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A collection of Jewish history and current Jewish events, in date format, updated daily in this Jewish history blog.

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    March 29


    835 BCE (1st of Nisan, 2926): According to some Joash assumed the throne as King of Judah


    1188: Emperor Frederick was convinced (both diplomatically and financially) by Moses bar Joseph Hakohen of Mayence to issue a decree declaring “that anyone who wounds a Jew shall have his arm cut off, he who slays a Jew shall die. This decree succeeded in preventing most of the excesses of the pervious crusades in the third crusade soon to follow.


    1244(11th of Nisan, 5004): Rabbi Meir Abulafia Halevi (Ramah), not Talmudist, masorete, and poet passed away today at Toledo, Spain at the age of 74. (As reported by Abraham Bloch)


    1366: Coronation of Henry II as King of Castile and Leon. Henry denigrated his rival Peter by portraying him as a friend of the Jews; a portrayal that including calling him “King of the Jews.” Henry exploited Castilian animosity towards Jews by instigating pogroms and forcing them to convert to Christianity.


    1559: Polish King Sigismund II grants the Jews a charter despite opposition of the local authorities at Przemysl.


    1629: Birthdate of Alexis Mikhailovich, the second of the Romanov Czars. He reigned during the period marked by the Chmelnicki Uprising that decimated eastern European Jewry and the appearance of Sabbati Zvi. Considering the fact that we have records of the Czar ordering sharpshooters to protect Jews on their travels, sending Jewish merchants abroad to purchase wine and allowing Jews living in territory he acquired under the Treaty of Andrussev to continue living there as Russian citizens, he is considered to have been “kindly disposed toward the Jews.


    1632: The Treaty of Saint-Germain is signed, returning Quebec to French control after the English had seized it in 1629. Return of the city to French control would keep Jews from settling in Quebec for another 130 years. The French gave up Canada to the British in 1763 at the end of the Seven Years War, known in America as The French and Indian War. Once the British were in control, Jews began to openly settle in the former French colony.


    1664: Consecration of Giulio Rospigliosi to whom apostate Jew Giovanni Battista Jona, dedicated a Hebrew translation of the New Testament when he became Pope Clement IX


    1714(13th of Nisan): Rabbi David ben Solomon Altaras, author of Kelalei ha-Dikduk passed away.


    1719(9th of Nisan): In Venice, Rabbi Jacob Pardo of Ragusa and his wife gave birth to David Pardo who accepted the position of Chief Rabbi at Sarajevo in 1764 and passed away in Jerusalem in 1792.


    1744(16th of Nisan): Rabbi Hayyim ben Jacob Abulafia of Smyrna, author of Ez ha-Hayyim passed away.


    1773:Pope Clement XIV confirmed the bull issued by Clement VII concerning “Jus Gazaka” which the Jews viewed positively since it dealt with their right to rent houses in the ghetto of Rome. Another token of Pope Clement XIV’s benevolence toward the Jews was the confirmation today of the bull of Clement VIII. concerning the Jus Gazaka, which was of very great importance to the Roman Jews.


    1801(15th of Nisan, 5561): First Day of Pesach


    1814: The King of Denmark officially allowed Jews to find employment in all professions and makes racial and religious discrimination punishable by law.


    1819: Birthdate of Rabbi Isaac Mayer Wise. Isaac Mayer Wise was one of America's most influential Jewish leaders during the 19th Century. His major achievements were the establishment of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations in 1873, the Hebrew Union College in 1875, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis in 1889. This brief summary can in no way do justice to the life a man who had such an impact on the American Jewish community.


    1848: In Great Britain, Samuel Joseph Rubinstein married a daughter of David Moses Dyte, a London quill merchant.


    1858(14th of Nisan): Jews who had served in the Russian army received the right of residence in the province of Abo-Bjorneborg, Finland upon its annexation today.


    1860: Todays "Personal" column reported that “The Cincinnati papers notice the arrival in that city of Mr. Israel J. Benjamin, author of Eight Years in Asia and Africa -- a Jew, who is making the tour of North America to examine the condition of his race. His design is to cross the Plains, spend a short time in the Rocky Mountains, and thence proceed through California to Asia.


    1861: Opening night at the Winter Garden for “The Hebrew Son” a play designed to appeal to the Jews in the audience.


    1862: Birthdate of Swiss born American portrait painter whose work includes a painting of Isaac Newton Seligman that has disappeared and one of his five year old son Joseph L. Seligman which was done in 1891 and first exhibited in January of 1892.


    1863: A column published today entitled “New From Fortress Monroe” reported that two Jews were arrested while on board the SS Thomas A. Morgan which was making her trip from this Fortress Monroe, VA to Yorktown, VA. The Jews had “a lot of contraband goods” in their possession. [The implication of the article is that the Jews were trading with the Rebel forces further upriver.


    1863: The New York Times reported that Colonel Crane and a group of Union soldiers captured a schooner towing a lighter filled with cotton in Florida. Of the 12 men aboard the schooner, 10 were rebels while the others were a man named Titus from Rhode Island and “a Jew from New York named J. Cohen.” [The correspondent does not say how he ascertained that Cohen was a Jew or why his was the only one whose religion was mentioned.]


    1866(22nd of Adar II, 5646): Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Lubavitch passed away. Born in 1789, Rabbi Menachem Mendel was the grandson of the first Chabad Rebbe and was the third Chabad Lubavitch Rebbe. "He was also known as the Tzemach Tzedek (Righteous Sprout), the name for a voluminous compendium of Jewish halachah that he authored. He also authored Derech Mitzvotecha (Way of Your Commandments), a mystical exposition of Jewish law." According to some sources, the seventh Lubavitch Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson was named in honor his illustrious predecessor. This brief summary can in no way do justice to the life and writing of this illustrious sage.


    1867: A column published today entitled “Affairs In Illinois” reported on the victimization of the insurance companies by a series of fraudulent claims. The article concludes by stating “And the fire insurance companies have been so frequently victimized by Jews practicing arson, that many of them are declining Israelitish risks.’ The article does not contain any details about these Jewish arsons.


    1867: “The Purim Ball” published today reported that this event is different from the other balls that make up the New York Social Season. Unlike the other festivities, the Purim Ball is rooted in the national traditions of the Jews and calls for form of costume and masquerade that makes it a unique event.


    1873(1st of Nisan, 5633): Rosh Chodesh Nisan


    1875: It was reported today that there is a dispute among the members of New York’s Beth-El congregation over how to deal with the remains of those buried at the two cemeteries owned by the congregation. Beth-El was formed by a merger of Anshei Chesed (Norfolk Street Synagogue) and Adas Jeshurun which is why Beth-El has two cemeteries.


    1877(15th of Nissan, 5637): First Day of Pesach


    1878: Birthdate of Albert Gumm, the Indiana native who gained fame as a songwriter under the name of Albert Von Tilzer, the author of “Take Me Out To The Ballgame.”


    1880: Myer Stern represented the Hebrew Benevolent and Orphan Asylum Society at today’s meeting of the New York State Board of Charities meeting.


    1880: Birthdate of pianist Rosina Lhévinne whom Juilliard president Peter Mennin called "quite simply one of the greatest teachers of this century." Born in Kiev, she began her piano studies at age six and entered the Moscow Conservatory at age nine. Over the next nine years, she perfected her piano technique, graduating in 1898 with the school's gold medal. Among her classmates at the Conservatory were Sergei Rachmaninoff and Josef Lhévinne, whom Rosina married after her graduation. After getting married, Lhévinne abandoned her fledging solo performance career in order to keep her husband, also an accomplished pianist, in the spotlight. However, she did not abandon the performance circuit, often playing two-piano concerts with her husband. The Lhévinnes toured the U.S. for the first time in 1907, and moved permanently to New York immediately after World War I. In 1924, they joined the faculty of the newly established Juilliard Graduate School, where they shared a studio. After Josef Lhévinne's death in 1944, Rosina continued to teach at Juilliard, where her students included such promising musicians as Van Cliburn, David Bar-Ilan, James Levine, and Arthur Gold. As her students made their mark in national and international piano competitions, Lhévinne's fame grew. However, it was only in 1956, at the age of seventy-six, that Lhévinne resumed her own solo piano career. Her first concert was with the Aspen Festival Orchestra; she went on to perform with orchestras around the country. In 1963, she appeared in four performances with the New York Philharmonic, under Leonard Bernstein's direction. Despite a busy performance schedule, Lhévinne continued to teach at Juilliard until she passed her ninety-sixth birthday.


    1881: In Leadville, CO a fire broke out in the Pioneer Salon which spread to the next door liquor business owned by the Schloss family.


    1882: A two day Pogrom in the largely Jewish town of Balta (Russia) comes to an end leaving nearly half of the homes and shops in ruins.


    1884: Mrs. Max Rosenberg claimed that on this day her husband forced her to pack her trunk, leave their New York apartment and stopped providing her with financial support. (Rosenberg would subsequently deny these claims, citing proof that she left of her own volition, that he continued to support her, that she still loved him and that the cause of their problems was that he was Jewish – a fact resented by her gentile father.)


    1887: In Leadville, CO, Simon Schloss “was a member the committee of arrangements for the eighth annual Purim Masque Ball held at the Tabor Opera House today


    1888(16thof Nisan, 5648): Second Day of Pesach; 1st day of the Omer


    1888(16thof Nisan, 5648): Seventy-four year old composer and pianist Charles-Valentin Alkan whose “Op. 31 set of Préludes includes a number of pieces based on Jewish subjects, including some titled Prière (Prayer), one preceded by a quote from the Song of Songs, and another titled Ancienne mélodie de la synagogue (Old synagogue melody)


    1890(8th of Nisan, 5650): Shabbat HaGadol


    1890: Birthdate of daughter Pauline Herzl, daughter of Theodor Herzl who passed away in 1930.


    1890: “Emanuel Bernheimer” published today listed the philanthropies and charities supported by the founder Lion Brewery including Mount Sinai Hospital, the Hebrew Orphan Asylum and the Montefiore Home for the Chronic Invalids.


    1890: It was reported today that in St. Petersburg, university students have presented Professor Menelieff with demands that entrance fees be reduced and the restrictions against Jewish admission be removed.


    1890(8th of Nisan, 5650): Forty-five year old Morris Eising, a Jewish immigrant from German was found dead in his boarding house at West 24th Street.


    1892: The Russian government published the edict that expelled 14,000 Jews from Moscow. Two thirds of Moscow’s Jewry were disposed and violently removed to the Pale of Settlement.


    1892(1st of Nisan 5652): Rosh Chodesh Nisan


    1892(1st of Nisan 5652): Rabbi Elimelech Szapira of Grodzhisk passed away. Born in 1832, he “was the leading Hasidic rebbe of his time in Poland. He was a chosid (follower) of the Rizhiner Rebbe. After the death of his father, the Sorof of Mogelnica, he assumed leadership of the chasidim, who eventually numbered ten thousand. His sons-in-law were the Kozhnitser Rebbe and Rebbe Osher the Second of Stolin-Karlin.”


    1893: In Boston, Judge Ely dismissed charges against Tavia Angus, the defendant charged by the police with illegally possessing wine and liquor which his co-religionists from Adat Israel claimed he was holding for them and which would be distributed prior to Passover which begins at sundown on March 31. The Jews will now be able to get their wine and brandy back from the police in time for the first Seder.


    1893: “New Immigration Commissioner” published today described Secretary of Treasury John G. Carlisle’s appointment of Joseph H. Senner as the Commissioner of Immigration at New York. (Carlisle was not Jewish; Senner was)


    1895: “Grand Cake Walk For Charity” published today described the fund raiser sponsored by the Monte Relief Society which began with an address by the founder and President Sofia Monte-Loebinger. The society which is named for its founder was founded by a handful of Jewesses and provides financial aid to the city’s destitute.


    1895(4th of Nisan, 5655): Bernhard Bernhard, a benefactor to many Jewish charities including the Hebrew Benevolent Association, passed away today at his home on East 62nd Street in New York leaving behind two children


    1896(15th of Nisan, 5656): First Day of Pesach


    1896(15th of Nisan, 5656): The New York Times reported that Pesach, or the Feast of the Passover, with which the Israelites celebrate the deliverance of the Jews from bondage in Egypt, was inaugurated at sundown yesterday. The feast continues eight consecutive days and will close with the setting of the sun next Saturday.

    1896(15thof Nisan, 5656): Fifty-two year old Hungarian born revolutionary Leó Frankel who took part in the Paris Commune of 1871 passed away today.


    1896: It was reported today that Lucien L. Bonheur is chairman of the committee planning the 19th annual Strawberry Festival sponsored by the Young Men’s Hebrew Association. He is being assisted by Isaac Newton Lewis, Falk Younker, Levi Hershfield, Edwin M. Schwartz and Dr. Louis S. Rosenthal. Percival S. Menken is President of the Association.


    1897: “Millions For Charity” published today described a “stupendous project” to be underwritten by the Baron de Hirsch Fund that will “relieve the congested district of” New York’s “east side by building homes and establishing industries in the suburbs.”

    1897(25thof Adar II, 5657): Sixty-six year old David Weinberg, a retired furrier, passed away at his home leaving behind a widow and four children in New York.


    1897(25thof Adar II, 5657): Forty-nine year old Louis Israel, “proprietor of the one of the largest livery stables in Brooklyn” passed away today.  A native of Brooklyn, he was President of the Hebrew Benevolent Society and a member of the Independent Order of the Free Sons of Israel, the King Solomon Lodge and the B’nai Sholom Benefit Society.


    1898(6th of Nisan, 5658): Rabbi Emanuel Schwab who was 101 years old passed away today in New York City.  A native of Frankfort on Main he came to the United States 53 years ago where he served as rabbi of congregations at Schenectady, NY and Bridgeport, Conn.  He was preceded in death by his wife the former Miss Sophie Hirsch whom he had married in 1862.


    1899: Baroness Hirsch the widow of the late Jewish philanthropist is reportedly to be critically ill.


    1899: The Jewish Colonial Bank in London begins to accept subscriptions.


    1900: The American Israelite announced the death of Isaac Mayer Wise.

    1903: Herzl meets with the Belgian born barrister Leon Constant Ghislain Carton de Wiart now living in Egypt. Herzl tells him that “We will give up the word 'Charter' but not the thing itself."


    1907(14th of Nisan, 5667): On Ellis Island, Rabbi Adolph Radin joined 180 Jewish immigrants in a Seder this evening which marked their first Passover in the United States.


    1907: As of today 140,000 soldiers had been recruited to help quell the Romanian Peasant Revolt. The peasants were revolting against the Christian nobles who were the landowners responsible for their exploitation. An untold number of Jews fell victim to the peasants because they were the one who collected the rents. Once again, a dispute between groups of Christians results in dead Jews.


    1910::Eugène-Melchior, vicomte de Vogüé a 19th century French archaeologist and author “who is known for his architectural studies of Jerusalem, the Temple Mount and the surrounding areas. (For more see Digging Through The Bible by Richard A. Freund)


    1912: By decree of the King of Italy, Jews in Tripoli can now organize as a community.


    1913: Birthdate of Hyman Bloom. Born into an orthodox Jewish family in southern he emigrated to the United States with his family in 1920, at the age of seven. He lived for most of his life in Boston, Massachusetts and at a young age planned to become a rabbi, but his family could not find a suitable teacher. Bloom and Jack Levine, another Jewish painter from Boston, received scholarships in the fine arts given by the famous Harvard art professor Denman Ross. Bloom, along with Levine and another painter, Karl Zerbe, eventually became associated with a style named Boston Expressionism. He passed away in 2009.


    1913: Birthdate of comedian Phil Foster. Born Phil Feldman in Brooklyn, Foster gained lasting fame as Frank De Fazio on the 1970’s sitcom “Laverne & Shirley.” He passed away in 1985.


    1915: Emanuel Beckerman, an interpreter in the Bronx Municipal Court was pleased to learn today that the ten pounds of matzoth that he had shipped to Rabbi Bernard Pressen for his Seder in Berlin had arrived in Amsterdam and should have made it to Berlin in time for the Seder. Beckerman had met Pressen in 1907 did not want his co-religionist to go with unleavened bread because the Kaiser’s government had banned using wheat to make matzoth.


    1915(14th of Nisan, 5675): Ninety men and one hundred and five women ranging in age from 67 to 110 held a Seder at the Home of the Daughters of Jacob in New York City. Nissen Rosen, 105 years old, will sit at one end of the table where he will face 110 year old Ethel Rosenstein. It will be a double celebration for Hannah Perlaeur who was born on the night of the Seder 95 years ago.


    1915(14th of Nisan, 5675): One hundred Jews who had recently arrived from Jerusalem were among those who participated at a Seder at the Hebrew Sheltering and Immigrant Aid Society’s home on Broadway.


    1915(14th of Nisan, 5675): Dr. M.J. Leff conducted a Seder for the staff at the Beth Israel Hospital in New York City.


    1921: Birthdate of Bronx native Abraham H. Baum, who would lead the raid commanded by Blood and Guts Patton to rescue his son-in-law from a German POW camp.


    1921: Winston Churchill, British Colonial Secretary, is greeted by 10,000 Jews on Mt. Scopus in Palestine. Both the Chief Sephardic and Ashkenazic Rabbis were in attendance. They gave him a Sefer Torah. Churchill planted a tree on the future site of Hebrew University and spoke in support of the Zionist endeavors in Palestine.


    1921: It was reported today that the late Julia Wormser Seligman was a native of San Francisco who was the only daughter of the late Isidore Wormser from whom she inherited two million dollars.


    1923(12th of Nisan, 5683): Fast of the First Born observed because the 14th of Nisan falls on Shabbat.


    1925: While visiting Palestine, Lord Balfour, of Balfour Declaration fame, “reads the lessons in the Anglican Cathedral of St. George.”


    1927: Birthdate of Martin Fleischmann. A chemist at the University of Utah, Fleischmann (and his partner Stanley Pons) claimed to have discovered Cold Fusion in 1989.


    1928: Yeshiva College received its charter in New York City. Yeshiva College began as a Cheder on the lower east side of Manhattan in 1886. During the first decades of the twentieth century the school began offering dual curriculum including secular level high school courses. At that time it became known as The Talmudical Academy. Yeshiva College was founded to provide TA grads with alternative to secular colleges when going on to higher education. The college became Yeshiva University in 1946 and eventually altered its charter to become a secular university. None of these changes came without protests. But these changes show how Modern Orthodoxy has dealt with need to maintain Jewish education and tradition while equipping generations of youngsters with the skills to live in the secular world.


    1930: The first American convention of the promoters and adherents of the Yiddish language, literature and culture opened this evening at the Irving Plaza Hall in New York City. Eight hundred people from the United States and Canada attended the opening session of a convention working to foster Yiddish Culture.


    1931: Birthdate of Evelyn de Rothschild. Rothschild headed the English branch of the family and its banking business for twenty-one years. In 2003, the English and French branches merged and Baron David de Rothschild, head of the French branch assumed the new leadership position. The Rothschilds continue to be "one of the world's largest private banking dynasties."


    1932: At the first Jewish Olympic Games, officially known as the Maccabiah, American Sybil Koff of New York, finished first in the semi-final of the 100 meter race while the American team finished second in the semi-final of the relay race. The opening contests in which American Jews played a prominent part took place “in the newly built stadium situated at the junction of the Yarkon River and the Mediterranean Sea” before a crowd estimated to exceed the venue’s 25,000 seat capacity.


    1932: Jack Benny debuted on radio. This legendary Jewish entertainer moved from vaudeville to the electronic medium - radio, the movies and finally television.


    1933: The front page of the Nazi newspaper, Volkisher Beobachter, stated "Let Jewry Know Against Who it Has Declared War".


    1934(13th of Nisan, 5694): Otto Hermann Kahn passed away. Born in Germany in 1867, this noted banker, collector, philanthropist and patron of the arts moved to the United States in 1893. He joined the banking firm of Kuhn, Loeb & Company and continued to add to his fortune. He was a founder and President of the Metropolitan Opera Company. He bankrolled numerous artists including Hart Crane, George Gershwin and Arturo Toscanini. Kahn uttered the following warning, “The deadliest foe of democracy is not autocracy but liberty frenzied. Liberty is not foolproof.” To work “it demands self-restraint, a sane and clear recognition of the practical and attainable, and of the fact that there are laws of nature which are beyond our power to change.”


    1935: In Brooklyn, Abraham M. and Belle Lindenbaum gave birth to Samuel H. Lindenbaum, who was widely considered New York City’s top zoning lawyer and who was credited with doing as much as any of the powerful developers among his clients to shape the modern skyline of Manhattan…” (As reported by David W. Dunalp)


    1936: The SS guard formations were renamed SS-Totenkopfverbände (SS-Death's Head Units). They provided guards for concentration camps


    1938: A total of $20,000 was contributed tonight to the Youth Aliyah (immigration) fund of Hadassah to remove children from Austria as well as Germany and Poland.


    1937: Birthdate of Moacyr Jaime Scliar a Brazilian writer and physician who passed away in 2011.


    1937: The Palestine Post reported that the body of Jacob Zwanger, an engineer who had disappeared some 18 days earlier, was found near Rehovot. He was apparently strangled. A Jew and his Arab partner were arrested, both suspected of Zwanger's murder.


    1937: The Palestine Postreported that Arab brigands held up and robbed drivers near Jenin.


    1937: The Palestine Post reported that a plea was made in the House of Commons to reduce the British tariff on Palestine oranges which was devised to protect the South African citrus industry.


    1938: The New York Times reported that Dr. Sigmund Freud has been denied a passport so that he cannot leave Vienna for the Netherlands. A delegation that included Princess Marie Bonaparte had gone to Vienna to make Freud aware of the warm welcome that would await him in what would be his new Dutch home.


    1938: A total of $20,000 was contributed tonight to the Youth Aliyah (immigration) fund of Hadassah to remove children from Austria as well as Germany and Poland.


    1939: Birthdate of Roland Arnall, the French native who became a successful American businessman, diplomat and financial contributor to the well-being of Chabad-Lubavitch.


    1939: The Soviet NKVD secret police arrested Rabbi Levi Yitzchak Schneerson, the father of the late Chabad-Lubavitch Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson for his outspoken efforts against the Communist Party’s efforts to eradicate Jewish learning and practice in the Soviet Union. After more than a year of torture and interrogations in Stalin's prisons, he was sentenced to exile to the interior of Russia. He died there in 1944. Rabbi Schneerson was a distinguished Kabbalist. Some of his writings have been published under the name Likkutei Levi Yitzchak. Most of it, however, was burned or confiscated by the Soviet authorities and has yet to be returned to the Chabad movement.


    1942: SS Captain Dieter Wislicey wants $50,000 in cash as the price for stopping the deportations of Slovakian Jews to the death camps. He will get the money, but the deportations will continue


    1942: Founder's Day in honor of Isaac Mayer Wise, founder of Reform Judaism, was observed this afternoon in the Central Synagogue, with a special service under the auspices of the Greater New York City Alumni of the Hebrew Union College


    1943: Third and final shipment of Macedonian Jews from Skopje to Treblinka.  Of the 7,144 Jews shipped there over three days only about 200 survived the war/


    1944: Anne Frank mentions in her diary that Gerrit Bolkestein, Education Minister of the Dutch Government in exile, delivered a radio message from London urging his war-weary countrymen to collect "vast quantities of simple, everyday material" as part of the historical record of the Nazi occupation and writes "Ten years after the war people would find it very amusing to read how we lived, what we ate and what we talked about as Jews in hiding."


    1944: Tel Aviv was declared off limits to all military personnel today, including those who have family living in the city. The ban was in response to attacks on police stations in Haifa, Jaffa, and Jerusalem for which the Irgun has taken public credit.


    1945(15th of Nisan, 5705: First Day of Pesach


    1945(15th of Nisan, 5705): On the first day of Pesach least 58 Jews were murdered in a forest near the Austrian village of Deutsch Shuetzen, in what would come to be called the Deutsch Shuetzen Massacre. SS sergeant Adolf Storms SS sergeant Adolf Storms was among the perpetrators of the killing.


    1945: In the evening, members of the Jewish Infantry Brigade of the British 8thArmy serving in Italy took part in a Seder at Faenza.


    1945: The ill-fated and ill-conceived mission ordered by General Patton to rescue  his son-in-law John K. Waters under the command of Captain Abraham Baum came to an ignominious end with Baum who had been shot in the groin joining the wounded Walters in a German hospital for POWS.


    1947: Clifton Daniel interviewed Jewish refugees at Caraolos, a British run displaced persons camp outside of Famagusta, Cyprus. “An appeal for the outside world to consider their plight was the first and only formal proposal addressed” to him by these immigrants. Currently, there are 11,000 Jews living in camps like this all across Cyprus. If the British stick to their policy of releasing 750 Jews a month to go to Palestine, it will take at least fourteen months to empty these camps.


    1947: “A ship carrying 1,600 Jewish unauthorized refugees was intercepted tonight off the northern coast of Palestine by the Royal Navy.” The ship which was known as the Patria or Moledeth was taken to the harbor at Haifa.


    1947: At a mass meeting in Tel Aviv, Golda Meyerson, the head of the Jewish Agency’s political department “assailed the underground extremists’ warfare today in these words: ‘Terrorism is assisting Palestine’s British administration it has put Palestine Jewry on the defensive, whereas but for terrorism the Zionists could have pursued a more vigorous line in their political efforts…we don ot want to embark on internal warfare, but if it be thrust upon us we shall finish with the terrorists, although without cooperating with the Government in doing so.’”


    1949: In a meeting with Zionist leaders in New York, former Prime Minister Winston Churchill offers assurance that his commitment to the Jewish state is as solid as it has ever been.


    1950: The United Nations Conciliation Commission for Palestine issues a memorandum designed to “meet the Israeli demands for direct negotiations and the Arab desire that the commission act as mediator.”


    1950: The “first contingent of ‘hard core’ cases from the refugee camps in German and Austria arrive in Israel” three days before Pesach. “These unfortunates, the halt, the lame and the blind were brought in by the combined efforts of the international relief organizations, the Jewish Agency for Palestine and the Israeli Government.” Their arrival is an example of David Ben Gurion’s belief that Israel is the home for all Jews regardless of their condition.


    1951: Judy Holliday, born Judy Tuvim, won the Oscar for Best Actress for her portrayal of Billie Dawn in the film “Born Yesterday.”


    1951: Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were convicted of espionage. The prosecutor in the case and the judge who would pronounce the death sentence were also Jewish. However, right-wing politicians would overlook this and use the Rosenberg case as further proof that the Jews were part of the Communist Conspiracy.


    1953: Birthdate of Samuel Elliott Chwat founder of the Sam Chwat Speech Center.


    1956: Be'er Sheva or Beersheba was linked to Israel's railway system. Yes, this is the ancient city mentioned connection with Abraham and Isaac. This is just one example of how the young state of Israel was developing its economy and infrastructure while confronting on-going threats of Arab attacks as well as the reality of cross-border raids by fedayin (the name given to the terrorists of those days.)


    1959: Birthdate of Perry Farrell, lead singer of Jane’s Addiction


    1959: Release date for “Some Like It Hot” a great comedy film directed, produced and co-authored by Billy Wilder.


    1959: Birthdate of Nouiel Roubini, the Turkish born son of Iranian Jews who spent part of his youth living in Israel, who would gain fame as the economist who predicted the financial crisis that would engulf the world’s economy starting in the fourth quarter of 2008.


    1965: Birthdate of Elisheva Greenbaum. In June of 2003, at the Metulla Festival of Poetry, Ellisheva was awarded the prestigious "Tevah" prize in poetry. Earlier, in 2002, Elisheva was awarded The Prime Minister's prize for poetry.


    1967(17th of Adar II, 5727): Israeli author, Isaac Dov Berkowitz passed away. Born in Belarus in 1885 he made aliyah in 1928. The son-in-law of Sholom Aleichim, he was a two-time winner of the Bialik Prize and a winner of the Israel Prize for literature in 1958.


    1973(25th of Adar II, 5733): Ida Cohen Rosenthal, the woman who created the modern brassiere industry passed away.


    1977: Robert Stauss began serving as United States Trade Representative.


    1977: The Jerusalem Post reported that the Soviet Foreign Minister, Andrei Gromyko, said that he would allow the early reconvening of the Geneva Peace Conference without PLO participation. The conference might later decide on the PLO's eventual participation.


    1977: The Jerusalem Post reported that the Egged management threatened to withdraw public transport service to and from Lod due to hooliganism, personal attacks, theft and other difficult conditions at the Lod Central Bus Station.


    1981: The New York Times reviews "The Geneva Crisis" by Matti Golan, an Israeli diplomat writing about a fictional attempt by idealistic Jews who are duped when they attempt to work for peace with Palestinian rebels.


    1983(15thof Nisan, 5743): Pesach


    1987: Yitzhak Shamir was re-elected chairman of right wing Herut Party. Born in Poland in 1915, Shamir moved to Palestine in 1935. While attending Hebrew University he joined the Irgun. He later left the Irgun and joined what was the Stern Gang. Shamir would later rise above what some people might think of a rather dubious past to become Prime Minister in 1988. To his credit, in May 1991, Shamir ordered the airlift rescue of thousands of Ethiopian Jewry, codenamed "Operation Solomon." In September, Shamir provided living proof that people can change, when he represented Israel at the Madrid Peace Conference which brought about direct negotiations with Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and the Palestinians.


    1987: Tonight Colonel Aviem Sella, the Israeli Air Force who was indicted earlier this month in the United States for his role in recruiting Jonathan Pollard as a spy, said that he was giving up his recent promotion to the rank of general because of “the problems it had caused between the United States and Israel.”


    1987: An American Rabbi, Arthur Schneier, said that “that the Soviet Union has agreed that future Jewish émigrés will be sent to Israel by way of Rumania.” In the past, those Jews who were allowed to leave the Soviet Union traveled through Vienna where many of them obtained visas for the United States even though they had said they were leaving to go to Israel. Schneier hopes the change will lead to an increase in the number of Jews who are allowed to leave the Soviet Union. The Rumanians have asked that the transit cite in their country not be identified so that it will not become a target for terrorists.


    1991(14th of Nisan, 5751): The Kesim celebrated the last Pesach for their community at the Israeli embassy in Addas Abba, Ethiopia.


    1993: Billy Crystal served as host at the 65th Academy Awards Ceremony in Los Angeles. Elizabeth Taylor was co-winner of the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award


    1994(17th of Nisan, 5754): During Chol Hamoed Pesach, Yitzhak Rothenberg, age 70, of Petah Tikva, was attacked on a construction site by two residents of Khan Yunis by axe blows to the head. He died several days later of his wounds


    1998: The 27th Nabisco Dinah Shore Golf Championship was played today. The namesake of this major LPGA event was born Frances Rose Shore in Winchester, Tenn. in 1917. She adopted the name Dinah from a hit 1930's tune of the same name that was her signature song in the early days of her career.

    1998: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or special interest to Jewish readers including “Diplomacy for the Next Century” by Abba Eban, “Clement Greenberg: A Life” by Florence Rubenfeld,” The Castle: A New Translation, Based on the Restored Text” by Franz Kafka; translated by Mark Harman and “Getting Away With Murder: How Politics Is Destroying the Criminal Justice System” by Susan Estrich.


    1998: Famed basketball player Henry "Hank" Rosenstein Rosenstein was inducted into the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame


    1999: In the ever-changing revolving door of Israeli party politics, Eliezer Sandberg”s HaTzeirim faction joined Shinui.


    1999: Emanuel Zisman  left the Third Way political party and served the rest of his term as an independent MK.


    2000: Israel's high court orders that about 700 Palestinians be allowed to return to their traditional homes in caves in the southern West Bank.


    2002(16thof Nisan, 5762): Second Day of Pesach and 1st day of the Omer.


    2002(16thof Nisan, 5762): “Tuvia Wisner, 79, of Petah Tikva and Michael Orlinsky, 70, of Tel-Aviv were killed Friday morning, when a Palestinian terrorist infiltrated the Neztarim settlement in the Gaza Strip.” (Jewish Virtual Library)


    2002(16thof Nisan, 5762): Rachel Levy, 17, and Haim Smadar, 55, the security guard, both of Jerusalem, were killed and 28 people were injured, two seriously, when a female suicide bomber blew herself up in the Kiryat Yovel supermarket in Jerusalem. The Fatah Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades claimed responsibility for the attack. (Jewish Virtual Library)


    2002(16thof Nisan, 5762): Lt. Boaz Pomerantz, 22, of Kiryat Shmona and St.-Sgt. Roman Shliapstein, 22, of Ma'ale Efraim were killed in the course of the IDF anti-terrorist action in Ramallah (Operation Defensive Shield. (Jewish Virtual Library)


    2002: In response to the suicide bombing at a Seder in the Park Hotel that claimed the lives of 30, the IDF launced Operation Defenstive Shield.


    2003: In her presidential installation sermon on Rabbi Janet Marder spoke about the need to develop and sustain progressive Judaism in Israel, and about "developing an inner life — about personal prayer, about seeking the Holy One, and quiet hours inside a book, and the solitude that is essential for a life of clarity and integrity."


    2005: The New York Times reported that “as Columbia University awaits a report on charges of intimidation of Jewish students in classes in Middle East studies, a group of graduate students began circulating a petition calling for the resignation of Columbia’s president, Lee Co. Bollinger, because he ‘failed to defend our faculty, thereby nurturing an environment of fear and intimidation throughout the university.’” Columbia’s faculty has been divided about Mr. Bollinger’s performance ever since the showing of a videotape last fall that demonstrated some professors of Middle East studies intimidating Jewish students in classes and on campus.


    2006: With 95 percent of the ballots counted, the election results for the 17th Knesset appeared as follows:

    Kadima: 28 Knesset seats

    Labor: 20

    Shas: 13

    Likud: 11

    Israel Beitenu: 12

    NRP / NU: 9

    Pensioners: 7

    United Torah Judaism: 6

    Meretz: 4

    Balad: 3

    Hadash: 3

    United Arab List: 4

    While it appears that Acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s Kadima Party gained the largest number of seats, it was fewer than had been estimated in earlier polls. Once the results are final, Olmert will probably be asked to form a government. If the total holds at or around thirty seats, Kadima will have to gather another 31 seats to gain the 61 seats necessary to control the Knesset and govern the country.


    2007: The Tel Aviv Museum of Art presents, for the first time in Israel, a retrospective selection of works by Mark Rothko, one of the pillars of the New York School artists, identified in the late 1940s and early ‘50s as the painters of Abstract Expressionism.


    2008: Shabbat Parah, 5768


    2008: The 92nd Street Y presents “Gershwin Brothers’ Dream of a Great American Opera: Porgy and Bess and beyond” the third lecture in a series entitled “Music as Melting Pot Mosaic: The Gershwins.”


    2009: In the 2nd of a four part lecture series marking this special year of Hakhel Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, Chief Rabbi of England a noted author and lecturer delivers a talk on Unity and Redemption - Celebrating Freedom Together.


    2009: Model Matzah Baker takes place at Lubavitch Chabad of Northbrook with participants learning about Passover and enjoying the thrill of baking their own Matzah.


    2009: The Chicago Tribune reviews “The Kindly Ones” a Holocaust novel by Jonathan Littell which the reviewer calls a “helpless narrative” and “missed opportunity.”


    2009: The Times of Londonreported today that the Israel Air Force used unmanned drones to attack secret Iranian convoys in Sudan that were trying to smuggle weapons to Palestinian militant organizations in the Gaza Strip. Defense officials were quoted as saying that the trucks were carrying missiles capable of striking as far as Tel Aviv and the nuclear reactor in Dimona.


    2010: Pro-Palestinian protesters disrupted a performance in London by the acclaimed Jerusalem Quartet. Today’s lunchtime concert, which was being broadcast live on BBC Radio, was taken off the air in the middle due to the disruption.


    2010: In New York, a week long program entitled The New Israeli Cuisine is scheduled to come to an end.


    2010(14th of Nisan, 5770): Fast of the First Born


    2010(14th of Nisan, 5770): In the evening, Jews around the world sit down to the Seder. Have a zissen Pesach


    2010(14thof Nisan, 5770): Seventy-five year old author Alan Isler whose works included The Prince of West End Avenue, a novel “set in a Jewish old person’s home” which won the National Jewish Book Award and the Jewish Quarterly-Wingate Literary Prize.


    2011: “Nora’s Will” and “Precious Life” are scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.


    2011: President Obama nominated Daniel B. Shapiro to serve as the Ambassador of the United States of America to the state of Israel.


    2011: Center for Jewish History and Leo Baeck Institute presented “Romantic Piano Trios: Schumann and Rachmaninoff.”


    2012: The Andy Statman Trio (Andy on mandolin and clarinet, Jim Whitney on bass, Larry Eagle on drums and; percussion) is scheduled to wrap up the season at the Charles Street Synagogue.


    2012: Al Munzer is scheduled to moderate “Spinoza, Superstar of the millennium?” as part of Theatre J’s backstage program.


    2012: Jon Lebowitz was confirmed for a second term as Chairman of the Federal Trade Commission.


    2012: “Footnote” is among the films scheduled to be shown today at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.


    2012(6thof Nisan, 5772): Seventy-four year old “Kenneth Libo, a historian of Jewish immigration who, as a graduate student working for Irving Howe in the 1960s and ’70s, unearthed historical documentation that informed and shaped World of Our Fathers, Mr. Howe’s landmark 1976 history of the East European Jewish migration to America” passed away today. (As reported by Paul Vitello)


    2013: The Ruach Minyan at Adas Israel in Washington, D.C. is scheduled to host a Pesach Shabbat dinner.


    2013: The Eden-Tamir Music Center is scheduled to host a concert “Passion and Fire in the 20th Century.”


    2013(18thof Nisan, 5773): Ninety-one year old linguist John H. Gumperz passed away today.


    2013: The 23rdannual Haifa International Children’s Theatre Festival is scheduled to come to an end.


    2013: The Bernard and Irene Schwartz Classic Film Series is scheduled to present “That Hamilton Woman” the classic directed by Michael Korda


    2013: Forty year old Michael Steinberg, a SAC Capital Advisors portfolio manager who had worked for discredited billionaire Steven Cohen, was arrested by federal agents today.

    2013: A man claiming to represent the hackers behind one of the biggest attacks in Internet history made anti-Jewish statements.


    2014: “Fountains of the Deep: Visions of Noah and the Flood” is scheduled to be shown for the last time in a pop art space ot 462 West Broadway.


    2014: “Labor and Race in Modern Germany,” co-sponsored by the Pears Institute for the Study of Anti-Semitism is scheduled to come to a close today


    2014: “The Zigzag Kid” is scheduled to be shown at the Northern Virginia Jewish Film Festival.


    0 0

    March 30


    1135: On the secular calendar, birthdate of Maimonides (Moses Ben Maimon) in Cordova, Spain. According to Jewish tradition he was born Erev Pesach. "From Moses to Moses there was none like Moses.' This folk saying sums up the greatness of the man. There is not space enough to do justice to his amazing life. Such were his intellectual capabilities that one person said, if you did not know that Maimonides was the name of the man you would think that it was the name of a university. He is most noted for his codification of Jewish Law called the Mishneh Torah (Review of the Torah) and his philosophic work Moreh Nevuchim (Guide To The Perplexed). But for some the true measure of the man is the lesser known Letter of Consolation and Letter on the Sanctification of God. He wrote both of these to reassure the Jews of Fez that to encourage them in their steadfastness to Judaism and to emphasize the fact that God hears our prayers and that our sins do not detract from our good deeds. He wrote a great deal more including medical books. Maimonides refused to "make a profit from the crown of the Torah" so while he served as the leader of the Jewish community in Egypt; he earned a living as a leading physician. Maimonides died in Egypt in December, 1204 or Tevet, 4965. He is buried in Tiberias and many make a point of visiting the grave of this sage. If you do the math this is the 870th anniversary of the birth of Maimonides. This would make this an especially auspicious year for Jews to devote study time to this sage who has influenced non-Jews as well as Jews eight centuries.




    1191: King Philip II of France set sail from Sicily to begin his campaign against Saladin in what is called the Third Crusade. Throughout his reign, Philip persecuted his Jewish subjects by variously holding them hostage for ransom, releasing Christians from paying their debts to the Jews and expelling them so he could seize all of their property and assets.


    1218: Henry III of England enforced the Yellow Badge Edict. The badge was a piece of yellow cloth in the shape of the Tablets of the Law and was worn above the heart by every Jew over the age of seven.


    1296: Edward I sacks Berwick-upon-Tweed, during armed conflict between Scotland and England. This is the same King who expelled the Jews from England in 1290. He expelled them so that he could finance his various wars against the French, the Welch and the Scots


    1432: Birthdate of Mehmed II, Sultan of the Ottoman Empire. Mehmed’s reign was a positive period for the Jews. After he conquered Constantinople in 1453, he allowed Jews from today's Greek Islands and Crete to settle in Istanbul. His declaration of invitation said, in part, "Listen sons of the Hebrew who live in my country...May all of you who desire come to Constantinople and may the rest of your people find here a shelter". After fighting off a crusade led by Jean de Capistrano, Mehmed invited the Ashkenazi Jews of Transylvania and Slovakia to the Ottoman Empire. The invitation may have been as a sign of appreciation for fighting prowess of a Jewish regiment called “the Sons of Moses.” Mehmed ordered that various synagogues that had been damaged by fire should be repaired and several Jews held positions at Court.


    1492: King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella signed a decree expelling the Jews from Spain.


    1526: In Antwerp, Belgium, Emperor Charles V issued a general safe-conduct to the Portuguese "New Christians" and Marranos allowing them to live and work there. Although they still had to live under cover they were safe from the Inquisition.


    1581: Pope Gregory XIII issued a Bull banning the use of Jewish doctors. This did not prevent many popes from using Jews as their personal physicians.


    1690: Alexander VIII issued “Animarum Saluti,” a papal relating to the neophytes in the Indies.

    1739(20th of Adar II): Rabbi Moses Meir Perles of Prague, author of Megillat Sofer passed away


    1773: In Newport, Ezra Stiles, the future President of Yale invited Hebron born Rabbi Chaim Isaac Caregal and Aaron Lopez to his home for a meeting that would be the beginning of strong friendship that lasted for the next 6 months when the Rabbi left town to continue his travels.


    1804: Birthdate of Salomon the Austrian Chazan and composer whose "Shir Tziyyon" a work in two volumes that “established models for the various sections of the musical service—the recitative of the cantor, the choral of the choir, and the responses of the congregation—and  contained music for Sabbaths, festivals, weddings, and funerals which has been introduced into nearly all the synagogues of the world.”


    1856: The Treaty of Paris was signed, ending the Crimean War. One of the stranger aspects of the conflict that most remember for “The Charge of the Light Brigade” was the creation of Mickiewicz’s Jewish Legion. A Polish nobleman and nationalist who was living in exile in Paris at the start of the war, Mickiewicz went to Constantinople where he and Armand Levy organized a military unit made up of Jews from Poland and Palestine. The group was also called the Hussars of Israel. Mickiewicz died before he could lead them into action.


    1801(16th of Nisan, 5561): Second day of Pesach; First day of the Omer


    1804: Birthdate of Austrian Chazan and composer Salomon Sulzer


    1816: Birthdate of Moritz Steinschneider “a Bohemian bibliographer and Orientalist who received his early instruction in Hebrew from his father, Jacob Steinschneider.” He passed away in 1907.


    1820(15thof Nisan, 5580):  As Americans enjoy political season of “good feelings” Jews observe Pesach


    1839(15thof Nisan, 5599): Pesach


    1849: In New York, Isidor Bush published the first edition of Israel’s Herald, “the first Jewish weekly in the United States” that folded after only 3 months.


    1856: Birthdate Charles Waldstein, the native of New York who became a leading Anglo-American archaeologist who was knighted in 1912 and changed his name to Walston in 1918 so he became known as Sir Charles Walston, husband of Florence Seligman.


    1856: The attempts of the Turkish sultan, Abed Almagid, to ally his kingdom with the west came to fruition today when the Ottoman Empire “was officially included among the European family nations’ today during the Congress of Paris.  Abed Almagid had showed his support for the cause of the Jews when he issued a decree in 1840 absolving the Jews of Rhodes from the charges of having killed a Christian child so his blood could be used in making matzah.


    1858: Hyman Lipman, a Philadelphia Jew patented the lead pencil. Lipman was a printer who also played a key role in the early development of the postal card.


    1862: In Brooklyn, Congregation Beth Elohim dedicated its new facility on Pearl Street which gave rise to its nickname “the Pearl street Synagouge.”


    1863: During the Civil War, President Lincoln issued a proclamation proclaiming Thursday, April 30, 1863 as a National Day of Fasting.


    1864: Birthdate of German- born sociologist Franz Oppenheimer. After a distinguished career in Germany, Oppenheimer passed away as a refugee in Los Angeles in 1943.


    1873(2ndof Nisan. 5633): Count Abraham Camondo passed away. Born in Istanbul, he “was a Jewish Ottoman-Italian financier and philanthropist and the patriarch of the Camondo family.”

    1877(16th of Nisan, 5637): Second Day of Pesach; 1st day of the Omer


    1879: “Egyptian Influence on Hebrew Names” published today described the work of Dr. Brugsh that says there is no Hebrew derivation for the names Moses, Aaron or Miriam but they do contain Egyptian roots. Also, the name Pinchas (the famed slayer in the Book of Numbers) comes from an Egyptian term for “the Negro” which was applied to dark-skinned men in Egypt


    1880: It was reported today that a new opera, “The Queen of Sheba” by Goldmark has been successfully performed in several German cities.


    1881: In Leadville, CO, the liquor business owned by the Schloss family was determined to have sustained $250 in damages in a fire that began last night.


    1882: Birthdate of Austrian-born English psychoanalyst and child psychologist Melanie Klein. Klein developed methods of play technique and play therapy in analyzing and treating child patients. She passed away in 1960.


    1883: Temple Emanu-El-Beth Sholom, Westmount, a Reform synagogue in Westmount, Quebec, the oldest “Liberal” or “Reform” synagogue in Canada, was incorporated today.


    1890: Ida Levy of New York will marry Henry Naftal of Asbury Park today.


    1890: Authorities concluded that Morris Eising, German-Jewish immigrant who had been found dead in his rooming house had died by his own hand.  Apparently he was despondent over the loss of his job which meant he could not send money back to his wife in Bavaria.


    1890: This morning Rabbi Gustav Gottheil will officiate at the funeral Emanuel Bernheimer, “one of the owners of the Lion Brewery” and one of the oldest brewers living in New York.  Born in 1817, he learned his craft in his native Germany before coming to the United States in 1844.  In 1850 he and August Schmid formed the Constanz Brewery and in 1860 they took over and enlarged the Lion Brewery.  Bernheimer was one of the oldest member of Temple Emanu El and a patron of several charities including Mount Sinai Hospital, the Hebrew Orphan Asylum and the Montefiore Home for Chronic Invalids. After the funeral, Dr. Silverman will officiate at the burial in the Salem Field Cemetery.


    1890: “The Theatrical Week” published today provides highlights of current and upcoming productions including  “The Shatchen,” a new play by Charles Dickson and Harry Dobbin whose protagonist is Myer Petooksy  a peddler who also works as “an unlicensed marriage broker.”


    1891: “New Books” published today contains a complete review of The Persecution of the Jews in Russia that includes an “appendix containing a summary of special restrice laws, a map showing the pale of Jewish settlements.”


    1892: It was reported today that Prague after police quelled a riot by a mob upset by the Imperial authority’s refusal to allow a celebration of the anniversary birth of a medieval educational reformer, John Comenius.  When the rioters were thwarted by authorities, they cried “Let’s make for the Jews!” followed by calls to head for the Jewish quarter where they could “vent their fury on the inoffensive Hebrews.” The mounted policemen wanted an end to the rioters and drove them from the streets including those in the Jewish quarter. (Yes, this mindless anti-Semitic attack took place in the supposedly civilized confines Prague.  The anti-Semitic outburst that consumed Paris during the Dreyfus affair was really not such an aberration after all.)


    1892: A cable was received today in Toronto from London describing the death of sixty nine year old Canadian Jew Mark Samuel


    1895: Birthdate of Pierre Péteul, who as the Capuchin Franciscan friar Père Marie-Benoît saved approximately 4,000 Jews from the Shoah.  He was was honored with the Medal of the Righteous among the Nations and was known as Père des juifs  (Father of the Jews.


    1896(16th of Nisan, 5656): Second Day of Pesach; First Day of the Omer


    1896(16th of Nisan, 5656): Citizens are required to return their census papers in London. While most citizens are required to return their census papers today in London, the Jews have been given an extension and do not have to return them until tomorrow since today is the second day of Passover and the English respect the need to observe the holiday.


    1896(16th of Nisan, 5656): Rabbi Aaron Wise passed away. Born in Hungary in 1844, Wise was educated in the Talmudic schools of Hungary, including the seminary at Eisenstadt, where he studied under Dr. Hildesheimer. Later he attended the universities of Leipzig and Halle, receiving his doctorate at the latter institution. He assisted Bernard Fischer in revising the Buxtorf lexicon, and was for several years a director of schools in his native town. He was for a time identified with the Haredi party in Hungary, acting as secretary to the organization Shomere ha-Datt, and editing a Judaeo-German weekly in its support. In 1874 Wise emigrated to the United States, and became rabbi of Congregation Baith Israel in Brooklyn; two years later he was appointed rabbi of Temple Rodeph Shalom in New York, which office he held until his death. Wise was the author of Beth Aharon, a religious school handbook; and he compiled a prayer-book for the use of his congregation. He was for some time editor of the Jewish Herald of New York, and of the Boston Hebrew Observer; and he contributed to the yearbooks of the Jewish Ministers' Association of America, as well as to other periodical publications. He was one of the founders of the Jewish Theological Seminary, and the first vice-president of its advisory board of ministers. Wise founded the Rodeph Shalom Sisterhood of Personal Service, which established the Aaron Wise Industrial School in his memory. He was the son of Chief Rabbi Joseph Hirsch Weiss, and father of Rabbi Stephen Samuel Wise.


    1897: Colonel Goldsmid asks Herzl to stay away from the Zionist Congress in order to prevent a split in the ranks of the Hovevei Zion.


    1897: Dr. Adler, Chief Rabbi of Great Britain, and Moritz Güdemann, Chief Rabbi of Vienna, led anti-Zionist attacks. They were known as the "Protestrabbiner" - "Protest Rabbis".


    1897: “In Memory of General Grant” published today described the units that will be marching in the parade to honor the late President and Civil War hero including a contingent from the Hebrew Orphan Asylum Cadets under the command of Major Martin Cohen and Adjutant Max Saltzman.


    1898: Liebe Blond and her four children who had arrived in the United States were put on a ship bound for Europe after authorities refused to let her husband who has been working here see her or listen to his entreaties to let them stay in the United States.


    1899(19th of Nisan): Rabbi Hayyim Leib Tiktinski, head of the Mir Yeshivah for 49 years passed away


    1899: It was reported today that when Baron Hirsch passed away he left a fortune estimated at 125 million dollars, most of which was tied to railroad companies.  Both before and after his death, Hirsch had given large sums to the poor including 10 million dollars for the Jewish Colonization Association of the United States.


    1899: It was reported today that since the death of her husband, Baroness Hirsch has been very generous in providing aid to the poor including $1,500,000 to the need of Paris and an even large amount to the Educational Alliance which assists the Russian Jews.


    1899: Birthdate of movie producer Irving Thalberg. Thalberg was an early pioneer in the film industry. His brief career (he died of pneumonia at the age of 37) left such a mark on the world of cinema that a year after his death the Academy of Motion Picture Artists created a special award in his name that is given annually at the Oscar Presentations. Thalberg was the inspirations for F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel, The Last Tycoon. In explaining why his name did not appear in the film credits, Thalberg said, “if you’re in a position to give yourself credit, you don’t need it.”


    1900: Birthdate of Charles A. Robinson, Jr. the Professor of Classic at Brown University who married Celia Sachs, the daughter of art historian Paul J. Sachs who played a key role in planning to save and retrieve works of art in World War II.


    1903: Birthdate of Sol C Siegel. This journalist turned movie producer helped to create such hits as High Society, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Three Coins In A Fountain and a Letter to Three Wives. These last two films both were nominated for Oscar’s as Best Picture. He also produced two very entertaining “dark comedies,” No Way to Treat a Lady and Alvarez Kelly.


    1903: As part of negotiations to secure land for a Jewish homeland, Carton de Wiart talked to a lawyer with the Egyptian government who recommends that the concession should be in the form of a lease, not a freehold. Herzl demands a 99-year lease.


    1904: It was reported today that the children of the late Mayer Lehman, who was a Director of Mount Sinai Hospital for 19 years, have given $93,000 to cover the cost of constructing the Dispensary Building which is to be dedicated in memory of their father.


    1904(14th of Nisan, 5664): At Ellis Island, three hundred Jewish immigrants who “have been detained while awaiting inspection” held a Seder on the first night of Passover. The meal was served on dishes that were brand new having been brought straight from the storeroom. All of the utensils used in the kitchen were also brand new and the meal was prepared under the supervision of the Jewish immigrants. The meal included chicken soup, roast goose, apple sauce, mashed potatoes, black tea, oranges and, of course, Matzah and ground horseradish.


    1904: Alice Weinberg, the twelve year old daughter of Max Weinberg was reported missing by her father. The girl had gone to play with her friends this morning while her family prepared for tonight’s Seder. The family called off its Passover celebration so it could search for Alice.


    1907(15thof Nisan, 5667): Pesach


    1909(8th of Nisan, 5669): Mrs. Michla Shilotzdky passed away this morning at the age of 106. The cause of death was pneumonia. Mrs. Esther Davis, 115 years old; Mrs. Rosei Aaronwald, 108 years old; and Mendel Diamond, 107 years old were at her bedside at the Daughters of Jacob Home in New York.


    1909: Official opening of the Queensboro Bridge which two Jewish boys from Queens named Simon and Garfunkel would immortalize in the 1960’s hit "The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy)"


    1910: The Mississippi Legislature founds The University of Southern Mississippi at Hattiesburg, Mississippi. At the time of the founding of USM, there was a small Jewish population in Hattiesburg including Maurice Dreyfus who operated a sawmill and Frank Rubenstein who opened a department store called “The Hub.”


    1915(15thof Nisan, 5675): Pesach


    1919: Birthdate of Oscar Benjamin “Ossie” Schectman the Queens born son of Jewish immigrants who won the NIT while playing basketball for Long Island University and “is credited with having scored the first basket in what became the National Basketball Association.


    1920: A British soldier digging a trench in Syria uncovered ruins of Dura Europus which would include the discovery a synagogue that dated back to 244 “making it one of the oldest synagogues in the world.

    1920: In Baranovichi, Poland, Brakha née Sokolovsky and Shraga (Feivel) Tunkel gave birth to Yaakov Tunkel who would gain fame as Yaakov Banai, a leader of Lehi also known as the Stern Gang.


    1921: Birthdate of Clemens Kalischer, the German born American photographer whose skill raises the question “What is there about Jews and cameras?”


    1921: Churchill visits Tel Aviv where he delivers a speech praising what the Jews have accomplished in the last twelve years since the city was first founded.


    1921: Winston Churchill visits the “39 year old agricultural colony of Rishon le-Zion where he spoke approvingly of the accomplishments of the Zionists and the positive affect their activities have had on the surrounding Arab population.


    1921: British Colonial Secretary Winston Churchill completes his fact finding trip to Palestine and leaves Jerusalem for Egypt.


    1925: Time magazine published the following account Rabbi Solomon Goldman’s attempt to make changes at his synagogue in Cleveland, Ohio.


    In spite of generations of prophets and reformers, Jewish ritual with all its shrilly "orthodox" punctilio has lived with few radical changes. In Cleveland, Ohio, some months ago, Rabbi Solomon Goldman, spiritual head of the local "Jewish Center," proposed to rid his congregation of some bits of orthodoxy. In particular, he decided that men and women might sit in the same pews. Here was reform indeed! Not since Solomon built his great temple had the thoroughly orthodox Jewess sat with the thoroughly orthodox Jew at worship. She had been relegated to one side of the temple, or to the gallery, or to a seat in the rear behind a curtain. It was custom not merely Jewish, but Pan-Asiatic. Muhammadan women do not squat with men folk in the pit of the Mosque. And even in the new Christian Churches in China, Japan and elsewhere, women have always, until very recently, sat in a special section railed or curtained off for them. Now Rabbi Goldman of Cleveland has changed all this in his congregation. At once A. A. Katz, one of Rabbi Goldman's flock, cited him to appear before the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of America to answer for his ecclesiastical liberality. Rabbi Goldman refused to appear. In this, he was supported by his congregation. When the week ended, it was still the turn of the Jewish Fundamentalists to move. It should be noted that departure from Jewish orthodoxy is not equivalent to becoming a Reformed Jew. The latter class, whose most prominent leader is Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, disregards many customs from which Rabbi Goldman is not likely to depart, among which are:

    Blessing - At each service, men are called up before the congregation to say a blessing before and after portions of the Torah, which is read— on all Sabbaths and holidays. In congregations where Jewish customs are meticulously observed, this privilege is auctioned off to the highest bidder.

    Music - No instrumentation is permitted. Weird half-shouted chants, led by a slippered cantor, are the only melodies.

    Costume - Both men and women must wear hats. The enthusiastically orthodox wear skullcaps, shawls. Men also wear the talis, a fringed scarf, draped over the shoulders.


    1926(15thof Nisan, 5686): Pesach


    1926: Birthdate Thomas Guinzburg, an editor and publisher who helped create The Paris Review, and who later became president of Viking Press, the publishing house founded by his father,


    1928: While serving in the final year of her term as President of Hadassah Irma Levy Lindheim the American women's Zionist organization, declared that the administration of the ZOA was "not an effective instrument for the achievement of world Zionist aims for the up-building of Palestine." In so doing, she asserted her opposition to the leadership of ZOA President Louis Lipsky. Although Lindheim was careful to note that she spoke as an individual and that Hadassah had no quarrel with the World Zionist Organization led by Chaim Weizmann, she came under attack for her comments from both ZOA leadership and other Hadassah members. During her presidency, Hadassah was in frequent conflict with the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA), which wanted to control and dispense the funds raised from the Hadassah membership. The Hadassah-ZOA conflict had roots dating back to 1918, when Hadassah (founded in 1912) first joined the umbrella organization, giving up some of its organizational authority. Seven members of the Hadassah board had been expelled in 1920 when the organization's Central Committee refused to raise money for the ZOA fund Keren Hayesod. Despite Hadassah's loss of autonomy, the organization's membership steadily increased even as general ZOA membership declined.


    1928: Birthdate of American Jewish author Carl Solomon.


    1929: It was reported today that Hadassah has acquired a portrait of Nathan Straus painted by Eward Salzan which will be hung in the Straus Health Center currently under construction in Tel Aviv.


    1930: Birthdate of Gene Selznick, the native of Los Angeles who helped to make volleyball the popular sport in southern California.,0,4439222.story#axzz2x2Jxl7y2



    1930: It was reported today that if the government’s case against New York’s Century Club ever reaches the Supreme Court on appeal, Justice Benjamin Cardozo would be one of the one the judges who would have to recuse himself because he had been a member of the exclusive New York social organization.


    1930: A citrus tree was planted on the 140 acre plot purchased in 1926 under the direction of Mrs. Ada Maimon marking the official founding Ayanot, a women’s farm that took its name from the two springs located on the acreage. For the next two years, the women workers lived in Ness Ziona and came to Ayanot every day to cultivate the soil. In 1932, Ada Maiomon and ten girls would being living on a cowshed on the property.


    1932: Birthdate of A. J. (Arie) Zuckerman, Dean of the Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine. Zuckerman’s area of expertise is the study of hepatitis.


    1938: Mrs. Joseph Stroock, a member of the national Youth Aliyah committee of Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America announced that a total of $20,000 was contributed last night to the Youth Aliyah (immigration) fund of Hadassah to remove children from Austria as well as Germany and Poland.

    1940: At today’s meeting of its stockholders, The Workers Bank, Ltd. Of Tel Aviv, the central bank of the cooperatives in Palestine, declared the tenth annual dividend of 4 per cent on its common stock.


    1942: After being open for only two weeks, the Belzac Concentration Camp has processed 15,000 Jews most of whom were from the Liviv Ghetto.


    1944: Moshe Sertok, the head of the international department of the Jewish Agency, asked Oliver Stanley, the Colonial Secretary to allow any Jew reaching Istanbul from Nazi-occupied Europe to be admitted to Palestine.


    1947: Benjamin Teller, who is managing the Hapoel’s American Tour announced today that the soccer team is scheduled to fly out of Tel Aviv on April 6 and arrive in New York on April 10.


    1947: The Rabbinical Council of Palestine called on the terrorists to halt their actions and “issued a strong denunciation of terrorism as ‘completely contrary to Jewish religious feeling.’”


    1947: The 18 Americans who made up most of the crew of the SS Ben Hecht, formerly the Abril, boarded the Marine Carp, an American ship headed for New York. The British had declined to press charges against the crew.


    1945(16th of Nisan, 5705): SS Sergeant Adolf Storms reportedly shot “a Jew who could no longer walk during a forced March in from Deutsch Shuetzenn to the village of Hartberg.”


    1945(16th of Nisan, 5705):Nine women tried to escape from Ravenbruck. They were caught and executed.


    1949: Yigal Yadin and Walter Eytan returned to King Abdullah’s villa at Shuneh to try and reach final armistice terms with the Jordanians.


    1950(12th of Nisan, 5710): Seventy-seven year old Léon Blum French, the former French premier, passed away. Leon Blum was born in Paris, France, on April 9, 1872. The son of Jewish parents, he studied law at the Sorbonne. He became active in politics as result of the Dreyfus Affair. Blum became a leader of the Socialist Part. He was part of a group of left-wing parties in France known as the Popular Front that opposed Hitler in the 1930's. As leader of the Popular Front and head of the Socialist Party, Blum became Prime Minister of France, the first Jew to hold that position in the history of France. Blum lost his post before the outbreak of the war over the issue of the Spanish Civil War. After the Germans invaded France, Blum was arrested by the Petain Government which tried him along with other officials of the Third Republic on charges of betraying France. He was found guilty in 1942 and held by the Germans until 1945. Blum briefly returned to public life after the war

    For more see Leon Blum: From Poet to Premier by Richard Stokes



    1951: Neve Shalom, a new synagogue, was dedicated in Istanbul,. The building holds more than 1,000 people, and the 400,000 Lira it cost to be built was raised by the Jewish community of Galata, Pera, and Chichli.


    1953(14th of Nisan, 5713): Ta'anit Bechorot


    1953(14th of Nisan): Yiddish novelist and poet Abraham Reisen passed away


    1953: Albert Einstein announced his revised unified field theory.


    1957: "The Libyan government began to enforce a law forbidding any individual or corporation in Libya 'to make personally or indirectly an agreement of any nature whatsoever with institutions or persons residing in Israel.' The penalty was eight years in prison and a heavy fine."


    1957: Birthdate of Paul Reiser. The New York born actor’s credits include “My 2 Dads,” “”Diner, “Aliens” and “Mad About You.”


    1958: Syrian forces attack Israelis at Lake Hula


    1962: “Delousing of Harry Bogen” published today reviewed “I Can Get It for You Wholesale” starring Elliot Gould as Harry Bogen and introducing Barbra Streisand as Miss Marmel-stein.,33009,895977,00.html


    1965: In Los Angeles “Mission Impossible” stars Martin Landau and Barbara Bain gave birth to actress Juliet Rose Landau


    1972(15thof Nisan 5732): Pesach


    1973: Birthdate of Adam Michael Goldstein, the native of Philadelphia known as DJ AM who found fame and fortune in Los Angeles.


    1975: Agudas Achim, the Orthodox congregation in Little Rock, AR, breaks ground for its new building which is located in western Little Rock.


    1976: Israeli Arabs hold their first Land Day which was public held a protest strike against the expropriation of lands in the Galilee "for purposes of security and settlement."


    1976: Five Israeli Arabs were killed by security forces during mass protests in Nazareth, Israel. As a result of this deadly incident congregants of Mishkan Israel, a synagogue in New Haven, raised $10,000 so that their rabbi, Bruce M. Cohen, could go to Israel to promote peace. Three weeks later, while giving a speech in Jerusalem, Rabbi Cohen was approached by a young Israeli Arab, Farhat Agbaria, who shared his dream. Together they founded Interns for Peace.


    1976: The first season of “One Day At A Time” starring Bonnie Franklin ended tonight.


    1980: Yakov Kreizberg made one of his first public appearances as conductor today, when he led an orchestra at the Marble Collegiate Church in a performance of Haydn's Symphony no. 88.


    1994: The two terrorists who attacked Yitzhak Rothenberg, age 70, of Petah Tikva with axes yesterday were arrested today.


    1997: The New York Times includes a review of "The Vanishing American Jew: In Search of Jewish Identity for the Next Century" by Alan M. Dershowitz


    2000: At least 23 Israeli and Palestinian Arabs are injured in clashes with Israeli security forces during an annual day of protests.


    2002(17thof Nisan, 5762):Border Policeman Sgt.-Maj. Constantine Danilov, 23, of Or Akiva was shot and killed in Baka al-Garbiyeh, during an exchange of fire with two Palestinians trying to cross into Israel to carry out a suicide attack. The Fatah Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades claimed responsibility.


    2002: Joelle Fiasham, a member of the CPUSA, was among those who endorsed the call today for a national holiday honoring Cesar Chavez.


    2003: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of interest to Jewish readers including "The New Face of War: How War Will Be Fought in the 21st Century" by Bruce Berkowitz and the newly released paperback edition of SOROS: The Life and Times of a Messianic Billionaire by Michael T. Kaufman.


    2003: Secretary of State Colin Powell addresses the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee’s Policy Conference


    2005: Release date of “Live and Become” a French film about an Ethiopian Christian boy who disguieses himself as a Jew to escape to Israel was directed by Romanian born Jewish director Radu Mihăileanu


    2005: Eli Aflalo began serving as Deputy Minister of Industry, Trade and Labor.


    2005: Ruhama Avraham, a member of Kadima began serving as Deputy Internal Affairs Minister.


    2006(1st of Nisan, 5766): Three Israelis were killed when a Palestinian suicide bomber detonated explosives in a car after nightfall at the entrance to the West Bank settlement of Kedumim, located west of Nablus.The vehicle blew up around 9:45 P.M. next to the Kedumim gas station. Security forces sealed roads in the area immediately in the wake of the attack. A new group linked to Fatah, the party headed by Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, claimed responsibility for the attack. The group, from the Balata refugee camp in nearby Nablus, called itself Kateb al-Shahid Chamuda and identified the bomber as Mahmoud Masharka, 24, from the West Bank city of Hebron. Al-Manar TV in Lebanon broadcast a claim of responsibility from the Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, a violent offshoot of Fatah. The three Israeli casualties had apparently picked up the suicide bomber, who was likely dressed as an observant Jew, as he was hitchhiking on the road. He then exploded in their car. It is not clear if the terrorist got in the car at the entrance to Kedumim or rode with the Israeli victims to Kedumim from another location. A rescue service official said medics could not approach the car, because it was still on fire nearly an hour after the blast. The blast scattered pieces of the car across a wide area. Rafaela Segal, who lives in Kedumim, said she heard the blast from her house, from where she can see the gas station. "I saw thick smoke rising from the gas station and at first I thought the gas station was on fire," she said. "Now all the roads are closed except for the emergency vehicles. The smoke has reached my windows," she told Israel Radio more than an hour after the blast. "Security forces are searching the area. "The Prime Ministers' Office blamed the Palestinian Authority for the attack, PMO official David Baker told Haaretz. "The Palestinian Authority continues to do nothing to prevent terror against Israelis. There are currently scores of terrorist alerts concerning attacks against Israelis in the works," said Baker. "The Palestinian Authority continues to be fertile ground for terrorist attacks, most notably because of the PA's aversion to taking any necessary steps to prevent terror," he added. The last suicide bombing in the West Bank was December 29, 2005, at an Israel Defense Forces checkpoint. An IDF soldier and two Palestinians were killed in addition to the bomber. This was the first suicide bombing claimed by a group other than Islamic Jihad since a cease-fire was declared in February 2005


    2006: Lisa Kron's sparkling autobiographical play "Well” opened on Broadway when it premiered tonight at the Longacre Theater.


    2006: Haaretz reported on how a piece of a Torah scroll passed from a former Nazi offer to a “holy man.” Rabbi Yitzchak Dovid Grossman was sitting yesterday in his home in Migdal Ha'emek and touching, for the umpteenth time, the parchment cut over 60 years ago from a Torah scroll in an Eastern European synagogue. Although the piece of parchment has been in his possession for several days, apparently it is still a source of great excitement for him. This parchment was cut by an officer in the German air force, the Luftwaffe, during World War II, from a Torah scroll; he used it as a cover for his officer's ID document. Now it has come into the hands of the rabbi of Migdal Ha'emek, head of the Migdal Ohr youth village and an Israel Prize laureate. Rabbi Grossman says Moti Dotan, the head of the Lower Galilee Regional Council, recently came to his house with a notebook in hand. Dotan had returned from a ceremony in honor of the 25th anniversary of the twin cities pact between the regional council and the Hanover district in Germany. Dotan said that at the conclusion of a festive evening, a member of the Hanover district council approached him and asked to speak to him. "My father, Werner Herzig, died a few weeks ago," said the man. "Before his death he said he wanted to speak to me, and he told me he had participated in the war and been involved in crimes. 'It's important for me to tell you this, because today there are Holocaust deniers,' [said the Herzig senior]." Dotan says Herzig added that his father told him he had participated in the burning of a synagogue on the Russian front. According to Dotan, Herzig junior gave him the ID document and asked him to find a holy man in the Lower Galilee and give it to him. "I thought that Rabbi Grossman did holy work, and he was the most suitable person to receive the notebook," says Dotan. "When I came to him and gave him the document, I told him the story, he held the parchment and began to cry," recalls Dotan. He says that Rabbi Grossman symbolizes all that is good in Judaism, and will make proper use of the item. Rabbi Grossman turns over the piece of parchment and reads from the text. The parchment is from the book of Deuteronomy, from the weekly portion "Ki Tavo." The rabbi reads: "...and distress wherewith thy enemy shall distress thee in thy gates ... then the Lord will make thy plagues remarkable, and the plagues of thy offspring, even great plagues, and of long continuance, and severe sicknesses, and of long continuance ... also every sickness and every plague which is not written in the book of this Torah, them will the Lord bring upon thee, until thou art destroyed. And you shall be left few in number, whereas you were as the stars of the heaven for multitude" (Deuteronomy 28, 57-62). The rabbi is convinced that this is a "supreme message, with personal supervision. After 60 years, this notebook arrives in Israel, wrapped in these words of reproof, and is calling on us 'to awaken.' After all, the German could have cut the parchment from other books, from any of the Five Books of Moses, and he specifically cut out the section that speaks of redemption," said the rabbi. In recent days, Rabbi Grossman has shown the notebook to young people whom he met in the city, and according to him, it is causing a great deal of excitement. "It's a tangible thing, which you can see with your own eyes. You can see here the embodiment of evil, how after the destruction of a synagogue, this man had the daring to enter and to cut from the Torah scroll, only because he thought that the parchment was a suitable way to preserve his document." The rabbi promises to visit schools and young people with the notebook and to show it to them.


    2008: In Jerusalem, as part of the Contemporary Music Concert at the Jerusalem Music Centre The Israeli Contemporary Players perform music by Josef Bardanashvili, Tristan Murail and Arnold Schoenberg.


    2008: The Sunday New York Times featured a review of "The End of the Jews" by Adam Mansbach.


    2008: In Washington, D.C., Aaron David Miller, a 20-year veteran of the State Department (most recently as the senior advisor for Arab-Israeli negotiations), discusses his new book, The Much Too Promised Land: America's Elusive Search for Arab-Israeli Peace at Politics and Prose Bookstore.


    2008: Wolfie Cohen's Rascal House, a Jewish delicatessen located at the intersection of 172nd Street and Collins Avenue in Sunny Isles Beach, Florida, which opened in 1954 and closed today. Sporting a large neon sign in the front, the building was designed in the 1950s "MIMO" style (Miami Modern) which is common to much of the northern precincts of the Miami-area beaches. The neon sign makes a brief appearance at the beginning of the video for "Night Fever" by the Bee Gees. Wolfie Cohen's Rascal House was not the same as the original Wolfie's, another famous Jewish deli and restaurant in Miami Beach, also started by Wolfie Cohen, on the corner of 21st Street and Collins Avenue (closer to South Beach). For several years, Wolfie's featured a sign that read "The only thing that needs to come dressed is our chickens!" (meaning dining was casual, not clothing optional). That restaurant closed in 2001. Cohen also founded a third Jewish deli, Pumpernik's, at 67th Street and Collins Avenue, which also closed. (Personal note: One of the great joys of my childhood was eating at Wolfie's and Pumperniks - escpecially the latter. It was billed as the home of the pumpernickel bagel which for lovers of dark bread was indeed a delight)


    2009: Reuven Rivlin was chosen to serve as the Speaker of the Knesset when he got 90 out of the 120 possible votes.


    2009: Yeshiva University hosts the first day of the Israel and India International Conference styled"A Relationship Comes of Age" which includes the following presenters: Nathan Katz (Florida International University), Amit Kapoor (Management Development Institute, India), Efraim Inbar (Bar-Ilan University), Shlomo Mor-Yosef (Hadassah Medical Organization), Maina Chawla Sing (University of Delhi), P R Kumaraswamy (Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi), Gadi Ariav (Tel Aviv University).


    2009(5th of Nisan, 5769): Fifty-two year old Frank Stein, 'the face of Australian Jewry in Israel passed away today. (As reported by Raphael Ahren)


    2010: 80th anniversary of the founding of Ayanot


    2010(15th of Nisan, 5770): First Day of Pesach


    2010: A Chabad house in Budapest was stoned during a Passover Seder. The home of Rabbi Shmuel Raskin was stoned twice during the seder on tonight, according to Israel Radio. Police came after the first incident, and the second incident reportedly took place after the police left. The incident comes amid an election campaign in Hungary some have described as worrisome due to the expected rise of the far-right Jobbik party. No suspects were reported arrested in the attack.


    2011: “The Matchmaker” and “Seven Minutes in Heaven” are two of the movies scheduled to be shown at the Hartford Jewish Film Festival.


    2011:”Norman Mailer: The American” and “The Klezmatics: On Holy Ground” are two of the films scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.

    2011: A memorial service for George Einstein is scheduled to be held at the Sandestin Beach Club in Sandestin Resort, Fl.


    2011: Today the World Jewish Congress lauded Colombia’s decision not to recognize a Palestinian state, saying it showed courage in the face of pressure from neighboring countries.


    2011: “Israel Air Force jets struck a group of Palestinian militants in southern Gaza, killing one gunman and wounding another as they rode a motorcycle. The Israel Defense Forces confirmed carrying out the dawn strike, saying it targeted Palestinians who had launched a short-range rocket across the border yesterday. No one was hurt in that attack, which followed a surge in fighting around Gaza this month.”

    2012: One World One People, an exhibit of the works of renowned photographer Arnold Newman, is scheduled to come to an end at the Jewish Museum of Milwaukee.


    2012: “The Kid With a Bike,” “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen” and “Footnote” are scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Film Festival.


    2012: Shabbos Zingt - A Bay Area Yiddish ensemble that has created a new kind of Shabbos service, with Yiddish melodies and a Klezmer feel – is scheduled to appear at Shir Hadash in San Francisco.


    2013: In Coralville, Agudas Achim is scheduled to host Shabbat Yeladim


    2013:  An ensemble consisting of violinists Anna Ioffe and Alina Keitlin and harpsichordist Natilie Rosenberg is scheduled to perform at the Edin-Tamir Music Center.


    2013: "The ( * ) Inn”, an early touchstone for experimental theater in Yiddish, is scheduled to be performed at the Abrons Arts Center in New York.


    2013:Natural gas flow from the Tamar natural gas field began flowing this afternoon


    2013: In Memphis, TN “Paul Goldenberg, the burly former cop who runs the Secure Community Network, the security arm of the national Jewish community” has played a key role with the Jewish community including Cantor Rick Kampf in preparing for today’s scheduled rally by the KKK. (As reported by JTA)



    2014: The musical “If/Then” starring Idina Menzel as “Elizabeth” is scheduled to official open on Broadway at the Richard Rogers Theatre.


    2014: “Quality Balls: The David Steinberg Story” is scheduled to be shown on the last night of the Northern Virginia Jewish Film Festival.


    2014: “The Sturgeon Queens” is scheduled to be shown at the Pittsburg Jewish Film Festival and the New Jersey Film Festival.


    2014: The 6thannual Gesher Jewish Day School Used Book Sale is scheduled to come to an end in Fairfax, VA.


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    March 31

    1084: Henry IV, who had been embroiled in a conflict with the Papacy, was crowned Emperor by Clement III, called by some an anti-Pope. Within six years after this second coronation, Henry granted the Jewish community of Worms , the privileges of free commerce and exemption from taxation” and “designating the Jews as ‘subjects of his treasury,’”  placing  “them under his immediate protection, so that neither royal nor episcopal functionaries could exercise any jurisdiction over them” including the power of taxation.

    1146: Bernard of Clairvaux preaches his famous sermon in a field at Vézelay, urging the necessity of a Second Crusade. Louis VII is present, and joins the Crusade. Unlike the First Crusade, the Second Crusade is led by two monarchs - Louis VII of France and Conrad III of Germany. The “German connection” led to more suffering for the Jews of the Rhineland. Thanks to the incitement by one monk, the town of Wurburg was demolished during the massacres of Jews living along the Rhine River. As had happened during the First Crusade, the Christian warriors decided to slaughter the Infidels in their midst as they moved to free the Holy Land from the Infidels. The growing class of Christian merchants benefited from the violence since the destruction of the Jewish community destroyed their Jewish competitors. All Christians did not engage in this anti-Semitic behavior. Bernard himself tried to protect the Jewish population. His message of Crusade was heard. His message concerning the Jews was not.

    1283: Massacre of the Jews of Mayence in Germany.

    1381: During a popular uprising in France known as The Revolt of the Maillotins, Jews in France were murdered and their property plundered for next three or four days. The regent exercising royal power for the youthful Charles VI was unable to save the Jews or gain them indemnification for their loss.

    1492: Isabella I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon issued the Alhambra Decree or Edict of Expulsion, ordering her 150,000 Jewish subjects to convert to Christianity or face expulsion. Jews, unlike conversos and Marranos, were not subject to the Inquisition. So, the Church leveled a ritual murder accusation against them in Granada and was thus was able to call for the expulsion of both Jews as well as Marranos from Spain. The Marranos themselves were accused of complicity in the case so both groups were ordered to leave within four months. Torquemada, the director of the Inquisition (and incidentally of Jewish descent), defended this against Don Isaac Abarbanel. The edict was passed, and over fifteen thousand Jews had to flee - some to the Province of Aragon and others, like Abarbanel, to Naples. Still others found temporary sanctuary in Portugal.

    1547: Henry II succeeded his father as King of France on his 28th birthday. Obadiah ben Jacob Sforno, the Italian Rabbi dedicated is commentaries on “The Song of Songs” and “Ecclesiastes” to the French monarch.

    1596: Birthdate of Rene Descartes, the French mathematician and philosopher who was one of the two main sources from which Spinoza derived his view of the world.

    1647: Ralph Cudworth who had been Professor of Hebrew at Cambridge since 1645 and who “maintained an extensive correspondence” with Isaac Abenda the hakam of the Spanish Portuguese Synagogue in London preached a sermon in the House of Commons that advocated “principles of religious toleration and charity.”

    1648: In an attempt to explain the drop off in the production of vanilla, Commander Beekman of Essequibo and Pomeroon wrote the following letter to his superiors in Amsterdam today. “The Jew Salomon de la Roche having died some 8 to 9 months ago, the trade in vanilla has come to an end, since no one here knows how to prepare it, so as to develop proper aroma and keep it from spoiling. I have not heard of any this whole year. Little is found here. Most of it is found in Pomeroon, whither this Jew frequently traveled, and he sometimes used to make me a present of a little. In navigating along the river, I have sometimes seen some on the trees and picked with my own hands, and it was prepared by the Jew....I shall do my best to obtain for the company as much as shall be feasible, but I am afraid it will spoil, since I do not know how to prepare it.” [The letter is illustrative of the vital role Jews played in the production of vanilla.]

    1745: The Jews of Prague were exiled.

    1781: Today “the Hungarian government issued a decree known as the Systematica gentis Judaicae regulatio, which wiped out at one stroke the decrees that had oppressed the Jews for centuries. The royal free towns, except the mining-towns, were opened to the Jews, who were allowed to settle at leisure throughout the country. The regulatio decreed that the legal documents of the Jews should no longer be composed in Hebrew, or in Yiddish, but in Latin, German, and Hungarian, the languages used in the country at the time, and which the young Jews were required to learn within two years.”

    1783: Emperor Joseph II allowed the Jews to live in so-called "Royal Cities" including Pest, which would later be the “Pest” in Budapest. By 1787 81,000 Jews would be living in Hungary. The Hungarian Jewish community would grow large and prosper but would all but perish in the Holocaust. Tragically, it was the Holocaust that produced Hungary’s most famous Jew, Elie Weisel.

    1799(24th of Adar II, 5559): Lorenzo Bertran was subjected to an auto-da-fe ("act of faith," in reality the public ceremony when the sentence of the Inquisition was read and carried out) in Seville. Supposedly he was the last person to be punished for attempting to lead others to Judaism in Spain. It was not the end of the auto-da-fe; a ceremony that was reported to have taken place in Mexico in isolated instance in the early 19th century.

    1808: The French created Kingdom of Westphalia ordered Jews to adopt family names

    1810: Hayyim Selig Slonimski was born in Byelostok, Russian Empire (modern Białystok, Poland)  today.

    1817(14th of Nisan, 5577): Ta'anit Bechorot

    1821: Abolition of the Portuguese Inquisition. The Inquisition was established in 1531 meaning it lasted for 290 years.

    1825(12th of Nisan, 5585): Ta'anit Bechorot

    1851: Birthdate of Sir Francis Henry Dillon Bell, the first native of New Zealand and the first Jew to serve as Prime Minister of the land of the Kiwis.

    1853: In Hungary Michael Heilprin and his wife gave birth to Angelo Heilprin “an American geologist, paleontologist, naturalist, and explorer.”

    1856: The Jews of Belarus or White Russia were denied the right to wear any distinctive garments that would mark them as different from the rest of the citizenry. At the time White Russia was part of the Czar's Russia with Poland and Lithuania to the west, Ukraine to the South, and Russia to the east. Minsk, home to a large Jewish population is today the capital of an independent Belarus

    1863: An article entitled “The Will of Commodore Levy--The Bequest of the Monticello Estate to the People of the United States Void” published today described the litigation surrounding attempts to “break” the late Jewish naval hero’s will. “This was an action to obtain a construction of the will of Commodore Levy, in respect to the bequest of the People of the United States of a farm owned by him, and 200 acres adjoining it, at Monticello, Virginia, and also in respect to a bequest of $1,000 to the Jews' Hospital in this City. The Court now rendered the following judgment, declaring the devise and bequest of the Monticello estate, and the 200 acres adjoining, to the people of the United States void, and that said portions of the estate descended to and vested in the heirs at law and next of kin of the testator; also that the Jews' Hospital of New-York are entitled to have their bequest." Such was the endorsement upon the papers.”

    1865(4th of Nisan): Rabbi Jacob Zevi ben Gamaliel Konigsberg author of Ha-Ketav ve-ha-Kabbalah passed away

    1865: The new Synagogue of the Congregation Shaar Hashomayim, (Gate of Heaven), in Rivington-street, between Ludlow and Orchard, was formally consecrated this afternoon. The building, which was erected in 1835, was occupied by a Presbyterian congregation until last November, when it was sold to its present occupants.

    1867: An article published today entitled “The Insurance Companies and ‘Jew Risks’” reported on a meeting where members of the community including the mayor or Richmond expressed their anger over the decision of insurance companies to no longer accept ‘Jew Risks.’ The mayor, who had been in the insurance business for years, told the crowd that he had numerous dealings with Jews over the years and found them to be honest. No reason was given for the decision of the insurance companies.

    1878: It was reported today that “foreign Jews trading in Russia” are now have the same legal standing as native Russian merchants.

    1871: A poem in Hebrew about the Western Wall by Henry Vidaver, who served as a rabbi at Rodeph Shalom in Philadelphia, United Hebrew Congregation in St. Louis, B’nai Jeshrun in New York and Sherith Israel in San Francisco, appeared in the newspaper Havatzelet.

    1878: “The Order of B’Nai Brit” published today traces the history of the history of the Jewish fraternal organization which was founded 35 years ago in New York City.

    1880: Alexander II of Russia was assassinated, and with him his half-hearted liberalism. He was succeeded by Alexander III who, devoted to medievalism, urged the return to Russian civilization. The most influential person during his reign was Pobestonostov, his financier and procurator of the Holy Synod, who earned the title "the Second Torquemada."

    1885(15THof Nisan, 5645): Pesach

    1885: The New York Timesreported that “the Jewish festival of Pesach, or Passover, instituted to commemorate the exodus of the children of Israel from Egypt, commenced last evening and its celebration will be continued among the orthodox Hebrews throughout the world for the next eight days. This festival is also known as Hag Ha’Matzos, or the fest of the unleavened bread.”

    1889: The Eiffel Tower is inaugurated. One of Chagall’s most famous paintings was “Eiffel Tower, Serenade.”

    1890: The New York Times reported that “the diary of Sir Moses Montefiore and Lady Montefiore which the Belforde Clark Company published in two octave volumes covers the period from 1812 to 1883. The papers of Sir Moses were left to his Secretary, Dr. Lowe, for arrangement and publication, but Dr. Lowe died upon completing the work and son of Sir Moses, now a resident of this country, then carried it forward.

    1890; In Yazur, Ibrahim Hakki Pasha the governor of Palestine attended the groundbreaking ceremony for the Jaffa-Jerusalem railway..

    1892(1stof Nisan, 5652); Rosh Chodesh Nisan

    1892: It was reported today that 69 nine year old Mark Samuel, a former resident of Toronto, has passed away in London. He had found M & L Samuel in 1855 and helped found the Toronto branch of the Anglo-Jewish Association.  He was a supporter of efforts to settle Russian Jews in the Northwest Terriotories.

    1892: The SS Massilia, the steamship which had previously brought several Jews from Russia who were infected with typhus is scheduled to arrive in New York today.  Health authorities will be paying close attention to the passengers since they are similar to the ones brought here before.

    1893(14th of Nisan, 5653): Ta'anit Bechorot

    1893(14th of Nisan, 5653: Alexander Levi passed away. Levi was one of the earliest settlers and earliest Jewish settlers of Dubuque, Iowa.

    1893: A group of Boston Jews belonging to Adath Israel petitioned Judge Ely for the return of wine and brandy which the Judge had previously ruled had been wrongfully seized by the police. Passover begins tonight and the Jews need the wine for the Seder. While the Judge said he would do all that he could to help with the return, “he could find no authority to order the wines returned before May.”

    1893: The New York Times reported that “the celebration of the feast of Pesach, or the Passover, will be begun by Jewish people throughout the world at sunset this evening and will be continued for eight days by the Orthodox Jews. Those who have accepted the reform ritual, among them a large number of the Jews in America, continue the celebration only seven days, the first and last days of that period being alone regarded as of special significance and celebrated as holy days.”

    1894: It was reported today that Russia is changing its rules about naturalizations and that “foreign Jews will be excluded” from applying for citizenship in the Czarist Empire.

    1894: “For the Jews in Palestine” published today described the appeal made by Abraham Neurmak, the rabbi at New York’s Orach Chaim to provide aid for those living in Eretz Israel.  “The North American Relief Society” under the presidency of Myer Isaacs has already responded with a donation of one hundred dollars.

    1894: As of today there are about 4,000 Polish Jews living in Zarephath, Hebron, Tiberias and Jerusalem. They came to Palestine to seek refuge from Russian persecution.

    1895: “A Charity For Children” published today described “the good work of the Hebrew Sheltering Guardian Society.”

    1896: In New York, the Herald Square Theatre will host a special performance of “The Heart of Maryland”  that is a fundraiser for the Hebrew Infants’ Asylum.

    1896: “More than 1,000 pushcart vendors” attending a meeting tonight at the Hebrew Institute which was held under the auspices of the City Vigilance League and presided over by New York May Strong.

    1896: In New York, Palmer’s Theatre was the site of fundraiser for the benefit of the A.C. Sisterhood, a Jewish organization headed by Rebecca Kohut, the wife of the late Dr. Alexander Kohut, that “supports a kindergarten, day nursery, relief bureau and employment bureau.”

    1897: The improbably named “Jack the Jew” that went off at odds of 9 to 10 won the first race on a sloppy track in New Orleans.

    1897: Funeral services for the late Louis Israel, the owner of one of the largest livery stables in Brooklyn, will take place at Temple Beth Elohim today.

    1897: Massachusetts Congressman introduced the following resolution in the House of Representatives:
    “Resolved, That the Secretary of State be requested to demand from the Russian Government that the same rights be given to Hebrew –American citizens in the matter of passports as now are accorded to all other classes of American citizens and also to inform the House of Representatives  whether any American citizens have been ordered to be expelled from Russian or forbidden the exercise of ordinary privileges enjoyed by the inhabitants because of their religion.”  (Editor’s Note – This champion of Jewish rights is John F. “Honey Fitz” Fitzgerald who provided the name for his famous grandson, John Fitzgerald Kennedy)

    1898: Dr. Kaufmann Kohler, the rabbi at Temple Beth-El will officiate at the funeral of the late Rabbi Emanuel Schwab. Cantor Hass of Adas Israel will preside over the internment in the Machpel Plot at Cypress Hills Cemetery

    1899: Rumania barred Jews from professional and agricultural schools

    1904(15thof Nisan, 5664): As the T.R. prepares to run for re-election the Jews celebrate Passover

    1904(15thof Nisan, 5664): Sophia Karp, born Sara Segal in Romania, who became a leading performer in the New York Yiddish Theatre working with such giants as Abraham Goldfaden, Israel Grodner and Sokher Goldstein passed away today at the age of 42 or 43.

    1904: The New York Times reported that “at sunset last evening the Jewish people throughout the world began the celebration of the festival of "Pesach," or the Passover. This festival was instituted to celebrate the deliverance of the children of Israel from their long bondage in the land of Egypt, and, lasting for eight days, is a season of peculiar observances.”

    1905: Dorothy Levitt, the first English woman ever to compete in a motor race drove from the Adelpi Hotel in Liverpool, to Coventry and then on to the De-Dion showroom in Great Marlborough Street in London, retracing the 205 mile trip she had made the day before.

    1912: It was reported that “Interesting archaeological discoveries, showing the observance as far back as 430 B.C. of the Jewish Passover, the festival commemorative of the exodus from Egypt, which Jews throughout the world will celebrate for a week beginning the evening of April 1, are described in the current issue of The American Hebrew.”

    1912: The Patriotic League of America, an organization dedicated to helping Jewish young men pursue careers in the army and navy has invited 200 service men stationed in and near New York City to be its guests at Seders for the first two nights of Passover at the Tuxedo Hall in New York. Adjutant General A.F. Ladd of the War Department has responded positively to the League’s lobbying efforts on behalf of the Jewish servicemen and has directed commanding officers to allow the Jewish soldiers to have furloughs so that they can observe the holiday which begins on the evening of April 1.

    1912: It was reported that Leopold Plaut, President of the United Hebrew Charities has issued a circular asking that the families of deceased Jews donate the money normally spent for flowers at a funeral to his organization. The organization will send acknowledgements to the donor and the family of the deceased, acknowledging the gift without mentioning the amount.

    1915: In Egypt,  Colonel John Henry Patterson swore in the new volunteers for the Zion Mule Corps and invited them to ‘Pray with me that I should not only, as Moses, behold Canaan from afar, but be divinely permitted to lead you into the Promised Land’

    1921: Albert Einstein lectured in New York on his new theory of relativity.

    1922: Birthdate of Lionel Davidson

    1923(14th of Nisan, 5683): Shabbat HaGadol and Erev Pesach

    1923: Birthdate of Shoshana Damari

    1925: The town of Afula was founded in the Jezreel Valley. Afula means The Town of Jezreel and it was started with the support of the American Zion Commonwealth. Unfortunately, the town never lived up to the original expectations with the settlers in the Jezreel Valley preferring to go to Haifa for rest and relaxation. The hospital at Afula did prove to be of lasting importance. Afula is a friendly crossroads town with numerous small stores selling what the locals claim to be the "best pistachio nuts in the world."

    1926: Jacob Adler, who had suffered a stroke in 1920 and had been in declining health ever since, suddenly collapsed today.

    1928: Real birthdate of Jacob Lateiner, Cuban born American pianist. His father would not get around to registering his birth until May of 1928 which has led to confusion about when he was really born.

    1929: Birthdate of Ilya Piastetski-Shapiro, famed math theorist who clashed with Soviet authorities. He passed away at the age of 79 on February 21, 2009 in Tel Aviv.

    1932: At Tel Aviv, on the final day of the first Jewish Olympics, Americans captured the lion’s share of the victories Sybil Koff of New York “won the women’s triathlon and the high jumps. Gus Hemann … won the men’s 100 meter dash…Leslie Flaksman won the 500 meter race…and Harry Schneider won the javelin, shooting, discus-throwing and men’s triathlon contests.” Victories by European teams included an Austrian first place finish in the 400 – meter race and first place finish by the a team from the Middlesex Regiment in the relay race that earned it the High Commissioner’s Cup.

    1933: Adolf Bertraim, archbishop of Breslau rejected the request of Oskar Wasserman for aid in protesting against the boycott of Jewish business organized by the Nazis but this was refused as he regarded it as purely an economic matter”

    1934(15thof Nisan, 5694): Pesach

    1935: Hebrew novelist Samuel I. Agnon was awarded the Bialik Prize in Hebrew Literature. The Bialik Prize was established in memory of the dean of Hebrew literature, Chaim Nachman Bialik and is considered the equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize. S.I. Agnon is considered by sum to be a worthy candidate for the Nobel Prize.

    1935: The Italian liner Roma arrived in Haifa carrying 1,650 passengers, which is believed to the largest number of people ever brought to Palestine on one ship. Most of the passengers are believed to be headed for Tel Aviv, site of the upcoming Maccabiad.

    1935: The Palestine police (an instrument of the British mandatory government) “issued an order today prohibiting a parade of athletes participating in the Maccabiah, the world Jewish athletic games.” The parade was scheduled to be held in Tel Aviv on April 1. The police reportedly were responding to threats of violent outbursts by the Arab populace.

    1936: Birthdate of poet, playwright and novelist Marge Piercy. Piercy grew up in the racially divided city of Detroit, where her Jewishness made her the target of bullies. One grandparent was Yiddish-speaking and Orthodox; another was a union organizer murdered for his activism. These influences, together with grief over relatives murdered in the Holocaust, aroused Piercy's political activism. They also strengthened her commitment to remaining involved with issues and matters of Jewish importance.

    1937: The Palestine Post reported from Glasgow that the International Labor Party conference deplored the bloodshed in Palestine by terrorists and called upon Jews to resist all attempts by Arab reactionary elements, sometimes supported by the British authorities. The first regulation made by the High Commissioner under the New Palestine Orders allowed the authorities to seize and retain accommodation and food, as they thought fit for the execution of their duty.

    1938: According to reports published in the New York Times, Dr. Sigmund Freud cannot leave Vienna and move to the Hague because “the authoritieis have refused to give him a passport.” In other words, the Nazi Austrian government has madet the prominent Jewish psychiatrist a prisoner.

    1940: Birthdate of Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank.

    1941: After 7,500 Jews arrived from Vienna, a decree was issued to establish a ghetto at Kielce.

    1941: With encouragement from the Axis powers (Italy and Germany) Rashid Ali al-Gaylani led an anti-British revolt in Iraq much to the detriment of the Jewish population.

    1942: The Gestapo “disbanded” the Neu-Isenburg orphanage and deported the girls living there to Theresienstadt.

    1942: In the western Ukraine, the Gestapo organized the first deportation of 5,000 Jews from Stanislawow ghetto to Belzac death camp.It was one of the biggest transports to Belzec in the first phase of the camp.

    1942: Birthdate of radio personality Michael Savage

    1942: Six thousand Jews from Eastern Galicia were deported to Belzec and gassed to death.

    1943: This was the deadline the Germans gave Spain to repatriate any Spanish nationals of the Jewish "race."

    1943: Broadway premier of the Rodgers and Hammerstein’s hit musical “Oklahoma.” Yes, it took a team of Jews to create this most famous of all American musical comedies. This is yet another example of how it was Jews who helped to create what some call "the American myth." It was this ability and not some Jewish plot that explains, in part, the success of Jews in various parts of the American entertainment industry.

    1943: Crematorium II at Auschwitz begins operation

    1944: It was announced that every Jew in Hungary would be required to wear a yellow badge as of April 5.

    1945: Mother Maria of Paris, a Russian nun who had saved many French Jews by hiding them, was killed by the Nazis at Ravensbrueck

    1945: The deportation of Jews from Slovakia comes to an end. In all, German and Slovak authorities deported about 70,000 Jews from Slovakia; about 65,000 of them were murdered or died in concentration camps. The overall figures are inexact, partly because many Jews did not identify themselves, but one 2006 estimate is that approximately 105,000 Slovak Jews, or 77% of their prewar population, died during the war.

    1946: Birthdate of Gabe Kaplan in Brooklyn, New York. The comedian and actor gained famed as the teacher in “Welcome Back Kotter,” a television show that launched the career of John Travolta.

    1946(28th of Adar): Yiddish author and translator Leon Kobrin passed away

    1948: Birthdate of Rhea Perlman in Brooklyn, New York. She gained fame for her roles in the television comedies “Taxi” and “Cheers.”

    1949: The Dominion of Newfoundland joins the Canadian Confederation and becomes the 10th Province of Canada. There were somewhere between 215 and 360 Jews living in Newfoundland at this time. “The real history of the Newfoundland Jewish community began with the arrival in St. John's of Israel Perlin from the United States. He was instrumental in founding the first synagogue in Newfoundland, the Hebrew Congregation of Newfoundland, in 1909. The census of 1935 reported 215 Jews living in Newfoundland. The census of 1971 showed that that number had grown to 360.

    1953: Birthdate of Ehud Banai, an Israeli singer and songwriter.

    1953(15th of Nisan, 5713): First Day of Pesach

    1954: As tensions grew between Jordan and Israel due to the attacks by terrorists based in Jordan, the British cabinet discussed military options for responding to a possible strike by Israel into Jordan.

    1958: The US Navy formed an atomic submarine division. Admiral Hyman Rickover is considered the “father of the atomic Navy.” Thanks to his efforts, America developed a fleet of nuclear submarines that provided the United States with its strongest strategic edge during the Cold War with the Soviet Union.

    1952: The Jerusalem Post reported that Israel had become the ninth nation to ratify the agreement to eliminate trade barriers on the import of educational, scientific or cultural materials, sponsored by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. Forty tons of Jerusalem stone, hewn from the Castel quarry, went into the building of the UN headquarters in New York as Israel's contribution to the project. The stone was sufficient for 300 sq.m. of flooring. Israel purchased 40,000 tons of wheat from South Africa.

    1953: The number of Israeli unemployed as of this date was 16,350.

    1977: The Jerusalem Post reported that West Germany protested to Israel that it had not been told for more than a year of the arrest of two young West Germans, Brigitte Schultz and Thomas Reuter, who planned, on January 18, 1976, to shoot down an El Al plane in Nairobi. Five terrorists were arrested by Kenya: two Germans and three Arabs. Israel announced that they would soon be tried in camera, by a military court.

    1979: In Jerusalem, Israel, Gali Atari & Milk and Honey win the twenty-fourth Eurovision Song Contest for Israel singing "Hallelujah.

    1981: “The Yellow Star - The Persecution of the Jews in Europe 1933-45” lost out for an Oscar tonight as Best Documentary Feature

    1993: With Israel reeling from its worst wave of Arab violence in years, including the shooting deaths of two policemen this morning, the Government indefinitely closed the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip today.


    1994: Yosef Zandani, age 28, of Bnei Ayish, was found killed in his apartment near Gedera. Near the body was a leaflet of the DFLP "Red Star", explaining that the murder was carried out in revenge for the shooting of one of its members by an Israeli citizen. The Israeli acted in self-defense

    1998(4th of Nisan, 5758): Former New York Congresswoman Bella Abzug passed away at the age 77 (As reported by Laura Mansnerus)

    1999: Did you ever wonder how Jews celebrate Pesach, the holiday of “Spring,” in the Southern Hemisphere where it is really Autumn? In “An Argentine Passover, Then and Now,” Joan Nathan gives us some sense of the celebration.


    2001: Uzi Landau replaced Binyamin Ben-Eliezer as Energy and Water Resources Minister of Israel

    2002: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of interest to Jewish readers including the recently released paperback editions of "Constantine’s Sword: The Church and the Jews: A History" by James Carroll and "Walking the Bible: A Journey by Land Through the Five Books of Moses" by Bruce Feller.

    2002(18thof Nisan, 5762): 4th day of Pesach and 3rd day of the Omer.

    2002(18thof Nisan, 5762): Fourteen “people were killed and over 40 injured in a suicide bombing in Haifa, in the Matza restaurant of the gas station near the Grand Canyon shopping mall. Hamas claimed responsibility for the attack. The victims: Suheil Adawi, 32, of Turan; Dov Chernevroda, 67, of Haifa; Shimon Koren, 55; his sons Ran, 18, and Gal, 15, of Haifa; Moshe Levin, 52, of Haifa; Danielle Manchell, 22, of Haifa; Orly Ofir, 16, of Haifa; Aviel Ron, 54; his son Ofer, 18, and daughter Anat, 21, of Haifa; Ya'akov Shani, 53, of Haifa; Adi Shiran, 17, of Haifa; Daniel Carlos Wegman, 50, of Haifa. Carlos Yerushalmi, 52, of Karkur, died the next day of wounds sustained in the attack.” (Jewish Virtual Library)

    2003: Michael Chabon and Ayelet Waldman gave birth to their youngest child, Abraham “Abie” Wolf Waldman

    2003(27th of Adar II 5763): Eighty-five year old Sidney Greenberg, one of the Conservative movement’s leading rabbis, passed away.

    2003: National Security Advisor Dr. Condoleezza Rice addressed the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee’s Policy Conference.

    2005: ABC News reported that Ted Koppel will leave that organization when his contract expires in December of 2005. Mr. Koppel has been with the network for 42 years and has hosted the popular late night news program “Nightline” for the past twenty-five years.

    2005: At the Jewish Museum in New York, a distinguished panel of speakers, including exhibition co-curators Emily Bilski and Emily Braun, as well as Whitney Museum curator Elizabeth Sussman and Union College professor Brenda Wineapple, consider the contributions of women such as Gertrude Stein, Margherita Sarfatti, and Florine Stettheimer to literature and the visual arts from the late 18th century through the 1930s.

    2007: Shabbat Ha Gadol.

    2007: In Cedar Rapids, the show “Remnants of Memories” Interpretations of the collage by artists Tom Lee and Elizabeth Levi sponsored by Ginsberg’s Jewelry comes to a close.

    2007: Ben Stiller “received the ‘Wannabe Award’ from the Kids’ Choice Awards.”

    2008: New Jersey Democrat Frank Lautenbrg formally announced his candidacy for the United States.

    2008: Hillel receives a $10.7 million grant, from the Jim Joseph Foundation which the college oriented organization says is the largest in its history.

    2008: In New York, The Center for Jewish History presents a lecture by Dr. Atina Grossman entitled “Close Encounters: Jews and Germans in Occupied Germany during which she will discuss the story of the "close encounters" in Allied occupied Germany between Jewish survivors of the Nazi Final Solution who found themselves on "cursed German soil" after the German surrender, and the defeated Germans with whom they continually interacted.

    2008: End of Women’s History Month.

    2008: In Vancouver, B.C., the Vancouver Jewish Film Festival presents a screening of “Samuel Bak: Painter of Questions.”

    2008: “New Jerusalem: The Interrogation of Baruch de Spinoza at Talmud Torah Congregation: Amsterdam, July 27, 1656” was among the nominees for the 23rd annual Lucille Lortel Awards, celebrating excellence in Off-Broadway theatre,

    2008(24thof Adar II, 5678): Ninety-six year old movie director Jules Dassin the son of Russian immigrants who began his career as a Yiddish actor and was a victim of the infamous Hollywood Blacklist, passed away today.

    2008(24th of Adar II, 5768): Rabbi Herbert A. Friedman, a dominant figure in American Jewish philanthropy during Israel’s formative years, passed away at his New York home at the age of 89. (As reported by Dennis Hevesi)

    2009(6th of Nisan, 5769): Ruth Fredman Cernea, 74, a cultural anthropologist who wrote on topics that included the Jews of Myanmar and the annual mock debate at the University of Chicago on the respective merits of Jewish holiday foods such as latkes and hamantaschen, died today of pancreatic cancer.

    2009: Danny Ayalon began serving as Deputy Foreign Minister.

    2009: Moshe Kahlon replaced Ariel Atias as Communications Minister.

    2009: Gideon Sa'ar was appointed Minister of Education

    2009: Yeshiva University hosts the second day of the Israel and India International Conference which features the theme "A Relationship Comes of Age."

    2009: Gottschalks, a chain of department stores that was founded by German Jewish immigrant Emil Gottschalk in 1904, “announced it would liquidate its remaining stores.”

    2009: Silvan Shalom replaced Yaakov Edri as Minister for the Development of the Negev and the Galilee

    2009: Ayoob Karab began serving as Deputy Minister for the Development of the Negev and the Galilee.

    2009: Ariel Atias replaced Ze'ev Boim as Minister of Housing and Construction

    2009: Ya'akov Margi replaced Yitzhak Cohen as Minister of Religious Services

    2009: Eli Yishai replaced Meeir Sheetrit as Minister of Internal Affairs

    2009: Uzi Landau replaced Binyamin Ben-Eliezer as Minister of Energy and Water Resources.

    2009: Daniel Hershkowitz replaced Raleb Majadele as Minister of Science and Technology.

    2010(16th of Nisan, 5770): First Day of the Omer; Second Day of Pesach

    2010: “Rethinking the Holocaust and Genocide with Michael Thaler”

    2010: An exhibition presented by the American Jewish Historical Society entitled “Pages from a Performing Life: The Scrapbooks of Molly Picon” featuring the 22 scrapbooks keep by Molly Picon and her husband Jacob Kalish chronicling their extraordinary 50-year career, is scheduled to come to an end.

    2010(16th of Nisan, 5770): Steven Zilberman died while serving his country. “Miroslav Zilberman, a Navy pilot known to his friends as Steven, moved with his parents from Ukraine to Columbus, Ohio, in the early 1990s. His parents, Anna and Boris, did not want their son to be forced into military service in their native land. AP reports describe Zilberman as grandson of Gregory Sokolov, a major in the Soviet Army in World War II. Zilberman decided to follow his grandfather’s footsteps and joined the Navy after graduating from Bexley High School in 1997. He went on to graduate from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., where he majored in computer science. Zilberman’s plane, an E-2C Hawkeye, was returning to the carrier Dwight D. Eisenhower following a mission supporting operations in Afghanistan when the plane experienced a malfunction. Zilberman ordered his crew mates to eject before going down with the plane into the North Arabian Sea.”

    2011(25th of Adar II, 5771): Eighty-three year old Henry Taub, found of ADP, passed away. (As reported by Duff Wilson)

    2011: Yosef Begun a former Soviet Prisoner of Conscience is scheduled to speak at noon today in Washington, DC.

    2011: The 14th annual Main Jewish Festival opens in Portland, Maine.

    2011: “The Army of Crime” and “Hidden Children” are two of the films scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.

    2011: “The Human Resources Manager” is one of the films scheduled to be shown at the Hartford Jewish Film Festival

    2011: In Jerusalem, the Old City Flavors Festival comes do an end.

    2011: “How Israel Won the Six-Day War” published today described Operation Yated and the role an Egyptian agent “turned” played in the miracle of June, 1967.

    2012: “Footnote” and “Salmon Fishing in Yemen” are scheduled to be shown at the Hartford Jewish Film Festival.

    2012: Shabbat Hagadol - 81st anniversary of the Bar Mitzvah of Joseph B. Levin, of blessed memory who was Bar Mitzvahed on Shabbat Hagadol

    2013: Jeremy Piven stars in “Mr. Selfridge” a Masterpiece Classics min-series that is scheduled to aire for the first time tonight on PBS.

    2013: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including The Retrospective by A.B. Yehosuha and Karl Marx: A Nineteenth-Century Life by Jonathan Sperber 

    2013: President Shimon Peres today congratulated Yitzhak Tshuva, the controlling shareholder of the Tamar natural gas field which was first put into use Saturday, for pumping the gas into Israel four years after the deposit was first discovered — adding, however, that the pumping should not have begun on the Sabbath, the Jewish day of rest.

    2013: Pope Francis and Rome’s Chief Rabbi Riccardo Di Segni exchanged greetings to mark Passover and Easter.

    2014: In Little Rock, Lubavitch of Arkansas under the leadership of Rabbi Pinchas Ciment is scheduled to host an evening with “author, comedian, journalist and musician David Nesenoff.”

    0 0

    April 1

    515 BCE:  The Temple was inaugurated in Jerusalem (As reported by Jona Lendering)

    527: Byzantine Emperor Justin I names his nephew Justinian I as co-ruler and successor to the throne. This was a “lose-lose” proposition for the Jewish people. When Justin I assumed the throne he adopted a policy of rigorously enforcing the anti-Jewish laws promulgated by Theodosius including excluding Jews from “all posts of honor” and banning the construction of new synagogues. “Justinian began persecuting the Jews immediately after his accession” as can be seen from the adoption of anti-Jewish legislation in the very first year of his reign.

    1205: Amalrik II King of Cyprus/Jerusalem, died. This was the period of the Crusades when followers of Islam and Christians from Europe jockeyed for control of Eretz Israel and Jerusalem.

    1557(1st of Iyar):  Iggeret Ba’alei Hayyim, a book on zoology translated by Kalonymus was printed for the first time in Mantua, Italy.

    1798(15thof Nisan, 5558): Pesach

    1815: Birthdate of Otto Von Bismarck. A Prussian, he served as Chancellor from 1866 to 1890 making Germany into a united modern nation. His record concerning the Jews was mixed, He was Chancellor in 1869 when emancipation legislation was enacted removing limitations on civil rights based on religion. His personal physician was Jewish and there were Jewish department heads in the government. In his earlier years, Bismarck had been opposed to Jews as government ministers. Once again, as his career drew to a close and it fit his political needs Bismarck distanced himself from the Jews but did not adopt the rabid anti-Semitism that appeared in Germany during the 1880's.

    1817(15th of Nisan, 5577): First Day of Pesach

    1852: Fire broke out in San Francisco destroying a boarding house owned by Abraham Abrahamsohn that boasted a “French cook, three waiters and a dishwashers.” Abrahamsohn would have tried his hand unsuccessfully in the gold fields and as tailor in Sacramento had made the money for the boarding house by working as a mohel. One can only assume that there was a good sized and prolific Jewish population in San Francisco for him to have earned enough capital from performing ritual circumcisions. This latest setback forced Abrahamsohn to head to Australia where he again failed as gold miner, but met with modest economic success when he returned to his original profession – baker – and began providing food for the hungry miners.

    1853: When an apprentice named Herman who was working for a boot and shoe shop was arrested on charges of theft that covered the last 9 months, he claimed that he was regular selling eighty dollars’ worth of merchandize of an un-named Jew for twenty-five dollars.

    1858: The New York Times reported that one of the reasons for a drop in business at the local cattle markets this week was the absence of Jewish butchers who were observing Passover.

    1861: An English play entitled “Babes in the Wood” opened at the Winter Garden Theatre.  According to the reviewer, the play is based on the all too common practice of the impecunious English gentleman who borrows money from “a friendly Hebrew” for which he pays “a liberal interest” so that he may pursue a life style that includes “a generous supply of wine,” cigars and a marriage which all too often does not turn out to be solution to his problems. [It would appear that 3 centuries after the creation of Shylock, the English still are writing about the poor gentile victimized by the Jewish moneylender.]

    1862(1st of Nisan, 5622): Rosh Chodesh Nisan

    1865: Union forces defeat the Confederates at the Battle of Five Forks which effectively sealed the fate of Robert E. Lee’s Army and therefore the Confederacy.  The rebels were forced to abandon Richmond which would lead to the involvement of Raphael Moses, the native of Columbus, GA who had been with Lee at Gettysburg in the bizarre episode concerning the disposal of the Southern government’s bullion supply.

    1865: Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, later known as Leslie’s Weekly published a picture of the annual Purim Ball held in New York in March.

    1866: In a column entitled "Southern Jottings" published today described conditions in Charleston, South Carolina, including the observation that "the Hebrew element is largely represented here and speculators are as abundant as tea stores on Vesey Street."

    1866: Under the simple heading of “Nathan Meyer Rothschild of London” the New York Times published a lengthy article tracing the history of the family from its earliest beginning to its present prominent role in the world of finance as well as the role of other Jews in the financial growth that has occurred in Great Britain since “the days of the South Sea bubble.”

    1870: An article published today entitled “April Fool” traces the origins of April Fools Day. He claims that the prophet Haggai “makes allusion to it in the third chapter of his book.” He also contends that Solomon recognized “the fool” in his writings and even references a specific day for fools in the 29th verse of the 17th chapter of Proverbs, “The fool has his day and the simple man his season…”

    1870(10th of Nisan, 5631): Shabbat HaGadol

    1871: "Green Street synagogue” was founded today by a small group of Jews in Baltimore, Maryland.

    1872: Birthdate of Conrad Gröber, the Catholic cleric whose eventual opposition to the Nazi regime did not include opposition to the Holocuast.

    1874(14th of Nisan, 5634): The New York Times reported that “this evening the Jewish festival of ‘Pesach’ or the Passover will be inaugurated with the observances and ceremonies incident to its celebration. This festival is one of the most important in the Hewish calendar, and was instituted to commemorate the miraculous deliverance of the children of Israel from the vile system of slaver imposed upon them during their sojourn in the land of Egypt. The festival begins at sundown this evening and continues for eight days…and is distinguished from all festivals by the banishment of all leavened bread from the houses of the pious Israelites…”  

    1876: It was reported today that I.S. Nathans, a Jew who has become an Episcopalian has been authorized by his church to led a mission to convert the Jews of New York which the church number at 110,000.

    1876: Sigmund Dringer, an Austrian born Jew, had acquired 4,000 tons of scrap iron and 1,700 tons of car wheels said to be worth one hundred thousand dollars.  This made Dringer the largest scrap medal dealer in the United States supplying foundries and rolling mills from Boston to Cincinnati.

    1880: This morning, Shearith Israel, located at West19th Street near 5thAvenue in New York City, celebrated the 150th anniversary of its consecration with special services led by Rabbis Nieto, Lyon and Pereia-Mendes.

    1881: Anti-Jewish riots broke out in Jerusalem.

    1882: A blood libel in Tisza Eszlar, Hungary began. “A week and a half before Easter, a fourteen year old Catholic housemaid, Esther Solymossy, left her employer’s home to buy paint. She did not return.” When a week long search failed to turn up any evidence of the missing girl, two prominent Hungarian anti-Semites named Onody and Istoczy began making claims about “ritual murder” forcing the local sheriff to pursue this blatantly false line of accusation. Fifteen Jews were ultimately charged and tried for "murder" for which there was no real evidence. After a year of futile effort, the fifteen were acquitted.



    1883: In New York, David Holtz and Pauline Moses, whom he had known for a brief time, were engaged to be married.

    1887: Birthdate of Leonard Bloomfield. Bloomfield was an American linguist whose influence dominated the development of structural linguistics in America between the 1930s and the 1950s. He is especially known for his book Language published in 1933 that described the state of the art of linguistics at its time. Bloomfield was the main founder of the Linguistic Society of America.

    1888: At Temple Beth-El in New York, Rabbi Kaugman Kohler delivered a lecture entitled “The Wandering Jews.”

    1890: Three Russian Jewish immigrants – Ed Myers, Isadore Lowenstein and Ike Edeliman – have been charged with arson and are locked up the Central Police Station in Louisville, KY.

    1890: Nathan Birnbaum leader of Kadima and the publisher of the journal Selbst-Emanzipation created the term Zionism. Birnbaum was actually a Zionist before Herzl popularized the concept. Unfortunately, Birnbaum was not able to find a "home" in the movement as it grew. In a total role reversal he advocated the development of the Jewish community in the Diaspora, Yiddish instead of Hebrew and orthodoxy over secularism.

    1890: Fifty women formed The Beth El Society of Personal Services was formed with the intent of lessening the burden being placed on the United Hebrew Charities.

    1892: Grover Cleveland addressed a large crowd of Russian Jews in New York City.

    1892: In Great Britain, Mr. Balfour told the House of Commons that the British Ambassador in St. Petersburg had based his expectation that a large number of Jews would be coming to the UK because he believed that the United States was about to put an end to the immigration of Jews from Russa.

    1892: In Brooklyn, the Republican faction opposed to Ernst Nathan sent out a call for meeting.

    1893: German’s celebrate the 78th anniversary of the birth of Otto Von Bismarck, the Iron Chancellor who changed the face of Europe in ways to numerous to mention here.

    1893(15th of Nisan, 5653): First Day of Pesach

    1894: Professor Felix Adler delivered a lecture on “The Influence of Woman” at the Music Hall in New York City.

    1894: “Over In Camden” published today described the purchase by the Sons of Israel of “a portion of the New Camden Cemetery for use as a cemetery for Jews in the New Jersey city.


    1894: It was reported today that there may have been a period of time when the Queen Insurance Company of New York did not insure Jews

    1894: “All Fool’s Day” published today attributed to the origins of April Fool’s Day as being tied to the fact that Noah made the mistake of “sending the dove out of the ark before the water had abated on the first day of the month” on the Jewish calendar which correlates “our 1st of April.”  Since then people would be sent on “fool’s errands” on this date in the foolish manner of Noah sending out the dove.”

    1894: “Godfathers and Godmothers” published today described the origins of this popular custom among Christians but for which “doubtless” began with the Jews.

    1895: Interview with Alphonse Daudet, French anti-Semitic writer, for whom Herzl translated an article. Herzl unfolds his views on the Jewish question, which produce a deep impression on Daudet. Daudet feels that Herzl should write a novel about his ideas.

    1895: First appearance of The "American Jewess," the first English-language publication published by and for American Jewish women.

    1896: It was reported today that the recent benefit production of “The Heart of Maryland” raised about two thousand dollars for the Hebrew Orphan Asylum

    1897: “Rights of Hebrew Americans” published today described the efforts of Congressman Fitzgerald of Massachusetts to have the Secretary State ensure that American Jews are not discriminated by the Czar’s government when they are doing business in Russia. (Congressman Fitzgerald is the grandfather of JFK)

    1898: In New York, Boris Sidis, Ph.D., M.D. and Sarah Mandelbaum Sidis, M.D. gave birth to child-prodigy and math wizard, William James Sidis

    1899(21stof Nisan, 5659): 4th day of Pesach and Shabbat


    1899(21stof Nisan, 5659): Three weeks short of the third anniversary of the death of her husband, Baron Maurice de Hirsch; sixty-five year old Clara Hirsch, the Baroness de Hirsch passed away today in Paris. The daughter of Belgian banking family, she knew the personal tragedy of loss when her daughter died in infancy and her son died at the age of 31.  She threw herself into a variety of charitable efforts and after her husband’s used the family fortune to provide for a myriad of causes including settle Russian Jews in agricultural communities and establishing training schools for young girls so that they could learn a trade and be self-supporting.

    1899: Philip Michael Ritter von Newlinski, a Polish nobleman whom Herzl wanted to use his contacts with the Ottomans to promote the Zionist cause, dies in Constantinople.

    1899: In “Closing of the Schools” published today, “Vox Populi” defends the decision of the school board closing the schools at this time of the year since it coincides with Easter and Passover which means that Christian and Jewish students would not be in school.  Such a decision is not an unwarranted intrusion of religion in public education but an acknowledgement that in the United States we enjoy religious freedom that enables to honor the customs of Christians and Jews.

    1899: Despite a total lack of evidence, Leopold Hilsner was sentenced death today in Polna, Bohemia in another case of a Blood Libel. His sentence was later commuted and in 1916, Hilsner received a full pardon. It should be noted that his life was saved thanks to the activities of T.J. Masark, Czech patriot and the first president of an independent Czechoslovakia.

    1899: Austrian author Karl Kraus an advocate of Jewish assimilation and a critic of Theodor Herzl renounced the “faith of his fathers” today.

    1900: The executors of the estate of Abraham Wolf, a partner in the banking firm of Kun, Loeb & Co turned the estate over to the trustees Mrs. Addie Kahn and her son Gilbert W. Kahn

    1903: Birthdate of Salo (Salomon) Landau, the Galician born Chess Champion who will die in Auschwitz.

    1903: Herzl meets McIlwraithe, the legal adviser of the Khedive. Herzl presents the Zionist proposal. McIlwraithe promises that the government will make a counter-proposal.

    1905: Tonight over a thousand Jews watched as two Torah scrolls were carried to the First Zolyner Congregation Anshe Sefard from the home of Sigmund Yokel, the President of the Congregation. After a brief ceremony during which the scrolls were placed in the Holy Ark, “the marchers celebrated at a big banquet.”

    1905: The New York Times reported that the third edition of “The Seder Service,” a Haggadah prepared by Mrs. Phillip Cowen and published by her husband is now in available.

    1906: Birthdate of Polish born actor Ned Glass known for his portrayal of Uncle Moe in “Bridgette Loves Bernie.”

    1908: Birthdate of Abraham H Maslow, renowned psychologist. Born in Brooklyn, Maslow was the oldest of seven children of Russian Jewish immigrants. In a manner typical of this immigrant generation, Maslow's pushed him to succeed academically. Maslow studied law at CCNY and Cornell. He then married his cousin Bertha and enrolled at the University of Wisconsin where he began his study of psychology earning his doctorate in 1931. Maslow is most famous for developing his Hierarchy of Needs. Maslow was a professor at Brandeis from 1951 until 1969. He died in 1970. In examining Maslow's life and work, one commentator found a connection between Maslow's Jewish background and his scientific work. Just as Judaism tries to bring order of a chaotic world, so Maslow sought to develop a unifying structure that would enable people to bring order to their chaotic lives.
    "Human nature is not nearly as bad as it has been thought to be." Abraham Maslow.

    1909: Birthdate of Abner Biberman. Born in Milwaukee, Biberman gained fame as an actor and movie director. His films included “Gunga Din,” “Bridge At Saint Luis Rey,” “Winchester 73” and “Viva Zapata.” His oriental appearance made him a natural for the role of the Japanese officer in several war movies made during WW II, the most famous of which was “Back to Bataan.” He passed away in June, 1977.

    1912(14th of Nisan, 5672): For the first time, the Patriotic League of America sponsored a Seder tonight at Tuxedo Hall for Jewish soldiers and sailors stationed in the New York metropolitan area.

    1912( 14th of Nisan, 5672): It what appeared to be a classic SNAFU, 17 Jewish soldiers on Governor’s Island were assigned to guard duty tonight meaning that they could not attend the Seder at the Tuxedo. This was in direct violation of The Secretary of War’s had order that all soldiers in the New York area would receive a furlough to celebrate the holiday. When authorities found out about the mistake they corrected it so the soldiers could attend the Seder.

    1915: Based on a resolution adopted today in Chicago, Orthodox Jews will be able to exercise their franchise in the upcoming elections scheduled for April 6, the last day of Passover. Since the Orthodox cannot write on the holiday, the resolution empowered judges and clerks of the election to mark the ballots for the observant Jews.

    1915: In Berlin an anti-war protest was held led by Rosa Luxemburg, an act for which she was imprisoned.

    1916: The Federation of Rumanian Jews dedicates the new Jewish Home for Convalescents, which formally opens today at Grandview, Rockland County as a permanent memorial to the work of Dr. Solomon Schechter. Schechter was the noted Hebrew scholar and head of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, who died on November 20, 1915.

    1917: Birthdate of Melville “Mel” Shavelson who would gain fame a writer, director and producer of dozens of films featuring such stars as Lucille Ball, Jimmy Cagney and Frank Sinatra. He was nominated for two Oscars and created two Emmy Award-winning television series, "Make Room for Daddy" and "My World and Welcome to It."

    1918: Chaim Weizmann, the head of the Zionist Commission, arrived in Palestine. The Commission had been established by the British to help carry out the promises of the Balfour Declaration. The Commission actually arrived before the war had ended and the Mandate had been established. The British had intended that the Commission be its official contact with the Jewish community (Yishuv) and help in setting policies concerning post-war settlement and development including immigration. Unfortunately this positive start did not pre-sage a continuation of British support during the inter-war period.

    1918(19th of Nisan, 5678): Isaac Rosenberg, a leading British poet, is killed on April Fool’s Day while fighting on the Western Front.

    1919: In Grodno, Yitahak and Dvora Livni gave birth to ham "Eitan" Livni who made Aliyah in 1925, served with the Irgun and became a Likud MK.

    1919: Birthdate of Jabr Muadi, the Israeli Druze politician who served in the Knesset for three decades from 1951 to 1981

    1920: The emergence of the Nazi Party. (This happened on the anniversary of the day that Haman published his decree of extermination of the Jews.)

    1921: In the United Kingdom, Alfred Moritz Mond, 1st Baron Melchett, completed his service as First Commissioner of Works and began serving as Minister of Health in a cabinet headed by David Lloyd George.

    1921: In an article entitled “Upholds Palestine Plan: Churchill Tells Arabs that Balfour Declaration Must Stand,” The New York Times published “further details of Winston Churchill’s visit to Jerusalem.” Churchill met with a delegation of Arab Congress which had been held much earlier in Haifa and which “asked for the withdrawal of the Balfour declaration. Churchill declared…that the government was determined to keep to the Balfour declaration in both of its parts, namely, the establishment of the Jewish national home and the protection of the non-Jewish population.” Later, when he met with a Jewish delegation, Churchill concluded his remarks “by saying that the British taxpayers could not bear the expense of the establishment of the Jewish national home and that Jews must therefore make greater efforts to obtain the necessary funds.”

    1922: Sir Edgar Speyer “and his remaining partner in the London bank dissolved Speyer Brothers.

    1923(15th of Nisan, 5683): Pesach I

    1925: Amid much pomp and circumstance, Hebrew University was opened in Jerusalem on Mount Scopus. Chaim Weizman beamed with pride as he saw his 25 year old dream come to life. Lord Arthur Balfour, of Balfour Declaration Fame, represented the British government. Much of the funding came from the American philanthropist Felix Warburg. The first chancellor of what this first class educational institution was Dr. Judah Magnes, a native of San Francisco. The cornerstones had originally been laid in 1918 when fighting was still going on between the British and Turkish forces in Palestine. Talk about Jewish optimism and dedication to learning.

    1925: Chanina Karchevsky, “The Tel Aviv Nightingale,” conducted the Gymnasisa Herzliya Choir in what has been termed an “unforgettable performance” on Mt. Scopus at the ceremony marking the dedication of Hebrew University.

    1926(17th of Nisan, 5686):Acting giant Jacob Pavlovich Adler passed away in New York City.  Born in Russia in 1855, he was a dominate figure in the Yiddish Theatre in Odessa, London and New York City. A name unknown to most, he is remembered as the father of the actor Luther Adler and Stella Adler who coached Marlon Brando.

    1926: Hebrew Book Day is mounted in Tel Aviv.

    1927: The HaShomer HaZair kibbutzim and training groups establish a national organization in Haifa called "HaKibbutz Artzi" - "National Kibbutz". The Kibbutz Artzi is a federation comprising 85 kibbutzim founded by the Hashomer Hatzair youth movement. In 1998 it numbered around 20,000 members and its entire population (including children, candidates, parents of members etc.) totaled approximately 35,000.

    1928: Birthdate of Herbert G. Klein newscaster and President Richard Nixon’s press secretary.

    1928: Konrad von Preysing, a Catholic prelate who would play a key role as an anti-Nazi activist during World War II was made a canon today.

    1930: In Melbourne, Australia, a group of Jews interested in forming a “Liberal Community” met for the first time.

    1931: Birthdate of Rolf Hochhuth. This non-Jewish German playwright wrote The Deputy which portrayed the role of the Pope during the Holocaust.

    1932: Adolph Eichman joined the Nazi Party

    1932: The New York Times described the closing day activities at the Maccabiad. “An emotional crowd of 25,000 watched the conclusion of the first Jewish Olympics…The Palestine High Commissioner participated in the ceremonies as did other officials and representatives of foreign governments. There were tears in the eyes of many as the exhibits reached their close. Among the Maccabee displays were those of scouting, gymnastics, motorcycling, bicycle riding and horseback riding led by Abraham Shapiro, the hero of Petch Tikva…A procession of 5,000 Maccabeans led the way to the graves of Achad Ha’Am , Maz Nodeau and the victims of Arab riots, where wreaths were placed. …The procession marched through the main streets of Tel-Aviv” before dispersing at the “Herzlia Gymnasium where the march of the Maccabeans had begun.”

    1933: German violinst (and non-Jew) Adolf Busch repudiated Germany altogether and in 1938 he boycotted Italy. 

    1933: Nazi Germany began its persecution of Jews by boycotting Jewish businesses. Less than a month after coming to power, the War Against the Jews began in earnest. This puts the lie to those who portray Hitler's policies against the Jews as only being an incidental part of his plans and programs.

    1933: Birthdate of French physicist, Claude Cohen-Tannoudji, winner of the 1997 Nobel Prize.

    1934: Chevrolet ended its sponsorship of the Jack Benny Program. Benny continued the show with General Tire as the sponsor.

    1935: The New York Times reported that “the American team is favored to retain the track and field title in the Jewish world games which open tomorrow…The strongest challenge for the Americans is expected to come from the German, French, Czech and Austrian teams.

    1935: Democratic leader General Hugh S. Johnson denounced “Father Charles Coughlin, comparing the Catholic priest to Adolf Hitler” because of the anti-Semitic pronouncements on his radio show

    1935: Anti-Jewish legislation in the Saar region was passed.

    1935:Israelitisches Familienblatt  (Israelite Family Paper) began appearing in Berlin and became the organ of the Reichsvertretung

    1936: French conservatives condemned French Socialist leader Léon Blum because of his Jewish ancestry and his strongly anti-Nazi orientation. A popular slogan at the time condemned the future French premier: "Better Hitler than Blum."

    1937: The Palestine Post reported on the festive opening of a new road connecting Hadar Hacarmel and Mount Carmel in Haifa. The new road was 3,100 meters long and 10 to 15 meters wide - the asphalt width was six meters. It was expected that this new road would help to develop Mount Carmel.

    1937: The Palestine Post reported that according to the Palestine Review Jews contributed financially at least four times as much to the Arab economy as Arabs returned to the Jews.

    1937: The Palestine Post reported that a provision was made in the Pension Ordinance for officials in the Civil Service to retire, under special circumstances, on attaining the age of 50.

    1938: Fritz Löhner-Beda, the Bohemian born librettist, lyricist and writer was arrested and deported to Dachau Concentration Camp.

    1939: The Spanish Civil War came to an end marking another victory for fascism.  Oddly enough, despite the support Franco got from Hitler and Mussolini he remained neutral during WW II, which proved quite advantageous to the Allies. As far as Franco’s treatment of the Jews, the record appears to mixed but consider the following as one piece of the puzzle.

    1939: At the age of 13, Raul Hilberg who would gain fame as Dr. Raul Hilber a world renowned Holocaust scholar fled Austria with his family a year after the Anschluss, for France, where they embarked on a ship to Cuba. From Cuba the family would make their way to the United States, where Hilberg, after serving with the U.S. Army in Europe would come home and build his academic career.

    1940: The Institut für deutsche Ostarbeit (Institute for German Work in the East) was founded to study Polish Jewry.

    1940: Shanghai, China, accepted thousands of Jewish refugees.

    1941: A ghetto was established at Kielce, Poland. German overseers of the ghetto renamed some of the streets. New names were Zion Street, Palestine Street, Jerusalem Street, Moses Street, Non-Kosher Street, and Grynszpan Street.

    1941(4th of Nisan, 5701): German troops executed 250 members of a Jewish youth group in Subotica, Yugoslavia, who have been carrying out acts of sabotage.

    1941: A men's annex was established at the Ravensbrück concentration camp located in Germany,

    1941: Seven Warsaw Jews smuggled themselves into Bratislava, Slovakia, and from there to safety in Palestine.

    1941: A pro-Axis officer clique headed by Rashid Ali al-Gaylani seized power in Iraq, and prepared airfields for German use.

    1941: The first Croatian concentration camp began operation, at Danica. Four more Croat camps were opened, at Loborgrad, Jadovno, Gradiska, and Djakovo.

    1941: Lillian Hellman's "Watch on the Rhine", premiered in New York City. A native of New Orleans, Hellman's father was "of German Jewish ancestry." Hellman was a staunch supporter of the Communists. Many right-wingers mistakenly took her ancestry and her political beliefs, tied them together and used Hellman as an example of the Jewish/Communist Conspiracy to overthrow America.

    1941 Bess and Rubin “Honest Joe” Goldestein gave birth to Eddie Goldstein whom Dallas knew as swap shop owner “little Honest Joe King Edward.”

    1942: Sobibór death camp was nearly operational; gassings would begin in May.

    1942: At the beginning of the first week in April, more than 4400 Jews died of starvation in the Warsaw Ghetto

    1942: At the beginning of April, the first transports of Jews arrive at the camp at Majdanek, Poland, which will begin gassing Jews later in the year.

    1942: During the first week of April, Sunday Times of London published, but did not highlight news items about the Nazi executions of 120,000 Romanian Jews.

    1942: During the first week of April, Jews were mocked and hanged at Mlawa, Poland.

    1942: The Nazis deported 965 Slovakian Jews to Auschwitz.

    1942: In occupied Poland the Nazis created the Łachwa Ghetto when the town's Jews were forcibly moved into a new ghetto consisting of two streets and 45 houses, and surrounded by a barbed wire fence. The ghetto housed roughly 2,350 people, which amounted to approximately 1 square meter for every resident

    1943: By the beginning of April, Nazi killing squads had murdered almost two million Jews in Eastern Europe.

    1943: Starting in the first week of April, the Germans forced Jewish prisoners to burn the bodies of 600,000 Jews exterminated at Belzec.

    1943: During the first week of April, the Germans launched an offensive against Jewish partisans active in the Parczew Forest, Poland.

    1943: During the first week of April, Resistance members derailed a death train in Belgium.

    1943: Pope Pius XII complained that Jews are demanding and ungrateful.

    1943: Dr. Julian Chorazycki, a former captain in the Polish Army and a leader of inmate resistance at the Treblinka death camp, took poison when the camp's deputy commandant discovered the stash of currency Chorazycki had planned to use to buy small arms.

    1945: On Easter, Jan M. Komski, who was not Jewish, was among the 20,000 prisoners marched from Hersbruck to Dachau

    1945: Father Giuseppe Girotti, a Catholic theology professor at the Saint Maria della Rose Dominican Seminary of Turin, who acted to save many Jews by arranging safe hideouts and escape routes from the country died at Dachau. He had been arrested and sent to the camp after having been betrayed by an informer and caught in the midst of helping a wounded Jewish person. It is reported that while in Dachau, he continued to write his unfinished commentary on the biblical book of Jeremiah.

    1947: The first Jewish immigrants disembark at the port of Eilat. Eilat is a port the southern end of Israel on the Gulf of Aqaba. Ben-Gurion was determined to make this part of the new state of Israel. The tale of the race for Eliat in 1948 is a tale of daring-do that would worthy of Rambo or James Bond. Ben Gurion realized how important this southern port would be to the development of trade, among other things. The reality has exceeded his vision.

    1948: As the military situation for the Yishuv reaches a crisis status, Ben Gurion holds an urgent meeting with his senior Jewish Agency colleagues and forces them to adopt “a single blow offensive.”

    1948: Arabs attacked Beit Alpha, a kibbutz near the Gilboa Ridge, with mortars.

    1948: The first major report of Ralph Asher Alpher’s work describing the Big Bang Theory appeared in the periodical Nature.

    1948: During Operation Nachshon, three large convoys broke through the blockade of Jerusalem bringing food and arms to the beleaguered Jewish population.

    1949: Mordechai Maklef wаѕ appointed Head οf one of tһе General Command Departments in the IDF.

    1950: At sundown, Israelis sit down to celebrate the second Pesach since the creation of the state of Israel. A Seder is being held on Mt. Scopus for the 118 Israelis taking care of the Hadassah Hospital and Hebrew University campus that have been cut off from the rest of Jewish Jerusalem. The climaxing word of the Seder “Next Year in Jerusalem” take on special meaning for the 80,000 newly arrived immigrants who will be eating their Matzah and Maror in transit camps.

    1951: Following the issuance of an order by David Ben Gurion, the “Central Institute for Coordination” or Mossad became operation under directorship of Reuven Shiloah.

    1952: The Jerusalem Post   reported that an acceptable formula had been reached at the London External Debts Conference on the eventual Israel-German reparations agreements. At The Hague, however, the German reparations delegation announced that it had no authority to assume any commitments towards Israel or World Jewry's representation. A woman who refused to accept a $10,000 inheritance from her sister, who died abroad, was charged with infringing Israel's financial regulations.

    1952:  The Jerusalem Post reported that the deepest well in Israel, 565 m., was dug at Karkur and had produced 360 cu.m. of excellent water per hour.

    1952(6th of Nisan, 5712): Hungarian born dramatist and novelist Ferenc Molnár passed away today in New York.

    1953(16th of Nisan, 5713): Second Day of Pesach; First Day of the Omer

    1953: Birthdate of Barry Sonnenfeld director of the comedy “Men In Black” and “When Harry Met Sally.”

    1957: Birthdate of Representative Peter Deutsch, from Florida’s 20th Congressional District.

    1957: First Jewish immigrants to arrive by ship disembarked at Eilat.

    1959: An IDF drill for calling up the reserves turned into a fiasco that became known as The Night of the Ducks.

    1965(28th of Adar II, 5725): Helena Rubinstein US cosmetic manufacturer passed away. Her age was not accurately determined, but she was reported to be 89 at the time of her death.

    1968(3rd of Nisan, 5728): Russian physicist Lev D Landau passed away at the age of 59. He won the Nobel Prize in Physics for the year 1962 for his pioneering theories of condensed matter, especially liquid helium He is also admired for a prolific series of textbooks on theoretical physics, co-authored with E. M. Lifshitz.

    1969: Holocaust survivor Fred Kort opened Imperial Toy Corp. on Seventh Street in downtown Los Angeles. His inaugural product: the hi-bounce ball. Kort's sons from his first marriage, Jordan, Steve and David, all joined their father's business.

    1973: In Rabbi Soloveitchik’s Talmud shiur at Yeshiva University we completed learning the first chapter of Talmud Bavli Tractate Hullin. The Rav gave a dvar Torah at the Siyyum. He explained the meaning of the recitation of the hadran alakh, the prayer that promised upon the completion of learning a Talmud chapter or Tractate that we would return to study you – speaking to the text – again

    1974: The Interim Report of the Agranat Commission published today “called for the dismissal of a number of senior officers in the IDF and caused such controversy that Prime Minister Golda Meir was forced to resign.”

    1976(1st of Nisan, 5736): Max Ernst passed away. “The German painter-poet Max Ernst was a member of the dada movement and a founder of surrealism. A self-taught artist, he formed a Dada group in Cologne, Germany, with other avant-garde artists. He pioneered a method called frottage, in which a sheet of paper is placed on the surface of an object and then penciled over until the texture of the surface is transferred. In 1925, he showed his work at the first surrealist painting exhibition in Paris.”

    1977:  The Jerusalem Post reported that the visit to Israel of the French foreign minister, Louis de Guiringaud, ended with "normalization," if not an improvement of strained relations.

    1977: The Jerusalem Post reported that while visiting Washington King Hussein of Jordan declared that he was ready for a "full peace" with Israel, but would never give up East Jerusalem.

    1977: The Jerusalem Post reported that the ambitious Netivei Ayalon highway system in Tel Aviv had been revised owing to enormous expenses.

    1978: Rafael Eitan was promoted to the rank of General and was appointed by Ezer Weizman to be the Chief of Staff of the Israel Defense Forces.

    1980(15thof Nisan, 5740): Jews observe Pesach as Ronald Reagan sought to unseat Jimmy Carter.

    1981: An Israeli communique said today that one Israeli soldier had been wounded in the fighting in southern Lebanon.

    1982: In trucks and vans loaded with furniture and farm equipment, most Jewish settlers completed their departure from northern Sinai yesterday, leaving behind a hard core of several hundred militants who vowed to defy the deadline imposed by the army for leaving the area.

    1984: The long-term efforts of Arnold Resincoff, a Conservative Rabbi and former military chaplain, to convince the United States Department of Defense to participate in the national annual program for the Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust took a significant step forward today when “Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger signed a memorandum to the military services, urging the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and other military commanders to participate in the annual program for the first time”

    1987: Opening of the New York Antiquarian Book Fair whose offereings have included 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 ($1,750) and the first complete, corrected, printed film script of ''The Wizard of Oz,'' dated May 4, 1938, in its original blue wrappers from the files of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer ($7,500).

    1992: Daniel Goldin begins serving as the Administrator of NASA making him the first Jew to serve as head of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

    1996: In an article published today entitled “Challenging a View of the Holocaust,” Danita Smith discusses the new information provided by Daniel Jonah Goldhagen in "Hitler's Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust."

    1997: “--Lancit Media Entertainment, Ltd. (Nasdaq: LNCT), a leading creator and producer of high quality children's and family programming, today announced that Susan L. Solomon has been named Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer of the Company, effective immediately.”

    1998: “Israel today formally accepted a 20-year-old United Nations Security Council resolution calling on it to withdraw from Lebanese territory. But the Israelis said any pullback would be made only on the condition that Lebanon assume control over the region and prevent its use for attacks on Israel.”

    1999(15thof Nisan, 5759): Final Pesach of the 20th century.

    1999: Publication of “A Spiritual Life: A Jewish Feminist Journey” by Merle Feld.

    2000: Marvin Miller is inducted into The National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame and Museum.

    2001: The New York Times featured books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including “Stet: A Memoir” by Diana Athill.

    2002: In response to the increasing violence or Arab terrorists that climaxed with the suicide bomber murdering 30 people at a Seder in the Park Hotel, the IDF made preparation for Operation Defensive Shield.

    2002 (19th of Nisan, 5762) Fifth day of Pesach

    2002(19thof Nisan, 5762) Tomer Mordechai, 19, of Tel-Aviv, a policeman, was killed in Jerusalem, when a Palestinian suicide bomber driving toward the city center blew himself after being stopped at a roadblock. The Fatah al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades claimed responsibility for the attack.

    2002: “Using doctored pictures purportedly from the Hubble telescope, NASA ‘proved’ that the Moon was made of green cheese an expression that came from a fable that Reb Meir,Rashi, the Iraqi Rabbi Hai Gaoan and the Petrose Alponsi an apostate Spanish Jew helped to popularize.

    2003: “A rumor that” Chilean television personality Mario Luis Kreutzberger Blumenfeld known to his public as “Don Francisco had died surfaced around the New York and New Jersey area. The rumor proved false, but sent many of his fans into a panic until it was revealed as an April Fool's joke.”

    2003(28th of Adar II, 5763): Late in the evening Robert M. Levine, Gabelli Senior Scholar in the Arts and Sciences, Director of Latin American Studies, and professor of history at the University of Miami, died after a determined and ever-optimistic fight against cancer. He was 62.

    2005: Lewis Wolff was among those purchasing the Oakland Athletics baseball team.

    2005:A sign was dedicated today in Deadwood, South Dakota by the Deadwood Historic Preservation Commission in conjunction with the Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation which records information about the purchase of Hebrew Hill and some of those buried there.

    2007: The Sunday Washington Post reviewed two books designed to “untangle Biblical tales” that have just appeared in paperback: “David and Solomon In Search of the Bible's Sacred Kings And the Roots of the Western Tradition” by Israel Finkelstein and Neil Asher Silberman and “Jesus and “Yahweh: The Names Divine” by Harold Bloom.

    2007:The New York Times reviewed books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including the recently released paperback edition of “Jesus and Yahweh: The Divine Name” by Harold Bloom.

    2007: Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House of the US Representatives addresses the Knesset in what is her first address to a foreign government legislature. She is the highest ranking American woman to speak before the Knesset.

    2007: Based on stories in the secular press, the world of Kashrut is alive and well. The Washington Post featured an article entitled “A Doughnut Shop's Change Leaves a Hole” that tells about the consequences of four Dunkin Donut stores in the Washington area to give up their kosher certification. The Chicago Tribunefeatured an article entitled “China Firms Clamor To Go Kosher: Businesses covet certification that lets them tap $150 billion market.”

    2007: “Gefilte Fish Chronicles” airs at 7 p.m. on New York’s Channel 13. The DVD has its own website

    2007(14th of Nisan, 5767): Lou Limmer who played first base for the Philadelphia Athletics in the early 1950’s passed away at the age of 82.

    2007: German Chancellor Angela Merkel received an honorary doctor of philosophy degree from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem "in recognition of her lifelong dedication to the principles of democracy and in appreciation of her warm and constant friendship for the people and State of Israel."

    2008: The 92nd Street Y presents “The Year of Living Biblically,” featuring author A.J. Jacobs who discusses his most recent book, The Year of Living Biblically, in which he recounts his fascinating, enlightening and delightfully strange year trying to follow all 613 commandments in the Bible.

    2008: In Washington, D.C., Sidney Blumenthal, a former advisor in the Clinton White House, discusses and signs “The Strange Death of Republican America: Chronicles of a Collapsing Party” at a Barnes & Noble book store.

    2008: Idina Menzel “kicked off her 2008-2009 "I Stand Tour" in support of her new album performing 4 sold out legs.”

    2008(25th of Adar II, 5768): Radio broadcaster and actress and Shosh Atari passed away at the age of 58 after suffering a serious illness. Atari was born in Rehovot, and grew up in the central town. She spent her military service in Army Radio, and after her discharge from the Israel Defense Forces worked at Channel 1 television. In the 1970s Atari joined Israel Radio as a presenter. In the 1980s, she became one of the stars of Reshet Gimmel radio, where she hosted popular music chart shows, and other programs with Tony Fine as her editor. Atari was also famous as the moderator on the "Pitzuhim" game show on the Israel's educational TV channel. At the end of the 1990s the broadcaster joined Lev Hamedina Radio. A few years ago Atari underwent a kidney transplant operation after suffering from a kidney illness. Following the operation she moved again to Reshet Gimmel, but then returned to broadcast a daily program on Lev Hamedina radio. The broadcaster also performed on the stage at the Be'er Sheva theatre. In 2004, Atari's book "Secrets and Lies" was published. In 2007 she returned to television, starring in the "It's all honey" drama series on Channel 2.

    2008(25th of Adar II, 5768): Actor Mosko Alkalai, 77, died of respiratory failure. Alkalai was hospitalized and underwent surgery in Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center several weeks ago, but was unable to recover. Winner of the Israeli Film Academy's 2003 Lifetime Achievement Awards, Alkalai graced the stage and silver screen in a career spanning 21 years, appearing in dozens of theater plays and motion pictures. He also took part in various public activities and was the chairman of the Israeli Union of Performing Arts a member of the Israeli Arts Council and a member of the Israeli Film Academy.

    2009:Avigdor Lieberman replaced Tzipi Livni as Minister of Foreign Affairs.

    2009: Yitzhak Aharonovich replaced Avi Dichter as Minister of Internal Affiars.

    2009: The Center for Jewish History, PEN, Office of Cultural Affairs, Consulate General of Israel in New York and Blue Metropolis International Literary Festival co-sponsor a PEN World Voices entitled “Evolution/Revolution: Meir Shalev in Conversation with Daniel Menaker” featuring Israeli writer Meir Shalev the author of more than 16 highly praised works, spanning fiction, non-fiction and children's books and Daniel Menaker, the former Random House Editor-in-Chief.

    2009: In Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Temple Judah hosts a congregational meeting as it begins a search for its next Rabbi.

    2009: The Centennial Conference for Urban Sustainability opens at the Tel Aviv Performing Arts Center.

    2009: A new exhibition by the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw that has brought together photos and documents depicting the rich history of 1,000 years of Jewish life in Poland goes on display today at the European Parliament in Brussels and will run nearly a week.

    2009(7thof Nisan, 5769):Marcos Moshinsky “a Mexican physicist of Ukrainian and Jewish origin whose work in the field of elementary particles won him the Prince of Asturias Prize for Scientific and Technical Investigation in 1988 and the UNESCO Science Prize in 1997” passed away today.

    2009: “Picturing the Shoah,” a film festival sponsored by YIVO that explores how movies have represented the Holocaust from radical, provocative, and unexpected angles opens with a showing of “Schindler’s List.”

    2010: An exhibition entitled “From Dream to Reality: Zionism and the Birth of Israel” presented by the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research is scheduled to come to an end today.

    2010: An exhibition entitled “Folk Art Judaica by Herman Braginsky” presented by Yeshiva University Museum featuring carved ritual objects made of fine and aged woods, including tzedakah boxes, Torah pointers, mezuzot, dreidels, Torah arks, spice containers, and other works created by self-taught craftsman Herman Braginsky who was born in 1912 and passed away in 1999 is scheduled to come to an end today

    2010:A ceremony officially classifying the Machpelah Cave in Hevron as a National Heritage Site is scheduled to be held today, as tens of thousands visit the city for a Hol Hamo'ed celebration

    2010: The New York Times features a review of “Jenniemae & James: A Memoir in Black & White” in which Brooke Newman writes about her father, the famous mathematician James Newman,”the son of Jewish immigrants “who “had an I.Q. of 175.”

    2010:During a visit to Damascus, Democratic Sen. John Kerry, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, reiterated US misgivings about the flow of weapons through Syria to Hizbullah and told reporters the US view is that this is "something that must stop" for there to be peace.

    2011: Eatliz, one of Israel’s leading alternative rock bands, is scheduled to perform at the City Winery in New York City.

    2011: “Nora’s Will” and “Anita” are two of the films scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.

    2011:A loud explosion was heard outside the house of opposition leader Tzipi Livni today. The blast was apparently a result of a firecracker thrown at the security stand outside Livni's Tel Aviv home. Livni was not at her house when the explosion occurred.

    2011:Residents from all over Israel reported that they felt an earthquake this afternoon.Israel's Geophysical Institute said the earthquake, which occurred over 800km from Israel, was mostly felt in the north of Israel, including the towns of Safed and Nahariya.

    2011:Britain's first Jewish ambassador to Israel, Matthew Gould and his wife Celia had their first sabra baby girl today. Baby Rachel Elizabeth was born early this morning at the Lis Maternity Hospital in the Tel Aviv Medical Center.We are both incredibly happy and proud new parents," Gould said. "We are very grateful for the fabulous care we've received and all the mazel tovs we've been sent."

    2011:“Lillian Bassman: Lingerie,” is scheduled to be published by Abrams today.

    2012: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including ‘Enemies: A History of the FBI’  by Tim Weiner and ‘Mudwoman’ by Joyce Carol Oates.

    2012: Aluf Ram Rothberg, commander of the Israeli Navy reportedly “ordered senior commanders to prepare for a complex, 10-day exercise in Italy with the US and Italian navies” as part of an April Fool’s Day prank that got out of hand.

    2012: Anthony Russell, “an exciting new talent in the world of Yiddish music” is scheduled to perform at Temple Beth Emeth in Brooklyn.

    2012: “Footnote” and “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen” are two of the films scheduled to be shown at Hartford Jewish Film Festival.

    2012(9th of Nisan, 5772): Eighty-year old “Edmund L. Epstein the literary scholar who saved Lord of the Flies” passed away today. (As reported by Bruch Weber)

    2012: “Spinozium” is scheduled to take place today at Theatre J in Washington, DC.

    2013(21stof Nisan, 5773): Seventh Day of Pesach; Reform Jews recite Yizkor

    2013(21stof Nisan, 5773): Seventy-year old William H. Ginsburg, the California civil lawyer who was thrust into the national spotlight when he represented Monica Lewinsky, passed away today.

    2013: Those visiting the symphony bar are scheduled to have a chance to “experience Leopold Bloom's passage through Dublin in a dramatic episode from James Joyce’s masterwork Ulysses.”

    2013: Beginning this morning, Israel “was hit by strong winds and dust” which led to “high levels of air pollution causing breathing complications.” (As reported by Yoel Goldman

    2013: In Ancient Fear Rises Anew Lisa Abend describes the resurgence of anti-Semitism in Hungary.

    2014: The Hebrew Language Table at the Library of Congress is scheduled to co-sponsor a presentation by Professor Gabriel Weimann entitled “Terrorism in Cyberspace: The Next Generation.”

    2014: Episodes 3, 4 and 5 of “The Story of the Jews with Simon Schama,”are scheduled to be shown this evening.

    0 0

    April 2

    742: Birthdate of Charlemagne. Charlemagne was both King of the Franks and the first Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire. Despite pressure from the Catholic Church and the mighty Pope Gregory, Charlemagne treated his Jewish subjects and they played a prominent part in his realm. Unfortunately, after his death in 814, his successors were unable to continue to his policies towards the Jews of Christian Europe.
    1118: Baldwin I, who arrogantly styled himself King of Jerusalem.  For Jews nothing more be said then that he was a brother of Godfrey of Bouillon and a leader of the bloody First Crusade.
    1279(Nisan, 5039): A number of London Jews were martyred following ritual charges. You will note that during the Easter Season there is a significant increase in these reports for several centuries in different parts of Europe.
    1453: Mehmed II began his siege of Constantinople. The siege would lead to the downfall of the Byzantine capitol which would improve the lot of the Jews living in the city as well as opening it up to settlement by Jews living Crete, Transylvania and Slovakia.
    1550: The Jews were expelled from of Genoa.
    1678(10th of Nisan): Rabbi Judah Ashael ben David del Bene author of Kisot le-Bet David passed away
    1738(12thof Nisan, 5498):  Joseph Oppenheimer was hanged. Oppenheimer, the finance minister, was arrested after the sudden death of Prince Karl of Wurttemberg. He was offered a pardon on condition of agreeing to be baptized. Although not a practicing Jew, he refused and was placed in a cage in the center of Stuttgart declaring "I will die as a Jew; I am suffering violence and injustice." He died while shouting Shema Yisrael.
    1756: Benjamin D’Israeli, the Angol-Jewish merchant who was grandfather of the British Prime Minister married his first wife, Rebecca Mendez Furtado.
    1755(21st of Nisan, 5515):Aryeh Leib ben Saul Lowenstam passed away in Amsterdam. Born in Cracow this Polish rabbi was a member of long line of Jewish sages including his grandfather Rabbi Hoeschl of Cracow and his father Saul who served as rabbi of Cracow from 1700 to 1704,
    1770(7th of Nisan): Rabbi PInchas Zelig of Lask, author of Ateret Paz passed away
    1787: Ephraim Hart “he was registered as an elector of the Shearith Israel congregation” in New York City.
    1806: Birthdate of Gabriel Riesser, youngest son of Lazarus Jacob Riesser and an advocate for the emancipation of the Jews of Germany.
    1817(16th of Nisan, 5577): Second Day of Pesach; 1st day of the Omer
    1825(14th of Nisan, 5585): Shabbat HaGadol; Erev Pesach
    1825: “The special privileges granted to the Portuguese Jewish citizens of Suriname were terminated by order of the Dutch crown. Thenceforth, Jews in the Dutch colonies were accorded the same rights as the other inhabitants, and all privileges, concessions and exceptions of whatever nature were abolished.” (As reported by the Suriname-Jewish Community)
    1826: In Ancona, Italy, “Anna Costantini, a young girl, was torn from her family and forced into baptism.”
    1840: Birthdate of Émile Zola. This non-Jewish French author would become a leading player in the Dreyfus Affair. His J”Accuse would be an indictment of the French military establishment and the anti-Semitic forces that swirled around this entire act of injustice.
    1844:"The building” housing the Great Synagogue in Sidney “was consecrated today with the music for the ceremony in the hands of Isaac Nathan, father of Australian music, who was also associated with the music at St Mary's Cathedral. For the occasion Nathan composed settings for Baruch Habba ("Blessed be he that cometh") and Halleluyah.
    1846: The last letter in the correspondence between Grace Aguilar and “the philanthropist Miriam Moses Cohen who acted as an agent for her publications in America” was sent today.
    1863: During the Civil War, food shortages cause hundreds of angry women to riot in Richmond, Virginia and demand that the Confederate government release emergency supplies, in what became known as the Richmond Bread Riots. In her honor’s thesis entitled The Richmond Bread Riot of 1863: Class, Race, and Gender in the Urban Confederacy, MIDN 1/C Katherine R. Titus wrote that while the rioters targeted speculators and government offices “Richmond citizens also targeted foreigners and Jews. The city had a tradition of blatant anti-Semitism. Once the War erupted, many Richmond citizens openly blamed the Jews and foreigners in the city for speculation and charged them with disloyalty. Sallie A. Putnam, for instance, believed that the Jews in Richmond profited from the war. She exhorted, “They were not found, as the more interested of the people, without the means to purchase food when the Confederate money became useless to us from the failure of our cause.” Major John W. Daniel contended that local stereotypes allowed the rioters to target Richmond Jews. After the War, he reminisced, “certain people down there were credited with great wealth. It was said that they had made barrels of money out of the Confederacy, and the female Communists went at them without a qualm of conscience.”
    1865:Twenty Jewish men signed a constitution that became the framework that would guide the future of Reform Jews in Akron, Ohio.
    1870(1st of Nisan, 5630): Rosh Chodesh Nisan/Shabbat HaChodesh
    1874(15thof Nisan, 5634): Pesach
    1881: It was reported today that the population of Thessaly, which is moving from Turk to Greek rule includes 50,000 Jews and Muslims as well as 300,000 who are classified as Greeks.
    1882:The New York Times reported that “the feast of Passover will commence tomorrow evening at sundown in accordance with the rabbinical ordinance which lays it down that it shall be celebrated from the evening of the 14thof Nisan and continues for eight days. It is regarded strictly as a feast of rejoicing and it’s a pleasant illustration of the liberalizing tendency of the age that many Jews make it a custom to send small presents of unleavened bread to the Christian friends”
    1882: The New York Times publishes an excerpt from “Domestic and Artistic Life of Copely” by Martha Babcock Amory in which the author describes a dinner with Baroness Lionel Rothschild in 1857.
    1883: After telling him that it was customary for newly engaged couple to announce their intention to become man and wife before an official at City Hall, the relatives of Pauline Moses to David Holtz to City Hall where an alderman performed a marriage ceremony; a fact not understood by Holtz because of his limited knowledge of the English language.
    1886(26th of Adar): Rabbi Aryeh Leib Yellin, author of Yefeh Einayim passed away today
    1890: The Passover Association distributed free matzoth to over four thousand poor Jews this evening at the Goodfellow’s Hall on Essex Street in New York.
    1890: The New York Times reported that the American Hebrew will be publishing a special Passover edition this Friday
    1890: It was suggested at today’s meeting of the New York Board of Estimate and Apportionment that the old Hebrew Orphan and Asylum on 77th Street could be used for the proposed new offices of the city’s Board of Education.
    1891: Birthdate of Max Ernst founder of surrealism
    1892: Simon Schafer, M.H. Moses, Judge M.S. Isaacs and A.L. spoke at tonight’s meeting of the Purim Association which was held at the Hoffman House tonight.
    1892: “Want To Hear Cleveland” published today described the ex-President’s popularity in New York as can be seen by warm reception his supporters receive when they address rallies of Russian Jews.  The Russians barely understand English, but the sound of Cleveland’s name is enough to bring out shouts of approval..
    1893(16th of Nisan, 5653): Second Day of Pesach; first day of the Omer
    1893: At Temple Emanu-El, Dr. Silverman is scheduled to deliver a lecture on “The Crucifixition.”
    1893: It was reported today that in Germany “the Conservatives have definitely thrown over Rector Hermann Ahlwardt the Jew baiter and libeler.”  However, their rejection has not stopped him from making public speeches and holding anti-Semitic rallies.
    1893: “Fine British Weather” published today described the social and political events taking place in the UK including plans by “an organization of progressive young Jews…to propose at all annual meetings of the synagogue throughout England, most of which are held next week, a resolution that it is not desirable to elect a man engaged in money lending as President of the congregation.”
    1893: Dr. Silverman is scheduled to give an address at Temple Emanu-El on “The Crucifixion.”
    1893: The New York Times reported that “an organization of progressive young Jews has arranged to propose at all annual meetings of the synagogues throughout England, most of which are held next week, a resolution that it is not desirable to elect a man engaged in money lending as President of the congregation.”
    1894: It was reported today that approximately 50 Jews, many of them women attended the evangelistic service at the Thalia Theatre Auditorium although there was no report of any of them coming forward to convert.  (These services were part of a concerted effort by some Christians to convert Jewish immigrants at the turn of the century)
    1896: The will of the late Charles S. Friedlander was filed with the Surrogate today for probate.
    1896(19thof Nisan, 5656): Leonard Friedman, who is approximately 52 years old, passed away today at Lakewood, NU.  A native of Germany, he came to the United States and after fighting his way out of poverty established Leonard Friedman & Co which over the last twenty years has become one of the leading tobacco houses in the United States.
    1896: Funeral services were held for Dr. Aaron Wise, who had been rabbi at New York’s Temple Rudolph Shalom at the time of his death. The services at the Lexington Avenue Temple were attended by so many mourners that “not one half could gain entrance to the synagogue.” Several of New York’s leading clergy took part in the ceremony including Dr. Rudolph Grossman of Temple Beth-El, Dr. Kaufmann Kohler also of Temple Beth-El who delivered an address in German and Dr. Gustav Gottheil of Temple Emanuel who delivered a eulogy in English in which he said of Wise, “The spirit of his words cannot die. The influence of the teacher has not limits as to time or space.” Burial followed the service in Union Field, Cypress Hills Cemetery.
    1897: Reverend John Hall delivered a lecture on “Judaism and Christianity” in which he said “There is a distinction between Judaism as described in the Bible and the Judaism of the present generation.”
    1897: A school designed to teach students how to cook food according to the laws of Kashrut opened today in Brooklyn in a neighborhood with a large Jewish population.
    1898(10thof Nisan, 5658): Shabbat Hagadol
    1898(10thof Nisan, 5658):Austrian pathologist and histologist Salomon Stricker passed away.
    1899: At the Hebrews Sheltering Guardian Society Orphan Asylum, Chaplain Joseph Kauffman officiated at service were a “bronze tablet in memory of Samuel Lewisohn” was unveiled.
    1899: “Disraeli and the Suez Canal” published today provided a summary an article by Arnold White that appeared in Harper’s Weekly describing the British leader’s role in facilitating the purchase of this vital waterway from which he gained no financial advantage.

    1902: “Controversy Over Hen Fattened For Passover” was the headline in today’s Atlanta Constitution.

    1903: The High Court of Australia sits for the first time. In 1930, Isaacs Isaacs would become the third person to fill this position and the first Jew to serve as Chief Justice of Australia.
    1903: Herzl meets McIlwraithe, the legal adviser of the Khedive where he finds out that an immediate counter-proposal is out of question. The size of the land and the duration of the contract are discussed.
    1907: Birthdate of Irene Mayer Selznick famed as the producer of Street Car Named Desire.
    1909: Ahmed Riza Bey, President of Turkish Parliament, offered Russian and Romanian Jews who were suffering tremendous persecution and attacks a chance to come settle in Turkey.
    1911: The newly formed Grand Council of the Jewish Community of Constantinople expresses loyalty of all Jews of all parties to the Ottoman Empire.
    1912(15thof Nisan, 5672): As TR and Taft battled for control of the Republican Party, observance of Pesach began
    1912: Today “two wagons left the corner of Lilienblum and Herzl Streets in Tel Aviv carrying 4 "Ahuza" members, 3 laborers and 2 armed watchmen. After a 5 hour journey, they unloaded their baggage at the place destined to become Ra'anana which has grown to become a city of almost 70,000 people living in Israel’s Central District.
    1912(15th of Nisan, 5672): Fifty women attended a Seder tonight at the Young Women’s Hebrew Association building on Lexington Avenue. The attendance was limited by the size of the building underscoring the need to build a new facility.
    1913:Today, Jews living in New York City brought copies of letters from family members living in Anatolia describing persecution by Greeks living in that part of the Ottoman Empire to the attention of the American Jewish Committee. They called upon the committee to intervene on the behalf of their co-religionists and to organize a protest against these outrages.
    1914: The officers of the Jewish Soldiers and Sailors Passover Committee met at the Broadway Central Hotel in New York. After the meeting, Henry Berlin, Chairman of the Arrangements Committee, reported that Secretary of War Garrison and Secretary of the Navy Daniels had sent letters announcing that Jewish soldiers and sailors would receive furloughs to celebrate Passover this year.
    1914(6th of Nisan, 5674): Paul Heyes, the first Jew to win the Nobel Prize for Literature, passed away today at the age of 84. A native of Bonn, “he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1910 ‘as a tribute to the consummate artistry, permeated with idealism, which he has demonstrated during his long productive career as a lyric poet, dramatist, novelist and writer of world-renowned short stories.’ One of the Nobel judges, said that ‘Germany has not had a greater literary genius since Goethe.’" [Considering what would happen to the Jews of German two decades after his death, this praise has a strange ring to it. Also, Heyes is living proof that winning a Nobel Prize is no guarantee to lasting fame, even among his co-religionists.]
    1917: President Wilson asked the United States Congress for a declaration of war against Germany. This was the first official step towards America’s entry into World War I as a combatant on the side of the Allies. While American Jews supported the war effort and served in all branches of the armed forces, there was an unintended downside for the Jews living in Central and Eastern Europe. It was easier for American Jews to get aid to their suffering co-religionists when the United States was a “neutral.” Once it joined the Allied side, the Central Powers (Germany and Austria) it would be much more difficult to get help to those living in the war torn areas under the control of these nations.
    1918: One day after his death on the Western Front, a letter written by poet and painter Isaac Rosenberg which had been written three days earlier arrives in London. In the letter he describes life in the trenches.
    1921: Professor Albert Einstein held a press conference aboard the steamship Rotterdam today in New York Harbor. During the conference Einstein talked about his Theory of Relativity and his support for the creation of a Jewish homeland in Palestine.
    1923(16th of Nisan, 5653): Second Day of Pesach; 1st day of the Omer
    1922: “Two wagons left the corner of Lilienblum and Herzl Streets in Tel Aviv carrying 4 "Ahuza" members, 3 laborers and 2 armed watchmen. After a 5 hour journey, they unloaded their baggage at the place destined to become Ra'anana, a city in the heart of the southern Sharon Plain of the Central District of Israel with a population of 68,300, as of 2009.
    1925: According to a cable message that was made public today by Judge Jacob S. Stahl, President of the American Palestine Line steamship company, the SS President Arthur has arrived in Haifa. The liner with 500 prominent American Jews from all parts of the United States sailed on March 12 on her maiden voyage to inaugurate a regular service between New York and the Holy Land.
    1925: At “the groundbreaking ceremony of the Hebrew University on April 2, 1925 Edmund Landau lectured in Hebrew on the topic Solved and unsolved problems in elementary number theory.
    1925: The Vatucan’s Holy Office published a decree saying that the Catholic Church, whatever its other views on Jew maybe, “condemns hatred against the people elected by God, a hatred that today is vulgarly called anti-Semitism.” (For more see Under His Very Windows by Susan Zucotti)
    1928: Birthdate of actress Rita Gam who was the wife of director Sidney Lumet and publisher Thomas Guinzberg (not at the same time) and the mother of producer Kate Guinzburg
    1928: Birthdate of Serge Gainsbourg. Born Lucien Ginzburg or Ginsburg to Russian Jewish Parents living in Paris, Gainsbourg gained famed as a poet, singer, songwriter, actor, director and finally controversial guest on French television talks shows. He passed away in 1991.
    1929: The rabbinical commencement exercises of the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary and Yeshiva College, the first in three years and the first in the new building of the institution, were held today. Dr. Bernard Revel delivered an address in which he warned of the dangers of “religious illiteracy and urged that synagogues become centers of faith. Among those receiving diplomas were forty-one newly minted rabbis and 45 teachers.”
    1930: Isaac Isaacs completes his service as Puisine Justice of the High Court of Australia and begins serving as the as Chief Justice of Australia.
    1930: Haile Selassie is proclaimed emperor of Ethiopia. Part of his title included the honorific “Conquering Lion of the Tribe of Judah” which is tied to the contention that the Ethiopian rulers traced their origin to a relationship between King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba. During World War II, Orde Wingate would aid the king in his fight against the Italians. This is the same Orde Wingate who was stationed in Palestine before World War II. He was one of the few British officers who was supportive of the efforts of the Jews to defend themselves against the Arab who were attacking them. Wingate reportedly provided training for the Zionists in basic military tactics and weapons usage.
    1931: As Jews gathered to observe the second Passover of the Great Depression Rabbis focused their holiday talks on the worsening economic conditions of the day and the need for reform. Sermons mixed holiday motifs and symbolism with the rise in unemployment and deteriorating social conditions. Using the Ten Plagues as his point of departure Rabbi Rosenblum of Temple Israel “declared that the unsettled economic condition of the world was the greatest plague of our era and that the leaders of government and business were responsible for the chaos and misery. Capitalism seems to be a Pharaoh…If Pharaoh listens he will not suffer ten plagues. If he does not, the very first plague will yet come to pass. It will be a revolution and blood.” At Temple Rodeph Shalom, Rabbi Newman “said that Passover, the Jewish festival of freedom, commemorated the release of the Israelites not only from political bondage but economic enslavement as well.” Rabbi Samuel Schulman broadened the scope a bit by pointing out the “power of religion to free or enslave man and emphasizing that real freedom required economic freedom which would allow for just and equal opportunity for every individual to use his powers in accordance with his ability and to receive just rewards.” (Sounds a bit like Marx and Moses meeting on New York’s fashionable east side.) But it was left to Rabbi Jonah Wise preaching at New York’s Central Synagogue to pull all elements of religion including Christianity together with the great crisis facing the nation. “Men are trained by loyalties to country, church and self to refuse to share life with foreigners, non-conformists and competitors. We shall never have security and morality until we learn to live at peace. We are making occasional breaches in the Chinese wall of creeds, tariffs and prejudices. Passover and Easter are supposed to be feasts of freedom and salvation. They are farces in the face of humanity starved in the presence of plenty and condemned to hatreds in fact while applauding love in theory.”
    1934:Birthdate of Paul Joseph Cohen famed mathematician who developed a technique he called “forcing.” He won the Fields Medal in 1966.
    1935: In Tel Aviv, the second Maccabiah Games opened “before 40,000 spectators at the Maccabiah Stadium. The German contingent marched flagless amid the fluttering colors of the other teams entering the venue. The American team including Janice Lifson, Doris Kelm and Lillian Copeland, placed “fourth in the women’s 100-yard relay final, the first of the swimming events.
    1936: In an article entitled “Tel Aviv Prepares Its Greatest Fair” Joseph M. Levy describes plan for the upcoming Levant Fair slated to open at the end of this month.
    1937(21st of Nisan, 5697): Nathan Birnbaum passed away. Born in Vienna in 1864, Birnbaum coined the terms Zionists and Zionism in 1890. He was active with Herzl in the First Zionist Congress. However, he later drifted away from the movement becoming more concerned with a renaissance in Jewish culture and traditional Judaism. He left Germany after Hitler came to power and moved to the Netherlands where he continued his writings.
    1937: In Albania, the Jewish community was granted official recognition by the government. The largest Jewish populations were located in Kavaje and Vlora. Approximately, 600 Jews were living in Albania prior to World War II, 400 of who were refugees. At the beginning of World War II, hundreds of Jews arrived in Albania seeking refuge from Nazi persecution in other regions of Europe.
    1941: Hungarian Premier Count Pál Telecki committed suicide rather than collaborate with Germany. This is only one small chapter in the complex story of Hungary’s involvement in World War II. For much of the war, Hungary’s Jewish population would remain comparatively untouched by the raging Holocaust. Only in the final year of the war would the final solution come to this eastern European state.
    1942: Birthdate of Larry Selman whose life would captured in documentary “The Collector of Bedford Street.” (As reported by Paul Vitello)

    1943:At the Thirty-eighth Council of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations, which opened its three-day meeting in the Hotel New Yorker today,speakers declared that only through the creation of an international structure of mutual responsibility will the world obtain a lasting post-war peace period.
    1944: Today, 90 Jews who were captured by the Nazis at Chalcis, a port on the Greek island of Euboea are shipped to Auschwitz.
    1944: In Haifa, British police discovered a cache of arms belonging to the Stern Gang following a bombing which caused the death of a Jewish constable and wounded a British policeman.
    1944: At night, British authorities arrested more than sixty individuals many of whom were reported to be “members of the Jewish revisionist party known as the New Zionist Organization.”
    1945: In a letter to Chaim Weizmann, president of the Jewish Agency for Palestine, Peter Bergson provides a description of the efforts of the Hebrew Committee of National Liberation (H.C.N.L.) to save the Jews of Europe and create a Jewish state.
    1948: British Forces arrive at the air field south of Beit Darass looking for arms that had been delivered to the Jews. They found nothing since the Jews had hidden the weapons in the surrounding collective settlements.
    1950(15th of Nisan, 5710): First Day of Pesach
    1952:The Jerusalem Post reported that the Knesset passed the Nationality Act which was expected to confer automatic Israeli citizenship on all Jewish residents, and some of the non-Jews, on July 14, 1952. The vote was 43 to 17. The Knesset defeated, by a vote of 25 to 16, a proposal made by Herut which would require all persons holding dual citizenship to give up one nationality within two years after becoming Israeli citizens.
    1952:The Jerusalem Post reported that a report from The Hague stated that the German delegation to the reparations talks left for Germany for further consultations. The Israeli delegation denied that there was any "crisis" in the talks and explained that the preliminary, informative stage of deliberations drew to a close, and a formula for further talks had been agreed upon. The delegation hoped that this would allow for good progress in the further discussions and actual negotiations. A small letter bomb, containing 40 grams of modern explosives, was sent to the leader of the German reparations delegation at The Hague. It failed to explode when opened in the mail room of the German Embassy.
    1952:The Jerusalem Post reported that the IDF had completed "Operation Ma’barot," the winter-long assistance extended by various army units to new immigrants in their camps.
    1954: In Hong Kong, a Centenary Dinner was held celebrating the 100 anniversary of the founding of the Shanghai Volunteer Corps which from 1932 through 1942 included Company H or “The Jewish Company.”

     1958: Release date for “The Young Lions,” the cinematic treatment of Irwin Shaw’s novel of the same named produced by Al Lichtman one of the main protagonist of which is “Noah Ackerman”
    1962:Frieda Caplan opened her specialty produce company, Frieda's Inc., which has introduced a wide array of exotic produce to the American market.
    1965: Hochhuth’s play "Stellvertreter" was banned in Italy. In English, the play is called "The Deputy." It was a sensation at the time for its dramatic portrayal of the negative role Pope Pious XII played during the Holocaust in terms of saving the Jews from the Holocaust and resisting the Nazis.
    1970: An Israeli Phantom jet piloted by Pini Nahmani was shot down over a Damascus suburb. Nahmani was imprisoned in the al-Mazza Prison in Damascus.
    1972: Actor Charlie Chaplin returned to the United States for the first time since being labeled a communist in the early 1950s during the Red Scare
    1979: Menachem Begin visited Cairo, Egypt. The historic visit followed the historic peace treaty that Begin and Sadat had signed. Begin was the first Israeli Prime Minister to visit Egypt.
    1982:Jewish militants opposing Israel's withdrawal from Sinai tried to reach the area by boat today after the army closed it to unauthorized civilians and set up roadblocks
    1987(3rd of Nisan, 5747): Famed drummer and orchestra leader Buddy Rich passed away at the age of 69. According to some sources, only Rich’s father was Jewish. However, on the official Buddy Rich Website, Rich’s religion is listed as Jewish
    1987:Theater of the Riverside Church offered a rare look at Israeli Experimentalist Theater and dance when it presented Tmu-Na today. The Tel-Aviv group, founded in 1982 by Nava Zukerman, takes its name from the Hebrew word for moving pictures.
    1988(15 of Nisan, 5748): Pesach
    1989(26th of Adar II, 5749): Jack Ruby Lindo whose tombstone in the Anglican cemetery in Ocho Rio has a “large six-pointed Star of David” passed away today.

    1995: Two members of Hamas blew themselves up in Gaza City while preparing for an attack on Israel.

    1995: In an article entitled “Central Synagogue; A $500,000 Restoration of an 1872 Masterwork,” Christopher Gray traces the history of Central Synagogue, one of the most spectacular houses of worship in New York City, is a rare surviving example of early Victorian religious architecture. Construction sheds are now going up for a $500,000 restoration of the building's 1872 stone exterior. Central Synagogue, which was originally called Ahawath Chesed, was founded in 1846 by immigrants from Prague and the nearby regions of what was then Bohemia.
    1998:”Israel Offers Pullout if Lebanon Bars Raids” published today described the conditions under which Israel will leave its neighbor to the north.
    2000:The New York Times features reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or special interest to Jewish readers including “I Will Bear Witness:A Diary of the Nazi Years, 1942-1945by Victor Klemperer; translated by Martin Chalmers and the recently released paperback edition of “Playing for Keeps:Michael Jordan and the World He Made”by David Halberstam
    2000:Columbia University and the Jewish Campus Life Fund celebrates the dedication and cornerstone-laying, of the Robert K. Kraft Family Center for Jewish Student Life, a new $11.5 million building that fulfills the long-held goal of creating a permanent home for Columbia's vibrant and diverse Jewish student community. The building is named for the family of Robert K. Kraft, a 1963 graduate of Columbia College and University Trustee since 1991.
    2001: Scott Schoeneweis was awarded the honor of being the Angels' opening day starter today (his first such assignment) and he pitched effectively, yielding 3 runs and 8 hits in 7 innings; but Anaheim lost to Texas, 3-2.
    2001: Pitcher Tony Cogan played in his first major league game as a player with the Kansas City Royals.
    2002: As part of Operation Defensive Shield, the IDF entered the booby-trapped camp at Jenin and ”surrounded the headquarters of the Preventive Security Force in nearby Beitunia.”
    2002: Israeli forces surrounded the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem after 200 Palestinian terrorists took refuge inside. Instead of storming the church, the IDF surrounded the building a laid siege to the armed killers.
    2002: Frieda Caplan's specialty produce company, Frieda's Inc., which has introduced a wide array of exotic produce to the American market, celebrated forty years in business.
    2003: Milwaukee Brewers Pitcher Matt Ford appears in his first major league baseball game.
    2005: The Cedar Rapids Gazette reported that “the search for a new rabbi for Temple Judah has ended with the hiring of Rabbi Aaron Sherman.” Rabbi Sherman and his wife Stephanie Alexander recently purchased a home in Cedar Rapids. A graduate of Brown University, Rabbi Sherman has a Masters in Hebrew Letters and was ordained at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 2000.
    2006: Jaclyn Leibson Mintz, daughter of Dale Mintz, the national director of women’s health and advocacy for Hadassah and editor of “The Hadassah Jewish Family Book of Health and Wellness” and Stephen A. Mintz were married in a ceremony officiated at by Rabbi A. Rothman.
    2006: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including “Fair Trade For All: How Trade Can Promote Development” by Joseph E. Stiglitz and Andrew Charlton and the recently released paperback edition of “Incompleteness: The Proof and Paradox of Kurt Gödel by Rebecca Goldstein.”
    2007: “Nightrise” the third book in The Power of Five series, by Anthony Horowitz was released in the United Kingdom today.
    2007(14thof Nisan): Anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising on the Jewish calendar
    2007 (14th of Nisan): In the evening, Pesach begins with the first Seder.
    2007: The New Republic Magazine featured a review of George Konrad’s autobiography, “A Guest In My Own Country: A Hungarian Life.” Konrad, like the more famous Elie Weisel, survived the Holocaust in Hungary, but spent his adult life in the land where he had faced almost certain death.
    2007: Erev Pesach, Newsweek Magazine featured an article entitled “American Jews: The List—Choosing the Chosen” in which three American Jewish multi-millionaires list the top fifty rabbis in the United States. Following the criteria used by this trio, the Rabbis we read about Bnei Berak in the Haggadah would not have made the list.
    2007: Chicago real estate billionaire Sam Zell “has won the auction for the Tribune Co.” The 65 year old native of Highland Park, Illinois has bought the company whose holdings include the Chicago Tribune.
    2008: In Vancouver, B.C., the Vancouver Jewish Film Festival presents a screening of “Jewish Luck.” which was among the first Soviet Yiddish films to be released in the US during the 1920s. “
    2009: Professor Amy-Jill Levine, of Vanderbilt University, delivers an address at Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, entitled “Misunderstanding Judaism/Misunderstanding Jesus.”
    2009(8th of Nisan, 5769): A terrorist infiltrated Bat Ayin in the Gush Etzion region of the West Bank and killed Shlomo Nativ, a 13-year-old Israeli boy, by striking him in the head with an axe. The terrorist also attacked a 7-year-old boy with the axe, hitting and wounding him in the head. He was taken to Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem and is in moderate condition. Iran-backed Palestinian Islamic Jihad and an organization calling itself the Imad Mughniyeh Group claimed responsibility for the attack, although this has not been confirmed.
    2009: Today in an interview to the Radio Liberty Vitaly Lazarevich Ginzburg denounced the FSB as an institution harmful to Russia and the ongoing expansion of its authority as a return to Stalinism
    2010: Krista Tippe , host of American Public Media's Speaking of Faith and author of , Einstein's God: Conversations About Science and the Human Spirit, is scheduled to appear with Michel Martin, host of NPR's Tell Me More for a dialogue about the role of faith in their lives at the Shakespeare Theatre Company's Sidney Harman Hall in Washington.
    2010: “Musical Shabbat” is scheduled to return to Friday Night Services at Temple Judah in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
    2011:Professor Yosef Shiloh, of Tel Aviv University's Sackler Medical School, the first Israeli to receive the prestigious Clowes Award presented by the American Association for Cancer Research is scheduled to be honored at the AACR Annual Meeting that opens today in Orlando, Florida. The prize includes a $10,000 grant, a commemorative plaque, and funding to attend this prestigious event.
    2011:Former Israel Olympian, Shaul Landry, a surviving member of the 1972 Munich delegation, is scheduled to celebrate his 75th birthday today by walking his age in kilometers.
    2011(27th of Adar II, 5771): Ninety-two year old Morris Parloff, a member of the "Ritchie Boys," a German-speaking unit of the U.S. Army that did intelligence work and psychological warfare in World War II, and who later became a psychotherapist, researcher and an administrator at the National Institute of Mental Health, passed away today. Parloff was among the surviving members of the Ritchie Boys featured in a 2004 documentary.

    2011(27thof Adar II, 5771): In Cedar Rapids, Iowa, the Traditional Saturday Morning Minyan celebrated Shabbat Ha-Chodesh.

    2011(27thof Adar): Yahrzeit of Zedekiah “the last king of the royal house of David to reign in the Holy Land. He ascended the throne in 434 BCE, after King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylonia (to whom the kingdom of Judah was then subject) exiled King Jeconiah (Zedekiah's nephew) to Babylonia.In 425 BCE Zedekiah rebelled against Babylonian rule, and Nebuchadnezzar laid siege to Jerusalem (in Tevet 10 of that year); in the summer of 423 BCE the walls of Jerusalem were penetrated, the city conquered, the (first) Holy Temple destroyed, and the people of Judah exiled to Babylonia. Zedekiah tried escaping through a tunnel leading out of the city, but was captured; his sons were killed before his eyes, and then he was blinded. Zedekiah languished in the royal dungeon in Babylonia until Nebuchadnezzar's death in 397 BCE; Evil Meroduch -- Nebuchadnezzar's son and successor -- freed him (and his nephew Jeconiah)” today. Ironically, Zedikiah died on the same day on which he was freed.
    2011: “The Matchmaker” is scheduled to be shown at the West Chester Jewish Film Festival.
    2011:Early this morning, in the southern town of Khan Yunis, IAF aircraft bombed a car carrying four senior Hamas operatives who, according to Israel, were on their way to Sinai with plans to kidnap or attack Israelis vacationing on the peninsula.
    2011: The Israeli Counter-Terror Bureau urged Israelis today to leave the Sinai Peninsula immediately, after revealing that Israeli intelligence agencies had obtained concrete information of plans by terrorists to kidnap or attack Israeli nationals vacationing there over the upcoming Pesach holiday. .
    2011:Naama Shafir, a Sabbath-observing Israeli, scored a career-high 40 points to power the University of Toledo women's basketball team to the school's first national postseason championship in any sport. Shafir hit 13 of 27 shots as the host Rockets defeated the University of Southern California, 76-68 today for the Women's NIT title. The victory also marked the first women's national championship for a Mid-American Conference team in any sport. Shafir, a 5-7 junior guard from the small northern Israeli town of Hoshaya, also sank 13 of 18 free throws in the game. Following the victory on Saturday afternoon, Shafir walked home and held off interviews until long after the conclusion of Shabbat. Shafir is believed to be the first female Orthodox Jew to be awarded a Division I athletic scholarship. She led the Rockets this season with averages of 15.3 points and 5 assists per game. She had been courted by Boston University and Seton Hall before enrolling at Toledo. Getting the OK to play in the United States was no easy layup: Shafir obtained permission from an Orthodox rabbi in Israel to play games that coincided with the Jewish Sabbath, but not to practice, according to The Associated Press. Other special measures have been enacted to accommodate Shafir’s Sabbath observance: For road games, she checks into a hotel within walking distance of the host arena with a coaching staff assistant, bringing with her frozen kosher meals from Detroit. (As reported by JTA)
    2012(11th of Nisan, 5772): Ninety-seven year old “Mauricio Lasansky, an Argentine-born master printmaker who was equally well known for a series of drawings depicting the horrors of Nazism” passed away today at his home in Iowa City, Iowa. (As reported by Margalit Fox)
    2012(11th of Nisan, 5772): Ninety-year old Borscht Belt tumbler Lou Goldstein passed away today. (As reported by Joseph Berger)

    2012:Hillel C. Neuer and Bari Weiss are scheduled to discuss “From Eleanor Roosevelt to Qaddafi: An Insider's Account of Human Rights at the UN” at the 92nd Street Y.
    2013(22nd of Nisan, 5773): Final Day of Pesach
    2013: Elem, a non-profit organization for runaway homeless and neglected Israeli and Arab youth in distress is scheduled to host an evening of dinner and drinks to support Israeli Jewish and Arab Youth at Risk prepared by some of New York’s finest chefs.
    2013: Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon toured the Golan Heights this afternoon, and vowed that Israel would prevent the proliferation of weapons "that could threaten us in the future" to radical elements in Syria
    2013:Israel launched its first airstrike on the Gaza Strip today since the Egyptian-mediated truce ended November’s eight-day bout of fighting. The airstrike came in response to the firing of a projectile from Gaza, which had exploded in an open area of southern Israel’s Eshkol region.  Israel had not responded to a previous attack that came while President Obama was visiting the region in March.

    2013: Following the shots fired from Syrian territory into the Golan Heights today, IDF tanks returned fire at a Syrian military target across the border, successful destroying whatever had been doing the shooting.

    2014: The Jewish Theological Seminary is scheduled to present “Mah Nishtanah: Posing New Questions, Telling New Stories – An evening of inspiring Passover learning.”
    2014: The Oregon Jewish Museum is scheduled to host “Chai Fantasy” – a panel discussion about fantasy literature and Judaism.


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    April 3

    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.”

    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.”

    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

    1764: Meyer Hard, one of the founders of Easton, PA took the oath of allegiance to the colonial government today

    1825(16th of Nisan, 5585): Second Day of Pesach; first day of the Omer

    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.

    1870: An article published today entitled “Reformed Judaism: Advanced ideas in the Ancient Religion--Doctrines and Tenets of the Reformers--The New Temples in Brooklyn” 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.

    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: 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.

    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): Rabbi Arnaud, chief rabbi of Strasbourg, Alsace, author of Prieres d’un Coeur Israelite passed away

    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: 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.

    1893: Birthdate of 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 not be solved until 2025 when papers concerning the matter will finally be declassified

    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 teach has no limits as to time or space.”

    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: 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.”

    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.

    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.

    1920(15th of Nisan, 5680): First Pesach of “the roaring twenties”

    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.

    1924: Birthdate of Marlon Barndo. See below for an 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.

    1930: Birthdate of Max Frankel. “Max Frankel is 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.

    1937(22nd of Nisan): Author and folklorist Judah Loeb Cahan passed away.

    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: Ernst Heilmann, German jurist and political leader was murdered at Buchenwald

    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(27th of Adar II, 5703): Actor Contrad 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.

    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.

    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.”

    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 Postreported 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 Postreported 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.

    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.

    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.

    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 Postreported 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 old leader of the Arkansas Jewish community Adele Bluthenthal Heiman passed away today.

    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.

    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

    1993(12th of Nisan, 5753): Pinky Lee kiddy host (Pinky Lee Show), dies 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.

    2002(21st of Nisan, 5762): Seventh day of Pesach and 6thday 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: 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. His presentation includes readings from the works of Agnon, Gutman and Rubin.Uri Cohen is an assistant professor at Columbia University specializing in Modern Hebrew Literature and Israeli culture. His interests include the role of poetic language in political discourse and questions of cultural representation of conflict

    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.”

    2010: Violinist Joseph Lin is scheduled to perform at the Sixth & I Synagogue in Washington, D.C.

    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.

    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 Timesfeatures 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.

    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.

    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(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: 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: “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.

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    April 4

    188: Birthdate of Cracalla, the Roman Emperor who allowed all free Jews within the empire to become full Roman citizens.

    397:Aurelius Ambrosius, (Saint Ambrose) a bishop of Milan who became one of the most influential ecclesiastical figures of the fourth century passed away. He lived during a period when the Christian Church was still trying to establish its identity. He was no stranger to Jews as we can see from the following three examples. In “De Abrahamo” Ambrose warned Christians against intermarrying with Jews.  His strong opposition can be seen in the following conflict he had with the Roman Emperor, Theodosius over the rebuilding of synagogue. “It appears that in 388 a mob, led by the local bishop and many monks, destroyed the synagogue at Callinicum. The emperor Theodosius the Great ordered the rebuilding of the synagogue at the expense of the rioters, including the bishop. Ambrose immediately issued a fiery protest to the emperor. He wrote to Theodosius that "the glory of God" is concerned in this matter, and that therefore he cannot be silent. "Shall the bishop be compelled to re-erect a synagogue? Can he religiously do this thing? If he obey the emperor, he will become a traitor to his faith; if he disobey him, a martyr. What real wrong is there, after all, in destroying a synagogue, a 'home of perfidy, a home of impiety,' in which Christ is daily blasphemed? Indeed, he must consider himself no less guilty than this poor bishop; at least to the extent that he made no concealment of his wish that all synagogues should be destroyed, that no such places of blasphemy be further allowed to exist." At the end, he succeeded in obtaining from Theodosius a promise that the sentence should be completely revoked, with the very natural consequence that thereafter the prospect of immunity thus afforded occasioned spoliations of synagogues all over the empire. That Ambrose could nevertheless occasionally say a good word for the Jews is shown by a passage in his "Enarratio in Psalmos" in which he remarks, "Some Jews exhibit purity of life and much diligence and love of study."

    1081: Alexios I Komnenos is crowned Byzantine emperor at Constantinople, beginning the Komnenian dynasty. Most Byzantine Emperors of this period “expressed little interest in combating…religious pluralism.  Alexios was the exception to the rule.  He took “an unusual interest in presenting himself as a defender” of the dominant Christian Orthodox faith. During his reign, St. Nikon agreed to go to Sparta if the Jews were expelled from the community. The town was enduring a wave of unusual illness and Nikon said that cause was the contaminating effect of “abominable” Jewish customs and the polluting effect of their worship.

    1285: Philip the Fair, King of France, began his policy of using Jews solely for his financial benefit.  He was called the Fair because of his complexion, not his behavior.  The Jews were caught up in the conflict called the Albigensians Heresy, a conflict within the Catholic Church.  Philip was always looking for ways to enrich himself.  Ultimately he expelled the Jews from his kingdom, abrogating the debts he owed them and confiscating all personal and communal property.

    1292: Pope Nicholas IV who had issued “Orat Mater Ecclesla,” a bull designed “to protect the Roman Jews from oppression, passed away today,

    1609: English navigator Henry Hudson set sail from Amsterdam harbor under direction from his “employer,” the Duct East India Company to sail east in the quest for a shorter water passage to the Indies.  Fortunately for the Jewish people, Hudson ignored these instructions and sailed west seeking the fabled Northwest Passage to the Orient.  As part of this quest, Hudson sailed past what is now New York on his way up what we know as the Hudson River claiming all of the surrounding for the Dutch.  This meant that the 23 Jews who arrived in New Amsterdam landed in a territory controlled by the religiously tolerant Dutch as opposed to a colony controlled Catholic Spain or Catholic France neither of whom would have allowed the Jews to settle.

    1660: King Charles II of England publishes the terms under which he will return to the throne in a document known as the Declaration of Breda. The restoration under Charles II bodes well for the Jews of England since it was Charles II who was the first to declare that the Jewish community could remain in England without suffering harassment.   

    1687: King James II issued The Declaration of Indulgence, one of the major steps towards the granting of full religious liberty in Great Britain.  Jews had returned to in 1655 and the next major step in the fight for full religious rights would come with the passage of the short-lived Jewish Naturalization Act of 1753.

    1693(27th of Adar II, 5453):Rabbi Isaac Aboab da Fonseca, a kabbalist, scholar and leader of the Dutch Jewish community passed away.

    1718: Birthdate of Benjamin Kennicott, English churchman and Hebrew scholar.  Kennicott spent most of his life exploring and collating various Hebrew texts.  Unfortunately, the final printing of his work rendered much of it nearly useless.  One of the most positive outcomes was the recognition of the antiquity and common origins of the text of the Hebrew Bible.

    1739: “Israel in Egypt,” “an oratorio by George Frideric Handel that “it is composed entirely of selected passages from the Hebrew Bible, mainly from Exodus and the Psalms.. premiered at London's King's Theatre in the Haymarket”

    1762(11th of Nisan, 5522): David Frankel, the chief rabbi of Berlin whose students included Moses Mendelssohn, passed away today.

    1776: Celebration of the first Pesach after the firing of the Shot Heard Round the World.

    1830: Birthdate of Albert (Aaron) Siegfried Bettelheim, Hungarian born Rabbi and Hebraist.

    1838: Albert Moses Levy married Claudinia Olivia Gervais.  Levy was a Virginia born doctor who moved to Texas where he played a prominent role in the revolt against Mexico.  Levy’s father, a Dutch born Jew married an Episcopalian after coming to the United States.  Levy was raised in the faith of his mother and his wife, with whom he had five children, was also an Episcopalian. While stories like this were not uncommon among 18th and 19thAmerican Jewry, it is amazing that there were not more such cases given the fluidity of the American frontier.

    1850:  Los Angeles is incorporated as a city. Jews were active in Los Angeles from its earliest days as an American city. Jacob Frankfort is reported to the first Jew to live in Los Angeles.  He arrived in the city in December, 1841, when it was still part of Mexico.  In the early 1850’s seven prominent, unmarried Jewish merchants occupied space at the Corner of Aliso and Los Angeles streets on what was called Bell’s row.  Two were from Poland and five were from Germany.  They ranged in age from 19 to 28.  For the trivia buffs, their names were Abraham Jacobi, Morris Michaels, Morris Goodman, Phillip Sichel, Augustine Waserman, Felix Bachan and Joseph Plumer

    1859:Dinorah, originally Le pardon de Ploërmel ("The Pilgrimage of Ploërmel"), a French opéra comique in three acts with music by Giacomo Meyerbeer was first performed at the Opéra-Comique (Salle Favart), in Paris.

    1859: The New York Times reported that “the number of Jews in Oregon, most of whom are engaged in commercial pursuits, is quite large. In Portland, they have a synagogue recently incorporated by the legislature under the name of ‘Congregation Beth Israel’ where religious worship is conducted after the manner of German Israelites.  A large portion of them are, however, free-thinkers.”

    1861: The New York Times reported that M. Guranda, the Viennese Jewish editor of the Ost Deutsche Post was elected to serve in the Provincial Diet.

    1863(15thof Nisan, 5623): Pesach

    1862: Birthdate of Leonid Pasternak, the native of Odessa who became a noted post-impressionist painter and was the father of Boris Pasternak.

    1865: Private Henry Strauss was discharged from the 10th Mississippi Infantry today.

    1871: “Matzoth Again: The Feast of Passover Unleavened Bread How They Make Passover Cakes,” published today describes the process of making Matzah. [Ed. Note: Given the comparatively small Jewish population, this article is remarkable for several reasons.]

    1877: Birthdate of Yiddish poet and songwriter Mordechai Gebirtig.

    1878: In Singapore, the new Maghain Aboth Synagogue on Waterloo Street which had been financed in part by Menasseh Meyer, “supposedly the richest Jew in Asia,” was consecrated today.

    1879: A correspondent for the Neue Zilricher Zeitgung described a massacre of Jews in Satschcheri in the Caucuses. At the beginning of April the body of a child was found in the woods. Seven Jews were accused by the Christian villagers of having killed the child and then having hid the body as part of their Easter Sacrifice.  The accused were taken before a local Judge who dismissed the charges after “a medical witness” testified that the child had died of natural causes and that the wounds on the body “were the work of wild animals.  The Jews celebrated their deliverance with a party which was interrupted by a an axe wielding Christian mob.  The mob, which had been incited by an Orthodox Priest broke into the house killing six of the Jews and injuring many more.

    1882(15th of Nisan, 5642): First Day of Pesach

    1882: As the Jews of Tisza-Eszlar, Hungary, observe Pesach rumors are circulating that Esther Solymosi, a 14 year old Christian peasant girl who disappeared on the first of the month has been killed by the Jews so her blood could be used in baking matzah.

    1883(26thof Adar II):Menahem Cattawi Bey, known as the "Egyptian Rothschild” passed away today

    1884: In Pest, The Supreme Tribunal has confirmed the acquittal of all the Jews who were charged with murdering Esther Salomossy. It was alleged that they had killed her to obtain blood to mix with “Passover Bread”

    1886(28thof Adar II, 5646): Moritz Warburg, who was born in 1810 who represented his native Altona in the Reichstag passed away today.  He was survived by his first son Albert who was born in 1843 but was pre-deceased by his second son Jacob who was born in 1848 and was killed during the Franco-Prussian War.

    1887(10thof Nisan, 5647): Isais Morgenstern passed away.

    1889: Clarence Charles Minzesheimer, “who had entered the banking and brokerage business of his father Charles Minzesheimer became a member of the New York Stock Exchange today.

    1890: “Meat Given To The Poor” published today descried the distribution Passover provisions the needy.  While most of those in line were Polish Jews, “there was also a number of poor Gentiles.”  They were given coupons to take to local butchers since those distributing the food felt that there should be no distinction to helping the poor regardless of religion.

    1890(14th of Nisan, 5650): As Jews begin the celebration of Passover this evening, the less fortunate Jews living in New York will enjoy a happier holiday thanks to the efforts of the Passover Relief Association which distributed 9,830 pounds of Matzah, 1,000 pounds of sugar, 480 pounds of coffee and 50 pounds of tea at Goodfellow Hall prior to the start of the holiday.

    1890(14th of Nisan, 5650):Felix Albert Bettelheim passed away in Baltimore, Maryland. Born in Hungary in 1861 he was the son of the rabbi Aaron Siegfried Bettelheim. He immigrated to the United States in the sixties. In his seventeenth year he was graduated from the University of California with high honors, and three years later from the Medical College in San Francisco. From 1880 to 1881 he was resident physician of the San Quentin state prison; from 1881 to 1883, ship's surgeon of the Pacific Mail steamship "Colima"; 1883-89, surgeon-general of the Panama Railroad and CanalCompany. Through his efforts the first hospital in Panama was built; and he became one of its staff of physicians. He held several high offices and received a number of medals and testimonials from the government in recognition of his services. Bettelheim was the discoverer of a new germ peculiar to tropical countries, an account of which is given in medical records. In 1889 he studied clinical methods in the great European cities. On his return to America he died from a tropical liver complaint which was held by American authorities to be unique and was described by Professor Osler, of Johns Hopkins University, in a London medical journal. He was a frequent contributor to the "Lancet" and other periodicals, and left a posthumous work, "On the Contagious Diseases of Tropical Countries," still unpublished. A text-book by Dr. Thorington of Philadelphia, on the diseases of the eye, is dedicated to Bettelheim's memory.

    1890 (14th of Nisan, 5650): The Jewish Messenger reports that “despite the undeniable tendency to change in every direction, the festival of Passover, which begins this evening survives with all its old time strength and picturesqueness.  Our Passover “is over three thousand years old and likely to survive three thousand more.”

    1890: Erev Pesach, the American Hebrewpublishes a special Passover edition including an article entitled “Prejudice Against the Jews; its Causes and Remedies.”

    1892: It was reported today that newly elected officers of the Purim Association are M.H. Moses, President; Simon Schafer, Vice President; and Sol E. Solomon, Treasurer.   The $16,000 that the association raised at its last charity ball has been donated to the United Hebrew Charities.

    1892: It was reported today that “fever and diphtheria” are ravaging Jewish communities on “both sides of the Russian-German border.”

    1894(27thof Adar II, 5654): Sixty-eight year old Rabbi Abraham Pereira Mendes passed away in New York.  A native of Kingston, he was educated in England where he served congregations in Birmingham and London and served as the Dayan for the Sephardic community.  He came to the United States in 1883 to serve as Rabbi at the historic Touro Synagogue in Newport, RI.  He and his wife Eliza who was the daughter of Rabbi D.A. de Sola had two sons Frederick de Sola Mendes and Henry Pereira Mendes each of whom became rabbis.

    1894: The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that in Camden, NJ, “the Hebrew Independent Political Club has endorsed Isaac H. Weaver for Council and Harry Wolfe for Freeholder in the Fifth Ward.”

    1895:  Birthdate of Arthur Murray the man who danced his way into a financial empire of the Arthur Murray Dance Studios.  He began teaching dance while attending Georgia Tech as a way to pay for his college expenses.  Murray died on March 3, 1991.

    1895: The will of Bernhard Bernhard who had passed away last week we filed for probate today.

    1896:  Birthdate of poet Tristan Tzara [Samuel or Sami Rosenfeld].  Born in Romania, he began publishing in 1912.  In 1916 he moved to Switzerland where he a founder of Dadaism.  Tzara named this nihilistic movement by opening the dictionary and choosing the first meaningless word.  Tzara moved to Paris and was a member of the Communist wing of the Resistance.  He died in 1963.

    1897: “Dr. Grossman on the Talmud” published today included the view Dr. Rudolph Grossman of Temple Beth-El “that while there were many who knew what the Talmud was they failed to thoroughly comprehend the many and interesting truths contained in the book.”

    1897: “A new Sefer Torah will be dedicated this afternoon Congregation Adath Israel of West Harlem.”

    1897: “Kosher Cooking School” published today described the opening of “school for instruction in the art of kosher cooking;” kosher meaning prepared “in accordance with the Jewish dietary laws.”
    1897: It was reported today that Ancient History of the Peoples of the East by the French Egyptologist Gaston Maspero has been translated into Hebrew by a publisher in Warsaw.

    1897: “In The Public Eye” published today described the phenomena of Hebrew “springing up again as  living literary language in Eastern Europe” as can be seen by, among other things, the publication of monthly Hebrew language review now being published in Berlin.

    1897: It was reported today that Israel Zangwill, author of Children of the Ghettowill be speaking in Jerusalem later this month.

    1899: In Berlin, sociologist and economist Franz Oppenheimer and his wife gave birth to Hillel Oppenheimer, the Israeli botany professor who helped to found the “Faculties of Natural Science and Agriculture” at Hebrew University and passed away in 1971.

    1899: In Albany, NY, the state Assembly passed a bill “exempting the real estate of the Young Men’s Hebrew Association of New York City from taxation.”

    1899: In New York City, the trustees of the United Hebrew Charities offered Dr. Lee K. Frankel of Philadelphia the position of manager of the organization.

    1899: Birthdate of Carmel Myers, the San Francisco native whose Australian rabbi father used his connections with D.W. Griffith, to help her launch a movie career that began with “Intolerance” in 1916.

    1900: Birthdate of St. Louis native Ernest E. Ellman.

    1901(15th of Nisan, 5661): At Temple Israel in New York City,  more than $100 was raised after Rabbi Harris delivered a Passover sermon in which he called for funds to be raised to alleviate those suffering through the horrific famine in Bessarabia.

    1901(15thof Nisan, 5661): Pesach

    1901(15th of Nisan, 5661): R. J. de Cordova passed away in London today at the age of 79.   De Cordova, whose parents were English, was born in the West Indies. He came to the United States in 1849 where he enjoyed a successful business career until the Panic of 1857.  At that time he began a career as humorist, author and journalist who wrote for the New York Express and the New York Times.  Mr. de Cordova was a regular speaker at Temple Emanu-El where he had a contract at one time to give a lecture on every third Saturday of the month.  He moved to London in 1885.

    1905: In a speech delivered at a Zionist banquet in London, “Israel Zangwill declared that in the whole history of the world the Jews never had a better friend than President Theodore Roosevelt.”  In the same speech, Zangwill rejected Britain’s offer of territory in East Africa (often referred to as the Uganda Plan) saying that the land might be useful “for rearing goats” but that it “was doubtful if a settlement 500 miles from the sea offered sufficient bais for a prosperous Jewish colony.”

    1908: In Great Britain, the conflict between those who believe in a literal interpretation of the Bible and those who believe in a more liberal interpretation heated up today when Sir Samuel Montagu, head of the banking firm of Samuel Montague & Co threatened to withdraw his financial support from the Jewish Religious Education Board unless it severed any further relationship with two of its more “liberal members” – Calude Joseph Goldsmid-Montefiore and Israel Abrahams. Montefiore and Abrahams are noted scholars.  The former is the author of The Origin and Development of the Religon of the Ancient Hebrews and the latter is a reader at Cambridge who is also editor of The Jewish Quarterly Review. Montague, who is officially known as Lord Swaythling, is an active leader and famed philanthropist in the Jewish community.  He is referred to as King of the East End because of his generous support of the less fortunate and is second only Lord Rothschild as its benefactor.  The Jewish Religious Education Board is a major communal organization that “looks after the material welfare and religious education of more than 10,000 Jewish children in the great East End of London.  According to some accounts, the whole matter reached a boiling point over whether or not one really believes that Balaam’s ass actually spoke to its master as described in the book of Numbers.  Montefiore accepts the text literally.  The two biblical scholars apparently think there is room for interpretation.  

    1909: Hashomer, the first Jewish self-defense organization was founded to protect Jewish settlements in what was Palestine, a part of the Ottoman Empire.  Until then, local Arab militias had been paid to protect farmers and others from marauding bands.  The early Zionists had already begun providing their own farm labor.  Now they decided to provide their own protection as well.  Needless to say, this did not sit well with the local population.  This is one more example of how the Zionists were resented not for being Jewish, but for failing to conform to the behavior acceptable to the local power structure.  From the Jewish perspective, Hashomer represented yet another break with the European experience.  Jews would no longer be at the mercy of others.  They would provide their own protection.  Having just experienced of wave of Pogroms in Russia, this had an extra special meaning for the early members of Hashomer, many of whose members were recent arrivals from Russia who had organized self-defense organizations in Russia during the pogroms five years earlier. Its founders included Itzhak ben Zvi, Israel Giladi, Israel Shohat and Alexander Zeid. It was eventually absorbed into the Hagannah the Jewish defense force formed in the 1920's that became the foundation for the modern IDF.

    1913:  Birthdate of Jerome Weidman“revered New York novelist and playwright who first made a splash with his novel I Can Get It for You Wholesale and later won a Pulitzer Prize with George Abbott for their Broadway collaboration Fiorello!  He died in 1998 at the age of 85.

    1917: The Russian revolutionary government headed by Kerensky granted equality to all Russian Jews for the first time in Russian history. Since about 18 percent of the world's Jews were living in areas controlled by the Russian government, this decree would appear to have had a major impact on the fate of the world's Jews.  Unfortunately, such was not the case.  Within the year, the democratic Kerensky government was replaced by Lenin and the Bolsheviks.  That regime spelled the end of real freedom for everybody although Stalin would later have some special twists of evil for the Jewish population.

    1918(22 Nisan, 5678): German Jewish-philosopher Hermann Cohen, whose works included Religion of Reason out of the Sources of Judaism passed away in Berlin.

    1920: Arab orators in Palestine roused crowds into a fiery mob which attacked and killed Jews in three days of violent rioting that began today. At least five Jews were killed and hundreds more were injured during the Arab riots in Jerusalem.  The riots were fomented to protest Jewish immigration.  In a portent of the future, the British arrested the Jewish leaders, including Vladimir Jabotinsky and others for organizing a self-defense league.  The origins of the Arab rioting stemmed from intra-Arab conflicts – those who favored and opposed Feisal’s rule in Palestine.  Chaim Weizmann, who witnessed the riots, wrote to British Prime Minister Lloyd George that British authorities had done little to protect the Jews, a view that was supported by a later commission of investigation.

    1921: A Jewish battalion and an Arab battalion are founded by the British.

    1922:  Birthdate of composer Elmer Bernstein.  He wrote the theme songs or other music for more than 200 films and TV shows, including The Magnificent Seven, The Great Escape, The Ten Commandments, The Man with the Golden Arm, To Kill a Mockingbird, and the fanfare used in the National Geographic television specials. He received 14 Academy Award nominations, but his only win was for Thoroughly Modern Millie. Along with many in Hollywood, Bernstein faced censure during the McCarthy era of the 1950s. He was "gray-listed"—not banned, but kept off major projects—due to sympathy with left-wing causes, and had to work on a series of low budget films.

    1922: The Jewish industrial chemist and Liberal politician, Sir Alfred Mond, who was then Minister of Health, wrote to Sir Herbert Samuel warning him that the Arab delegation currently visiting London to express its opposition to the principles of the Balfour Declaration had become ‘a focus and a tool of the general anti-Semitic movement.’

    1924: The British and French end their dispute over the northern border of Palestine. Metula and its environs are included in the territory of the British Mandate.

    1924: The first issue of the periodical "Kiryat Sefer" appears. It is published by the National Library in Jerusalem.

    1926: In Berlin, real estate investor Oskar Rohr and Perla Gelbard Rohr gave birth to Sami Rohr who would survive the Holocaust to become a real estate mogul and philanthropist.

    1932: In Brooklyn Herman and Florence Davies gave birth to Clive Davis.

    1933: In Germany, a Civil Service Law prohibiting Jews from holding public service jobs was adopted.

    1933: A front-page article in the German-Jewish newspaper Jüdische Rundschau exhorted Jews to wear the identifying Yellow Star with the headline, Tragt ihn mit Stolz, den Gelben Fleck! (Wear it with Pride, the Yellow Badge!). The article was one of a series written a German Jew, Robert Weltsch, all of which were based on the same theme:"Say 'yes' to our Jewishness." The original article was written in response to the to the April 1, 1933 Nazi-led boycott of Jewish shops, which was the first meaningful anti-Jewish action of the newly-empowered Nazis,
    1935: American competitors at the 2nd Maccabiah in Tel Aviv came in first in their respective events.  Sybil Koff continued her winning ways in the 400 yard hurdles while “Abe Rosenkrantz captured the 1,500-meter run.”  Julius Finkelstein took the top spot in the shot put and James Sandler tied the Maccabiah record as he claimed first place in the high jump.  Lilian Copeland, who had done so well at the 1932 Olympics, won “both the javelin and discuss throws in the women’s division.”

    1937(23rdof Nisan, 5697): Seventy-nine year old Henry Goldman the only member of Goldman-Sachs to support Germany during World War I and who moved to Germany in the early 1930’s only to barely escape back to the U.S. in 1936, passed away today.

    1937: The Palestine Post commented on the text of the 300-page memorandum submitted by the Jewish Agency to the Royal (Peel) Commission on Palestine. The agency pointed out that the duty of the Mandatory government was to establish the Jewish National Home in Palestine, to encourage Jews to immigrate, to help them to settle down and to develop self-governing institutions. The Crown Colonist, published in London, advocated Jewish settlement in Transjordan, as a means of getting that country out of its economic plight.
    1938: Arthur Sweetser, a director of the secretariat of the League of Nations met with President Roosevelt to discuss the fate of the Jews of Europe and proposal for a “rescue plan.  According to Mr. Sweetser, during the meeting, Roosevelt took credit for this latest proposal to deal with the problem. “Then Roosevelt turned more expansive and said ‘Suddenly it struck me: why not get all the democracies to unite to share the burden? After all, they own most of the free land of the world, and there only…what would you say, 14, 16, million Jews in the whole world of whom about half are already in the United States.  If we could divide up the remainder in groups of 8 or 10, there wouldn’t be any Jewish problem in three or four generations.’”
    1939: Four year old Faisal II becomes King of Iraq. Faisal is the King of Iraq during the Israel War for Independence.  Iraq was the largest Arab state without a border with Israel that sent a major contingent “to drive the Jews into the sea.”  More importantly, Faisal was the last king of Iraq.  He was overthrown and murdered in a brutal revolt in 1958 when the Ba’ath Party (the party that would give us Saddam Hussein) came to power. 
    1939: The Institut zur Erforschung des jüdischen Einflusses auf das deutsche kirchliche Leben (Institute for the Study of Jewish Influence on German Church Life) was founded.
    1944: An Allied spy plane flying over Poland happened to photograph Auschwitz while documenting construction of a synthetic-fuels plant providing photographic proof of the existence of the death camp.
    1944: German Holocaust victim Anne Frank, 14, wrote in her diary: 'I want to go on living even after my death! And therefore I am grateful to God for giving me this gift...of expressing all that is in me.'
    1944(11th of Nisan, 5704): “Miss Irene Lewisohn, founder and co-director of the Neighborhood Playhouse School” passed away tonight.
    1945:The 4th Armored Division and the 89th Infantry Division liberated Ohrdruf concentration camp.  It was the first Nazi concentration camp liberated by the U.S. Army. General George S. Patton, Old Blood and Guts, described it as "one of the most appalling sights that I have ever seen."
    1945: Birthdate of Daniel Marc Cohn-Bendit who gained famed as student protester in France known as "Danny the Red". Like many other radicals, this son of refugees from Hitler’s Germany later sought political respectability.  In his case, he became a lead of the European Greens and a member of the European Parliament.
    1946: As international postal service is begun after a six year hiatus, large numbers of letters and postcards are sent to numerous locations including Tel Aviv.
    1946: Eitan Livini was arrested today on charges that he had participated in the “Night of the Trains,” an Irgun led sabotage operation aimed bringing the British transportation infrastructure to a halt.
    1948: Birthdate of Michael Kleiner, the native of Munich who made Aliyah in 1951 and whose career in politics led him to be elected President of the Supreme Court of Likud, “the party's highest judicial body in all matters pertaining to its constitution, and party members and divisions are subject to its decisions.”
    1948: Following an attack in the Northern Negev,a Palmach Unit destroyed "nine bedouin lay-bys and one mud hut."
    1949:French Labor Leader Leon Jouhaux, who is visiting Israel as a guest of the General Federation of Jewish Labor, was pelted with tomatoes and oranges by Communist hecklers tonight when he mad a public address in Tel Aviv Museum.
    1949: Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion addressed the Knesset on the impact of the armistice signed yesterday with Trans-Jordan

    1951: In what was the first outbreak of anti-Semitism in postwar Austria, 26 Jews were wounded in Salzburg.  The first outbreaks of anti-Semitism in postwar Europe actually began in Poland.  This episode reinforces the notion that the Nazis were so successful because they had willing help from the local populations.

    1952: The Jerusalem Post reported from The Hague that a critical stage had been reached in the reparations talks held there, after the German delegation, upon its return from Bonn, claimed that it had been denied any authority by the West German Federal Government.
    1952: The Jerusalem Post reported that four Israeli passengers aboard a Cyprus Airways ended up in the Beirut airport. They were flying from Nicosia when heavy fog forced the emergency landing. The four Jewish passengers were allowed to proceed to Lod unharmed.
    1952: The Jerusalem Post reported that on the eve of rather frugal Pesach holidays, Dr. Dov Joseph, minister of commerce and industry, promised a richer menu, better organization and more supplies for the forthcoming summer.
    1953: Birthdate of Simcha Jacobovici the Israeli born “Canadian film director, producer, free-lance journalist, and writer.”

    1954: Paddy Chayefsky’s teleplay “Mother” was broadcast by The Philco Televison Playhouse.

    1960: “A Palm Tree in a Rose Guardian produced by David Susskin was broadcast as “The Play of the Week”
    1960: Actress Shelley Winters won her first Academy Award for her performance as Mrs. Van Daan in the film version of “The Diary of Anne Frank.”
    1966 (14th of Nisan, 5726): Rabbi Alan Greenspan, a Chaplain in the United States Army, leads a Seder for 135 Americans in Saigon.  This simple statement does not do justice to the efforts of Rabbi Greenspan who overcame a wide-range of obstacles to pull off this fete.
    1966 (14th of Nisan, 5726): General William Westmorland issued a Passover greeting to Jewish soldiers in which he compared the Freedom theme of the holiday with the American effort to provide freedom and security for the people of Viet Nam.
    1967(23rd of Adar II, 5727): Mischa Elman passed away at the age of 76.  Another in a long list of world-class violinists who were Jewish, Elman was born in Kiev.  The child prodigy eventually made his way to the United States where he spent the bulk of his adult life.
    1967(23rd of Adar II, 5727): Lyricist Al Lewis whose most famous work was “Blueberry Hill” passed away. Written in 1940, it gained everlasting fame when it was recorded by Fats Domino in 1956.

    1967: Dr. Martin Luther King opened his “Beyond Vietnam” speech at Riverside Church in New York City by welcoming Rabbi Abraham Heschel

    1971(9thof Nisan, 5731): Seventy year old Shlomo Yisrael Ben-Meir the native of Warsaw who arrived in Israel in 1950 after having worked as a lawyer in the United States and then served as an MK from 1952 until his death, passed away today.

    1972(20th of Nisan, 5732):  German born, American composer Stefan Wolpe, passed away.
    1972: Le Mondedescribed Charles Bettelheim as "the most visible Marxists… in France as well as in Spain, Italy, Latin America, and India.”
    1973:  Birthdate of Magician David Blaine “the son of Patrice White, who may or may not have been a gypsy, but was certainly a Russian Jew living in Brooklyn” and  is sometimes called a modern day Harry Houdini.  

    1977:The Jerusalem Post reported that Egyptian President Anwar Sadat ended talks with French and German leaders by saying that he saw encouraging signs for the reconvening of the Geneva Peace Conference and the establishment of a permanent peace in the Middle East.
    1977:The Jerusalem Post reported that El Al planes took off for overseas flights without cabin crews who had absented themselves to protest against El Al's refusal to compensate them for duty on holidays.
    1978:Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim Synagogue  was added to the National Register of Historic Places
    1979: Birthdate of actress Natasha Lyonne who appeared in Slums of Beverly Hills and FreewayII

    1981(29th of Adar II, 5741):Icko Wakmann, retired president of the Relide Clock Company in Manhattan and founder of the Wakmann Watch Company and father of Tel Aviv resident Margalit Zwiebel passed away at the age of 86.

    1982: The New York Times publishes a review of “Kibbutz Makom Report From an Israeli Kibbutz” by Amia Lieblich.

    1983:Responding to Iraqi charges that Israel was guilty of ''mass poisoning'' of Palestinian schoolgirls in the West Bank, the Security Council tonight called on Secretary General Javier Perez de Cuellar to investigate ''the causes and effects of the serious problem of the reported cases of poisoning.''

    1985:Birthdate of Israeli tennis player Dudi Sela

    1987(5th of Nisan, 5747): Michael Redstone, the media mogul whose companies included CBS and Viacom, passed away.

    1987: Annette Greenfield Strauss won a plurality of the vote for Mayor of Dallas. Winning a run-off election on April 18, she became the city's first elected woman mayor.

    1992(1st of Nisan, 5752): Rosh Chodesh Nisan/Shabbat Ha-Chodesh

    1992(1st of Nisan, 5752):Samuel "Sammy" Herman Reshevsky, a chess prodigy and grand chess master passed away.  Reshevsky was an Orthodox Jew who did not play on Shabbat.

    1996(15thof Nisan, 5756): Pesach

    1998: Shabbat Hagadol

    1999: The New York Times features reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or special interest to Jewish readers including “Uncovering Clinton:A Reporter's Story” by Michael Isikoff and “The Rise and Fall of the House of Barneys: A Family Tale of Chutzpah, Glory and Greed” by Joshua Levine.

    1999: In an article by Bill Kent,John Mulloy, president of Ginsburg's bread bakery laments the fate of his company’s sales during Pesach.

    'What happens to our bread business during Passover?'' sighed John Mulloy, president of Ginsburg's bread bakery here. ''It dies!'' During the eight days of Passover, Jews refrain from eating all foods made from grains except matzah, a flat, cracker-like wheat bread that Mr. Mulloy does not make. ''In the old days the Ginsburgs would just close up and take a vacation when Passover came around,'' Mr. Mulloy went on. ''We never close.'' What started as a family-run business on Atlantic Avenue in 1903 that made bread and cakes for Boardwalk hotels now employs 120 and occupies an entire city block at Mediterranean and New York Avenues. All of the casino hotels use Ginsburg's baked goods. The bread is also sold in six supermarket chains in the area. And eight regional distributors put the bread on grocery shelves as far away as Flordia and California. In the 20 years Mr. Mulloy has owned the bakery, Ginsburg's three Israeli-made, natural gas-fired Thermatron ovens have never grown cold. ''There were some bad years when the business went up and down,'' said Mr. Mulloy, who owned a delicatessen in Philadelphia and ''raised four sons on corned beef specials.'' He bought the bakery from the Ginsburgs with a partner in 1979 partly because of its Jewish rye bread. ''Even in Philadelphia, where you could get all the good Jewish rye you wanted, my customers would rave about the Ginsburg rye. For some of them, before the casinos opened up, it was the only reason to go to Atlantic City.'' Two years later, after moving to the area, Mr. Mulloy bought out his partner and turned over the management of the bakery to his sons -- John, 33; Michael, 32; Dan, 30; and Chris, 29 -- who learned the peculiar difficulties of doing business with a casino industry whose buyers can be notoriously fickle and take four months to pay their bills. An attempt to sell the bread through a retail storefront failed, he said, when ''tourists just couldn't find us.''''There were other times when we didn't think we'd make it,'' Mr. Mulloy said. ''But, as locations go, this one has been very good to us.'' The plant uses no milk ingredients in its dough and is inspected yearly by a panel of local rabbis who assure that its preparation techniques and products are in accordance with Jewish dietary laws. Beyond saying that his plant uses about 75 tons of flour each week, Mr. Mulloy would not disclose how much bread his bakery produces, or how much sales decrease during Passover. ''But there is enough of a downturn for us to use the holiday to make improvements to the plant,'' he said. Ginsburg's has just begun a $1.5 million renovation ''that will just make us a little bit more efficient'' -- in time for September, when the demand for chalah peaks at Rosh Hashanah.

    2000: Rabbi Ismar Schorsch, chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary delivered the first public lecture sponsored by the John Cardinal O'Connor Distinguished Chair in Hebrew and Sacred Scripture at St. Joseph's Seminar
    2002(22ndof Nisan, 5762): 8th day of Pesach and 7th day of the Ome
    2002(22ndof Nisan, 5762): During Operation Defensive Shield a member of the Israel Border Police was killed by terrorists when they went to arrest a member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade at Hebron.
    2002(22ndof Nisan, 5762): “Rachel Charhi, 36, of Bat-Yam, critically injured in a suicide bombing in a cafe on the corner of Allenby and Bialik streets in Tel-Aviv on March 30, died of her wounds. Some 30 others were injured in the attack. The Fatah Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades claimed responsibility.”
    2002(22ndof Nisan, 5762): During Operation Defensive Shield Border Police Supt. Patrick Pereg, 30, of Rosh Ha'ayin, head of operations in an undercover unit, was killed Thursday while attempting to arrest a wanted member of Fatah's al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade.
    2002(22ndof Nisan, 5762): During Operation Defensive Shield Sgt.-Maj.(res.) Einan Sharabi, 32, of Rehovot; Lt. Nissim Ben-David, 22, of Ashdod; and St.-Sgt. Gad Ezra, 23, of Bat-Yam were killed today.
    2005(24th of Adar II, 5765):  Edward Bronfman, Canadian financier and philanthropist passed away at the age of 77.  Part of “the other Bronfmans” to distinguish him and his brother from the more famous Edgar Bronfman family, Edward Bronfman amassed business holdings valued at $80 million.  His generosity and in recognition of his other contributions to the civic good earned Bronfman  the Order of Canada, the nation’s highest civilian honor.
    2006: Eightieth birthday of Sami Rohr.
    2006: “While turning the pages of The Miami Herald” Sami Rohr “was surprised by a large advertisement announcing a new literary award” – The Sami Rohr Prize – that his three children had created without his knowledge to honor him. “It’s the largest prize of its kind in North America, in terms of the amount,” and gives “authors an opportunity to take time off to pursue their craft’” which furthered Rohr’s desire “to make sure that Jewish literature would thrive for generations.”
    2006: Paula Abdul filed a report at a Hollywood police station claiming she had been a victim of battery at a private party…"According to Abdul, the man at the party argued with her, grabbed her by the arm and threw her against a wall," L.A.P.D. Lt. Paul Vernon said. "She said she had sustained a concussion and spinal injuries
    2006:The Justice Ministry confirmed that Yona Metzger would not be able to continue as chief rabbi if the dayanim Appointment Committee disqualifies him from serving as a judge in the High Rabbinic Court
    2006: In an article entitled, “With Yoga, Comedy and Parties, Synagogues Entice Newcomers,” Michel Luo reports on the development of Jewish outreach programs

    2007: New Mexico’s Bosque Redondo State Monument, a site commemorating “The Long Walk” hosts the traveling exhibition “Anne Frank: A History for Today.”
    2007: “A little over three weeks after Robert “Bob” Levinson was arrested, an article today by Iranian state-run PressTV stated that he "has been in the hands of Iranian security forces since the early hours of March 9" and "authorities are well on the way to finishing the procedural arrangements that could see him freed in a matter of days". The same article explained that it was established that Levinson's trip to Kish "was purely that of a private businessman looking to make contact with persons who could help him make representations to official Iranian bodies responsible for suppressing trade in pirated products which is a major concern of his company.”
    2007: An exhibition styled “Landmarks” presented by students of the Jewelry and Fashion department at the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design comes to a close.
    2007916thof Nisan, 5767): Second Day of Pesach.
    2007: Florida Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehinten, the ranking Republican on the House (of Representatives) Foreign Affairs Committee “stated at a Congressional Hearing” that “‘Jews who were born in Arab countries have lost their resources, their homes, their heritage, and their heritage sites.’” During these same hearings, Irwin Cotler, a member of the Canadian Parliament and a former Justice minister argued that “’the rights for Jewish refugees from Arab countries have to a party of any peace process if tht peace process is to have any integrity.’”
    2008: The Youth Department of Congregation Beth Judea holds a special Friday Evening Shabbat Service led by the Kadinkers, the Kadima and the members of USY.  The service is preceded by a traditional kosher dinner.  Founded in 1969, the synagogue is in Long Grove, Il and serves families located in nearby Wheeling and Buffalo Grove.  Its website provides an on-line entry into the world of synagogue music.
    2008: Army radio reported that Palestinian militants had opened fire on farmers working in the fields of Kibbutz Ein Hashlosha, near Gaza. Thirty of the fieldworkers being shot at were volunteers from kibbutzim from different parts of Israel who had come to aid their counterparts at Ein Hashlosha, which has been the target of repeated sniper attacks
    2008: Hamas spokesman Abu Obeida announced today that sniper fire from Hamas' military wing, which wounded Public Security Minister Avi Dichter's bureau chief near Gaza, was in fact aimed at the minister himself. Dichter's senior aide Mati Gil sustained moderate wounds in the attack, but the minister himself was not hurt.
    2008: The city of Montreal stated it planned to allow demolition of the building that housed Bens De Luxe Delicatessen and Restaurant originally opened by Ben and Fanny Kravitz in 1908.
    2009(10thof Nisan, 5769): In Cedar Rapids, Iowa, at Temple Judah, the Traditional Saturday morning minyan celebrates Shabbat Hagadol
    2009:Rabin Square in central Tel Aviv hosts the city's Centennial Opening Gala. A showcase for top Israeli and International artists, the event includes an impressive 360-degree audiovisual display and performances by the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and Israeli Opera.
    2009:Several hours after IDF soldiers killed two Palestinian terrorists who were trying to plant a bomb along the Gaza border fence, Border Police forces killed a terrorist who tried to carry out a shooting attack at their base in the Negev this afternoon.
    2010: The New York Times features reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including the recently published paperback edition of One State, Two States: Resolving the Israel/Palestine Conflict by Benny Morris, “the father of Israel’s ‘new historians’” who “was convinced by the failed 2000 Camp David summit that Israel could do nothing to make Arab Muslims agree to its existence as a Jewish state” and “ now sees the two-state solution as a fantasy” while rejecting  “the so-called one-state solution as a call for Israel’s elimination.”
    2011: Larry Page “officially became chief executive of Google.”
    2011: A revival production of “The House of Blue Leaves” starring Ben Stiller began its preview performances at the Walter Kerr Theatre.
    2011: YIVO Institute for Jewish Research and Leo Baeck Institute are scheduled to present a rare interview with Nobel Laureate Elfriede Jelinek as part of a program entitled “Rechnitz: Austria's Dirty Little Secret.”
    2011:SheshBesh - The Arab-Jewish Ensemble of the IPO – is scheduled to perform in New York City.
    2011:La Rafle,” a film described as “a European Schindler’s List” is scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.
    2011(29thof Adar II, 5711): Actor Juliano Mer-Kham was gunned down in Jenin.

    2011(29thof Adar II, 5711): Fifty-one year old John Adler who “was a U.S. Representative for New Jersey's 3rd congressional district, serving from 2009 until 2011” passed away today.
    2011(29thof Adar II, 5711): Ninety year old William Prussoff  “a pharmacologist at the Yale School of Medicine who, with a colleague, developed an effective component in the first generation of drug cocktails used to treat AIDS” passed away today. (As reported by William Grimes)
    2011(29thof Adar II): Anniversary of the giving of the first commandment to the Jewish people. “Shortly before sundown on the 29th of Adar, God commanded Moses regarding the mitzvah of sanctifying the crescent new moon and establishing a lunar calendar. This is the first mitzvah the Jews were given as a nation.”
    2011:Dirar Abu Sisi was Hamas's leading missile developer according to an indictment filed today at the Beersheba District Court.
    2011:The Lehi considered killing Winston Churchill, The Telegraph reported today, citing declassified MI5 files. Eliyahu Bet-Zuri, a member of the underground group during the time of the British mandate, reportedly suggested in November 1944 that Lehi, or Stern Gang, members fly to London to kill the prime minister and force the British out of Mandatory Palestine, sparking concern in MI5 that Jewish extremists might try to assassinate foreign secretary Ernest Bevin, as well. "As soon as [Bet-Zuri] returned to Stern Group headquarters, he proposed to suggest a plan for the assassination of highly placed British political personalities, including Mr. Churchil, for which purpose eimssaries should be sent to London," a sources within the Lehi told Major James Robertson from MI5's Middle East section. Four months later, Bet-Zuri was executed in Cairo for assassinating Lord Moyne, the British Minister in the Middle East.
    2011:Requests from charities around the country for food aid packages to help feed the country’s growing needy population have nearly doubled this year compared to last year, Israel’s largest food bank, Leket, reported today. Close to 250 volunteers gathered at Leket’s warehouse on the outskirts of Ra’anana today to help prepare some 5,400 baskets with basic food staples that will be distributed over the next four days to 70 non-profit organizations countrywide ahead of the Pessah holiday next week, said Leket PR and marketing manager Deena Fiedler. (As reported by Ruth Eglash)
    2012: “The Kid With a Bike” is one of the films scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.
    2012: The Yuval Ron Ensemble is scheduled to present a program thatexplores music of the ancient biblical Hebrew, Yemenite and Babylonian musical traditions, in Manhattan, Kansas.
    2012(12th of Nisan, 5772):On the 12th of Nissan, 3412, Ezra departed from the river of Ahava, for Eretz Israel. This was part of the return from the Babylonian Exile that would lead to the building of the Second Temple and the regular, public reading of the Torah.
    2012: Ruth Goodman and Gabi Gabay are scheduled to lead a program of Israeli Dancing at the 92nd Street Y.
    2013: A renewal contract for the “Judge Judy” television show with Judith Sheindlin in the title role extended the show through the 2016-2017 season.
    2013: The Center for Jewish History is scheduled to present “At the Edge of the Jewish World: Central Asia’s Bukharan Jews.
    2013: As part of the lecture series 'FilmTalk: The Jewish Villian', the Wiener Library is scheduled to present “Reviewing Fagin, 1948-2005”

     2013: The Jewish Theological Seminary is scheduled to host “a concert starring the Juilliard Jazz Ensemble” that “will feature the music of prominent Jewish and African American jazz composers” and “will explore the singular connections between the compositions and the cultures.”
    2013: The White House will not hold a Jewish History Month event this year because of the sequester. A White House official confirmed to JTA that the reception, which usually takes place toward the end of May, would not take place this year because of the congressionally mandated across-the-board budget cuts that kicked in last month.
    2013: More than 100 U.S. Jewish leaders urged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to make clear "Israel’s readiness to make painful territorial sacrifices for the sake of peace."
    2013: Women who recite the Mourner's Kaddish at the Western Wall will not be arrested, Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky said he has been assured, despite a police vow to enforce a ban.
    2014: Congregants at Temple Judah in Cedar Rapids, Iowa are scheduled to take a trip down memory lane with “Retro-Reform” Shabbat Evening Services featuring Gates of Prayer, the prayerbook which was considered ground-breaking when introduced just a few decades ago.
    2014: The 12th annual Austin Jewish Film Festival is scheduled to come to an end today.
    2014: “The Prime Ministers: The Pioneers” and “Aya with Wherever You Go” are scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.
    2014: The Cedar Rapids Gazetteis scheduled to publish a feature story about Cesare Frustaci the survivor of the Nazi ghetto in Budapest who will be the featured speaker at the upcoming Yom Hashoah Service sponsored by The Thaler Holocaust Remembrance Fund.

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    April 5

    1291: Muslim forces began the siege of Acre, the last Crusader stronghold.  Today, this site, Akko, is back in the control of the true titleholders, the people of People of Israel who were more often than not victims during the centuries dominated by the Crusades.

    1419: Sixty-nine year old Vincent Ferrer, the Dominican Friar who used dubious means to force Jews to convert to Catholicism and helped to sow the seeds of anti-Semitism in Spain passed away today. Among the leaders who sought to provide the Jews with the intellectual support to fight this period of darkness was Isaac ben Jacob Canapton, the Spanish rabbi who lived from 1360 to 1463 and wrote A Methodology of the Talmud. ( The Catholic  Church saw fit to canonize the priest)

    1464: Anti-Jewish riots broke out in Seville, Spain.

    1533: In an effort to stop the Inquisition, Pope Clement VII issued the Bulla de Perdao which was essentially a pardon for all past offenses. This was supposed to help the News Christians living in Portugal. Unfortunately the pope died a few years later and the Inquisition was officially established.

    1558: Birthdate of Philosopher Thomas Hobbes.  Hobbes discusses the nature and source of the canonized Biblical texts in Chapter 33 of his seminal work, The Leviathan.

    1566:  Two hundred Netherlands noblemen, led by Hendrik van Brederode, force their way into the presence of Margaret of Parma and present the Petition of Compromise which denounces the Inquisition in the Netherlands. The Inquisition was suspended and a delegation was sent to Spain to petition Philip II.(Ed note:  This should provide further explanation of the reasons for the rise of the Jewish community in the Netherlands and ultimately in the United States)

    1568: Baptism of Maffeo Barberini who has Pope Urban VIII “ended the custom according to which a Jew, upon enter the pontiff’s presence was expected to kiss the Holy Father’s foot.”  All that he required was that the Jew kiss the spot on the floor where the Pope’s foot had stood.

    1649: Birthdate of Elihu Yale who took a Jewish wife while serving in India and fathered a child with her.  [And you thought the only Jewish connection was the group of Hebrew letters on the crest of Yale University.]

    1721(8th of Nisan): Rabbi Benjamin Zev, author Ir Binyamin, passed away today

    1760(19thof Nisan, 5520): Centenarian Isaac Ḥayyim de Brito Abendana:Ḥakam of the Portuguese community in Amsterdam, who “published "Sermão Exhortatoria," in 1753 passed away today.

    1775: Pope Pious VI issued the “Editto sopra gli ebrei,” a proclamation that reinstituted all former anti-Jewish legislation. The proclamation included forty-four clauses prohibiting the possession of Talmudic writings, erection of gravestones, forbidding Jews from passing the night outside the ghetto, under pain of death, and more. The regulations were in effect until the arrival of Napoleon army 25 years later.

    1795(16thof Nisan, 5555): 2nd day of Pesach

    1795(16thof Nisan, 5555): After having been arrested as an Austrian spy, accused of corruption and bribery” Moses Dobruschka was sent to the guillotine.

    1804: Birthdate of German botanist Matthias Jakob Schleiden

    1812: In Stuttgart, Germany, Sheinle Ephraim and Isaac Samuel Wormser gave to Lewis Wormser Harris the successful Irish financier who served as Lord Mayor of Dublin and President of the Dublin Hebrew Congregation.

    1822(14th of Nisan, 5582):Ta'anit Bechorot
    1822(14th of Nisan, 5582): Rabbi Benjamin Zev of Zabrocz , Poland, passed away in Tiberias.

    1830, “In his maiden speech to the House of Commons, Thomas Macaulay spoke eloquently in favor of Robert Grant's bill for the Removal of Jewish Disabilities. Alluding to but not actually naming, Nathan Rothschild (who had financed the Allied armies ranged against Napoleon), Macaulay noted that "as things now stand, a Jew may be the richest man in England.... The influence of a Jew may be of the first consequences in a war which shakes Europe to the centre," and yet the Jews have no legal right to vote or to sit in Parliament. "Three hundred years ago they had no legal right to the teeth in their heads." If some members of the House thought it indecent of Macaulay to dredge up this nasty old business about King John extracting gold teeth from Jewish heads, certain opponents of Jewish Emancipation found it still much the best policy. According to J. A. Froude, his biographer, Thomas Carlyle, standing in front of Rothschild's great house at Hyde Park Corner, exclaimed: "I do not mean that I want King John back again, but if you ask me which mode of treating these people to have been nearest to the will of the Almighty about them--to build them palaces like that, or to take the pincers for them, I declare for the pincers." Carlyle even fancied himself in the role of a Victorian King John, with Baron Rothschild at his mercy: "Now, Sir, the State requires some of these millions you have heaped together with your financing work. 'You won't? Very well'--and the speaker gave a twist with his wrist--'Now will you?'--and then another twist till the millions were yielded." Although Macaulay was a liberal, he did not speak for all liberals, some of whom stood much closer to Carlyle on the Jewish question. One of these was Thomas Arnold, the famous headmaster of Rugby and intellectual leader of the liberal or Broad Church branch of the Church of England. Arnold set himself against conservatism as the most dangerously revolutionary of principles: "there is nothing so unnatural and so convulsive to society as the strain to keep things fixed, when all the world is by the very law of its creation in eternal progress." (4) When John Henry Newman, leader of the Anglo-Catholic (or "High") branch of the Church of England, declared that liberalism was "the enemy," and that by liberalism he meant "the Anti-dogmatic Principle," Arnold was among the principal culprits he had in mind, particularly "some free views of Arnold about the Old Testament."  But Arnold's preference of improvement to preservation and of free views to dogma drew up short where the Jews were concerned. He might excoriate the High Church party for having, throughout English history, opposed improving measures of any kind; but he shared with his Anglo-Catholic adversaries the conviction that Christianity must be the law of the land. In 1834 (a year after the Jewish Emancipation Bill had been passed by the Commons but rejected by the Lords) Arnold insisted that he "must petition against the Jew Bill" because it is based on "that low Jacobinical notion of citizenship, that a man acquires a right to it by the accident of his being littered inter quatuor maria [on the nation's soil] or because he pays taxes." That indelicate word "littered" suggests that Arnold's opposition to Jewish emancipation was not purely doctrinal, but had a strong admixture of compulsive nastiness (or worse).

    1850: The Danish King implemented a law that allowed foreign Jews to settle in Denmark

    1860: According to reports published today Rabbi Isaac Mayer Wise, “editor of the Cincinnati Israelite, has written to several Senators to caution them against the repetition of any clause in the Chinese treaty similar to that in the treaty with Switzerland, which debars the Jews from enjoying the privileges of other American citizens.”

    1860: In New York, the Assembly passed a bill “to amend the charter of the Hebrew Benevolent Society”.

    1860: In New York, the Assembly passed a bill “to amend the charter of the Cemetery Association of” B’nai Jeshurun.

    1861:“What Made Him Sick” published today described the desperate financial condition of the Ottomans whose creditors include Jews who left the government undisclosed amounts of money.  [During its last century of existence, Westerners referred to the Ottoman Empire as “the sick man of Europe.’]

    1870(14th of Nisan, 5631):Ta'anit Bechorot

    1870: Today the Sultan Abdul Aziz issued a firman that allocated the "Alliance Israelite Universelle" 2600 dunams of land east of Jaffa for the establishment of a school of agriculture and also granted permission for importing all kinds of tools and machinery free of taxes and customs. As Ben Gurion, said: "I doubt that the Israeli dream would have been realized if the farm school of Mikveh Israel had not existed."
    1871(14th of Nisan, 5631): As the Jews of Newark, New Jersey, begin the celebration of Passover this evening, it is estimated that they will consume 10,000 to 15,000 pounds of matzoth during the eight days of the holiday.
    1882(16th of Nisan, 5642): Second Day of Pesach; First Day of the Omer
    1882(16th of Nisan, 5642): German born rabbi and educator Max Lilienthal passed away in Cincinnati, Ohio. After a successful career in Europe, “Lilienthal left Russia suddenly in 1844 and went to the United States. Settling in New York, he became rabbi of the Congregation Anshe Chesed, Norfolk street and, later, rabbi of Shaar ha-Shomayim,. His somewhat advanced views led to considerable friction. He resigned his position in 1850 and established an educational institute with which he attained considerable success. In 1854 he became correspondent of the "American Israelite," and in the following year removed to Cincinnati and became associate editor of that journal and rabbi of the Congregation Bene Israel. His activity in Cincinnati extended over a period of twenty-seven years. He organized the Rabbinical Literary Association, serving as its president, and was at first instructor and later professor of Jewish history and literature at Hebrew Union College. He was prominent, also, in the Jewish press as the founder and editor of the "Hebrew Review," a quarterly, and the "Sabbath-School Visitor," a weekly, and as a frequent contributor to the "Israelite," the "Occident,""Deborah" (founded by him), the "Asmonean,""Volksblatt," and "Volksfreund." He published a volume of poems entitled "Freiheit, Frühling und Liebe" (1857), several volumes of addresses and sermons, and left three dramas in manuscript—"Die Strelitzen Mutter,""Rudolf von Habsburg," and "Der Einwanderer."Lilienthal took an active interest in the affairs of the municipality. As member of the Cincinnati board of education, and as director of the Relief Union and of the university board, he contributed much to the welfare of his adopted city. He was a reformer by nature; he was instrumental in introducing reforms in his own congregation in Cincinnati, constantly preached tolerance, and urged a more liberal interpretation of Jewish law.”
    1890(15th of Nisan, 5650): First Day of Pesach
    1895: “Bequests by Bernhard Bernhard” published today included a partial list of those benefiting from his generosity including the Hebrew Benevolent Association, Mount Sinai Hospital, the Home for the Aged and Infirm Hebrews and the Montefiore Home for Chronic Invalids each of which received $150 and the Home for Aged and Infirm Hebrews which received $100. 
    1896: Rabbis Gottheil, Silverman and Sparger will officiate at the funeral of Leonard Friedman who died last week in New Jersey. Edward Lauterbach will deliver the graveside address.

    1896: Dr. Joseph Silverman spoke today at Temple Emanu El on “Passover and Easter; a Comparative Study.”
    1896: “Solomon’ Song” published today contains a detailed review of Elbert Hubbard’s study of the biblical book entitled  The Song of Songs, Which Is Solomon’s

    1896: Using information that first appeared in The American Hebrew, “Error in the Jewish Calendar” published today described a lecture “delivered under the auspices of the Graetz College in Philadelphia on ‘The Jewish Calendar’ in which Dr. Cyrus Adler called attention to an error in the calendar” which was first “promulgated by Hillel II” in or around 350 C.E.

    1897: Reverend Lyman Abbott of Plymouth Church addressed an event hosted by the Jewish Alliance in the Assembly Hall of Temple Emanu El

    1899: Dr. Lee K. Frankel of Philadelphia accepted the offer to serve as the manager of United Hebrew Charities of New York City succeeding N.S. Rosenau who had resigned from the position last February due to poor health.

    1899: “Real Estate Exemption” published today described Assemblyman Green’s efforts to gain a property tax exemption for the Young Men’s Hebrew Association of New York City.

    1901: Birthdate of actor Melvyn Douglas.  Born Melvyn Hesselberg in Macon,Georgia, Douglas enjoyed a long and distinguished career in films.  One of his most memorable roles was in Hud, in which he played the craggy old Texas father committed to the virtues of the frontier.  This is another example of the Jew portraying the quintessential American.  Douglas gained a different kind of fame when his wife Helen Gagahan Douglas ran against Richard Nixon for U.S. Senator in 1950.  Nixon and his allies combined her liberal politics with his Judaism to create the specter of the Jewish/Communist Conspiracy.  The fact that Douglas had changed his name was considered evidence of he conspiracy. "Californians can do one thing very soon to further the ideals of Christian nationalism, and this is not to send to the Senate the wife of a Jew."  Douglas died at the age of 80 in 1981 just before the appearance of his final film, Ghost Story.

    1905: The announcement of the engagement of journalist and former cigar worker Rose Pastor to prominent Protestant philanthropist James Graham Phelps Stokes caused a media sensation.

    1909(14th of Nisan, 5669): The New York Times reported that “The celebration of the Jewish festival of Pesach, or the Passover, will commence at sunset this evening and will continue among the orthodox members of the Hebrew community for eight days. The first two days and the last two days of this period are held as strict holidays on which no business should be transacted or servile work entered upon, except such as may be considered works of necessity or charity.”

    1910:  Birthdate of Chaim Grade, poet, novelist and short story writer.  Born in Vilna, Lithuania (which at that time was part of Russia), Grade gained prominence in the 1930's as a Yiddish author.  He survived the Holocaust and came to the United States after the war where he continued to write.  Two of his more famous novels are The Agunah and The Yeshiva.  In My Mother's Sabbath, Grade created a memoir praising his mother, "a pious woman, who raised her son alone and worked herself to the bone...but never forgot the holiness of the Sabbath."  Elie Wiesel described Grade as "one of the greatest, if not the greatest of contemporary Yiddish novelists."  Grade passed away on June 26, 1982.

    1911:Eight hearses carried the caskets of seven unknown victims of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire to the Cemetery of the Evergreens in Brooklyn.

    1914:Preparations were made today for the free distribution of thousands of pounds of unleavened bread or Matzoth to needy Jewish families, for use duruing the week of the Passover, which begins on Friday night.

    1914: The 24th annual convention of the Independent Order of Free Sons of Judah opened today at the Murray Hill Lyceum

    1914: The New York Times Magazine features on articledescribing “the almost unrivaled collection of Jewish manuscripts found at the Jewish Theological Seminary, which, thanks to Dr. Solomon Schechter and others is surpassed only by those found at the British and Bodleian Museums.”

    1917: Birthdate of Robert Albert Bloch. Bloch wrote hundreds of short stories and over twenty novels, usually crime fiction, science fiction, and, perhaps most influentially, horror fiction. He was a contributor to pulp magazines like Weird Tales in his early career, and was also a prolific screenwriter. He was the recipient of the Hugo Award, the Bram Stoker Award, and the World Fantasy Award. He served a term as president of the Mystery Writers of America. Robert Bloch was also a major contributor to science fiction fanzines and fandom in general. In the 1940s, he created the humorous character Lefty Feep in a story for Fantastic Adventures. He passed away in 1994.

    1918: Premier Radoslavoff of Bulgaria praises the patriotism of Jews, and pledges his Government will be an ally of the Jewish cause in the negotiations with Romania.

    1919(5th of Nisan, 5679): The Polish army executed 35 young Jews who had helped in the distribution of packages sent by the Joint to the Jewish community of Pinsk. They were taken from a legitimate business meeting of the Jewish Cooperative and accused of being Jewish Bolshevists. Others also arrested were told to dig their own graves and but were released.  Ironically, the relief activities of the Joint Distribution Committee were used by Russians, in the declining years of Stalin, as a pretext for their anti-Semitic charges of disloyalty against Soviet Jews.

    1923: Birthdate of Belgian born philosopher and economist Ernest Mandel

    1925: Celebration of the 40th anniversary of the founding ofMontefiore Hospital for Chronic Diseases a leading medical intuition named to honor the memory of Sir Moses Montefiore. During the observance, President Rosenbaum reviewed the history of the hospital and Dr George E. Vincent, President of the Rockefeller Foundation, delivered an address on "The Hospital and the Community."

    1926: New York Times correspondent T. Walter Williams reports that the American Zionist Commonwealth and the Palestine Securities Corporation are paying $20 a dunam (quarter of an acre) to the Arabs for land in Palestine and selling it to Jewish settlers for $100 per dunam.

    1927: Municipal elections are held in Jerusalem. The election ordinance allocates four seats for Jews and eight for Arabs. Ragheb al Nashashibi is elected mayor. Deputy Mayors are Chaim Salomon and Ya'akuv Faraj (a Christian).

    1931(18th of Nisan, 5691): 4thday of Pesach

    1931(18th of Nisan, 5691): Seventy-nine year old Nathan Frank,

    1934: Birthdate of “Dr. Fritz H. Bach, a physician and medical researcher who helped develop techniques to improve people’s chances of surviving organ and bone marrow transplants.” As reported by Douglas Martin)

    1937: The Palestine Post reported in a leading article that the Mandatory government’s delay in granting certificates to workers, apparently for political reasons, had caused a severe shortage of Jewish labor.

    1937: The Palestine Post reported that Jews living Safed were forced to remain in their own quarter since those who dared to go into the Arab parts of the city were stoned.

    1937: The Palestine Post reported that a royal palace was been unearthed at Megiddo by the archaeological expedition, organized by the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago.

    1937: The Palestine Post reported in Poland Menachem Begin and members of his Betar Revisionist youth group were sentenced to various terms of imprisonment for having demanded free immigration to Palestine, during a demonstration held outside the British Embassy in Warsaw. The Polish government expressed its regrets to the British Embassy.

    1937: Birthdate of Aryeh “Arie” Selinger who “served as the head coach of the USA Women's Team in the years 1975-1984.”

    1938: Anti-Jewish riots break out in Dabrowa and spread across Poland.

    1939(16th of Nisan, 5699): Second Day of Pesach; 1st day of the Omer

    1939(16th of Nisan, 5699): Dr. Moses Gaster passed away today.

    1940: Birthdate of Aliza Kashi, Israeli, actress and singer.  She gained some of her popularity as a regular on the Merv Griffin Show.

    1942: The Lutheran Church of Norway issued "Kirken grunn"("Foundations of the Church"), a letter condemning Nazism and racism and protesting efforts of Vidkun Quisling, Norway's German puppet, to "Nazify" Norway's churches.

    1943(29th of Adar II, 5703): Three hundred Jews from Soly and Smorgon, Byelorussia, were transported by rail westward to Vilna, Lithuania. En route, the captives shattered the railcars' wire-reinforced glass and attempted to flee, but were shot to death by guards. The survivors were later shot at Ponary, southwest of Vilna, by German and Lithuanian SS troops. About 4000 Jews from in and around Vilna were trucked to Ponary, slaughtered, and dumped into mass graves. Jews arriving at the Ponary station by rail from Oszmiana and Swieciany, Lithuania, resisted with revolvers, knives, and their bare hands; a few dozen escaped to Vilna and the rest were shot. During the massacre, a Lithuanian policeman was wounded by Jews and an SS sergeant was hospitalized after being stabbed in the back and in the head.

    1943(29th of Adar II, 5703): The final trainload of Jews from Macedonia arrived at Treblinka. All aboard were gassed immediately.

    1943: Three Tunisian Jews, Joseph, Gilbert and Freddy Scemla, were flown from North Africa to Germany where they would be imprisoned in Dachau and eventually be beheaded.  The three men had been betrayed by an Arab when they were attempting to hide from the Nazis in the days before Tunisia was liberated by the Allies. 

    1944: Deadline arrives for all Jews of Hungary to wear a Gold Star on their clothing.

    1944: A prisoner escaped from Auschwitz to warn Czech Jews about the death camp.

    1947(15th of Nisan, 5707): In China, a Seder was held at The Shanghai Jewish Young Community Center

    1949: Birthdate of Dr. Judith Arlene Resnik.  Born in Akron, Ohio, Resnik was a design engineer, electrical engineer and biochemical engineer for Xerox, RCA and NIH.  She was a mission specialist on the Challenger where she died in 1986.

    1951: The Rosenbergs and David Greenglass were convicted of spying.  Prosecuted by Jewish lawyers, the Rosenbergs were sentenced to death by a Jewish judge.

    1953: Birthdate of Ghaleb Majadele, an Israeli-Arab member of the Labor Party who has served as an MK and cabinet minister.

    1956: Birthdate of “English author and screenwriter” Anthony Horowitz.

    1956: In a case of Jew versus “Abraham Telvi, a mobster and hit man, attacked journalist Victor Riesel with acid, blinding him as he left” Lindy’s Restaurant in New York.  Riesel was a crusading journalist who exposed the connection between mobsters and certain elements of the American labor movement.

    1956: Egyptian artillery in the Gaza Strip bombarded settlements in the Negev.  Four civilians and two Israeli soldiers were wounded.  At mid-day Egyptian terrorists were spotted trying to infiltrate from Gaza.  The failed attempt was accompanied by a renewed barrage from the Egyptians which killed three Israeli soldiers.  The Israelis returned fire, killing 63 civilians in the process.  The Foreign Ministry expressed regret at the loss of civilian life but reminded the Egyptians that it was “their folly” which had brought on the exchange in the first place.  Attacks like these from Gaza were one of the causes of the war between Egypt and Israel that took place later in 1956. [Yes, this is the same Gaza from which the Kassam Rockets are being launched during the 21st century.]

    1958(15th of Nisan, 5718): First Day of Pesach

    1965:Jack Benny, whose weekly television show will not continue after this season, said today he would star on two special hour-long shows next season on the National Broadcasting Company network. The 71-year-old comedian will thus continue the uninterrupted association with broadcasting that began in 1932.

    1966(15thof Nisan, 5726): Pesach

    1967(24th of Adar II, 5727): Violinist Mischa Elman passed away.

    1971: The Supreme Court rendered a decision in INVESTMENT COMPANY INSTITUTE et al., Petitioners, v. William B. CAMP, Comptroller of the Currency, et al. in which Joseph B. Levin represented the petitioner, National Association of Securities Dealers, Inc.

    1972(21st of Nisan, 5732):: Sixty-five year old MK Reuven Barkat passed away today.

    1973: Funeral services are held at Temple Emanu-El in New York for Aaron Rabinowitz, a pioneer in the field of affordable housing and other forms of real estate innovation.

    1977:The Jerusalem Postreported that US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger warned that his country and Israel must not paralyze ourselves by suspiciousness that deprives our relationship of dignity and our cooperation of significance. He reassured, “We’ll never abandon Israel.”

    1977:The Jerusalem Postreported that President Sadat of Egypt, who was in Paris on an arms-purchasing mission, assured his hosts that he had withdrawn the Soviet Union’s right to use Egyptian port naval facilities.

    1977: Birthdate of Israeli tennis player Jonathan Erlich.

    1982(12th of Nisan, 5742): Abe Fortas Supreme former Supreme Court Justice and advisor to Lyndon Johnson died at the age of 71. (As reported by Linda Greenhouse)

    1990: Eighty-one year old Rabbi S. Gershon Levi, a former president of the Rabbinical Assembly and a former editor of the quarterly publication Conservative Judaism, died of heart failure at his home in Jerusalem.

    1992(2nd of Nisan, 5752): Actress Molly Picon, the star of the Yiddish theatre who played Yente the Matchmaker in the film version of “Fiddler on the Roof”  passed away today

    1994: "Jackie Mason Politically Incorrect" opened in New York City for the first of 347 performances.

    1995: Alisa Flatow, a Brandeis University Junior from New Jersey, was riding a bus in the Gaza Strip when a van loaded with explosives was driven into the bus. Shrapnel from the bomb went through her skull and she never regained consciousness. Stephen Flatow, her father, flew to Israel to confirm that the brain-dead young woman was his daughter. Staff at Sororkin Hospital in Beersheva asked him if he would be willing to donate his daughter’s viable organs. After consulting with his wife and making a conference call to his rabbis, Alvin Marcus and Rabbi Moshe D. Tendler of Yeshiva University, Alisa’s parents decided to follow the positive mitzvah of Pikuach Nefesh, the "Saving a Life." Alisa’s organs changed the lives of six people on the transplant waiting list. "People have called it a brave decision, a righteous decision, a courageous decision. To us it was simply the right thing to do at the time," said Flatow. The Flatow family decision had an emotional impact on a grieving Israel. Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin told American Jews in May 1995 that "Alisa Flatow’s heart beats in Jerusalem." Even more, the Flatow’s decision made public a painful issue — Jewish views about organ donation.
    1993: The keel of INS Hanit, the corvette built Northrop Grumman, was laid down today.

    1996: Marlon Brando made anti-Semitic remarks about Hollywood on The Larry King Show.

    1997(27th of Adar II, 5757): Beat poet Allen Ginsberg passed away.

    1998: The New York Times features reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including “Confederates in the Attic” by Tony Horwitz,Good Spirits: The Making of a Businessman” by Edgar M. Bronfman and “Jewish Roots in Poland: Pages from the Past and Archival Inventories” by Miriam Weiner.

    2000: Joseph Gutnick was among three men who resigned as directors of Great Central Mining following the exposure of financial irregularities.

    2001(12th of Nisan, 5761): German born entertainer, Theodore Gottlieb, known as Brother Theodore, passed away.
    2002: Operation Defensive Shield continued today with Israeli forces fighting terrorists in a number of towns including Jenin, Hebron, Nablus and Bethlehem where their mission was made that much more difficult because the terrorists hid among the Arab civilians.

    2002(23rdof Nisan, 5762):Sgt. Merom Fisher, 19, of Moshav Avigdor; Sgt. Ro'i Tal, 21, of Ma'alot; and Sgt. Oded Kornfein, 20, of Kibbutz Ha'on - were killed in exchanges of fire between IDF troops and Palestinian gunmen in Jenin during Operation Defensive Shield.

    2004(14th of Nisan, 5764): On the Jewish calendar, 61st anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.

    2005(25th of Adar II, 5765):  Pulitzer Prize winning author Saul Bellow passed away at the age of 89.

    2006:  In a story that resonates with special meaning as Jews prepare to remember another Anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, the Jerusalem Post reported on the reuniting of two cousins, Holocaust survivors, who had been separated for 66 years. For 66 years, Ella Friedvald, 82, and her 79-year-old sister Lila were sure that their cousin Krystyna had been killed in the Holocaust, just as she was convinced they were long dead. After all, the three women were barely teenagers when the Germans invaded Poland and their families were separated, their paths seemingly forever split as their world shattered before them. After the war, Ella and Lila settled in Israel, while Krystyna, 79, made her home in the US, all having failed to find traces of their respective parents. But, as fate willed it, a faded postcard sent from a German labor camp 60 years ago and the determination of a very persistent octogenarian to claim her family's pre-war life insurance benefits led to their reunification here this week. The Friedvald girls grew up in Warsaw in the 1930s. After the Nazis invaded Poland, their families fled to Lvov, at the time still part of Poland, but under Soviet control. Although they escaped the Germans, Ella, Lila and their parents were forcibly taken by the Soviets to a closed labor camp, while Krystyna and her parents eventually made their way back to Warsaw once the Germans entered Lvov. Krystyna's last childhood memory of her two cousins was that of her father racing to the train station in Lvov in the hopes of bribing the Russian soldiers to free the two girls, only to come back home empty-handed having failed to find the family at the station. Her last piece of information about her cousins for the next six and half decades was a letter that Lila wrote her from the Soviet camp in which she said that her parents and older sister were dying of hunger. The two sisters were indeed soon orphaned, but they managed to survive the war, and eventually made their way to Israel where they married and had families. Their cousin's parents fared no better than their own, as both were killed by the Nazis in Warsaw. But young Krystyna, who was living on the Aryan side of the city and who took part in the Warsaw uprising, managed to survive the war against all odds, largely since the Germans had no clue that the Polish-speaking teen was Jewish. After the Nazis crushed the Polish rebellion, she was taken, together with a group of Poles, to a labor camp in Germany, where she remained until the war ended with the Red Army liberating the camp. While she was still at the camp, Krystyna sent out postcards to various places in Poland in search of family members and friends, but they were returned to the camp with no such persons found. "I was positive they were dead," Krystyna told The Jerusalem Post, "and they were sure I was killed with the rest of the Jews of Poland." After the war, Krystyna's uncle brought her to England, where she would meet her future husband. After the young couple married, they decided to move to the US since they did not want to start a family in war-ravaged Europe. For the next 50 years, Krystyna, of Eastchester, NY, was unaware that her two cousins were alive and well in Israel. Then, five years ago, her cousin Ella began to make inquires about possible remuneration from the Generali Company for life insurance taken out by her family members before the war. The Polish offices of the company did not find any policies for her parents or grandparents but they did find one for her cousin's father. Ella Friedvald then contacted a Polish organization of authors and composers, where he had worked, to see if they had any record of him. The organization wrote back that their cousin had informed them in a letter in 1947 that her father had been killed in 1942. That letter opened up a whole new world for them. "At that moment we knew that she had survived the war," Ella said. The next thing to do was to see if she were still alive. Coincidentally, around the same time that Ella began to make inquiries, her cousin had answered an advertisement put out by the Polish Consulate in New York in search of survivors of the Warsaw uprising. A representative of the consulate then visited Krystyna in her home, and when he asked her if she had any memento for a museum to mark the uprising, she gave him a postcard she had written from the German labor camp 60 years earlier that had been stamped "return to sender." The Polish official was very happy with the postcard, and the museum subsequently put it on its Internet site, which would prove critical in her cousins' search for her, which they carried out with the help of two Polish friends. Last month, Krystyna Friedvald got a call from the Polish museum. "Someone is looking for you," the voice on the other line said in Polish. "Who?" she asked. The museum staffer asked her if she had any cousins, using their married names. Krystyna said she did not know of any such people. "How about Ella and Lila?" the voice - like a dream out of the past - asked. "Where are they?" Krystyna cried, thinking her cousins were in Poland. "They are in Israel," came the reply. The next morning at 5 a.m. Krystyna's phone rang. It was her long-lost cousin calling from Israel. "We talked and we talked and we talked," she said. The following week Krystyna was on a plane to Israel to reunite with her cousins. After 66 years, the three, who look remarkably alike and who communicate with each other in Polish, were clearly trying to squeeze a lifetime into Krystyna's one-week visit, her first ever to Israel. "It's these two stubborn ladies, they decided to find me," she concluded with a smile.

    2007: An exhibition opens at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles entitled “The Art of Vintage Israeli Travel Posters”  The exhibition is designed as part of a commemoration of Israeli Independence Day.

    2008: The 92ndStreet Y presents a piano recital by Peter Serkin, son of the famous Rudolf Serkin

    2008: Shabbat Ha-Chodesh

    2008(29th of Adar II, 5768): Eugene Ehrlich, a self-educated lexicographer who wrote 40 dictionaries, thesauruses and phrase books for the "extraordinarily literate," not to mention people just hoping to sound that way, died at his home in Mamaroneck, New York at the age of 85

    2008: The New York Times reported that Sederot, a long neglected immigrant town a mile from Gaza, pounded by Palestinian rockets for the past seven years, is taking on a new identity, edging into the center of Zionist consciousness as a symbol of the nation’s unofficial motto: “Never Again.” Like the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem, Sderot is now a must-see stop for those who support Israel or are being urged to do so.

    2009: “Picturing the Shoah,” a film festival sponsored by YIVO that explores how movies have represented the Holocaust from radical, provocative, and unexpected angles continues with a presentation of the works of director Jean-Luc Godard including– In Praise of Love and Our Music.

    2009: The New York Times featured books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including “Mainly On Directing: Gypsy, West Side Story, and Other Musicals”by Arthur Laurents

    2009: The Washington Post featured books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including The Spartacus War by Barry Strauss.

    2009:Israeli archaeologists continued their inspection today of the Western Wall stone by stone in a new conservation effort at the Jewish holy site.

    2010(21st of Nisan, 5770): In Jerusalem, Isralight is scheduled to host the Seudat Mashiach this evening.

    2010:Edom; featuring Israeli guitaristEyal Maoz is scheduled to appear at The Local 269 in New York City.

    2011(1stof Nisan, 5771): Rosh Chodesh Nisan

    20122(1stof Nisan, 5771): Eighty-seven year old Charles Laufer, the creator of magazines aimed at teenage girls passed away today. (As reported by Douglas Martin)

    2011(1stof Nisan, 5771): Nobel Prize-winning biochemist Baruch Blumberg passed away today.

    2011: In New York City, the Guggenheim Museum is scheduled to present “Omer Fast: Art Talk.”Omer Fast is a native of Jerusalem who “works with film, video, and television footage to examine the complex interplay between personal and public histories.”

    2011: Irwin and Ginny Edlavitch are scheduled to be honored at the Washington DCJCC Annual Spring Gala.

    2011: Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington is scheduled to kick off the 150th anniversary month of the Civil War with t a Lunch and Learn entitled “The Jewish Civil War.”

    2011: President Peres joined President Obama for a working lunch at the White House where they will discuss Israeli peace proposals.

    2011:A leading US Congressman blasted demonization of Israel and anti-Semitism in the Arab world today, and stressed that action against incitement must be part of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. “If this is a new era of openness in the Middle East, then the work of defending Israel from ideological attacks becomes even more pressing,” House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer told the Anti-Defamation League’s leadership conference. “That’s because, if this is a new era of openness, it matters more than ever that the Arab people have a view of Israel unclouded by bigotry.

    2011:Doctors around the country began a two-day warning strike in the public health and hospital system today after a meeting between representatives from the Finance Ministry and the Israel Medical Association (IMA) ended with no agreement yesterday. The public health sector and hospitals around the country will operate on a reduced Shabbat schedule.

    2012: The Timofeyev Ensemble is scheduled to present the NYC premiere of "Shloyme: a Musical Biography of an Imaginary Hero."

    2012: The Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center is scheduled to present “All the Missing Souls: A Personal History of the War Crimes Tribunal.”

    2012(13thof Nisan, 5772): Ninety-four year old Bernard Rapoport, the Texas insurance tycoon who became the financial angel for numerous liberal candidates and causes passed away in Waco, TX.


    2012: “Fake ‘eviction notices’ scare Jewish Students” published today described efforts by Students for Justice in Palestine to terrorize Jewish students attending Florida Atlantic University.

    2013: The Eden-Tamir Music Center is scheduled to host a celebration of Verdi’s 200thBirthday in the form of a performance by The Israeli Opera’s Meitar Studio.

    2013:  In Coralville, IA, Agudas Achim is scheduled to host its annual Sisterhood Shabbat Service.

    2013: “No Place on Earth” a documentary about the Sterner and Wexler families surviving in Ukrainian caves for 17 months is scheduled to premiere in New York City.

    2013:Hundreds of demonstrators marched in Tel Aviv this afternoon for the second consecutive year in protest of violence against women in the now world-famous Mitzad Sharmuta (SlutWalk).
    2013: Royal Dutch Shell declined to comment on reports that it will divest its stake in an Australian energy firm because of that firm’s investment in Israel’s gas fields. (As reported by Times of Israel)

    2014: Yaala Ballin and her Quintent are scheduled to “celebrate the outstanding female vocalists of Jazz history” at their performance at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music.

    2014: Yoni Rechter is scheduled to perform at the Stephen Wise Free Synagogue.

    2014: “Friends From France” is scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.

    2014: “Cupcakes” is scheduled to be shown at 11th JCC Rockland International Jewish Film Festival

    2014: In Waterloo, Iowa, Sons of Jacob Synagogue is scheduled to host Harry Brod, author of Superman is Jewish?: How Comic Book Superheroes Came to Serve Truth, Justice and the Jewish-American Way

    2014: The Shachar Club, a kosher nightclub, is scheduled to open in Moscow.



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    April 6

    1199: King Richard I of England dies from an infection following the removal of an arrow from his shoulder. Richard spent most of his reign fighting to protect his lands in France or on the Third Crusade. While he was in England, he did protect his Jewish subjects.  Jews did suffer during his Kingship.  Among other things, they were forced to contribute a disproportionate amount towards the ransom collected to free Richard from the clutches of an Austrian duke.  Richard’s death put King John on the throne.  John openly exploited Jewish subjects.  His tyranny brought on the Magna Charta which included a special section on treatment of the Jews.

    1233: Pope Gregory IX, who was criticized by some for being too protective of the Jews wrote "Mandate, if facts are established, to the archbishops and bishops of France to induce the Christians in their dioceses to stop persecuting the Jews, who had complained to the pope that they were being maltreated and tortured by certain lords, imprisoned and left to die. The Jews are willing to forsake usury. They are to be set free and are not to be injured in person or in property."  A year later, in Decretals,  he invested the doctrine of perpetua servitus iudaeorum – perpetual servitude of the Jews – with the force of canonical law. According to this, Jews would have to remain in a condition of political servitude and abject humiliation until Judgment Day. The doctrine then found its way into the doctrine of servitus camerae imperialis, or servitude immediately subject to the Emperor's authority, promulgated by Frederick II. The second-class status of Jews thereby established would last until well into the 19th century.

    1443:  In a document from King John of Castile on economic conditions, he mentions Jews are prohibited from exercising certain high offices among Christians, and from being employed as judges, farmers, collectors, directors, or stewards of revenue (taxes).

    1453: Mehmed II began his siege of Constantinople (Istanbul).  His ultimate conquest of the city would be a positive thing for the Jews since, among other things, he opened the city to their settlement

    1568:”Elvira del Campo, a young woman, was subjected to her first torture session by the Inquisition of Toledo, Spain.”

    1667: The “Old Synagogue” is among the buildings damaged when an earthquake struck Dubrovnik today. The synagogue dates back to the 14th century and is reportedly the oldest Sephardic synagogue in use today. 

    1766: Birthdate of Israel B. Kursheedt, the native of Sing-hafen Germany who when he arrived in Boston in 1796 became the first rabbi to come to the city.

    1720: Manuel San Vicente, a Spanish mercenary turned himself in to the Inquisitional Tribunal after living among the Spanish Jews in Constantinople and Salonica as a Jew for a month. He sought pardon for his sin, and/or to avoid being turned in by another party. While he was in the Ottoman Empire he was circumcised, and learned Jewish prayers.

    1808: John Jacob Astor incorporated the American Fur Company.

    1809: Jews fled Pressburg (Bratislava) when Napoleon attacked the city

    1819: In Chatham, Kent, England Sarah Moses and Lazarus Magnus gave birth to their daughter Elizabeth Magnus.

    1822(15th of Nisan, 5582): Pesach
    1841(15th of Nisan, 5601): Pesach
    1848: "In every part of Germany excluding Bavaria, Jews were granted civil rights. As a result, Gabriel Riesser (a Jew, and an advocate for Jewish emancipation) was elected vice-president of the Frankfurt Parliament, and became a member of the National Assembly.” It must be noted that for the most part these freedoms existed only on paper and were not enforced."  This paper emancipation was part of the revolutionary ferment sweeping Europe at this time. The revolts failed in Germany.  The result was a migration of German liberals, including many Jews, to the United States.

    1853: In Leipzig, Rosalie Bettelheim and Dr. Adolf Jellinek, a leading Rabbi in the Austrian Empire gave birth to Emil Jellink who sat on the board of Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft ('DMG') and was responsible for the naming of Mercedes in Mercedes-Benz.

    1856:“After a background check” the Board of Congregation Baith Israel Anshei Emes (the Kane Street Synagogue)“decided by a 10–9 vote” that M. Gershon, its newly hired Cantor, “had never held the position of cantor in any other congregation, and was therefore not ‘sufficiently acquainted with the actual requirements to fill said office’, and was furthermore not ‘a competent reader enough to read the Sefer Torah’. As a result, services were led by laymen, except during the Jewish holidays, when a professional cantor would be brought in from Manhattan.”

    1861: According to the “Our Charleston Correspondence” column published today, Benjamin Mordecai was among those who lent the government of South Carolina funds it needed immediately after its declaration of secession.  Mordecai’s “free will offering” was in the amount of $10,000.  Another un-named “Hebrew gentlemen” from Charleston was pressured by his co-religionists into donating five hundred dollars to the cause.  He had just returned from New York where he had made $50,000 speculating as a “Bear” in the stock market.

    1862: During the American Civil War, The Battle of Shiloh begins in Tennessee when Confederate forces under Albert Sidney Johnston attack forces under Union General Ulysses S. Grant.  The Confederate attack surprised the Union troops who literally ended the day with their backs to the river.  On the following day, the Union forces would go over to the attack and drive the Confederates back into Mississippi. The 16th Regiment from Iowa was one of the units engaged in the fight.  Among the “Hebrew Hawkeyes” engaged in the fight were Jacob Jacobs and Charles Weissman of Company B and Abraham Meyers and Jacob Lehman of Company D.  Both Jacobs and Meyers were wounded in the battle.

    1864(29thof Adar II): Hebrew author Zebi Hirsch Mecklenberg, passed away at Konigsberg

    1866: The Grand Army of the Republic, an American patriotic organization composed of Union veterans of the American Civil War, was founded today.  Among other things, the GAR worked to establish appropriate burial sites for Union veterans. When the five Grand Army of the Republic posts in Seattle established a cemetery in 1895, Huldah and David Kaufman donated the land.  The Kaufmans were two of the first Jews to settle in Seattle having settled there in 1869.
    1870(15th of Nisan, 5631): Pesach

    1871(15th of Nisan, 5631): In New York, on the first day of Passover, The Forty-fourth Street Synagogue, the Thirty-fourth Street Synagogue and the Clinton Street Synagogue are the only Jewish houses of worship where rabbis will preach sermons in English. All of the others, with the exception of the Sephardic congregations, will hear sermons preached in German including Temple Emanuel on Fifth Avenue.

    1874:  Birthdate of Harry Houdini.  Houdini was the stage name of Ehrich Weiss one of the premier magicians and escape artists of all times.  Born in Hungary, the Weiss family settled in Appleton, Wisconsin. Harry’s “father, Mayer Samuel Weiss, served as rabbi of the Zion Reform Jewish Congregation. After losing his tenure, Mayer moved to New York City with Ehrich in 1887, where they lived in a boarding-house on East Seventy-Ninth Street. Mr. Weiss later called for the rest of his family to join him once he found more permanent housing. The name "Harry" came from a family pet name for Ehrich, Ehrie(rhymes with and sounds like 'Harry').”
    1875(1st of Nisan, 5635): Rosh Chodesh Nisan
    1875(1st of Nisan, 5635): Moses Hess passed away.

    1876(12th of Nisan, 5636):Ta'anit Bechorot
    1878: Birthdate German-Jewish anarchist, writer, poet, dramatist and cabaret performer, Erich Mühsam The Nazis imprisoned him in a series of concentration camps following the Reichstag Fire.  After months of beatings and torture guards at the Orianberg Concentration camp murdered him in July of 1934.

    1879: An article entitled “A Festival of Thankfulness” published today states rthat “To-morrow evening the Jewish feast of Peach, or the Passover, will commence, and will continue for seven days. This festival, which was instituted to celebrate the deliverance of the children of Israel from the land of Egypt and out of the house of bondage, is also called Hag Hamatzoth.”
    1879: Future Dreyfusard Ludovic Trarieux was elected to the Chamber of Deputies
    1881: “The administrators of the Tunis Railway have seized a case of cartridges sent to the Khoumis by Tunisian Jews.” (The Khoumis were a tribe living on the frontier who had rebelled against Mohammed Bey. So far, I have not been able to find a reason for the Jews to be sending them aid since Mohammed Bey had made amends for executing a Jew named Batto Sfoz on charges of blasphemy.)
    1882: Birthdate of Rose Schneiderman, the labor organizer who taught Eleanor Roosevelt everything she "knew about trade unionism." Born in Russian Poland, her Orthodox Jewish family was close but exceedingly poor, despite both her parents' employment as tailors. Her mother insisted that Rachel (who would later change her name to Rose) attend school and enrolled her in a traditional Hebrew school and, when she turned six, in a Russian public school. The family immigrated to the United States in 1890 and made the Lower East Side of New York City their home. Two years later, Samuel Schneiderman died of meningitis, leaving his family in a dire economic condition. Deborah, his widow, took in borders and sewed for neighbors; despite her efforts, however, the family descended into poverty and was forced to rely on charity to help pay the rent and grocery bill. A thirteen-year-old Rose dropped out of school after the ninth grade to help support the family by working as a department store sales clerk. Three years later, despite her mother's objections, Rose left sales for a better paying (but more dangerous) job in the garment industry. By 1903, she organized her first union shop, the Jewish Socialist United Cloth Hat and Cap Makers' Union, where she quickly developed a reputation as an effective leader after she organized a successful strike opposing an open-shop policy. By 1907, Schneiderman devoted most of her time to the Women's Trade Union League, which she later called "the most important influence on my life." Within a year, she was elected vice-president of the New York chapter, and thanks to a stipend provided by a member, she was able to work full-time organizing for the WTUL. After the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire, she helped established the International Ladies Garment Workers Union and led its 1913 strike. Determined to outlaw sweatshop labor, she told New Yorkers, "I would be a traitor to those poor burned bodies if I came here to talk good fellowship. . . . Every year thousands of us are maimed. The life of men and women is so cheap and property is so sacred." Although she was a committed trade unionist, Schneiderman grew increasingly frustrated trying to get male union members to address women's labor issues. By the late nineteen teens, the WTUL was her major focus. As president of both the New York and national WTUL, she concentrated her efforts to lobby for minimum wage and eight-hour-day legislation. In 1921, she helped organize the Bryn Mawr Summer School for Women Workers. In 1922, Eleanor Roosevelt joined the WTUL and the two women began a lifelong friendship. Schneiderman tutored ER on the issues confronting women workers, the challenges facing the trade union movement, and the problems inherent in labor-management relations. ER responded to Schneiderman's tutorial by chairing the WTUL finance committee, donating the proceeds from her 1932-1933 radio broadcasts to the WTUL, and promoting WTUL in her columns and speeches. As Schneiderman recalled in her autobiography, ER overcame the trappings of privilege to become "a born trade unionist."President and Mrs. Roosevelt enjoyed Schneiderman's company and often invited her to their homes in New York City, Hyde Park, and, after FDR became governor, Albany. In 1933, FDR named Schneiderman to the advisory board of the National Recovery Administration, a position she held until the Supreme Court declared the NRA unconstitutional in 1935. For those two years, she represented labor's voice on the board, working to see that wage and hour provisions of the NRA codes treated workers fairly. In 1935, she returned to both the New York and the national WTULs, whose presidencies she held until the New York WTUL ceased operations in 1950 and the national WTUL disbanded in 1955. From 1937 to 1943, Schneiderman, balancing her WTUL work with state politics, served as secretary to the New York State Department of Labor. Ninety-year old Schneiderman died in New York in 1972 at the Jewish Home and Hospital for the Aged.
    1886:  Vancouver was incorporated as a Canadian City. Jewish people have been on the Vancouver scene since the city's earliest days. The first to take up residence was Polish born Louis Gold who arrived in 1872. His wife Emma was a businesswoman, and by 1882 she had established the West End Grocery and Royal City Boot and Shoe stores. David Oppenheimer, a German native, was undoubtedly the outstanding citizen in Vancouver's formative period. He promoted incorporation of the city. In June of 1886, Oppenheimer Bros.--today Vancouver's oldest business--built the first wholesale grocery in the city's first brick building, still extant in present-day Gastown. The Great Fire passed over its foundation, then under construction. Upon completion, the building was used as Vancouver's first "city hall." Both David and his brother Isaac were members of the 1887 city council, David being chairman of the finance committee. From 1888 to 1891 David served four terms as mayor, among the most constructive in Vancouver's history.
    1886(1st of Nisan, 5646): Rosh Chodesh Nisan

    1886(1st of Nisan, 5646): Rabbi Mordechai Aby Serour of Morocco, who was best known for his work as a geographer and explore passed away.
    1889: Baltimore Hebrew Congregation which had been variously known as "Stadt-Schul" or "Fell's Point Hebrew Friendship Congregation" erected its new synagogue at Madison Avenue and Robert Street.
    1890(16th of Nisan, 5650): Second Day of Pesach; first day of the Omer
    1890: “Aid For Immigrants” published today described the finalization of “the plans for the fund which Baron de Hirsch…has established to the amelioration of the conditions” of Jews living in Russian, Romania “and those other countries in Europe where the Jew is persecuted to martyrdom” to find refuge in more civilized places.
    1892: “Rabbi Browne on the ‘Talmud’” published today described the speech delivered on this topic at the Central Musical Hall.  The lecture entitled "Talmud - Its Ethics and Its Literary Beauties" including his assertion that "What the Congressional Record is to the loyal American citizen, the 'Talmud' is to the Jew - an embodiment of the laws and history of his race. And yet the books of the 'Talmud' so dear to every Hebrew heart have gone through a most trying ordeal. At times they have been banished and burned, plundered and torn, and yet their glory lives.”
    1895: Three revenue collectors raided a basement at 119 Division Street where  they found 200 galloons of wine that was supposed to be “Kosher.”  The illegal still is operated by a Russian Jew known as “Gordon” who was not on the premises when the raid was being made. 
    1895: The Tidings, a weekly Jewish newspaper published in Rochester, NY has been merged with The American Hebrew published in New York City.
    1896: The German anti-Semitic agitator Herman Ahlwardt was accompanied by A.M. Woeller, President of the Anti-Semitic Society and Jacob Hoefnagel, the society’s secretary as he made his way to deliver a speech at Germania Hall in Hoboken, NJ.
    1897: Rabbi Joseph Silverman of Temple Emanu El and Cantor William Sparger officiated at today’s funeral for the late Julius Ehrmann.
    1897: President Lewis Parmer of the Hebrew School on Stone Avenue said that the Long Island Water Supply Company is refusing to continue to service because “the supply lines are worn out”
    1898(14th of Nisan, 5658): An article entitled “The Feast of Passover” published today states that “The Jewish Passover, or the Feast of Unleavened Bread, will be ushered in at sundown to-day. It will be universally observed by orthodox Jews for eight days and by their reformed and Palestinian brethren for seven days. With the former, however, only the first and last two days are actual holidays, and with the latter only the first and last, the intervening days being only semi-festivals, on which all manner of work may be performed.”
    1899: Mrs. Samuel Hirsch will sing at today’s musicale and tea sponsored by the Women’s Committee of the Hebrew Technical Institute being held at Sherry’s.
    1899: Adolf von Sonnenthal received a standing ovation when he returned to the Irving Place Theatre as Nathan in Lessing’s “Nathan Der Weise.”
    1899: In Paris, L’Figaro published “the evidence given by Examining Magistrate Bertulus before the Court of Cassation hearing the Dreyfus Cas
    1903(9th of Nisan, 5663):  The Kishinev pogrom began. “The Kishinev pogrom was an anti-Jewish riot that took place in Kishinev, which was back then part of the Bessarabia province of Imperial Russia (currently Chişinău is the capital of independent Moldova).  It started on April 6 and lasted until April 7, 1903.The riot started after a Christian Russian boy, Michael Ribalenko, had been found murdered in the town of Dubossary, about 25 miles north of Kishinev. Although it was clear that the boy had been killed by a relative (who was later found), the government chose to call it a ritual murder plot by the Jews.The mobs were incited by Pavolachi Krushevan, the editor of the Anti-Semitic Newspaper "Bessarabetz", and the vice-governor Ustrugov. They used the ages-old blood libel against the Jews (that the boy had been killed to use his blood in preparation of matzo). Viacheslav Plehve, the Minister of Interior, supposedly gave orders not to stop the rioters. During three days of rioting, the Kishinev Pogrom against the Jews took place. Forty-seven (some put the figure as high as 49) Jews were killed, 92 severely wounded, 500 slightly wounded and over 700 houses looted and destroyed.This pogrom is considered the first state-inspired action against Jews of the 20th century. Despite a world outcry, only two men were sentenced to seven and five years and twenty-two were sentenced for one or two years. This pogrom was instrumental in convincing tens of thousands of Russian Jews to leave to the West and to Israel.”
    1904(21st of Nisan, 5664): Fifty three year old literary critic Elazar Atlas, the son of David Atas passed away today in Bialystok.
    1909(15th of Nisan, 5669): Pesach
    1909(15th of Nisan, 5669): Abraham Bengrihan, Chief Rabbi of Marrakech, Morocco, passed away.
    1909: Birthdate of Estella Agsterribe, later Estella Blits- Agsterribe, the Dutch Olympic Gold Medal winner who would die at Auschwitz with her children and her husband.
    1910: Commanding officers in Constantinople granted Jewish soldiers nine days off for Passover, even though official leave is stipulated only for the first two and last two days. 
    1910: In Constantinople in response to a request from the Hambashi The Minister of Justice, ordered all Jews in prison for trivial offenses be liberated in preparation for the celebration of Pesach.
    1912: In Chicago,  more than 15,000 thousand Jews found out today that the Orthodox among them will not be able to participate in the primary election being held on Tuesday, April 9, the last day of Passover.  A plan to allow somebody to accompany Orthodox Jewish voters into the booth and mark the ballot for them was rejected “because of the chances of fraud.”
    1914:A committee met at the hotel Astor tonight to make final arrangements for the Passover celebration for the Jewish soldiers and sailors whose release on furlough was obtained a few days ago.
    1917: "The United States declared war on Germany. Approximately 250,000 Jewish soldiers (20% of whom were volunteers) served in the U.S. army - roughly 5.7% of the servicemen, while 7of Eastern and Central Europe.  The aftermath, Communism and Fascism, would prove to be even worse.  For American Jews, the aftermath of the war included immigration restrictions and the Red Scare.

    1917(14th of Nisan, 5677): Erev Pesach; As Jews sat down to their Seders tonight, they had no idea how much their world was about to change!
    1917: One of the British Undersecretaries for Middle Eastern Affairs, Mark Sykes informed his French counterpart Georges-Picot that Britain’s military efforts in Palestine would have to be “taken into account” at the peace conference.  This was a polite way of saying that new realities had changed the British view of the Sykes-Picot Agreement and that the British would be pushing for a Jewish homeland in Palestine.

    1918: The Jewish Administration Commission for Palestine arrives at Tel Aviv.  “Dr. Chaim Weizmann, head of the commission, evokes great enthusiasm when he replied in Hebrew to the address of welcome.  The British Military Governor of Jaffa, who participated in the reception, expresses his sympathy with the Zionist aims.”

    1920:  Birthdate of Dr. Edmond H. Fischer. The son of a Jewish father, Fischer shared in the 1992 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine.

    1923: Birthdate of Shoshana Shenburg who moved to Eretz Israel a year later where she would marry Professor Elisha Netanyahu and gain fame as attorney and jurist Shoshana Netanyahu who served as a justice on the Supreme Court of Israel.

    1925: During his triumphal tour of Palestine, Lord Balfour, of Balfour Declaration fame, spent tonight at the hotel on top of the historic Mount Carmel, from which he had a superb view of Haifa, on the northeastern slope, and of the bay below.

    1929: In Berlin, Charlotte (née Epstein) and Jack Previn, who was a lawyer, judge, and music teacher gave birth to pianist and conductor Andre Previn

    1930: The Jewish Telegraphic Agency reported that according to a report submitted by the Zionist Education Council to the Action Committee, “there are 21,031 pupils in the schools maintained in Palestine by the Zionist Organization. The annual budget for the schools is $637,250 which includes…a $37,975 subsidy from the Palestine Colonization Association and $60,000 from the municipality of Tel Aviv.

    1930: In an interview on this date “Ittamar Benavi, one of Palestine’s leading journalists” reiterates his support for the creation of a series of Cantons along the Swiss model as a way to govern Palestine.

    1931: The first episode of “Little Orphan Annie” Radio Show aired today with a ten-year-old Jewish girl named Shirley Bell playing the lead role.

    1937: IN Jerusalem Moshe Baram and his wife Grazia who was born in Aleppo, gave birth to MK and cabinet minister Uzi Baram.

    1941: German forces, in alliance with Hungarians and Bulgarians, invaded Yugoslavia and Greece.  The invasion was caused by the Italian Army's failure against the Greeks.  For the Jews, this meant that the Balkans would come under Nazi domination which later resulted in the destruction of some of the most ancient Jewish communities in the world.  According to some, this "diversion" delayed the invasion of the Soviet Union which resulted in the Nazi forces becoming trapped in the Russian Winter.  This in turn was a contributing factor to the final defeat of the Nazis.

    1941: In New York City, 23 year old Sylvia Lubow Rindskopf married Ensign Maurice H. Rhindskopf – a marriage that would last nearly 69 years during which she played the perfect Naval wife to Rear Admiral Mike Rindskopf.

    1941: The Nazis established two ghettos in Radom, Poland.  Radom's Jewish community dated back to the Middle Ages.  Nine tenths of the Jewish population of 25,000 perished in the Holocaust.  According to some reports, the remaining Jews did not return because of the anti-Semitic riots that took place in Poland after the war.

    1942: In Baltimore, MD Violet "Vi" (née Krichinsky) and Irvin Levinson, who worked in the furniture and appliance business gave birth to Academy Award winning director Barry Levinson whose works included one the greatest movies ever – “Avalon.”

    1944: The Jewish nursery at Izieu-Ain France was overrun by Nazi's
    1945: The 14th Armored Division liberated the Serbian hospital at Camp Hammelburg whose patients included Captain Abraham Baum who had been shot in the groin while trying to rescue General Patton’s son-in-law John K. Waters who was also in the hospital recovering from his wounds.
    1945: After the USS Bush, an American destroyer was struck by a Japanese suicide bomber today, Raphael J. “Ray” Moses was among those who were rescued from the East China Sea.
    1946: The British consulate General in Madagascar reported in confidence to the foreign Office in London that while Madagascar might be suitable for 200 colonists of the peasant class, stress should be laid by Britain on providing the right type of colonist in the first instance and not city-bred Jews who were worn and emaciated through long confinement in concentration camps.
    1947: As it begins its American tour, The Hapoel soccer team is scheduled to board a plane a Tel Aviv today as it makes its way to New York City.
    1947: The first Tony Awards are presented for theatrical achievement.
    1948: The Irgun raided the British Army camp at Pardes Hanna killing seven British soldiers and stealing a large quantity of weapons
    1948: Operation Nachshon was launched this evening in an attempt to open the road to Jerusalem.  At the same time, a convoy left the coast and after a ten hour trip arrived in the beleaguered city.  It was the first the first convoy to reach the city in two weeks.  They found a city that was under constant bombardment from Arab Legion (Jordanian Army) artillery situated on the high round north of the Damascus Gate.  For the next three weeks, the Arabs would use their military might to try and re-gain control of the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv Road. 
    1951: The Jerusalem Post reported that Israel Air Force planes bombed Syrian entrenchments in the demilitarized zone near El Hamma where seven Israeli policemen were killed and one wounded. The government lodged a complaint with the UN Security Council listing all recent Syrian border violations.
    1951: The Jerusalem Post reported that for the first time since the establishment of the state, Britain announced that it was ready to sell small arms to Israel, on the same terms as had been enjoyed by Egypt.
    1954: The body of Baron Edmond de Rothschild was re-interred in Zichron Yaakov, the wine-producing village which had been established with his help.

    1954(3rd of Nisan): Yiddish poet Aaron Leib Baron passed away

    1955: David Saul Marshal, a descendant of Indian Baghdadi Jews, began serving as Chief Minister of Singapore.

    1957: First oil tanker in Eilat arrived filled with Persian Gulf oil.

    1958(16th of Nisan, 5718): Second Day of Pesach; First day of the Omer

    1959(27thof Adar II, 5719): Sixty-four year old Leo Aryeh Mayer, who worked jointly with Eleazar Sukenik, in connection with the excavations of the "Third Wall" of Jerusalem, built by in 41-44 CE, Agrippa, king of Judea, in 41-44 CE and served as rector of Hebrew University, passed away.

    1959: Joseph B. Levin represented the Securities and Exchange Commission before the Fifth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Columbia General Investment Corporation v. the SEC.

    1962: Leonard Bernstein causes controversy with his remarks from the podium during a New York Philharmonic concert featuring Glenn Gould performing Brahms' First Piano Concerto.

    1967: Avraham Lanir “scored his first aerial kill in a major skirmish along the Syrian border which ended with the downing of six Syrian jets. Lanir, flying Mirage 60, downed a SAF MiG-21 with cannon fire after closing in to a distance of 200 meters. The MiG exploded and Lanir flew right through the fireball, covering his aircraft with soot. Initially blinded, enough soot was eventually blown off his canopy to afford Lanir a safe landing at Ramat David. The scorched aircraft earned the nickname ‘Black Mirage’".

    1968: Romanian Jewish playwright Israil Bercovici adapted a collection of Itzik Manger's poems into a two-act stage piece, Mangheriada, which premiered today at the Romanian State Jewish Theater in Bucharest

    1969: Birthdate of actor Paul Rudd

    1969: Birthdate of actress Ari Meyers best known for her role as "Emma Jane McArdle" in the television series, “Kate & Allie.”

    1969:  Gold Meir spoke to 3,000 teenagers in Jerusalem, expressing her absolutefaith that peace would come.

    1971: Jews must have felt mixed emotions today when Igor Stravnisky passed away today.  On the one hand he was a giant in the world of music and yet he was also an anti-Semite.

    1974(14th of Nisan, 5734): Shabbat Hagadol; Erev Pesach

    1974(14th of Nisan, 5734): Canadian born poet Rochelle Mass and her family celebrate their first Pesach in Israel at a kibbutz where she had picked oranges during the Yom Kippur War in 1973.

    1975: Birthdate of actor Zach Braff

    1975: Sandy Helberg the American actor who is the son of 2 Holocaust survivors married Harriet Birnbaum.

    1976(6th of Nisan, 5736):Sidney Franklin passed away.  A Brooklyn born Jew whose name was originally Sidney Frumkin, Franklin was the U.S.’s first successful bullfighter.

    1976: The Jerusalem Post reported that France sold to Egypt Mirage F-1 interceptors, the most advanced French combat aircraft. It is pointless for Israelis, or for Israel friends abroad, to shadow box with PLO, Defense Minister Shimon Peres told the International Conference on Palestinians and the Middle East, since the PLO aspires to liquidate the Jewish State. He added that the PLO had maintained its rigid extremism, and had lined up the entire Arab world behind this position.
    1977:The Jerusalem Post reported that Egyptian President Anwar Sadat called upon US President Jimmy Carter to establish "a political entity where the Palestinians can, at long last, be a community of citizens, not a group of refugees." The Israel Press Council decided to form a team to check local papers’ observance of their ban on publication of criminal suspects’ names before they are remanded. Israeli artillery shelled terrorist concentrations in Lebanon. Israeli meat producers obtained a US permit to export kosher meat to America

    1982:Foreign Minister Yitzhak Shamir, speaking at the funeral of an Israeli diplomat slain two days ago in Paris, said today that Israeli forces would strike ''without reservation, without end'' at bases and headquarters of the Palestine Liberation Organization in Lebanon and elsewhere.

    1985(15th of Pesach, 5747): Pesach

    1986(26th of Adar II, 5746):Pesach Burstein, a Yiddish actor whose singing, dancing and whistling delighted audiences here and abroad for more than 70 years, died today at Lenox Hill Hospital after suffering a heart attack last Monday. Mr. Burstein was 89 years old and a resident of Manhattan and Tel Aviv.

    1992(3rd of Nisan, 5752): Molly Picon passed away at the age of 94..Born in 1898, the petite Molly Picon was a star of both the Yiddish theatre and a variety of American entertainment mediums.  Her career included 19 years of radio broadcasts and roles on Broadway and film.  She performed for American troops during World War II.  She was one of the first entertainers to go to Europe after the war to perform for Jewish refugees.

    1992(3rd of Nisan, 5752): Isaac Assimov died at the age of 72. Born in Russia in 1920, Asimov was raised in Brooklyn which he always considered his home.  He was known as a science fiction writer but also wrote about the Bible as well.  A confirmed atheist, Assimov attributed this interest to his devoutly Jewish father.


    1992: Ninety-six an Austrian-American chemist who fled Europe for America because he was the son of Dr. Herman Carl Mark, a Jew who converted to Lutheranism passed away today.

    1993(15th of Nisan, 5753): Pesach observed for the first time in the Presidency of Bill Clinto
    1994(25th of Nisan, 5754): A Palestinian suicide bomber killed 7 Israelis and himself.
    1994(25th of Nisan, 5754): Eight people were killed in a Hamas terrorist car-bomb attack on a bus in the center of Afula. This was the first documented car bombing in Israel. The dead included: “Asher Attia, 48, of Afula, bus driver; Vered Mordechai, 13, of Afula; Maya Elharar, 17, of Afula; Ilana Schreiber, 45, a teacher from Kibbutz Nir David; Meirav Ben-Moshe, 16, of Afula; Ayala Vahaba, 40, a teacher from Afula; and Fadiya Shalabi, 25, of Iksal were killed in a car-bomb attack on a bus in the center of Afula. Ahuva Cohen Onalla, 37, wounded in the attack, died of her wounds on April 25.”
    1995(6th of Nisan, 5755): Six Israelis were killed in two suicide bombings at Kfar Darom.
    1997: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including Memories of Summer: When Baseball Was an Art
    and Writing About It a Game
    by Roger Kahn.
    2000:The United States Postal Service issued five stamps depicting the work of Jewish sculptor Louise Nevelson.
    2000: Habib Bourguiba, President of Tunisia, passed away.  Bourguiba came to power when Tunisia gained its independence from France in 1956.  By then the Jewish population had shrunk from its 1948 high of approximately 100,000.  The Tunisian government enacted a series of anti-Jewish decrees. In 1958, Tunisia's Jewish Community Council was abolished by the government and ancient synagogues, cemeteries and Jewish quarters were destroyed for "urban renewal."The increasingly unstable situation caused more than 40,000 Tunisian Jews to immigrate to Israel. By 1967, the country's Jewish population had shrunk to 20,000. During the Six-Day War, Jews were attacked by rioting Arab mobs, and synagogues and shops were burned. The government denounced the violence, and President Habib Bourguiba apologized to the Chief Rabbi. This apology certainly marked Bourgiba as unique among Arab leaders. His government appealed to the Jewish population to stay, but did not bar them from leaving. Subsequently, 7,000 Jews immigrated to France. Today about 1,000 Jews live in Tunisia.

    2001: In an article published today, entitledOut of the Jewish Ghetto and Into the Mainstream,” Grace Gluek traces the life and times of one of the earliest of Jewish artists, Moritz Daniel.
    2002: During Operation Defensive Shield the terrorist leader responsible for trying to turn Jenin into a massive booby-trip (including the homes of the civilians) and two of his comrades were killed by Israeli troops as they cautiously made their way through the camp in an attempt to minimize civilian casulaities.
    2002(24thof Nisan, 5762): Twenty-six year old Staff Sergeant Nisan Avraham from Lod was killed today and five of his comrades were wounded when Islamic Jihad terrorists attacked them at the entrance of Rafiah Yam.
    2003: The New York Times included reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including ''The Crisis of Islam: Holy War and Unholy Terror'' by Bernard Lewis.
    2003(4th of Nisan, 5763): Leon Levy, the co-founder of Oppenheimer & Co who was praised as an “investment genius and prolific philanthropist” passed away.
    2004(15thof Nisan, 5764): Pesach

    2005:  The New York Times featured a review of “In Satmar Custody.” This documentary written in English, Hebrew, Yemenite and Yiddish describes the fate of Yeminite Jews living in Israel who were brought to the United States to live in the Satmar community in Monsey, N.Y.  The Times describes the fate of such Jews as a “nightmare for a Jewish family from Yemen.

    2005(26th of Adar II, 5765): Specialist Daniel J. Freeman aged 20, who “had been in Afghanistan for about two months was killed today in a helicopter crash “along with 15 other soldiers. He had not been scheduled to be on board the supply flight to Kandahar, but had volunteered for a friend. “Daniel Freeman was always the boy with the Israeli accent, a remnant of his life on a kibbutz, where he lived until he was 9 years old. Growing up in Cincinnati, he loved playing soccer and rock climbing, and was part of the local fire department’s explorer club, excited to dress up and train like a firefighter. As an older teenager, “Daniel developed a keen sense of right and wrong and would get very upset if he thought something was unfair,” said Shmuel Birkan, Freeman’s stepfather. In high school, Freeman took an enthusiastic interest in military history, a subject he studied in addition to Hebrew. He decided he wanted to enlist in the Army, “because he truly believed it was the right thing to do,” Birkan said. A participant in the Army’s early induction program, Freeman went on to complete his basic and advanced training in Fort Benning, Ga. “Daniel was never particularly in favor of [America’s] reason for being in Iraq and Afghanistan. He just knew that his mission was to keep himself and his friends safe,” Birkan said. (As reported by Maia Efrem)

    2006:  The Jewish Reconstructionist Federation (JRF) of Metropolitan New York/New Jersey recognizes their Vatikim: Those Who Inspire Us with a Lifetime of Contribution with a festive evening of celebration featuring the unique Sephardic spirit and sounds of Gerard Edery and the Bnai Keshet a Cappella Singers

    2006: David Bromberg is featured in a Washington Postarticle entitled “In Fine Fiddle” by Paul Schwartzman.

    2006: In “A Homecoming, in Los Angeles, for Five Klimts Looted by Nazis,” Sharon Waxman describes Maria Altmann’s fight to regain her family’s art.

    2007: “Spots of Light: To Be a Woman in the Holocaust” opens at Yad Sachem’s Exhibitions Pavilion:

    2008: David Blatt, the head coach of the the Istanbul-based Turkish Basketball League team Efes Pilsen, “parted ways with the team.”

    2008: In Washington, D.C., Jewish authorJonathan Rieder discusses and signs The Word of the Lord Is Upon Me: The Righteous Performance of Martin Luther King, Jr. at Politics and Prose Bookstore.

    2008(1st of Nisan, 5768): Rosh Chodesh Nisan

    2008: The Sunday New York Times book section featured reviews of two books by Jewish authors - Fidelity by Grace Paley and Please Don’t Remain Calm by Michael Kinsley.

    2008(1st of Nisan, 5768: Thirty-six year old MajorStuart Wolfer was killed today when his unit was attacked by insurgents in Baghdad. (As reported by Maia Efrem)
    Read more:

    2009: Lubavitch Chabad of Northbrook and CJE Senior Life present the “Yiddish Club.”

    2009:Ambassador Daniel Kurtzer, professor of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University delivers an address entitled "Iran, Israel and the US: Dissecting the Triangular Relationship’ at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

    2009:J. Ezra Merkin, a prominent New York financier whose private clients lost more than $2 billion in the collapse of Bernard L. Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, has been accused of fraud and deception in a civil lawsuit filed today by the New York attorney general, Andrew M. Cuomo.
    2009:A list of 801 Jews saved during the Holocaust by German businessman Oskar Schindler has been recovered from a Sydney library, News Agencies reported today. The story inspired the novel and Oscar-winning film "Schindler's list," and led to his being named a Righteous Gentile by the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem. Employees at the New South Wales State Library found the list in boxes containing German news clippings and manuscripts by the Australian author Thomas Keneally, who wrote the bestselling novel Schindler's Ark, The library's co-curator, Olwen Pyke, described the 13-page yellowing document as "one of the most powerful documents of the 20th Century" and said that the library was stunned to find it among the six boxes containing Kneally's material. Pryke described the 13-page list - a typescript copy of the original - as "one of the most powerful documents of the 20th Century" and was stunned to find it in the library's collection. She told the AFP that she did not know how much such a finding would be worth financially."This list was hurriedly typed on April 18, 1945, in the closing days of WWII, and it saved 801 men from the gas chambers," she told the AFP. "It's an incredibly moving piece of history."Kneneally's 1982 novel, which won a Booker Prize, told the story of how Schindler risked his life to save more than 1,000 Jews from the Nazis. Hollywood director Steven Spielberg adapted the story into a film in 1993, starring Liam Neeson as Schindler and Ralph Fiennes as the head of an SS-run camp. According to Pryke, Schindler had actually compiled more than the one list implied in the film and the book. She said that Holocaust survivor Leopold Pfefferberg, number 173 on the list, gave the document to Keneally in an attempt to persuade him to write the story. Pryke said that Kneally found the list so inspiring, that he acquiesced to the request. Schindler was born in a German-speaking part of Austria-Hungary in 1908. At the start of the war, he was a card-carrying Nazi who used those connections to take over a Polish factory following Hitler's invasion. Over the course of the war, his conscience got the better of him and he persuaded Nazi official that his Jewish laborers were vital to the war effort and should not be deported to death camps. He died in 1974, but his acts were only recognized years later with the release of the book and the film.

    2010(22nd Nisan, 5770): Yizkor is recited on the Eighth Day of Pesach.

    2010: The Home Minister of Maharashtra State, which includes Mumbai, informed the Assembly that the bodies of the nine Pakistani gunmen from the 2008 attack on Mumbai who had murdered 8 people at Nariman House  were buried in a secret location in January 2010.

    2010:  Model and actress Lisa S. (Lisa Slesner) married David Wu today.

    2010:Israeli Author Savyon Liebrecht is scheduled to speak at Yale’s Slifka Center for Jewish life.

    2010: David Remnick's biography of President Barack Obama, The Bridge, was released today.

    2011: Michael Applebaum began serving as Chair of the Montreal Executive committee.

    2011: AlexanderMashkevitch announced his intention to found a Jewish version of Al-Jazeera that will "represent Israel on an international level, with real information

    2011:Former Israeli Supreme Court Justice Dalia Dorner as keynote speaker is scheduled to speak today at an event marking the formal launch of The Berkeley Institute for Jewish Law and Israeli Law, Economy and Society at the University of California Law School.

    2011:Ruth Messinger, President of the American World Jewish Service is scheduled to speak today during the New CAJE Lehrhaus webinar series.

    2011(2ndof Nisan): On the Jewish calendar, Yahrzeit of The fifth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Sholom DovBer Schneersohn ("Rashab") who passed away in 1920.

    2011(2ndof Nisan): Eighty two year old Igor Yakovlevich Birman, the Russian born American economist who predicted the collapse of the Soviet Union passed away today.

    2011:Tel Aviv has been ranked No. 34 out of 40 cities in the annual Knight Frank global cities index, which was released today, one place lower than last year and three below Cairo. The Global Cities Survey, which was created by multinational real-estate and property-services firm Knight Frank in 2008 to monitor city-level power shifts, measures 40 major cities in terms of their provision of investment opportunities and influence on global business leaders and the political elite.

    2012(14th of Nisan, 5772): Fast of the First Born

    2012(14th of Nisan, 5772): Fifty-nine year old Elan Steinberg who was head of the World Jewish Congress passed away today.  As reported by Douglas Martin)

    2012: Rabbi Greg Wall is scheduled to lead the Seder at The Sixth Street Community Synagogue; an event that will “swing between tradition and utter hipness.”
    Chag Kasher v'Sameach!

    2013: Tom Arnold who converted to Judaism when he married Roseanne Barr and continues to be a practicing Jew and his fourth wife Ashley Groussman gave birth to their first child Jax Copeland Arnold.

    2013: “A Bottle In The Gaza Sea” is scheduled to be shown at the Hartford Jewish Film Festival.

    2013: “Joe Papp In Five Acts” is scheduled to be shown at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival.

    2013: US Secretary of State John Kerry is headed to the Middle East today on his third trip there in just two weeks in a fresh bid to unlock long-stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

    2014: The New York Times reviewed books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including three written especially for children and young readers about the Holocaust: Hidden: A Child’s Story of the Holocaustby Loic Dauvillier; Hidden Like Anne Frank: Fourteen True Stories of Survival by Marcel Prins and Peter Henk Steenhuis; The Whispering Townby Jennifer Elvgren

    2014: The Jerusalem Post is scheduled to hold its annual conference in New York City.

    2014: A special performance of “The Last Act of Lilka Kadison” for the benefit of Yiddishkayt and in memory of NPR radio producer Johanna Cooper is scheduled to take place in Burbank, CA.

    2014: In Springfield, VA, Congregation Ada Reyim is scheduled to host a Sisterhood Community Women’s Seder using a special Haggadah honoring “the role of women in Passover tradition.”


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    April 7

    451: Attila the Hun sacked Metz in what is now Germany as he pillaged his across Europe.  Based on the Thirteenth Tribe, there are those who contend that a large proportion of Europe’s Jews were descended from the Khazars a warrior people connected to Attila.

    529: The Roman Emperor Justinian issued the first draft of the Corpus Juris Civilis. Justinian codified the ant-Jewish imperial view of the world that began under Constantine.The code made “anyone who was not connected to the Christian church a non-citizen.” More specifically, the principle of "Servitude of the Jews" (Servitus Judaeorum) was established by the new laws, and determined the status of Jews throughout the Empire for hundreds of years. The Jews were disadvantaged in a number of ways. Jews could not testify against Christians and were disqualified from holding a public office. Jewish civil and religious rights were restricted: ‘they shall enjoy no honors’. The use of the Hebrew language in worship was forbidden. Shema Yisrael sometimes considered the most important prayer in Judaism ("Hear, O Israel, YHWH our God, YHWH is one") was banned, as a denial of the Trinity. A Jew who converted to Christianity was entitled to inherit his or her father's estate, to the exclusion of the still-Jewish brothers and sisters. The Emperor became an arbiter in internal Jewish affairs. Similar laws applied to the Samaritans.”

    1348:  In the first year of the reign of Charles IV, Charles University is founded in Prague. Charles was an enlightened ruler whose years on the throne were good ones for the Jews of Prague. “The long reign of Emperor Charles IV brought the Prague Jews new privileges and relative calm even. The king ensured protection and, among others, offered a chance for them to settle inside the walls of the arising New Town. A sign of the status of the Jewish community is a banner that has survived, given to the Jews of Prague by Charles IV in 1375. From that year on the Jews would, over the centuries, come to the gates of the ghetto to welcome the kings of Bohemia in Prague. The banner was a shield and legacy of the favors of the ruler’s predecessor, a symbol of ambition and sign of hope.” Today Charles University is the home base for a Jewish Studies program offered to American college students that examines the history of Central European Jewry

    1486:  The first prayer book (Siddur) was printed in Italy by Soncino. This was the only time that the Siddur was published during the 15th century. For the most part hand copied manuscripts (of which there were plenty) continued to be used.

    1506: In Portugal, a group of New Christians was arrested when they were caught conducting a Seder.  Although they were released two Dominican firiars “who paraded through the streets with an uplifted crucifix crying Heresia so inflamed the citizenry that 500 hundred New Christians were murdered on the first day of a multi-day massacre

    1615: In Worms, members of the Guilds riot as part of an attempt to force the Jews to leave.

    1645: Michael Cardozo became the 1st Jewish lawyer in Brazil. The Dutch West India Company granted Michael Cardozo the right to practice law in Brazil a privilege no other Jew enjoyed at that time anywhere else.  The Dutch would shortly lose control of Brazil to the Portuguese.  And in 1654, it would be a group of Jewish refugee from Recife (part of formerly Dutch Brazil) who would land in New Amsterdam to begin the modern American Jewish Community.

    1720: At one of the last large auto-de-fe's in Madrid, was burned five suspected Jews who were found to have committed the crime of praying in a "secret synagogue" which had been found after the Spanish war of Succession.

    1767: Christian Old Testament scholar, Johann Gottlob Carpzov, a member of the Carpzov family who specialized in the study of Hebrew and the Old Testament passed away. Carpzov authored Apparatus Historico-Criticus Antiquitatum et Codicis Sacri et Gentis Hebrææ in 1748. “According to the Jewish Encyclopedia, Carpzov represents both an advance and a retrogression in Biblical science — an advance in fullness of material and clearness of arrangement (his Introductio is the first work that deserves the name), and a retrogression in critical analysis, for he held fast to the literal inspiration of the Hebrew text of the Old Testament and bitterly opposed the freer positions of Simon, Spinoza, and Clericus. His antiquarian writings are still interesting and useful.”

    1781: Birthdate of Berlin philanthropist Abraham Muhr

    1788: American settlers establish Marietta, Ohio, the first new American settlement in the Northwest Territory.   Apparently a thriving Jewish community existed in Marietta during the last part of the 19thcentury and the first part of the 20th century as can be seen by the existence of two Jewish cemeteries, a Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, the Jewish War Suffers’ Society and a synagogue called B’nai Israel.

    1818:In Ḳin'at ha-Emet (Zeal for Truth), a paper written today, and published in the collection “Nogah ha-Ẓedeḳ” (Light of Righteousness), Aron Chorin a Hungarian rabbi and advocated for religious reform, declared himself in favor of reforms, such as German prayers, the use of the organ, and other liturgical modifications. The principal prayers, the Shema', and the eighteen benedictions, however, should be said in Hebrew, he declared, as this language keeps alive the belief in the restoration of Israel. He also pleaded for opening the temple for daily service.

    1822(16th of Nisan, 5582): Second Day of Pesach; first day of the Omer

    1826: Birthdate of Frederick C. Salomon, the Prussian native came to the United States where he worked as a surveyor and Register of Deeds in Wisconsin before joining the Union Army where he served with distinction and was mustered out as Major General of Volunteers.

    1849:The Pennsylvania legislature granted a charter today to the Hebrew Education Society of Philadelphia that “authorized the establishment of schools for general education, combined with instruction in the Hebrew language and literature; the charter also authorized the establishment of a "superior seminary of learning," with power to grant the usual degrees given by other colleges.”

    1851: The first school created under the jurisdiction of the Hebrew Education Society held its first class today in Philadelphia, PA.

    1852: This morning at the Herkimer-street Synagogue in Albany a new Sefer Torah was read for the first time and then placed in the Holy Ark.  Following the reading Rabbi Raphall gave what was called “an appropriate address.”

    1855: Marcus Samuel gave birth to Samuel Samuel founder of Samuel Samuel & Co who served as an MP for almost twenty years.  He was the brother of Marcus Samuel, 1st Viscount of Bearsted.

    1855: At the behest of Samuel K. Labatt, The Los Angeles Star published “the lengthy and effective denunciation” William Stow written by his brilliant lawyer brother, Henry J. Labatt of San Francisco.”  Stow is William Stow who had launched an anti-Semitic attack on the Jewish people from the sanctuary of the California State Assembly. Samuel K. Labatt was the first President of the Hebrew Benevolent Society of Los Angeles. He saw part of his role as being the defender of Jews against anti-Semites.

    1860(15thof Nisan, 5620): As the war clouds that will bring the Civil War begin to form in earnest during the U.S. Presidential elections, Jews observe Pesach.

    1860:  A review of The History of Herodotusby George Rawlinson published today compared the writings of the ancient Greek Historian with information found in the Bible. The reviewer gives credence to the progression of history as presented in the Scripture. “The Hezekiahs, the Isaiahs, the Jacobs, the Zerubbabels, the Maccabees, the Gamaliels,…could never have appeared as the later records describe them, had there been no Samuel, no Joshua, no Moses, no Exodus from Egypt, no law-giving on Sinai, as represented to us in the marvelous yet truthful pictures of the more ancient books.”

    1861: Sinai Congregation which was led by Rabbi Felsenthal and President Schoeneman was established in Chicago

    1862: The Battle of Shiloh ends with a Union Victory. Among the many Jews serving at the battle was Corporal David Orbansky of the 58th Ohio Volunteer Infantry who won the Medal of Honor for his “gallantry in action against the enemy.”

    1863: Birthdate of Henry Cohen, a Jewish Texan rabbi who served Congregation B'nai Israel in Galveston, Texas from 1888 to 1952.

    1868(15thof Nisan, 5628): Pesach

    1868(15thof Nisan, 5628): Rabbi Carl Heinemann passed away.  He was hired as the first rabbi in Goteborg, Sweden in 1837 but was forced to resign in 1851 after he opposed the introduction of “radical reform measures.”

    1870(16th of Nisan, 5631): Second Day of Pesach; 1st day of the Omer

    1870: Birthdate of German anarchist Gustav Landauer.

    1870: According to the review of the Art Academy, on this date, Russian –Jewish sculptor Mark Arntokolski “was granted personal name of honorary citizen ‘for wonderful knowledge of art’”.

    1872: Seventy year old, W.L. Mitchell, a Professor at the Georgia State University Law School, has begun to study Hebrew. [Ed. Note – I have not been able to find out anything about Professor Mitchell i.e. whether he was Jewish or a Christian who was following what had become a popular pastime among 18th& 19th century Protestants.]

    1880: Birthdate of multi-talented performer Fritz Grünbaum who gave his last performance to fellow inmates at Dachau just days before his death.

    1880: In Leadville, CO, Jewish businessman Jacob Schloss was elected treasurer of the Turnverin Society

    1880: Rabbi H.P. Mendez officiated at the wedding of Frederick Nathan, the son of the late Benjamin Nathan and Maud Nathan, daughter of Robert W. Nathan, which was held at Shearith Israel in New York City.

    1883: Birthdate of Maksymilian Apolinary Hartglas, the Hungarian born Zionist activist who was one of the main political leaders of Polish Jews during the interwar period, a lawyer, a publicist, and a Sejm deputy from 1919 to 1930.

    1891: In Leadville, CO, Lotta Schloss married Moses L Stern who became secretary and treasurer of Schloss Bros.

    1891: Birthdate of British born, New Zealand cartoonist, Sir David Low.  Low was not Jewish but he was an early and constant critic of Hitler and Mussolini.  Throughout the 1930’s his cartoons skewered the fascist dictators with such skill that no a less a personage than Sigmund Freud wrote, “"A Jewish refugee from Vienna, a very old man personally unknown to you, cannot resist the impulse to tell you how much he admires your glorious art and your inexorable, unfailing criticism."

    1891: The cornerstone of the Hebrew Sheltering Guardian Society’s new building was laid this afternoon at 3 o’clock.

    1891: Twenty-eight year old German Jewish immigrant Siegfried Lewisohn shot himself twice in the left breast today at 29 Sutton Place in New York.

    1892: John L. Stoddard delivered an illustrated lecture designed as “an excursion to Jerusalem and the Holy Land.”

    1895: It is expected that several liquor dealers who bought “bootleg” Kosher wine from a Russian Jew known as “Gordon” will be arraigned today for failure to pay the appropriate revenue taxes.

    1895: “Free Sons of Israel” published today traces the history of  Independent Order of Free Sons of Israel” which was founded in 1849 by German Jews and has grown to be one of the leading Jewish organizations of its kind throughout the United States.

    1895: It was reported today that during his service as Chairman of the Committee on Endowment for the Free Sons of Israel, William A. Gans has written checks totaling $2,300,000 to provide aid for widows and orphans.

    1896: Congressman Amos J. Cummings will deliver an address about Horace Greely, as the last lecture “of the regular season’s course under the auspices of the Young Men’s Hebrew Association.

    1896: The Union Veteran Hebrew Association met today in New York City.

    1896: Birthdate of Benny Leonard.  Born Benjamin Leiner, son of Orthodox Jews, Leonard learned his trade on the streets of New York.  Leonard was Light Heavyweight Champion for seven and half years.  He was one of several Jewish boxing champs during the early decades of the twentieth century. Leonard was proud of being Jewish and was quoted that Jews were suited by nature to boxing because it was the highest form of self-defense.  A hall of famer, Leonard died April 18, 1947.

    1896: Hermann Ahlwardt, the German anti-Semitic agitator and his two American sponsors are expected to be arraigned for their part in provoking a riot in Hoboken, NJ during which Ahlwardt reportedly drew a pistol and threatened the mob protesting his appearance.

    1897: It was reported today that Oscar S. Straus, Isaac Wallack, Emanuel Lehman, Isaac Eppinger and Samuel M. Schafer were among the dignitaries who had attended the funeral services of the late Julius Ehrmann.

    1897: Orthodox Jews through the world celebrated the “festival of the new sun” which “comes once every 28 years on the fourth day of the first week of Nisan.”

    1898(15thof Nisan, 5658): Pesach

    1897: While most services for The Blessing of the New Sun, Birkat Hachama, were held without any problems in New York City, including one held on the banks of the East River, an observance at Tompkins Park was marred by the arrest of the officiating Rabbis.  Rabbi Wechsler and Rabbi Klein had told their congregants to gather at the square.  Since the service had to be completed by nine o’clock, a large group had already gathered by eight when local police appeared on the scene.  They were concerned about the threat posed to the public safety by such a large gathering.  Nobody had thought to get a permit and the two Rabbis were taken away since their English was not effective enough to convey the purpose of the gathering.  A magistrate later released them with a warning.  In the mean time, the Jews in the square conducted the service without the benefit of clergy.

    1897: Birthdate of Walter Winchell.  The son of Jewish immigrants, Winchell left school at the age of 13 to go into vaudeville.  He appeared with other such Jewish beginners as Eddie Cantor.  Winchell's career took a different turn.  He entered the world of journalism where he invented the gossip column.  Winchell's column appeared in 2,000 papers every day and his 1930's radio show was heard by 50 million listeners.  Winchell had his friends and his foes.  Both agreed that Winchell outlived himself and he died a much diminished figure in 1972.  However, he is another example of a Jew inventing something that was considered to uniquely American.

    1899: “Dramatic and Musical” published today described Herr Adolf Sonnenthal’s recent portrayal of the lead character in “Nathan the Wise” which was described as “his greatest success.”  The audience burst into spontaneous, uncontrolled applause when uttered the monologue during the third act in which “Nathan commenting on Saladin’s desire for money asks, ‘Who is here the Jew?’”

    1899: “In Aid of the Hebrew Infant Asylum” published today described the plans for the upcoming fundraiser sponsored by the Young Folks’ League of Hebrew Infant Asylum that has 500 members and has raised over $6,000 in the last two years to support the institution.

    1899:”Musicale in Aid of Hebrew Institute” published today described the successful fund raiser held at Sherry’s which raised $4,000 for the Hebrew Technical Institute.

    1900(8thof Nissan, 5660): Shabbat HaGadol

    1900(8thof Nissan, 5660): Zionist poet Isaac Rabinowitz passed away.

    1901(18thof Nisan): Hillel Kahane, teacher and worker for the "Enlightenment," passed away at Bottuschan.

    1903: Second and final day of the First Kishinev Pogrom

    1906: The Algeciras Conference, which had been convened to settle the dispute between France and Germany over Morocco, came to an end. During the conference, the United States raised the issue of the mistreatment of the Jews in the North African kingdom.  U.S. Ambassador White said, “the American government has always considered it duty…to assure due respect to all religious beliefs…My government has charged me to invoke the cooperation of the Conference…regarding the wishes for the welfare of the Israelites of Morocco.” According to Abraham Bloch, the European powers attending the conference supported the American position.  This included Russia whose anti-Semitic policies had forced untold numbers Jews to live in misery or leave the country, France which had been dealing with Dreyfus wave of anti-Semitism and Spain which had expelled it Jews en masse in 1492.
    1907(old style): Second and final day of the Kishinev pogrom.

    1908: H. H. Asquith of the Liberal Party takes office as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. Herbert Henry Asquith served as Prime Minister until 1916 when he was replaced by Lloyd George.  In a private letter written before he became Prime Minister, Asquith described the Jews as “a scattered and unattractive tribe.”  He did enjoy the friendship of Jews including Edwin Montagu who would become the new P.M.’s private secretary. Montagu and Asquith would have a falling out over the affections of Venetia Stanley a friend of Asquith's daughter.  Montagu gained fame as one of the British Jews who opposed the Balfour Declaration. During the 1930’s, Asquith’s daughter befriended Vladimir Jabotinsky. She is the one who introduced him to Winston Churchill.  One of Asquith’s sons served with the British Army in Palestine during WW II.

    1911(9thof Nisan, 5671): Fifty-nine year old French banker and art collector Comte Isaac de Camondo who was a member of the House of Camondo passed away today.

    1915: Birthdate of economist Albert Hirschman, “who in his youth helped rescue thousands of artists and intellectuals from Nazi-occupied France and went on to become an influential economist known for his optimism” and was the author of Exit, Voice and Loyalty. (As reported by William Yardley)

    1915: New York's Governor Charles S. Whitman signed the Widowed Mothers Pension Act into law. The new statute, which provided state-funded pensions to qualifying women so that they could care for their children at home, was largely the result of the efforts of communal activist and reformer Hannah Bachman Einstein.

    1916: Birthdate of Robert V. Tishman, “a real estate developer whose companies — bearing the family name since the 19th century — etched their mark on the skylines of cities around the nation, including construction of the World Trade Center.”

    1923:  The 1st brain tumor operation under local anesthetic was performed at Beth Israel Hospital in New York City by Dr. K Winfield Ney

    1928: Birthdate of producer Alan J. Paluka, who was nominated for an Oscar for his work on the cinema classic “To Kill A Mockingbird.”

    1929: The New York Times reports that Warner Brother’s recently released Biblical epic, “Noah’s Ark” was panned by critics in London while proving to be a box-office smash success with English audiences.  The criticism seemed to be more an expression of anti-Americanism than related to the quality of the film itself.

    1930: Birthdate of German born, British actor Andrew Sachs. 

    1930: It was reported today that Palestine Mandatory Authority is preparing a plan for dividing Palestine into cantons, like Switzerland which it will then submit to the government in London. “The first experiment with such cantons will be the establishment of special Jewish district comprising Tel Aviv…with 47,000 inhabitants” and 40 nearby settlements including Petach Tikvah, Rishon Lexion and Rehoboth that would form a contiguous entity with 70,000 Jewish inhabitants.  The aim is to ultimate create 15 or 16 such cantons, seven of which be Moslem, three would be Christian and five or six which would be Jewish.

    1931: Birthdate of Daniel Ellsberg, American history’s most famous whistleblower.  He is the man who released the Pentagon Papers.

    1932: The first radio station in Palestine was opened today in Tel Aviv under a license from the British Mandatory Government. Mendel Abranovitch operated Radio Tel Aviv.

    1933:  Hitler approved decrees banning Jews and other non-Aryans from the practice of law and from jobs in the civil service (Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service). Jewish government workers in Germany are ordered to retire. The term Nichtarier ("non-Aryan") became a legal classification in Germany. This made it "legal" to discharge Jews from their position in the universities, hospitals, and legal professions.  The law was called the Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service.  The non-Aryan clause would be extended over the next year to include everything i.e. all professional occupations, athletic competition and military service.

    1934: Several thousandAmericans attended a pro-Nazi rally in Queens, New York

    1934: “The House of Rothschild” a biopic about the famous banking family starring George Arliss, Loretta Young and Boris Karloff was released for public viewing today.

    1935: As the 2nd Maccabiah games came to a close before 50,000 spectators the team from the United States had scored 254 giving it a wide lead over second place German (183).  The team representing the Jews of Palestine scored 139.5 points edging out Austria, Czechoslovakia and South Africa. 

    1937: The Palestine Post reported from London that according to British political circles, the Royal (Peel) Commission on Palestine might propose the setting up of two separate Jewish and Arab states, leaving Jerusalem, Bethlehem and other holy places under British Mandate. Haifa was to be a common seaport for all.

    1937: The Palestine Post reported that Jewish students were attacked and beaten at the Warsaw Polytechnic Institute, which closed for a number of days.

    1937: The Palestine Post reported that the Polish airline, Lot, initiated a regular three-flights-a-week schedule from Warsaw to Lod Airport.

    1937: The Palestine Post reported that ewish laborers complained that they were excluded from various development projects carried out by the government at Lod Airport.

    1939: Italy invaded and annexed Albania. Jews were exiled from the coastal port cities and moved to Albania’s interior. Several Austrian and German families took refuge in Tirana and Durazzo in 1939 in hope of making it eventually to the United States or South America. Many Jewish refugees also passed through Albania on their way to Palestine. These refugees were well treated by the Italian forces and by the local population. Jewish refugee families began to scatter throughout Albania and assimilate into society. Jewish children continued to attend school, but under false names and religions. Italians rejected the Final Solution and therefore did not implement anti-Jewish laws. Nevertheless, many Albanians joined the SS Division “Skanderbeg.” Some Jewish refugees were eventually placed in a transit camp in Kavaje, and from there sent to Italy. At one point, nearly 200 Jews were placed in the Kavaje camp. Some Albanian officials tried to rescue these Jews of Kavaje, by issuing identity papers to hide them in the capital Tirana.


    1939: In a prelude to World War II, Mousilliniinvades Albania as he tries to create a modern day Roman Empire. “Approximately, 600 Jews were living in Albania prior to World War II, 400 of whom were refugees. At the beginning of World War II, hundreds of Jews arrived in Albania seeking refuge from Nazi persecution in other regions of Europe.There was little history of anti-Semitism in Albania between the local Christians, Muslims, and Jews. Most of the Albanian population was not hostile toward the Jews and helped to hide them during the war, especially when Italy and Germany occupied the country. When Italy invaded and annexed Albania. Jews were exiled from the coastal port cities and moved to Albania’s interior. Several Austrian and German families took refuge in Tirana and Durazzo in 1939 in hope of making it eventually to the United States or South America. Many Jewish refugees also passed through Albania on their way to Palestine. These refugees were well treated by the Italian forces and by the local population. Jewish refugee families began to scatter throughout Albania and assimilate into society. Jewish children continued to attend school, but under false names and religions. Italians rejected the Final Solution and therefore did not implement anti-Jewish laws.Nevertheless, many Albanians joined the SS Division “Skanderbeg” and committed atrocities against the Serbian and Jewish populations of Kosovar. Some refugees were eventually placed in a transit camp in Kavaje, and from there sent to Italy. At one point, nearly 200 Jews were placed in the Kavaje camp. Some Albanian officials tried to rescue these Jews of Kavaje, by issuing identity papers to hide them in the capital Tirana.”  For more see \

    1940: Cyrus Adler, the national Jewish leader from, of all places, Van Buren, Arkansas, passed away today.

    1941: Two separate ghettos were established in Radom, Poland. At Kielce, Poland, 16,000 local Jews and about a thousand Jewish deportees from Vienna are herded into a ghetto area.

    1943: The Spanish Ambassador has lunch with Winston Churchill at which time the Prime Minister protested in the strongest possible language to the closure of the border between France and Spain to Jewish refugees trying to escape across the Pyrenees. Churchill’s threatening tone had its effect when a “few days later the Spanish authorities had re-opened the border to Jewish refugees.” (Churchill's indignation had its limitations since his government continued to actively enforce the White Paper and block Jewish immigration to Palestine

    1943: Jewish resistance led by Michael Glanz took place at Skalat, Ukraine.

    1943(2nd of Nisan, 5703): During the Holocaust in the western Ukraine, the Germans order 1,100 Jews to undress to their underwear and march through the city of Terebovlia to the nearby village of Plebanivka. They were then shot dead and buried in ditches.

    1944: Birthdate of Julia Miller who gained fame as Julia Philips co-producer of “The Sting,” “Taxi Driver” and “Close Encounters of the Third Kind.”

    1944:  Rudolf Vrba and Alfred Wetzler escaped from Auschwitz with the expressed the intention of telling the world what was going on. With the help of the resistance movement inside the camp, these two made it out and after two weeks found their way to Slovakia. They met with Adre Steiner and Oscar Krasnansky and described in detail what was happening including plans to murder 800,000 Hungarian Jews. Krasnansky turned their report into the thirty-page long "Auschwitz Protocols" which were then sent to contacts in the West. To say the Holocaust happened because nobody knew was not quite the case; more like people did not want to know or knew but did not care.

    1944(14th of Nisan, 5704): In the evening, with the world at war, Jews sit down for the first Seder of the year including American service men and woman.  The different branches of the United States armed forces have made great effort to make it possible for Jews serving in the military to observe the holiday.  “With the cooperation of the Army and Navy, 400,000 boxes Matzah, 7,000 gallons of wine and 190,000 Haggadot have been shipped by the Jewish Welfare Board for distribution” to those serving “in every war sector as well as England, North Africa and Australia.” Holiday supplies have already been parachuted to troops serving in the upper reaches of the Rockies and dogsleds were used to get Passover goodies to those serving in outposts in Alaska.  The South African Army provided a special train so Jewish soldiers in Egypt could enjoy home hospitality in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

    1945: In Italy, the Jewish Brigade received an order to cross the Senio River “and establish a bridgehead on the other side – a move that would force the Germans to retreat in the wake of the advancing British Army.

    1946: Syria's independence from France is officially recognized. The Syrian Jewish community which traced its origins back to the reign of King David and had once been thriving and prosperous had, by now, fallen on hard times. As anti-Jewish sentiment increased in the 20th century, many Syrian Jews moved to New York.  In the years just prior to Syrian independence, thousand of Syrian Jews found refuge in Palestine. A year after Syria gained independence, the ancient Jewish community of Aleppo was the victim of a Pogrom. [Reading the works of Haim Sabato, a Syrian Jew whose family moved to Egypt before settling in Israel, will give you some sense of this ancient Jewish Community.]

    1949: Rogers & Hammerstein's "South Pacific" opened at Majestic Theater for the first of 1,928 performances.

    1950: In one of the ironies of history, a commercial vessel now called the Tsfonit which flew the Swastki when first launched in 1937 will fly Israel’s Blue and White flag complete with the Star of David.  The ship has been purchased by the American-Israeli Shipping Company for Zim, Israel’s shipping line, according to reports published in the New York Times.  As part of Israel’s growing commitment to maritime commerce, a freighter now named the Akko will leave for Haifa next week to join three other war surplus shipping vessles that are already plying the waters between Israeli and U.S. ports.

    1952: The Jerusalem Post reported from The Hague that at the reparations talks held there, Israel was waiting for a definite commitment and a specific sum to be offered as compensation, by the authoritative German delegation.

    1952: The Jerusalem Post reported that the UN Technical Assistance Department proposed to set up in Israel a center for modern adobe (sun-dried earth) housing development scheme.

    1952: The Jerusalem Post reported that The Jerusalem Municipal Council voted for a new entertainment tax and fixed salaries of town councilors and deputy mayors.

    1955(15thof Nisan, 5715): Pesach

    1955(15thof Nisan, 5715): Sixty-nine year old silent film star Theda Bara passed away today.

    1958: Writer Arch Oboler's six-year-old son, Peter, drowned in rainwater collected in excavations at Oboler's Malibu home. The house was designed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright; the Wright-designed Oboler residential complex is named Eaglefeather. The house is featured in Oboler's film “Five.”

    1963: The New York Times published a review of The Femine Mystique by Betty Friedan

    1967: Israeli fighters shot down seven Syrian MIG-21s.  This episode turned out to be one of the many flashpoints on the road to the war that would be fought in June of 1967.  The Syrians were embarrassed and infuriated by the ease with which the Israelis swept their advanced MIG’s from the sky.  So they took action to encourage Nasser to follow an aggressive policy towards Israel that would ultimately lead to a clash of arms from which the region still has not recovered at the start of the 21st century.

    1970: Birthdate of Rabbi Aaron Sherman

    1974: Swedish release date for “Cinderella Liberty” produced and direct by Mark Rydell and co-starring James Caan and Eli Wallach.

    1975: Forty-five year old Beverly Sills debuted at the Metropolitan Opera

    1977:The Jerusalem Post reported that in Washington Egyptian President Anwar Sadat announced that a "normalization" of relations with Israel would be possible only after the signing of a peace agreement at the reconvened Geneva Peace Conference and the establishment of a Palestinian state. A Soviet diplomat called unexpectedly at the Israeli Embassy in Washington to deliver a note from his leader, Leonid Brezhnev.

    1977:The Jerusalem Post reported that Taiwan was reported to have purchased Israeli missiles.

    1977:The Jerusalem Post reported that Senior Israeli pilots expressed criticism of the current safety measures at Ben-Gurion Airport and warned that unless these were taken care of, an eventual disaster was inevitable.

    1990: Michael Milken pleaded innocent to security law violations.

    1994(26th of Nisan, 5754):Yishai Gadassi, age 32, of Kvutzat Yavne, was shot and killed at a hitchhiking post at the Ashdod junction by a member of HAMAS. The terrorist was killed by bystanders at the scene. 1994(26th of Nisan, 5754):Based on information it attributed to Israel Radio, The Associated Press in Jerusalem, reported that Palestinian shot and wounded at least two Israelis at a bus stop in the southern Israel port of Ashod early today before he was shot dead by a bystander.

    1994(26th of Nisan, 5754):Author Golo Mann, son of Thomas Mann, passed away.  Golo was technically Jewish since his mother was Jewish.

    1994:  For the first time theVatican acknowledged Holocaust i.e. the Nazi's killing of Jews.

    1998: Under the leadership of Sandy Weill, Citicorp and Travelers Group announce plans to merge creating the largest financial-services conglomerate in the world, Citigroup.

    2002: During Operation Defensive Shield, the Vatican “warned Israel to respect religious sites in line with its international obligations ignoring the fact that the Church of Nativity was at risk only because Palestinian terrorist had seized control of the venerable shrine.

    2002: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including ''Gershom Scholem: A Life in Letters.''

    2002: In a column entitled “A Jewish Avenger, A Timely Legend,” Alisa Solomon reviews the upcoming revival English language production of H. Leivick's Yiddish classic, ''The Golem,''

    2002: MEMRI (The Middle East Media Research Institute) Special Dispatch  363 quotes Al-Azhar Mosque’s Sheikh Muhammad Sayed Tantawi as announcing “every martyrdom operation against any Israeli, including children, women, and teenagers are legitimate acts according to religious law, and Islamic commandment until the people of Palestine regain their land and cause the cruel Israeli aggression to retreat.”

    2005:The Prince of Wales attended a memorial service for the Hon Dame Miriam Louisa Rothschild held today at the Liberal Jewish Synagogue in London. Rabbi Alexandra Wright, officiated, assisted by Rabbi Baroness Julia Neuberger. Rabbi Mark Solomon sang and Ms Andrea Hess, cello, played during the service. Attendees included Sir Evelyn de Rothschild, the Hon Emma Rothschild, Professor Sir John Gurdon and Lord Lester of Herne Hill, QC.

    2006: David Bromberg appears at the Library of Congress to speak on the historic significance of that ever-under-appreciated musical instrument, the American-made violin. The sixty year-old musical legend owns nearly 250, some dating back more than 100 years. It is the largest such collection, and they are displayed in cabinets from one end of his living room to the other.

    2007: The UJA-Federation of New York’s Music for Youth initiative holds a fund raising concert at New York’s Carnegie Hall.

    2007: The three day festival known as Boombamela comes to an end.The festival is described by its organizers as "a place for meeting, experiencing, crossing borders and transcending social limitations through music, creation, and connection with nature." It is held on the sandy beach of Hof Nitzanim, between Ashdod and Ashkelon.

    2008: RSA Conference opens in San Francisco.  RSA was developed by Ronald Rivest (R), Adi Shamir (S) and Leonard Adelman (A) in 1977.



    2008:David Grossman's latest novel, Isha Borahat Mibesora (English title: "Until the end of the land") is released by Hasifria Hahadasha, Kibbutz Hameuchad and Siman Kriah books. Last night, advance sales of the book started on the Hasifria Hahadasha Web site, which is offering the first 500 copies of the book autographed by Grossman. The first edition of the book will have a print run of 20,000 copies.

    2008: The Years of Extermination: Nazi Germany and the Jews, 1939-1945 by Saul Friedlander won the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction.“In his second volume of a history of the Holocaust, Mr. Friedländer, 75, interwove segments from contemporary journals and letters into the more general description of the atrocities. “Usually the history of the Holocaust is written from the viewpoint of German documents and archives,” said Mr. Friedländer, who was born in Prague, escaped to France in 1939 and emigrated to Israel in 1948. He teaches history at the University of California, Los Angeles.”

    2009:The Zionist Organization of America renewed its call today for a boycott of Coca-Cola products during Pesach on behalf of an Egyptian Jewish family that is suing the company over a property dispute. “Members of the Bigio family, now living in the US, are demanding compensation from the soft-drink giant, based in Atlanta, for bottling plants they say were expropriated by the Egyptian government in 1965 and illegitimately bought by the Coca-Cola Company in 1994.  

    2009:Today, two days before Passover, a University of Haifa archaeologist has unearthed foot-shaped structures he believes were constructed by the Israelites at the time of the Exodus from Egypt and move into the Promised Land.  The large structures were found in the Jordan Valley by Prof. Adam Zertal, who describes them as "the first structures the Israelites built on entering Canaan, and [which] testify to the biblical idea of ownership of the land." Zertal's excavating team exposed five such complexes, all of which he has dated to the beginning of the Bronze Age (1200-1300 BCE), and which he collectively identifies with the biblical Gilgal, the site the Israelites reached after crossing the Jordan River. As described in the Book of Joshua, the Israelites were ordered to take 12 stones from the river, one for each tribe, to commemorate the event for posterity. Most modern archaeologists believe do not see the biblical accounts of the Exodus from Egypt and conquest of Canaan as historically reliable, but Zertal is one of the few in Israel who believe they have found archaeological evidence directly corroborating these events. Zertal has previously referred to archaeologists doubtful of the Bible's historical veracity as "Bible deniers." The archaeologist's best-known discovery until now has been on Mount Ebal near Nablus, which he identified as the location of the first great stone altar the Israelites dedicated to God. He also believes he has found potsherds characteristic of those believed to be left by the ancient Israelites. Still, no evidence has been found definitively linking the site to the biblical Gilgal. Zertal said the foot carried significance for ancient peoples in the region as a symbol of ownership over territory and superiority over their enemies. He believes the "foot" complexes he has discovered served as meeting places for Israelite communities after entering Canaan. Zertal said even after Jerusalem became the center of worship, and the Israelites were commanded to make pilgrimages there, the "foot" concept had not vanished, as evidenced in the Hebrew term for pilgrimage, "aliyah laregel" - literally, "ascending on foot.

    2009: “Picturing the Shoah,” a film festival sponsored by YIVO that explores  how movies have represented the Holocaust from radical, provocative, and unexpected angles continues with exhibitions of “Black Book” and “Sobibor, Oct. 14, 1943.

    2009:Israel carried out a test launch of its Arrow II interceptor missile today. The Defense Ministry said the system is designed to defend against possible ballistic missile attacks by Iran and Syria.


    2010: Savyon Liebrecht, who was born in Munich to Holocaust survivors and is the author of The Women My Father Knewis scheduled to discuss growing up in a home of survivors, the psychological and social phenomena of the "second generation," and how these subjects manifest themselves in her stories and play at Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York.


    2010:The Tel Aviv municipality unveiled the city's new large-scale public bomb shelter today, built under the new Habima Theater.


    2011: The Miracle Worker is scheduled to have its final performance today in Talpiot, Jerusalem, in the Way Off Theater.

    2011:Yeshiva University Museum, American Jewish Historical Society, Center for Jewish History and Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum  are scheduled to present a panel discussion entitled: "Give us Your Tired, Your Poor, Your Huddled Masses....or Not: A New Model for Civic Dialogue Within and Beyond the Gallery Walls.

    2011:In Rockville, MD, Magen David Sephardic Congregation is scheduled to present a lecture by David W. Jourdan, President & Founder of Nauticos entitled “Never Forgotten: The Search for Israel’s Lost Submarine Dakar.

    2011:Philo Bregstein is scheduled deliver a lecture at London’s Wiener Library in which he re-evaluates Ashes in the Wind: The Destruction of Dutch Jewry” by Jacob Presser. When it was first published in 1965, the book triggered a fierce debate on the Holocaust in the Netherlands.”

    2011:A number of terrorist cells are operating in the Sinai Peninsula with the goal of kidnapping Israeli nationals, security officials warned today ahead of the upcoming Pesach holiday.


    2011: Two people were wounded today after an anti-tank missile exploded into a bus traveling in one of the communities surrounding the Gaza Strip.  Following the attack, 16 additional mortar shells were fired at Israeli towns in the western Negev, most of them hitting open areas. Following the attack on the bus, in which a 16-year-old boy was seriously wounded and the bus driver was hurt moderately, a barrage of 15 rockets and mortars were fired at southern Israel.

    2011:Today, the Iron Dome missile defense system successfully intercepted for the first time a Grad rocket that was fired at the Israeli city of Ashkelon from the Gaza Strip. Iron Dome's success y marks the first time in history a short-range rocket was ever intercepted.

    2011:  Today, Les editions CNRS will publish the philosopher and translator Nicolas Cavaillès’s “Cioran in Spite of HImself: Writing Against Oneself.” It appears one day before the 100thanniversary of the birth of Emil Cioran

    2011:The local government of the Balearic Islands in Spain will, for the first time, officially acknowledge the suffering of a local community, whose ancestors were Jewish, at a ceremony in Palma de Majorca today. Balearic Island President, Francesc Antich Oliver, will attend the commemorative event held on the 320th anniversary of the killing of 33 locals who belonged to the Cheuta minority, and were executed by the Spanish Inquisition for secretly practicing Judaism in 1691. The Cheuta (also spelled Xeuta), is a community of about 20,000 people living on the Mediterranean islands whose ancestors were forcibly converted from Judaism to Christianity in the 15th century.

    2012(15thof Nisan, 5772): First Day of Pesach

    2012(15thof Nisan, 5772): Ninety-three year old television broadcast journalist Mike Wallace passed away today. (Tim Weiner)

    2012(15thof Nisan): According to Chabad Lubavitch, “on the 15th of Nissan of the year 2447 from creation (1314 BCE) -- exactly one year before the Exodus -- Moses was shepherding the flocks of his father-in-law, Jethro, at the foot of Mount Sinai, when G-d appeared to him in a "thornbush that burned with fire, but was not consumed" and instructed him to return to Egypt, come before Pharaoh, and demand in the name of G-d: "Let My people go, so that they may serve Me." For seven days and seven nights Moses argued with G-d, pleading that he is the wrong person for the job, before accepting the mission to redeem the people of Israel and bring them to Sinai.

    2013(27thof Nisan, 5773): Seventy-three year old “American comedy writer and screenwriter” and “lifelong friend of Woody Allen” Mickey Rose passed away today.

    2013(27thof Nisan, 5773): Seventy-four year old “Peter Workman, the founder of Workman Publishing, whose knack for landing best-selling trade books like “What to Expect When You’re Expecting,” and “The Silver Palate Cookbook” built his company into one of the few remaining independent book publishers in the country” passed away today.

    2013: The New York Times features reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including Fear Itself by Ira Katzneson and FDR and the Jews by Richard Breitman and Allan J. Lichtman

    2013: The Arab-Israeli ensemble of the IPO is scheduled to perform in Los Angeles.

    2013: The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research is scheduled to present a screening of “Chronicle of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising According to Marek Edelman.”

    2013: Start of “National Days of Remembrance” sponsored by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.”

    2013: Hamas terrorists, who declare openly their wish to commit genocide against the Jewish people, marked Holocaust Remembrance Day their way today – with a salvo of rockets fired at Jewish civilians. Three rockets were fired, the action timed to coincide with the official Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremony taking place in Jerusalem at the same time. (As reported by Gil Ronen)

    2013: Anti-Israel hackers failed in their declared plan to wipe the Jewish state from the internet on Yom HaShoah.

    2013: Second season of “House of Lies” co-starring Ben Schwartz came to an end.

    2014: The Tulane University Jewish Studies Department under the chairmanship of Dr. Brian J. Horowitz is scheduled to host “Nazi Film- Melodrama” a lecture by Visiting Professor Laura Heins author of Nazi Film Melodrama.

    2014: In Cannes, the MIPTV event that will include a “Focus On Israel” series “that will include lectures and screenings featuring the hottest content out of the Holy Land” is scheduled to open today.

    2014: The anti-Semitic “hacker group known as Anonymous” is scheduled to launch OpIsrael, its second annual attack on the cyber infrastructure of Israel.

    2014: Jael Silliman author of The Man With Many Hats and a former Professor at the University of Iowa is scheduled to deliver a talk that “will present a rich visual tour of the Calcutta Jewish community

    2014: In Cedar Rapids, Iowa, the Thaler Holocaust Memorial Fund chaired by Dr. Bob Silber is scheduled to co-host “A Service of Remembrance for the Victims of the Holocuast” featuring Holocaust Survivor Cesare Frustaci.

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    April 8

    73(15th of Nisan, 3833): The Great Revolt came to an end today when the defenders of Masada completed their murder/suicide pact

    217: Assassination of Roman Emperor Caracalla.  Some Romans may Caracalla who was officially known as Antonius, as a disgrace to his office.  Caracalla extended the right of citizenship to all of those living in the empire as a way of raising additional taxes.  Under the “law of unintended consequences” this improved the status of the Jews.  While Caracalla showed no special affection for his Jewish subjects, he did not single them out for any special disabilities or punishments except for one matter of taxation. This was an improvement over life under some of his predecessors and many of his successors. When it came to taxes, Caracalla took as much as he could.  Since the time of Julius Caesar, the Jews of Palestine had been exempt from paying certain taxes during the Sabbatical Year.  The taxes were paid in produce which was used to feed the army.  Caracalla put an end to the exemption. Caracalla was fighting the Parthians in 216 which was a Sabbatical Year.  Rabbi Janni, a contemporary of Judah haNasi, ruled that it was permissible for the Jews of Palestine to grow crops during the Sabbatical Year so that they could pay these taxes.  He made it clear that this was a special exemption and in no way was intended as an abrogation of the Sabbatical Year.

    426: Emperors Theodosius II and Valentinian III decree that Jewish parents and grandparents cannot disinherit any children and grandchildren who convert to Christianity.  This was designed to enhance the spread of Christianity since under the decree those who converted to other religions could be disinherited.

    1094(19th of Nisan): Mathematician and astronomer Rabbi Isaac ben Baruch Albalia, author of “Kuppat ha-Rochlin, passed away.

    1139:  Roger II of Sicily is excommunicated. Roger may have had his problems with Innocent II, but for a monarch of his time, the Jews benefited from his rule.  Roger allowed the Jews to be tried under their own legal system; the same privilege that he had extended to his Greek and Saracen subjects.  One of his close advisors was known to be sympathetic to the Jews going so far as to visit their synagogues and to donate money for the support of the community.  Finally, Roger brought a significant contingent of Greek Jews to Palermo, the capital of Sicily, who were supposed to tend silk-worms in an attempt to develop the silk trade.

    1484: Local farmers of Arles, France, led by the town's monks attacked the Jewish section of the town. A number of people were killed and 50 men were forced to accept Christianity.

    1559: “Dominican monks distributed inflammatory pamphlets in Cremona, Italy, urging the populace to kill the Jews.” (As reported by Abraham P. Bloch)

    1730: In New York, the (first) Mill Street Synagogue which is known as Shearith Israel was consecrated. It was the first structure designed and built to be a synagogue in continental North America. During the time the congregation was at Mill Street, the Sephardic leadership worried it might become Ashkenazic. The compromise within the Jewish community was they agreed the president of the congregation would be Ashkenazi, while the services would remain under the traditional Spanish and Portuguese rite, under the guise of a Sephardic chazzan. It is now known as the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue.  One of its most famous leaders was Gershom Menes Seixas, a patriot during the Revolution, who had to leave when the British took the city.  A 1744 visitor noted that congregation's women "of whom some were very pretty, stood up in the gallery like a hen coop."

    1773(15thof Nisan, 5633): Pesach

    1773: Raphael Hayyim Isaac Carregal, the native of Palestine who was reported to be the first ordained Rabbi to visit the colonies that would become the United States was described by Ezra Stiles as wearing "a high Fur Cap, exactly like a Woman’s Muff, and about 9 or 10 Inches high, the Aperture atop was closed with green cloth" at Passover services today.

    1801:  Soldiers rioted and killed 128 Jews in Bucharest.

    1817(22nd of Nisan, 5577): 8th day of Pesach

    1819: A traveler who stopped in Joannina (Yanina), Greece acknowledged the following:
    "In going out of the village this morning, soon after the sun rose, we passed a Turk, richly dressed, sitting upon a carpet, under a fig tree just budding…I know of no European habit of life so picturesque, as the Eastern one. Greek, Turk, and Hebrew enjoy nearly an equal protection."

    1845(1stof Nisan, 5605): Rosh Chodesh

    1845(1stof Nisan, 5605): Solomon Rosenthal, the younger son of Naftali Rosenthal -one of the most important leader of Hungarian Jewry- who was “active in Haskalah and Jewish culture life” passed away today in Pest.  

    1847: Birthdate of Karl Wittegenstein, the Austrian steel tycoon who was often compared to his friend Andrew Carnegie.  Like so many 18thEuropean Jews, Wittegenstein converted.  For him Vienna was apparently well worth a Mass.

    1851: Abraham Abrahamsohn arrived in San Francisco.  A baker by trade, Abrahamsohn had left his wife and children in Pomerania (Germany) to seek his fortune in America.  On his first day in San Francisco he “set up a canvas-roofed store” on the Long Wharf” where he made $85 in one day.  After several exciting years, Abrahamson returned to Germany where he published Interesting Accounts of the Travels of Abraham Abrahamsohn to America and Especially to the Gold Mines of California and Australia in 1856.

    1863: Birthdate of Jules Huret who authored Sarah Bernhardt, a biography of the famous Jewish performer

    1869: Jacob Bibo, an orphan who was the brother of Isaac R. Bibo and who had been working for a pawnbroker in the Bowery after leaving the Hebrew Orphan Asylum “went out on the Bowery to meet some other boys of his own aged” tonight “and has never been seen or heard of by any of his friends or relatives since”
    1873:Sir Julius Vogel begins serving his first term as Prime Minister of New Zealand.  Vogel was the first practicing Jew to hold this position.

    1876(14thof Nissan, 5636): “Passover: The Jewish Feast of Unleavened Bread” published today stated that “this evening will be marked by the peculiar ceremonies incident to the Jewish festival of "Pesach" or Passover. This festival, which is also known as the "feast of unleavened bread," continues for eight days, and, with the exception of the New-Year feast and the Day of Atonement, is more generally observed than any of the very numerous festal days in the Hebraic calendar.”

    1879(15thof Nisan, 5639): Pesach
    1879(15th of Nisan, 5639): In New York, Rabbi Frederick De Sola Mendes delivered the sermon at Shaarai Tefilla, Rabbi Henry S. Jacobs delivered the sermon at B’nai Jeshurun and Rabbi H.P. Mendes delivered the sermon at Shearith Israel.
    1884: The Turkish government is a proclamation today “forbidding the immigration of Jews of any nationality, except for pilgrims who were restricted to a stay of thirty days.”

    1887(14th of Nisan, 5647): Rabbi Gustav Gottheill led the well-attended Passover eve services at Temple Emanu-El in New York City.

    1887(14th of Nisan, 5647): An article published today entitled “The Feast of the Passover” states that “the celebration of Pesach, or the Passover, will begin at sunset this evening.  The feature of the celebration is the substitution of the matzoth or unleavened cakes for bread…”

    1890: Among the victims of a riot by 8,000 unemployed workers in Vienna were the several shops owned by Jews which were plundered by the mob.

    1891: In Australia, Sir John Monash, who would lead the Aussies during World War I, married Hannah Victoria Moss. Their only child, Bertha, would be born 2 years later in 1893.  
    1891: John Duncan is the architect for the Hebrew Sheltering Guardian Society’s building now being built by Lynd Brothers. The new building will be 66 feet wide and 125 feet and will enable the society to double its capacity from 400 t0 800 orphans.  The $90,000 cost will be covered by raised by board members and prominent supports including Philip J. Joachimsen, the founder of the society and Moses Lauterbach, Chairman of the Advisory Board.

    1892: In the “Persecuted Jew” published today, a writer using the nom de plume “American Girl” expresses her belief that we can do more for the Jews whom she describes as persecuted outcast than answer “their call for bread” and calls upon the press to help right the wrongs done against these people.

    1892: During today’s lecture on Jerusalem and the Holy land, John L. Stoddard displayed a large, rare photographic collection that included views of Jaffa and Jerusalem not seen by most Americans.

    1893(22nd of Nisan, 5653): 8th day of Pesach

    1893: Karl Luger, a deputy in the Austrian parliament addressed an anti-Semitic rally in Vienna tonight “at which the Jews were violently denounced.”

    1895: Birthdate of Barney Gorodetsky who gained fame as comedian Bert Gordon known as “the Mad Russian.”

    1895: “A package of clothing addressed to the United Hebrew Charities” was sold for $23 at today unclaimed parcels auction held by the American Express.  It was the highest price paid for any of the unclaimed items.
    1895 (14th of Nisan, 5655): “The Feast of the Passover” published today describes the current status of the observance of Pesach.  “The celebration of Pesach…will be begun by the Jewish people throughout the world this evening…Those of the Jewish community who still cling to the orthodox observances of the Hebraic ritual continue the celebration of the festival for eight day, the first two and last two days of that period being observed as strict holy days.  Those who have accepted the modern or reform ritual celebrate only the first and the last day of the festival.”
    1896: Lewis May, President of Temple Emanu El has sent “a communication” the Union Veteran Hebrew Association offering the use of the city’s synagogues for memorial services.  Among those planning for the Memorial Day celebration are Isaac Eckstein, Isaac J. Siskin and Otto Lassner.

    1896: A committee of the New York State Board of Charities that has been investigating the Ladies’ Deborah Nursery and Child Protectory submitted its report this afternoon.

    1896: “Jews In Our Wars” published today provided a detailed review of The American Jew As A Patriot, Soldier and Citizen, a book written to counter the claims of anti-Semites had shirked their role as soldiers in the United States.
    1896: “Scenes in the Orient” published today provides a review of A Cruise Under the Crescent a travel book that includes descriptions of visits to Jerusalem, by Charles Warren Stoddard in which the author “tells of that vexation all travelers feel as the authenticity of the shrines in Palestine”
    1897(6th of Nisan, 5657): Hungarian rabbi and Talmudic scholar Samuel Low Brill passed away.
    1897: Karl Lueger, the anti-Semitic politician, began his services as Mayor of Vienna. Historians do not agree as to the depth of Lueger’s anti-Semitism.  Some, including Amos Elon contend it was more of a political ruse designed to garner votes and power. 

    1897: In an article describing the Jewish observance of the Blessing of the New Sun, the New York Times reports that synagogue records “show that the new sun service has been conducted by orthodox Hebrews in this country at intervals of twenty-eight years for 180 years.”

    1898:  Birthdate of E Y "Yip" Harburg.  Born Isidore Hochberg, to Orthodox Jewish parents on New York's lower east side, Harburg appears to have enjoyed a reasonably happy childhood with his parents exposing to him art, literature and the Yiddish theatre.  After trying his hand at everything from journalism to selling appliances, Hochberg began a successful career as a lyricist during the depths of the Great Depression.  His first financial and artistic angel was Ira Gershwin.  Harburg wrote the words to the Depression hit "Brother Can You Spare A Dime."  While you may not know his name, anybody who has seen the Wizard of Oz, has heard several Harburg hits.  Harburg's career disintegrated during the Red Scare of the 1950's.  He died in an automobile accident in 1961.

    1899: “The Young Folks’ League of the Hebrew Infant Asylum” is scheduled to “give its fourth annual amateur performance” this “evening at the Lexington Opera House.”

    1899: The approximately 10,000 members of various trade unions who were taking part in the Socialist and Organized Labor Day Parade paused at Greene Street and Washington Place, and stood in front of the ruins of the Asch Building where 145 people many of them young Jews lost their lives in the recent Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire.

    1899: A review published today of The Bible and Its Transmission by Dr. W.A. Coplinger which is an historical and bibliographical view of the Hebrew and Greek texts, notes that it contains illustrations from the first printed portion of the Hebrew Bible which was completed in 1447 in Bologna

    1899: Benjamin Weinstein and official of the Hebrew Trades Union was among the speakers who addressed those participating in the Socialist Labor Day Parade.

    1900: Birthdate of Gavriel Mullokandov, the native of Samarkand who was regarded by some “as the greatest Bukharian Jewish singer and musician.”

    1904(23rdof Nisan, 5664): In Frankfort-on-Main, author Chaim M. Horowitz passed away.

    1908: Harvard University votes to establish the Harvard Business School. Among its Jewish graduates are Donna Dubinksy, Gabi Ashkenazi, Len Blavatnik, Michael Bloomberg, Stephen Allen Schwarzman and Robert Kraft.

    1908: The Passover Relief Association of Harlem distributed 2,000 pounds of Matzah, 300 pounds of coffee and other items necessary to celebrate the upcoming holiday of Passover to the needy east side Jews today.

    1910: Large Jewish owned mercantile houses in Salonika announce 1% of all cash takings will go toward the cost of new Turkish warships.

    1911: In the Bronx, Morris Kaplan a candy store owner who worked as a textile cutter and his wife gave birth to Judge Benjamin Kaplan, “who as an Army officer helped craft the indictment of the Nazi war criminals who were tried at Nuremberg, and who later became a Harvard law professor and served nine years on the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.” (As reported by Bruce Weber)

    1915(24thof Nisan, 5675): Sixty-five year old New York William Gans who had been a partner with fellow attorney Samuel B. Hamburger for 35 years and who was active in numerous Jewish charities and fraternal organizations including the Maimonides Library of which he was President, passed away today.

    1917: Sir Mark Sykes wrote to the British Foreign Secretary, Lord Balfour, “That the French were hostile to the notion of bringing the United States into Palestine as a patron of Zionism.”

    1917: Chaim Weizmann cabled Louis Brandeis, advising that "an expression of opinion coming from yourself and perhaps other gentlemen connected with the Government in favor of a Jewish Palestine under a British protectorate would greatly strengthen our hands."

    1918: During World War I, Charlie Chaplin led a group of Hollywood starts in selling war bonds on the streets of New York City’s financial district.

    1923(22nd of Nisan, 5683): 8th day of Pesach

    1926: Birthdate of Sheldon Greenfield, the Chicago native who gained fame as comedian Shecky Greene

    1929: In Tel Aviv, Sir John Chancellor, the High Commissioner to Palestine, presided over the opening of the fourth Palestine and Near East exhibition.

    1930: Mickey Cohen fought his first professional bout in Cleveland, Ohio

    1930: During a visit to Palestine where he is gathering material for a novel based on Jacob and Joseph, Nobel Prize winning author Thomas Mann compared Zionism “in its ideals and purposes to the Romantic movement among the Germans in the 19thcentury.”  Mann was especially impressed by the Jews of Tel Aviv who seemed “freer and happier” than Jews living elsewhere.  “He believes that Tel Aviv has a bright future because of the wide-awakeness and intellectuality of its people.”

    1931: Publication of “When Judge Cardozo Writes” by Felix Frankfurter, a case of one future Jewish Supreme Court Justice writing about another future Jewish Supreme Court Justice.

    1933: Ludwig Kaas met Vice Chancellor Von Papen who was on his to offer a Reichskonkordat to the Vatican met on the train to Rome

    1935: Birthdate of Broadway lyricist Fred Ebb.  Along with John Kinder he created numerous musicals including Chicago and Cabaret.

    1935: Congressional legislation created the Works Progress Administration, which developed millions of jobs for the unemployed. WPA agencies placed 8.5 million Americans on the federal payroll, including hundreds of Yiddish actors, writers, scene designers and theater directors hired for the administration’s Federal Theatre Project. Among those directly employed by the WPA was economist Solomon Adler.
    1936(16th of Nisan, 5696): 2nd day of Pesach; 1st day of the Omer

    1936(16th of Nisan, 5696):Robert Bárány, who won the Noble Prize for Medicine in 1914, passed away.

    1937:  Birthdate of Seymour Hersh.  A graduate of the University of Chicago, Hersh is a Pulitzer Award winning reporter for the New York Times.

    1937: The Palestine Post reported from London that there was some concern among members of the House of Commons over rumors of the possibility that the Royal (Peel) Commission on Palestine might propose partition. Col. J.C. Wedgwood, MP, declared that the proposed partition of Palestine into a Jewish and an Arab state meant "the scuttling of British responsibilities under the Mandate."

    1939: Birthdate of Trina Schart Hyman, artist and book illustrator

    1940:  Soviet troops began the massacre of what would finally total 26,000 Polish officers in Katyn Forest near Smolensk, Russia. Many Jews were among the victims.

    1941: According to some sources the Nazis established Kielce (Poland) ghetto today. Others report that the ghetto was actually established on March 31, 1941.  Regardless, there is no conflict that the ghetto was liquidated in August, 1942 when 21,000 Jews were sent to Treblinka.  A remnant was shipped to Auschwitz in August of 1944.   Kielce's real claim to fame is that on July 4, 1946, the returning Jews were subjected to "an old-fashioned Nazi Pogrom" complete with tales of the blood libel.

    1942: The Crimean Peninsula was declared Juednfrei or Jew Free.  When the Nazis and their allies took the Crimea (part of the Soviet Union) in October of 1941, the Jewish population numbered between fifty and sixty thousand.  The Einsatzgruppen Units (special squads assigned to murder Jews) with the help of the local population took part in what was to date, the worst "ethnic cleansing" of the war.

    1942:Nora Kaye's performance as Hagar in the world premiere of "Pillar of Fire" at the Ballet Theatre established her as one of the world's prima ballerinas.

    1943(3rd of Nisan, 5703):Itamar Ben-Avi the son of Eliezer Ben-Yehuda, who revived Hebrew as a modern language, passed away while working as journalist in New York City. (For more see Itamar Ben-Avi by Frederick P. Miller)

    1943(3rd of Nisan, 5703): The Nazis began executing Jews near Ternopol in the Ukraine.  By the time they finish on the following day, one thousand Jews will have been murdered. One thousand Jews are executed near Ternopol, Ukraine.
    1944(15th of Nisan, 5704): Pesach

    1944: The Jewish Agency telegraphed from Istanbul to Jerusalem that the steamship Maritza carrying 244 Jewish refugees from Romania had arrived that day in the Turkish port and that the passenger would be leaving in two days’ time by train for Palestine.

    1945: Hans von Dohnányi, who would be recognized as one of the Righteous Among the Nations, was executed today at Sachsenhausen concentration camp for his role in resistance to Hitler.  This included smuggling Jews out of Germany, seeing to it that their funds were transferred to where they could access them and for his role in the plot to kill Hitler.

    1946: Golda Meir, a leader of the Jewish Agency received the following telegram.  “We are 1100 Jewish refugees.  We sailed from Spezia for Palestine-our last hope.  Police arrested us on board.   We won’t leave the ship!  We demand permission to continue to Eretz-Israel  Be warned:  we will sink with the ship if we are not allowed to continue to Palestine, because we cannot be more desperate.”

    1946: Margaret and Hans Rey (the creator of Curious George) became United States Citizens. [Louise Borden has written a cute, fascinating tale about the Rey’s entitled “The Journey That Saved Curious George”.

    1947:  Henry Ford, the creator of the Model-T passed away.  Ford may have had his moments as an industrialist, but he proved to be a notorious anti-Semite.  Among other things, he published and disseminated untold numbers of copies of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.  Ford actually believed this notorious fabrication.  His later apology was treated with various degrees of belief and disbelief.  For several decades, there were many Jews who would not by a Ford product.  

    1950: In Tel Aviv, Australian Jack Harper won the singles title of Israel’s International Open Tennis Tournament.

    1950: As the condition of the Jews in Iraq worsened, today, "the Zionist organization in Iraq call on all Iraqi Jews who wished to do so to register for emigration"  to Israel. The plight of the Jews of this ancient community had become so desperate that within three weeks "47,000 Jews" would present "themselves at registration centers in the main synagogues.  They did so despite the fact that they had to sign a declaration renouncing their Iraqi citizenship forever and effectively surrendering most of their property and goods.

    1952: The Jerusalem Post reported from The Hague that reparations talks were suspended after Germany found only a $750m.justification for the joint Jewish-Israeli claim for $1,000m. Later Germany expressed surprise at the Israeli claim that the talks were suspended. The Israeli delegation reported that it had found the German statement completely unsatisfactory and that it would report fully to the Israeli government for consideration, review and decisio