "Leader of the Pack" and "Sugar, Sugar"
1939(14th of Nisan 5699): Fast of the First Born; erev Pesach
1939: Dr. Chaim Weizmann and David Ben Gurion were greeted by cheering crowds when they returned to Tel Aviv from the Palestine Conference that had been held in London. Of the negotiations, Weizmann told the crowd, “We did not return victors, but neither were we vanquished.”
1939: In Brooklyn, Abraham and Mildred Gralnick gave birth to Jeffrey Charles Gralnick “a blunt, gravel-voiced television news executive who got his start in the days of the 15-minute, black-and-white evening newscast and went on to play leading roles in the news divisions of three major broadcast networks.” (As reported by Dennis Heveisi)
1939: Rosie Goldschmidt Waldeck author of Prelude To The Past became a naturalized U.S. Citizen today.
1940: Birthdate of Tel Aviv native and Ophir Award winning cinematographer “Amnon Salomon” a “disciple of cinematographer David Gurfinkel”
1940: Ernst Heilmann, German jurist and political leader was murdered at Buchenwald.
1941: “Nazis Put New Curbs on Jewish Workers” published today described “a rule that Jewish laborers must not be paid for time spent in air-raid shelters” and another rule stating that “Jews are not entitled to compensation for damage suffered in air raids.”
1942: This day's deportations from Augsburg, Germany, emptied the town of Jews, ending a Jewish presence that was established in 1212. They were deported to the Belzec death camp.
1942(16th of Nisan, 5702): The Final Solution came to Tlumacz also called Tlumach on the second day of Pesach. Tlumach was a town of about seven or eight thousand people, about a third of whom were Jewish. It was one of those places that changed hands several times including being part of the Soviet Union and Hungary. The Germans took control in 1941 and immediately killed off the leading Jews of the area. On April 3, twelve hundred Jews are taken to Belzac Extermination Camp and the remaining three thousand were placed in a ghetto. Later in the war another two thousand Jews were sent to Belzac. The Jewish community was not reconfigured after the war and is now only a page in the book of Jewish memory. Sad as this event is, it would be sadder still if we did not note their fate and remember (Yizkor) them.
1943: Maria Różanski, Wiktoria Paduch and several others were sentenced to death today by the German Sondergericht special court for helping two Jewish women Elsa Szwarcman and Sala Rubinowicz escape from the Radom Ghetto
1943(27th of Adar II, 5703): Actor Conrad Veidt who played Major Strasser in Casablanca passed away at the age of 50.
1943: Birthdate of British director Jonathan Lynn, a nephew of Abba Eban.
1944: As an indication that “the backbone of Jewish extremist gangs” may have been broken, British authorities suddenly lifted the rigid curfew in Palestine today.
1944: Moshe Shertok reported to Jerusalem that his negotiations with Oliver Stanley, the British Colonial Secretary had succeeded in creating a breakthrough in the search for a safe haven for Romanian Jews fleeing the Nazis. Henceforth, for an all too brief period of time, “any Jews who reached Istanbul could continue on to Palestine irrespective of Palestine Certificates and quotas in effect because of the 1939 White Paper.
1944: An internal memo of this week from the United States Government War Refugee Board states that it did understand the "attitude" of the Turkish government. On one hand it was "professing a desire to cooperate with the refugee program," while on the other it would not let the United States nor other countries use its ships to transport refugees from Romania to Turkey without formal contracts in place.
1945(20th of Nisan 5705): On the 6th day of Pesach the Fourth Armored Division and the 355th Infantry Regiment of the 89th Infantry Division, part of General George Patton's famed Third U.S. Army, liberated the first death camp, Ohrdruf or North Stalag III, a sub camp of Buchenwald, located near Weimar.
1945: Würzburg, which had had a population that included 2,000 Jews in 1930 most of which was shipped to the death camps between November 1941 and June 1943, was occupied by the U.S. 12th Armored Division and U.S. 42nd Infantry Division in a series of frontal assaults masked by smokescreens
1946: In the United States, premiere of “Deadline At Dawn” directed Harold Cluman, with a script by Clifford Odets and music by Hanns Eislter.
1947: The HMT Ocean Vigour was damaged by a bomb planted by the Haganah’s Palyam forces while docked at the port of Famagusta. She was a British freighter which had been converted into a caged prison ship used to deport illegal Jewish immigrants who had attempted to enter the Mandate Palestine back to Europe and to prison camps in Cyprus. “The Ocean Vigour was one of 3 ships used by the British authorities in “Operation Oasis” to deport the refugees from the Exodus 1947, most of whom were Holocaust survivors, to Germany. The Haganah commander on the Ocean Vigour was Meier Schwarz. The ship carried 1,464 deportees to Port-de-Bouc near Marseilles and, when they refused to disembark there, on to Hamburg, Germany, where they were forced off by club-wielding British troops.”
1948: In another act of daring, a ship from Yugoslavia docked at Tel Aviv. Hidden in the ship’s cargo of potatoes and onions, were 500 rifles, 200 machine guns and a large quantity of ammunition. Jewish dock workers unloaded the vital supply of munitions and shipped them to the Haganah without being caught by the British.
1948: During the fighting that resulted from Arab attempts to abort the Partition Plan of the United Nations, a unit of Palmach fighters captured Al –Qastal, after Mordechai Gazit led a Haganah unit that killed the commander of the Army of the Holy War in their attempt to hold this strategic point.
1949: Israel and Jordan signed an armistice agreement. This agreement was part of the negotiations held on the island of Rhodes under the auspices of the U.N. and Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Dr. Ralph Bunche. The agreement left the Jordanians in control of the eastern part of Jerusalem and the West Bank. When people speak today of Arab East Jerusalem, they are speaking of a result caused by the Arab Armies forcibly removing the ancient Jewish community from that section of the city; a condition that was in violation of the U.N. resolutions but which were made a reality by this armistice agreement. The Jordanians never honored the agreements for free, unfettered access to the Hadassah Hospital and Hebrew University Campus on Mt. Scopus.
1950(16th of Nisan, 5710): Second Day of Pesach; 1st day of the Omer
1950(16th of Nisan, 5710): Kurt Julian Weill, German born composer and socialist passed away in New York City.
1952: The Jerusalem Post reported on satisfactory economic talks held in Great Britain where Israel sought, in addition to the Haifa Oil Refineries¹ deliveries agreement, more trade and credits, and genuinely modern military equipment.
1952: The Jerusalem Post reported that 5 members of the family of Yehoshua Arya, a Tel Aviv municipal employee, slept on the pavement outside the Jewish Agency building after they had been evicted from their one-room apartment in the Hatikvah quarter.
1952: The Jerusalem Post reported that owing to last-minute red tape, only 324 immigrants arrived aboard the S.S. Transylvania from Romania, instead of the expected 1,000. In Hamburg police arrested a neo-Nazi who mailed a letter-bomb to the head of the German reparations team at The Hague.
1953: “Desert Legion,” another Hollywood version of the French Foreign Legion with a screenplay by Irving Wallace and Lewis Metzler and featuring Leon Askin was released in Los Angeles today.
1954: Aristides de Sousa Mendes, the Portuguese diplomat who risked his life and career to help Jews escape from Hitler’s Europe, passed away
1955: The American Civil Liberties Union announces it will defend Jewish author Allen Ginsberg's book Howl against obscenity charges.
1958(13th of Nisan, 5718): Sixty one year old Theodor Kramer whom Thomas Mann called “one of the greatest poets of the young generation” but whose career in Austria was short-circuited by the Anschluss and an escape to the United Kingdom passed away today.
1958: U.S. premiere of “The Long Hot Summer” produced by Jerry Wald and starring Paul Newman.
1960: George Lincoln Rockwell, the leader of the newly formed American Nazi Party held his first public rally on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.
1961(17th of Nisan, 5721): Third Day of Pesach
1961(17th of Nisan, 5721): Forty six year old Maurice Howard “Babe” Patt, the Carnegie Tech line who played five seasons in the NFL and served in the U.S. Navy during WW II passed away today.
1961: “The Happiest Girl in the World” a musical with E.Y. Harburg opened today at the Martin Beck Theatre.
1967: The original version of “I’ve Got a Secret” a popular panel game show co-produced by Mark Goods and created by Allan Sherman was broadcast for the last time today.
1973(1st of Nisan, 5733): Aaron Rabinowitz, a pioneer in public and private house as well as real estate development passed away at the age of 93. The son of Jewish immigrants from Russia, Rabinowitz’s work in the field of public housing began in 1926 when he began serving on the New York State Board of Housing created by Governor Al Smith. He then worked closely with Lieutenant Governor (and later Governor) Herbert Lehman.
1975: Bobby Fischer refuses to play in a chess match against Anatoly Karpov, giving Karpov the title of World Champion by default.
1977(15th of Nisan, 5737): Pesach
1977: The Jerusalem Post reported that HIAS (the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society) urged Soviet immigrants to bring their relatives from the Soviet Union directly to the US in order to "reduce the growing phenomenon of dropouts in Vienna." Max Fisher, chairman of the Jewish Agency¹s Board of Governors, did not think that this would be at the expense of Jews who wished to come on Aliyah. He believed that if more Jews could be got out from Russia, more will come to Israel
1977: The Jerusalem Post reported that US experts hailed the new Israeli tank, the Chariot.
1978: CBS broadcast the final show for the third season of “One Day At A Time” starring Bonnie Franklin.
1979(6th of Nisan, 5739): Seventy-eight year leader of the Arkansas Jewish community Adele Bluthenthal Heiman passed away today.
1980: In one of those moments when you would think that “the theatre” could not exist without Jews Neil Simon’s “I Ought To Be In Pictures” starring Ron Liebman as “Herb” and Dinah Manoff as “Libby” which had first been produced by Emanuel Azenberg in Los Angeles with Tony Curtis as “Herb” opened tonight at the Eugene O’Neil Theatre. (Eugene O’Neil is the only non-Jew in this list)
1981(28th of Adar II, 5741): Seventy-seven year old Polish born American Yiddish theatre actor and union leader Herman Yablokoff passed away today at Mt. Sinai Hospital.
1981(28th of Adar II, 5741): Seventy-nine year old film critic Cecilia Ager, the wife the composer of “Happy Days Are Here Again,” Milton Ager passed away today.
1982(10th of Nisan, 5742): Parashat Tzav; Shabbat HaGadol
1982(10th of Nisan, 5742): Eighty-six year old Tillie Klausner, the Polish born daughter of Miriam and Aaron Wolf Bienenstock and wife of Josef Klausner passed away today in Denver, CO.
1984(1st of Nisan, 5744): Rosh Chodesh Nisan
1984: Milton Coleman, a reporter with the Washington Post who happens to Black, said that did not “have any comment to make on” Minister Lois Farrakhan vow to “make an example of him” because he disclosed the fact that Reverend Jesse Jackson “had referred to Jews as ‘Hymies’ and to New York as ‘Hymmietown.’”
1986: Birthdate of actress Amada Bynes.
1986(23rd of Adar II, 5746): Israeli mathematician Elisha Netanyahu passed away.
1987: Bob McAdoo, former National Basketball Association scoring champion, scored 15 of his 21 points in the second half today as Tracer Milan won the European Champions Cup by edging Maccabi Tel Aviv of Israel, 71-69, in the final.
1987: The New York Antiquarian Book Fair comes to a close. Among the items offered at the fair was The ''Twenty Four Books of the Holy Scriptures,'' the first edition in English of what was for generations the standard Jewish-American Bible, translated and annotated by Rabbi Isaac Leeser and published in Philadelphia in 1853 which was valued at $1,750.
1988(16th of Nisan, 5748) Second Day of Pesach; First day of the Omer
1988(16th of Nisan, 5748): Eighty-one year old OSU grad and cartoonist Milton Caniff, the Hillsboro, OH born son of John and Elizabeth Caniff and the husband of Esther Parsons Caniff who created “Terry and the Pirates” and “Steve Canyon” passed away today.
1990: Gilbert and Sullivan Yield To Gershwin and Ryskind
1991(20th of Nisan, 5751): Charles Henry Goren, the son of Russian-Jewish immigrants who became “a world champion American bridge player and bestselling author who contributed significantly to the development and popularization of the game” passed away.
1992: Richard Schifter completed his term as Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs.
1992(29th of Adar II, 5752): Eighty-four year old painter Aaron Bohrod passed away today.
1992: “The Player” a satirical film featuring appearances by Sydney Pollack, Peter Falk, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Gershon premiered in Cleveland, Ohio today.
1992: Jack Lang began serving as Education Minister of France for the first time.
1992: “Beethoven,” the first in a series of dog comedy films co-produced by Ivan Reitman, starring Charles Grodin and with music by Randy Edelman was released today in the United States.
1993(12th of Nisan, 5753): Parashat Tzav; Shabbat HaGadol
1993(12th of Nisan, 5753): Eighty-two year old philanthropist Ludwig Jesselson passed away today in Jerusalem. (As reported by Eric Pace)
1993(12th of Nisan, 5753): Pinky Lee kiddy host (Pinky Lee Show), died of a heart attack at 85. Born Pincus Leff, in 1916, Lee was a big star in the early days of television. His signature line was "Ha Ha Hee Hee." He was well known as a host of children's shows including the Pinky Lee Show. Lee ran into trouble with the Black List. One of his last programs was the Gumby Show in 1957. (Yes, there was Gumby before SNL.)
1994(22nd of Nisan, 5754): Seventy-five year old Maj. Gen. Aharon Remez, the first commander of the Israeli Air Force, passed away today at the age of 75. General Remez had also served as a Labor Party Member of Parliament, Transport Minister and Israeli Ambassador to Britain. He was buried with full military honors on Monday in Jerusalem's military cemetery. Born in Tel Aviv in British-ruled Palestine, General Remez joined the Haganah underground in 1936. The Jewish Agency, then the governing body of Jewish settlement in what later became Israel, sent him to New Jersey in 1939 to learn how to fly. He flew a Spitfire for Britain in combat against the Germans. In 1947 he helped establish Haganah’s flying service, the predecessor to the Israeli Air Force, and Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion appointed him commander shortly after Israel's statehood was declared in 1948. General Remez stepped down three years later in a dispute over attempts to incorporate the Israeli Air Force into the general command. The air force is under separate command today. He served as Ambassador to Britain in the late 1960's.
1996(14th of Nisan, 5756): Ta’anit Bechorot; Erev Pesach
1996: Today, with the Jewish celebration of Passover set to begin at sundown, one New York synagogue will push the religious use of a new technology a little further, placing on the Internet what it calls a "cyber seder," the liturgical text and images for a Passover meal. Beginning at 4 A.M. (to reach Jews at sundown in Australia) and repeating every hour for the next 36 hours, Temple Emanu-El will transmit a reading of the Haggadah. The text is recited and discussed at seders, the home rituals held on the first one or two nights of Passover, commemorating the exodus of the biblical Israelites from slavery in Egypt. The transmission will be available to people with personal computers with Internet links and, to hear the reading, audio capability.
1997: A revival of Lillian Hellman’s “The Little Foxes” which uses a verse from Chapter 2, Verse 15 of the Song of Solomon which reads, "Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes" as the inspiration for its title opens today at the Vivian Beaumont.
1997: “Dogtown” a drama co-starring Jon Favreau and filmed by cinematographer Kramer Morgenthau was released today at the Los Angeles International Film Festival.
1997(25th of Adar II, 5757): Seventy-five year old Los Angeles Judge Jerry Pacht “died of a cerebral hemorrhage today.”
1999(17th of Nisan, 5759): Shabbat Shel Peach; 2nd day of the Omer
1999(17th of Nisan, 5759): Sixty-eight year old Lionel Bart, the London born son of Galician Jewish refugees Yetta (née Darumstundler) and Morris Begleiter, a master tailor and creator of the hit musical “Oliver” passed away today.
2000: The New York Times featured a book of special interest to Jewish readers, Circumcision: A History of the World’s Most Controversial Surgery by David Gollaher.
2001: “President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt urged President Bush today to increase the United States' involvement in the Middle East, but Mr. Bush used their White House meeting to defend his policy of allowing the Israelis and Palestinians to take the lead in seeking peace.
2001: “The Pestilence That Left Not Just Death Behind It” published today provides a review of In the Wake of the Plague: The Black and Death and the World It Made by Canadian-American Jewish historian Norman F. Cantor.
2002(21st of Nisan, 5762): Seventh day of Pesach and 6th day of the Omer
2002: During Operation Defensive Shield, IDF troops secured Jenin but the fight for the terrorists’ stronghold still loomed ahead.
2002(21st of Nisan, 5762) IDF reservist Maj. Moshe Gerstner, 29, of Rishon Lezion was killed in Jenin during anti-terrorist action (Operation Defensive Shield).
2003: Release date for the Hebrew Language Israeli film “Bonjour Monsieur Shlomi.”
2004: At the Rainbow Room in NYC, Rabbi Mark S. Golub officiated at the wedding of Anna Chloe Hoffman, a daughter of Dale and Stephen Hoffman and David Russ Steinhardt, a son of Judy and Michael Steinhardt, founder of “Makor, a cultural center which is part of the 92nd Street Y.
2005: Official induction Pretoian born Warren Goldstein, as Chief Rabbi of South Africa making him the first native of South Africa and the youngest person to hold the post.
2005: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including “Omaha Blues: A Memory Loop” by Joseph Lelyveld, “Inside the List by Rachel Donadio” and “Return to Greatness: How America Lost Its Sense of Purpose and What It Needs to Do to Recover It” by Alan Wolfe as well as the following monograph about ''Runny Babbit,'' Shel Silverstein's silly tale of a rabbit with a penchant for inverting his consonants that just made its debut at No. 1 on the children's picture book best-seller list. Silverstein, the much loved poet and author of idiosyncratic and often bittersweet books like ''The Giving Tree,'' ''Where the Sidewalk Ends'' and other children's classics of the past four decades, worked on ''Runny Babbit'' on and off for 20 years, before his death in 1999. Silverstein was a constant reviser. ''He had mountains of poems and stories, in bits and pieces, and in different versions, written on stray pieces of paper,'' his friend and former editor, Joan Robins, told Publishers Weekly. Robins and Toni Markiet, the executive editor of HarperCollins Children's Books, both helped shepherd ''Runny Babbit'' into print. Written in jolly inverse verse, the book recounts the adventures of a kindhearted, rather hapless rabbit, from restaurant to bath to library (''A bience scook? A boetry pook? / Oh, no -- a bomic cook!''). HarperCollins has done a first printing of 500,000 copies, betting that deprived Silverstein fans will be eager to snap it up. A good bet: The Times Magazine reported after his death that Silverstein -- who in the course of his career was a playwright, a regular cartoonist for Playboy and a country-western songwriter -- left an estate worth $20 million, so he clearly knew a thing or two about what people want.
2006: Israeli Attorney General Menachem Mazuz announced that he was closing the Yona Metzger investigation and would not seek an indictment against him, citing a lack of sufficient evidence. He added, however, that in light of various "disturbing" information that came to light during the investigation, including contradictory statements given to the police that the Chief Rabbi should resign
2007(15th of Nissan, 5767): First Day of Pesach
2007: In column published today entitled “For Shtetl by the Sea, Only a Few Fading Signs Remain” Abby Goodnough provides a portrait of the changing face of “Jewish Miami Beach.”
The synagogue at 1415 Euclid Avenue had only a few members left when Daniel Davidson, a New Yorker seeking a standout South Beach retreat, bought it in 2003. “I thought the space magical,” he said of the spare, white 16,000-square-foot building — now back on the market for $9,950,000 — “irrespective of religion. And so the Orthodox synagogue, Kneseth Israel, became Temple House, where Mr. Davidson has not only lived but also allowed Budweiser to film a commercial, Senator Bill Nelson of Florida and Al Gore to hold a Democratic fund-raising event and Jennifer Lopez to stage a listening party for her latest album, belting out love songs near where the Torah ark used to be. Like so many buildings that served a thriving Jewish population here for decades — synagogues, delicatessens, kosher markets and hotels, even Yiddish theaters — Temple House’s history is all but imperceptible now. The community that earned Miami Beach nicknames like Little Jerusalem and Shtetl by the Sea is largely gone, and many of today’s residents know nothing of it. Miami Beach had roughly 60,000 people in Jewish households, 62 percent of the total population, in 1982, but only 16,500, or 19 percent of the population, in 2004, said Ira Sheskin, a demographer at the University of Miami who conducts surveys once a decade. The decline — due mostly to elderly Jews dying or getting priced out after the city’s Art Deco revival, but also to the migration of others to Broward and Palm Beach Counties as greater Miami became more Hispanic — has forced old-timers to scour for hints of their past. A few remain, like the Hebrew-inscribed doors of a deserted Orthodox shul being converted to condominiums and the old entryway to Wolfie’s, a beloved coffee shop demolished for a condo building that will keep the faded front as a relic. But Miami Beach’s last kosher resort hotel, the Saxony, closed in 2005 to make way for condominiums. Its oldest synagogue, Beth Jacob, also closed that year after membership dropped to 22, from 1,200 in the 1950s. Its domed building is now the Jewish Museum of Florida, housing memorabilia like mah-jongg boards and anti-Semitic real estate ads promising “always a view, never a Jew.” (Residents with “Hebrew or Syrian blood” generally could not rent or buy north of Fifth Street until the 1950s.) On Lincoln Road, the pedestrian thoroughfare at the heart of South Beach, Temple King Solomon has given way to Touch, a restaurant and lounge with occasional belly dancers and flame throwers. On Washington Avenue, the Cinema Theater, home to one of the longest-running Yiddish vaudeville shows in the world, is now Mansion, a club favored by Paris Hilton types. Farther north, in Sunny Isles Beach, Wolfie Cohen’s Rascal House — Miami’s version of Katz’s Deli in New York, famous for “mile-high” corned beef sandwiches — will soon be demolished and replaced with yet another condo tower. This is not to say all Yiddishkeit is lost here: Talmudic University, which opened in Miami Beach in 1974, remains on Alton Road, along with a Lubavitch center that runs a day school and a rabbinical college. A few miles north of blingy South Beach, beachfront resorts like the Fontainebleau and the Eden Roc still fill up at Passover, and an Orthodox Jewish community is flourishing around 41st Street. But in South Beach alone, the number of people in Jewish households dropped by 53 percent between 1994 and 2004, to 4,171 from 8,775. Charlotte Cooper, who came to Miami Beach from New York to perform Yiddish theater in the 1960s and stayed until she was priced out in 1999, said she could hardly stand to return these days.“It’s an entirely different story now,” said Mrs. Cooper, a Holocaust survivor who moved to a condominium in Pembroke Pines but still performs here now and then. “People from Hollywood, movie stars, come to stay in those hotels now. It has nothing to do with the Jewish people anymore.” At Temple Emanu-El in South Beach, Rabbi Kliel Rose is striving to attract young Jews while keeping older, second- and third-generation members. The cavernous stone synagogue drew 1,200 families in the 1980s; it claims about 260 now. Rabbi Rose’s tactics include regular outings to South Beach bars and clubs, lectures on Kabbalah and a recent Havdalah ceremony, marking the end of Sabbath at sundown Saturday, with cocktails at Temple House. Rabbi Rose has added drums, guitar and an element of mysticism to Shabbat services. Still, to ensure the requisite 10 people for morning minyans, or prayer sessions, Temple Emanu-El teams up with the Cuban Hebrew Congregation, one of the neighborhood’s only other surviving synagogues. “We are truly experimenting,” said Rabbi Rose, 36, who wears an earring and was recruited from Congregation B’Nai Jeshurun, a booming conservative synagogue on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. “We are trying to think outside the box.” When his congregants started shifting in their seats toward the end of Shabbat services one recent Friday night, Rabbi Rose asked them not to leave just yet, admonishing, “Lincoln Road can wait.” David Weintraub, who directed “Where Neon Goes to Die,” a film about the Jewish retirees who flocked to Miami Beach from the 1920s through the 1980s, said his research was frustrated by an astonishing lack of documentation. “This legacy went on for over 60 years, and yet there is almost no memory that it even happened,” Mr. Weintraub said. “At the Miami Beach archives, I went through their file drawers for two weeks. There were drawers and drawers of cheesecake on the beach but not one photograph of Yiddish culture.” Now, Mr. Weintraub is thinking of organizing “ghost tours” of Jewish Miami Beach. But he does not want a tourist clientele. “We would target the folks who already live in Miami in the hopes that if people get a better sense of who and what came before,” he said, “they might be more pro-active when city planners destroy another piece of Miami’s past.” Marcia Zerivitz, founding executive director of the Jewish Museum of Florida, said that while the decline of the Jewish population is an old story here, the rest of the country is surprisingly unaware. Filmmakers and writers still call her to say they want to document Jewish culture in Miami Beach, Ms. Zerivitz said. “I get calls like that all the time, especially from California and up east,” she said. “I say: ‘Sorry, you’re many, many years too late. There’s nothing left.’ ”
2008: Don Hewitt was honored with Washington State University's Edward R. Murrow Award for Lifetime Achievement in Broadcast Journalism.
2008: As part of the Israel at 60 Celebration the 92nd Street Y hosts Israeli “Culture: Past and Present: Examining Pre-1948 Israeli Culture: Art and Literature.” Professor Uri Cohen examines the formation of Israeli culture from its inception to the creation of the state.
2008: Israeli-European economic ties are growing as the parties seek to speedily integrate the strong and expanding Israeli economy into the huge European market, according to statement made by EU officials today.
2009: Richard Stoltzman presents “A Salute to Benny Goodman” at the Englert Theatre in Iowa City. Originally scheduled for Hancher Auditorium, the program was shifted to the smaller venue because of the Floods of 2008.
2009: At Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Vanderbilt University Professor Amy-Jill Levine delivers a lecture entitled “Hearing the Parables in their Jewish Contexts.”
2009: “Fast and Furious” featuring Gal Gadot as “Gisele Yashar” was released in North America today.
2010: Violinist Joseph Lin is scheduled to perform at the Sixth & I Synagogue in Washington, D.C.
2010(19th of Nisan, 5770): Fifth Day of Pesach; Shabbat Chol HaMoed
2010(19th of Nisan, 5770): Ninety-one year Stamford born and New Canaan, CT raised journalist Bernie Yudain, the long-time editor and columnist for the Greenwich (CT) Times passed away today.
2010: On Shabbat Chol Hamoed Pesach, Temple Judah holds its monthly traditional Saturday morning service complete with a Kosher for Passover Kiddush, a one of a kind event in Cedar Rapids, Iowa thanks to the culinary skills and creativity of Deb Levin.
2010: Nili Shamrat “was sentenced to 300 hours of community service and given a five-year suspended sentence for possession of stolen property” for his role in the 1983 burglary of the L.A. Mayer Institute for Islamic Art.
2011(27th of Adar II, 5771): Moshe V. Goldblum, rabbi of Pittsburgh’s Beth Shalom Congregation for 24 years, passed away today in Israel. “Goldblum was a 1949 graduate of the Jewish Theological Seminary and came to Pittsburgh from Jacksonville, Fla. He also served congregations in Columbus and Mansfield, Ohio, New York and Baltimore. He was a U.S. Army chaplain from 1945 to 1947.”
2011(27th of Adar II, 5771): Twenty three year old Yale hockey player Mandi Schwartz passed away today. (As reported by Thomas Kaplan)
2011: The Annual Used Book Sale is scheduled to begin at Gesher Jewish Day School in Fairfax, VA.
2011: The Center for Jewish History in conjunction with the Jewish Book Council, the Skirball Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies at New York University and the Columbia University Institute for Israel and Jewish Studies are scheduled to present a program entitled “The Jewish Book: Past, Present, Future” which deals with the questions of What makes a Jewish book?, Who are the People of the Book? How have Jewish books changed with changes in technology?
2011: “Jews and Baseball: An American Love Story” is scheduled to be shown at The Westchester Jewish Film Festival.
2011: Agudas Achim Synagogue is scheduled to host the Iowa City Jewish Community’s 3rd Annual Mitzvah Day - A Day of Community Service.
2011: The New York Times features books by Jewish writers and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including ‘All the Time in the World’ by E.L. Doctorow and ‘The Free World’, David Bezmozgis’s first novel, set in Rome in 1978, which “follows three generations of Soviet Jews as they wait for visas to North America.”
2011: President Shimon Peres is scheduled to leave for Washington, DC where he will meet with several US leaders including President Obama.
2011: The Ministry of Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs announced the names of people chosen to light beacons at this year's Independence Day ceremony. The ministry pointed out that each of the chosen beacon lighters represent the central theme of this year's ceremony, "Looking after one another – the year of mutual care," which was chosen by the cabinet. The 2011 Independence Day ceremony will take place on May 9, at Mount Herzl in Jerusalem. Among the torch lighters are Orit Dror, a member of Kibbutz Lavi who, together with her husband, donated her son's organs after he died of a terminal illness, and saved the life of a 13-year-old girl; Zehava Dankner (mother of businessman Nochi Dankner), a philanthropist who supported, among others, residents surrounding Gaza, and who is involved in matters of education, security and health; Barbra Goldstein, a representative of Hadassah, the women's Zionist organization of America, which is marking its 100th anniversary this year; Yovi Tsuma, a social activist who participates in a group of young Ethipian volunteers who help members of the immigrant community who have encountered difficulties in absorption; and Rabbi Shimon Rosenberg, a member of the Chabad movement, who lost his daughter and son in law in the November 2008 terrorist attack at the Chabad house in Mumbai.
2012: “The Kid With a Bike” and “The Mill and the Cross” are scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival
2012: A Concert of Russian and Jewish Music featuring Metropolitan Klezmer is scheduled to take place in New York City.
2013: “The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York said a lower court had erred in dismissing fraud-based claims by” Steven A. Cohen’s “former spouse” Patricia Cohen and revived the lawsuit” while also reviving “claims of racketeering and breach of fiduciary duty, while upholding the dismissal of an unjust enrichment claim.”
2012: The Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City, with the endorsement of the Greater Kansas City Interfaith Council, is scheduled to present a performance by the Yuval Ron Ensemble.
2013: “Numbered,” a film that explores the relationship some Auschwitz survivors have with their tattoos, is scheduled to be shown at the Museum of Jewish Heritage at Battery Place in New York City.
2013: Today “it was announced that Lorne Michaels will be taking over as the executive producer for The Tonight Show.”
2013(23rd of Nisan, 5773): Ninety-five year old, Dorothy Taubman, the developer of the Taubman Technique for rehabilitating musicians passed away today. (As reported by Vivian Schweitzer)
2013(23rd of Nisan, 5773): Eighty-six year old cartoonist Ed Fisher passed away today.
2013: Palestinian terrorists fired two rockets at the southern Israeli city of Sderot this morning. The intermittent rocket attacks began while President Obama was touring the region before Pesach.
2013: Today, A three-judge panel of the Tel Aviv District Court ordered Bank Hapoalim and three pension funds to pay around NIS 2.1 million to the estate of an elderly Holocaust survivor for liability in allowing the illegal withdrawal of her money by her home caregiver.
2013: First baseman Nate Freiman made his major league debut with the Oakland A’s
2014: In Israel, Channel 2 broadcast the last episode of “Yellow Peppers,” a series about a family raising an autistic child.
2014: The Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington is scheduled to host Jews and Baseball: D.C. and Beyond with Phil Hochberg, Jean Leavy and Aviva Kempler
2014: A French court fines a 28-year-old Moroccan man $4,130 for posting photos online of himself giving the quenelle salute in front of Grand Synagogue in Bordeaux
2014: “The Sturgeon Queens” is scheduled to be shown at the Austin Jewish Film Festival.
2014: The Oregon Jewish Museum is scheduled to host the opening reception for an exhibit styled “The Seder: Meanings, Ritual & Spirituality” featuring the work of Samuel Eisen-Meyers.
2014: Friends and family gather to celebrate the birthday of Elizabeth Levin, “daughter extraordinaire” of David Levin.
2015: “President Obama issued Passover greetings” today “to those celebrating Passover in the United States, in the state of Israel and throughout the world.
2015: President Obama and his hosted their seventh White House Seder where the menu included, “Moroccan charoset balls, savory holiday brisket and carrot soufflé.”
2015: Francis J. Pruitt, the author of Faith and Courage in a Time of Trouble, “a memoir of a Belgian-Jewish girl and her family who were saved during the Nazi occupation of France through the compassion and heroism of French peasants from the southern part of the country” is scheduled to appear at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
2015: A year after having been shown at the Tribeca Film Festival “5 to 7” directed and written by Victor Levin was released in the United States today.
2015: The friends and family of Elizabeth Levin will have to get her that birthday cake today before the last crumbs of Chametz are swept away.
2015(14th of Nisan, 5775): Ninety-two year old English actor Robert Rietti, born Lucio Herbert Rietti, passed away today.
2015(14th of Nisan, 5775): Fast of the First Born
2015(14th of Nisan, 5575: In the evening first Seder.
2016: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including Don’t Let My Baby Do Rodeo by Boris Fishman and Spain in our Hearts: American in the Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939 by Adam Hochschild
2016: In Fairfax, VA, Temple Beth El is scheduled to host a “sneak preview of Sabena Hijacking” one of the films to be shown later at the JCCNV’s Annual Film Festival.
2016: The Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center is scheduled to host a panel discussion on “The Forgotten Genocide: The Destruction of Cultural Heritage in Armenia, Bosnia and Syria.”
2016: HaZamir: The International Jewish High School Choir is scheduled to perform at Carnegie Hall.
2016: “Wedding Doll” is scheduled to be shown on the final night of the Israeli Film Festival in Philadelphia, PA.
2016: Radio Kol Hamusica is scheduled to broadcast the works of Israeli composer Emanuel Vahl.
2016: The Breman Museum, the Center for Civil and Human Rights and the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival, are scheduled to offer a free screening of the award winning film, “50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr.& Mrs. Kraus”
2016: Leo Baeck Institute and Center for Jewish History are scheduled to host “Burning Words: A History Play by Peter Wortsman”
2016: Unlike last year, Elizabeth Levin gets a break and she and her friends a family can enjoy plenty of cake as they celebrate her natal day.
2017: The JTA Centennial Gala featuring Bernard-Henri Levy as the keynote speak and honoring Brian Sterling, Mark Wilf and Jane Weitzman is scheduled to take place this evening at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York.
2017: “State of Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel said today he will purchase an unmatched $61 million in Israel bonds to hit back at the boycott movement against the Jewish state, and because the bonds are a good investment.” (As reported by Stuart Winer)
2017: Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, “was appointed a National Deputy Finance Chairman of the Republican National Committee” today.
2017: In Cedar Rapids, a sad moment as the community gathers for the funeral of Amy Barnum, wife of Joel Barnum, mother of Emma (Sam), Sasha (Lance), Gail and grandmother of Dean and Henry. A friend to so many – positive, upbeat woman of valor whose optimism was so contagious.
2018(18th of Nisan, 5778): Fourth Day of Pesach
2018: A real simcha for friends and family of Dr. Elizabeth Levin as they celebrate her natal day and acceptance into a prestigious fellowship program.
2018: In New Orleans, Temple Sinai and the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans are scheduled to cost a LGBTQ Interfaith Seder this evening.
2018: In Jerusalem, The Tower of David is scheduled to host a performance “A Lion of the Streets of Jerusalem”—a “story about Rabbi Aryeh.”
2018: The Swann Auction Galleries is scheduled to a screening of selections from the feature documentary Rosenwald, followed by a conversation with director Aviva Kempner, hosted by Nigel Freeman.
2019: Second anniversary of the funeral of Amy Barnum. Gone – but never forgotten
2019: In Des Moines, IA, Ambassador Ron Dermer is scheduled to “deliver an address to the Jewish Community.” (Editor’s note – Will he tell the non-Orthodox attendees while Israel does not recognize the validity of the Judaism or explain why those who have a non-Orthodox convert in their family tree are not Jews.)
2019: In London, the Jewish Museum is scheduled to host a curator’s tour of its newest exhibition “Jews, Money, Myth.”
2019(27th of Adar II, 5779): Seventy-seven year old New Heaven, CT native and Belz School of Jewish Music graduate Sherwood, Sherwood Goffin, the long-time cantor at the Lincoln Square Synagogue and faculty member at Yeshiva University’s Belz School of Music who raised three children with his wife Batya, passed away today.(As reported by Benjamin Koslowe)
2019: The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum is scheduled to host Holocaust survivor David Bayer as part of its “First Person Series.”
2019: As The Kinneret experienced record rises in the last few days, the forecast for today calls for local rains in the afternoon which will “mostly” in the southern part of the country
2019: The Yeshiva University Museum is scheduled to present “Israel and Eurovision 1973-2019: “featuring Israeli singers Ariella Edv and Omer Shaish” in a concert that “celebrates Israel’s participation in Europe’s iconic song competition.”
2019: The Jewish Study Center and Adas Israel are scheduled to a lecture by “Karin Olofsdotter, Sweden’s Ambassador to the United Sates” on “The Work Must Be Done: Raoul Wallenberg’s Mission to Rescue Hungary’s Jews.”
2019: David R. Levin, is button-busting proud to be celebrating the birthday of his accomplished daughter Elizabeth.
2020(9th of Nisan, 5780): On the Hebrew calendar, Yahrtzeit of the fifty-seven Jews killed in Bury St. Edmunds, England during the reign of King Richard I. (Abraham P. Bloch)
2020: Rabbi Heath Watenmaker of Beth Am in Los Altos offers stories, a bedtime Shema and Shabbat blessings for kids on Zoom or by phone. Zoom requires registration.
2020: In a virtual presentation on “Was Christopher Columbus Jewish” Jason Harris is scheduled to look at the circumstantial evidence surrounding this including the fact so many Jews were involved in his voyage.
2020: The Streicker Center is scheduled to host Abigail Pogrebin’s virtual lecture on “How to Guarantee and Un-Boring Passover.”
2020: As they prepare for Shabbat, residents of Kiryat Joel deal with competing claims by their village officials and Dr. Zev Zelenko, who claims to found a treatment for coronavirus, on just how many sick people there are and the validity of his claims