In the Beginning: 1855

Each week The American Israelite will print an item from the first years.

Noah’s Ark. — Mount Ararat is 6000 feet higher than Etna, and 1528 feet higher than Mont Blanc; the latter the point of greatest elevation in Europe. It is detached from the other mountains of Armenia, and is divided into two conical peaks. Sir Robert Porter paints in glowing colors the magnificence of the spectacle when he first came in sight of Ararat majestically rising from a widely-extended green plain, fertilized by the clear waters of the Arts (the ancient Araxes) and covered with Armenian villages. In various points of view the summit has a striking resemblance to a ship, a fact which has been recorded by all travelers to the spot; the whole country around is full of traditionary stories relative to Noahs’ ark and the flood. I tis a common belief among Armenians and Persians that the remains of the ark still exist on this summit. 

Editor’s note: The mountain discussed here is located in modern Turkey. The Ararat anomaly, described here, is an outcropping in the snowfields at the top of the peak which has been thought to be remains of Noah’s ark. No such remains have been found, however, and the location and existence of the biblical mountain is a much debated topic among archaeologists and scholars. 

April 13, 1855


Local and Domestic

Rev. Mr. S. Weil, of Pittsburg, has been elected minister to the congregation at Columbus, Ohio. 


The Israelites of Charleston, W. Va., celebrate the first public worship this evening. They organized under the Minhag America. 


Among the councilmen elected in Cincinnati, three belong to our congregation, viz; Daniel Wolf, Gabriel Netter, and M. Baur; and all three of them are Republicans, so they can not accuse us of having voted for them. Still we think they will do well in that body, and we will be happy to give spiritual counsel to city councilmen. 


The congregation of Evansville has changed its offer of salary to a minster from $1,000 to $2,000, which ought to induce the proper men to apply. The Evansville congregation has always been peaceable and progressive, animist likely has not changed now. We can only encourage candidates to apply. 


Election four county and city officers was held in this city last Monday; as usual, quite a number of co-religionists have been elected. The only Israelite who will represent this county at the Ohio Constitutional Convention is Mr. Julius Freiberg , who was nominated by both parties. Several other of our Jewish citizens were nominated as delegates to the convention, but would not accept the nominations. 

April 11, 1873



According to a dispatch received from Victoria, B.C., on April 6, Andree, the explorer, is still in the land of the living and has been heard from. 


MIss Bella Kingsbaker of Quincy, Ills., has returned home after a delightful visit of five months’ duration, to friends at Los Angeles, Cal.


The children of the Benai Israel Sabbath-school of Little Rock, Arkansas, through their rabbi, Rev. Harry Hubert Mayer, have sent us five dollars for the plague stricken B’nai Israel of Bombay. On behalf of the far away beneficiaries we thank these generous young people. 


The Topeka, Kansas Ministerial Union has adopted very strong resolutions against extravagant extravagant expenditures at funerals and as a means to that end condemn Sunday burials as tending to make “an event of the greatest solemnity degenerate into an occasion for pomp and show.” 


In these days of rapid transit the tardiness of the Australian mails is a little surprising. On April 10 we received two copies of a Melbourne paper which had receiving stamps dated respectively Feb. 28 and March 9, sixteen days apart. Our friends on the other side of the world should stir their postal authorities up a little. 

— April 14, 1898



Sir Edward Stern, in presiding a meeting at Jews’ College in London, said that “it is a terrible ordeal to face a Jewish audience. They are all so clever.” If it were always the useful kind of cleverness, all would be well. Unfortunately it very often is quite the reverse, when it leads only to carping criticism. 


Rabbi Jacob S. Minkin of Rochester, New York, author of that excellent series of articles, “What’s Wrong With the Rabbinate?” Is now syndicating a weekly article interpreting Jewish news of the world, to over twenty metropolitan papers. It is an interesting piece of work, handled in an intelligent manner, and shows that the Jews are not such strange creatures as the World’s Work would have us seem. 


There must be a pretty large sum of money in the treasury of the Ku Klux Klan, as the high “muckamucks” are fighting for control of Atlanta.The ostensible subject of this little family quarrel is that the Imperial Wizard, H.W. Evans, wishes to establish a Woman’s SKlan, to which the Imperial Emperor Simmons is opposed. All this, however, is of no great importance to the public, which says: “A plague on both your houses.” 


The reports from Mexico in regard to the condition of the Jewish immigrants settled there and the chances for success of those who many come in the near future, continue to be extremely contradictory. It would seem that a few hundred dollars spent in sending a competent and reliable man to investigate conditions of the Jews already there, and the possibilities for future Jewish immigrants, would be money well spent. It would be an excellent thing if the American Jewish Committee, or the Constitution Grand Lodge of  the B’nai Brith would take this matter in hand.  

— April 12, 1923


Bureau of Jewish Education

The B’nai Brak Discussion of the Exodus by the rabbis mentioned in the Haggadah will have its modern counterpart at the Pre-Seder sponsored by the Bureau of Jewish Education Tuesday, Aril 13th, at 8:30 p.m., in Avondale Synagogue Center. 

Rabbis of the community, under chairmanship of Rabbi Louis Feinberg, will present Midrashic and folklore material of humorous and anecdotal nature concerning Passover. 

In addition, a dramatic presentation, “From the House of Bondage,” will be given under the direction of Charles S. Becker, director of Dramatics of the Bureau of Jewish Education, with the participation of the Bureau Youth Theater and Zionist. Youth Choir and Dance Group. Bernice Lipsich, Robert Bergman, and Fradie Ehrlich assist. 

Jewish Vocational Service


TYPIST: Ediphone or dictaphone experience. Good at simple figuring. Five days plus one Saturday A.M. per month. $130 — $150 month to start. 

RECEPTIONIST: Several openings in doctors’ offices. Can be trained to assist doctor. Some knowledge of typing. 

MACHINISTS: Prefer men able to work on all types of machines, heavy work in machinery rebuilding firm. 

KOSHER COOK: Several openings either in private homes or institutions. May live in if deserted. Salary plus maintenance. 

Cincinnati Social and Personal

Mr. Albert J. Mayer, Jr., is the newly elected president of the United Nations Association. He was chosen at the groups’ annual meeting Thursday evening, April 1st. Mrs. Simon Kuhn was chosen honorary president. 


Dr. Leon Schiff was chosen chairman of the Medicine Section at the recent Ohio State Medical Association convention at the Netherland Plaza.  


Miss Alma Hill and her brother, Mr. Gus Hilb, have returned to the Belvedere after a stay in Miami Beach, Fla.


Mrs. Sidney Deutsch is recuperating at home from her recent illness at the Jewish Hospital. 

— April 8, 1948


Judge Kraft Is Honored By Bar Association 

Judge Robert S. Kraft of Common Pleas Court was honored by the Cincinnati Bar Association at a luncheon in conjunction with the Federal Bar Association and Cincinnati Lawyers Club. 

An award of recognition was presented by Robert R. Lavercombe, president of the Bar Association, in appreciate of Judge Kraft’s efforts in establishing a compulsory arbitration system in Common Pleas Court. 

This system, effective July 1, 1972, has involved 500 attorneys in disposition of smaller claims and also has enabled Common Pleas judges to expedite criminal cases and trial of more complicated civil matters. 

From July 1, 1972 through Dec. 31, 1972, some 128 cases which might have been jury trials were disposed of through the arbitration procedure. 

Bar Mitzvah

Mr. and Mrs. Raymond Solomon announce the Bar Mitzvah of their son, Micah, Saturday, April 14, at 9 a.m. at Adath Israel Synagogue Galbraith and Ridge Roads, Amberley. 

Micah is the rundown of Mrs. Esther Kalchman and the late Rabbi Bernard Kalchman, formally of this city, and the lat Mr. and Mrs. Harry Solomon of New York City. 

Friends and relatives are cordially invited to worship with the family and attend the Kiddush that follows. 


MR. and Mrs. Emil Blumenstein announce the Bar Mitzvah of their son, Carl Lawrence Blumenstein, April 29th, 1973, at Temple Beth Tikvah, Fullerton, Calif. 

April 12, 1973


Greengus discusses time management at Founder’s Day

By Brian L. Meyers

Staff Writer

The study of Torah falls onto Dr. Steven Covey’s time management matrix into the categories of “not urgent” and “important,” according to Dr. Samuel Greengus, who gave the keynote address at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion Founders Day ceremony, on March 25 

Greengus, HUC’s Julian Morgenstren Professor of Bible and Near Eastern literature and professor of Semitic languages, spent nine years in a traditional yeshiva. He praised the College-Institute’s mission to be a mixture of the “ancient and precious tradition of yeshiva” and “the intellectually open tradition of university,” where students “encounter every phase of Jewish life and civilization from before Abraham to your current temple bulletin.” 

Greenberg to discuss Pirke Avot 

Rabbi Sol Greenberg will discuss Pirke Avot (Sayings or Ethics of the Fathers) at Shabbat Services at valley Temple on Firday, April 24, at 7:30 p.m. 

— April 16, 1998


18 marriages happily reconsecrated 

At the annual Marriage Reconsecration service at Wise Temple on March 29, the follow- ing couples celebrated significant anniversaries and reconsecrated their marriage vows. Hosts for the evening were Elissa and Mitchell Habib, Aimee and David Kirzner, and Ann and Michael Margolis. Honorary hosts for the event were Donna and Ken Hyams. 

Rockdale, Valley commemorate Passover at Freedom Center 

The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center welcomed nearly 300 members of Rockdale Temple and Valley Temple on Sunday, March 17 for a joint educational program entitled Let My People Go: The Ultimate Freedom Festival. The program, sponsored by a grant from the Jewish Community Education Council of the Cincinnati Jewish Federation, and in partnership with the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, offered congregants of all ages the opportunity to explore the concepts of the Passover story and the American experience of slavery depicted in the Center through a variety of activities. 

April 11, 2013