In the Beginning: 1855

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

K.K. Benai Israel, Cincinnati, O., is desirous of engaging a lecturer (in the English and German languages) and superintendent of their school. Salary $1000 per annum with a prospect o an increase to $1,500. Candidates being endowed the the following qualifications: 

  1. Good theological learning and a general scientific education. 
  2. Liberal principles, progressive and in just accordance with our age. [No radical reformer.]

Apply by letter to the committee. 

April 20, 1855



It is maintained in England that Napoleon’s property, all in all, amounts to 120,000 pounds sterling. 


The Pasha of Jerusalem has ordered the construction of a caravansary at Bab-el-wada, half way between Jerusalem and Joppa, for the benefit of pilgrims. 


The Prince of Serbia has promised the committee of the Alliance Israel to repeal all exceptional laws now oppressing the Jews of that country. He promised (!)


Simon Samuel, of London, the brother-in-law of Montefiore and Rothschild, died lately, one hundred years old. He was born  April 3, 1773. His main business was charity. 


Dr. Berliner, with a letter of Prince Bismarck, and two hundred whalers subvention by the German Empire, has arrived in Rome, and has gone to work to examine the Vatical library, so long closed to the world. For literary curiosities, especially of the Hebraic branch. Let us see what the doctor will discover. 


The Bishop of Posen and the German Emperor are quarreling. The Emperor insists that the religious instruction in that province should be given in German, and the bishop wants it in Polish. The teachers are instructed by the government to teach in German, and by the bishop to do so in the euphonious Polish tongue. We would advise them to do it in Hebrew, so that the children understand not what the priest says.  

April 18, 1873


Are you going to Europe this summer? 

Those of our readers who are contemplating a pleasure trip to Europe this summer had better consider the matter very carefully before finally deciding. The Spanish question is liable to be a critical one for several months to come and hostilities are likely to be declared at any moment. While it is probable that neutral ships are not apt to be molested on the high seas, there is always a possibility that they may be searched for material contraband of war and such Americans as are on board subjected to annoyance, if not worse. There is, also, the possibility of a more or less efficient blockade of the home ports to be considered, which may make it hazardous for visitors abroad to return. All in all this will be a good summer for American tours. 

Editor’s Note: The editors of the American Israelite were right to be concert with “the Spanish Question” when this article was written, April 21, 2898. On April 25, 1898, just four days after this issue was printed, the United States declared war on Spain. The Spanish-American war ended with the signing of the Treaty of Paris, on December 10, 1898. 


The net proceeds of the Philadelphia Jewish charity ball were $17,155. 43. 


There are twelve Jews in the State Prison at Trenton, N.J., and Rabbi L. Weiss holds services there and preaches to them once a month. He provided them with matzos on Passover and obtained permission for them to abstain from labor on the first and seventh days, and to assemble for prayer. He also obtained a pardon for one prisoner, who is very ill and is now taking steps to have him sent to his native place in Europe as he can not live very long.    

— April 21, 1898


Miracle or Monkey 

The people of Winchester, a Kentucky college town, form the happiest community in the world; they have nothing more serious to trouble them than the question of the truth or falsity of the Darwinian theory of evolution. They did not even have this care, but were living in a state of supreme beatitude until William Jennings Bryan appeared upon the scene and delivered his famous sand oft-repeated lecture on this subject. Thereupon Professor Ralph G. Demaree, instructor of physics and mathematics at Kentucky Wesleyan College, located at Winchester, made a statement in a chapel address that the “theory of organic evolution as held by modern scientists reconciled absolutely with the Biblical accounts of creation.” For this awful heresy he was cited to appear before the Board of Governors of the College and suspended until they could take action. But Professor Demaree, undismayed, declared he would not retract a word of his address, resigned his position, and expressed his intention to go to California and make his home there in the future. He remarked that the action taken by the College Board cold not have taken place outside the state of Kentucky. However the Board was not so sure of its position and Prof. Demaree was reinstated after he had signed a statement expressing regret for “any damages” his speech had caused, and promising not to discuss the matter publicly so long as he remained on the faculty. 

In the meantime, the citizenry of Winchester is decided into two contending factions, who are eaglets discussing the incident and trying to decide whether to they are descendants from monkeys, or whether their primal ancestor was a regular fellow, created by a miracle. If this vital question has been settled, the decision has not yet reached the outside world. From the newspaper report it would appear that the division of the  Winchesterites between the monkey and anti-monkey parties is about equal. It will be recalled that a resolution to prevent the teaching of the theory of evolution in the public schools of the State was adopted by the State Legislature by a majority of one vote. In the meantime, Mr. Bryan has betaken himself into other fields, littler caring and perhaps not even knowing what terrible strife over this vital question he has stilled u in a hitherto peaceful community. 

— April 19, 1923 


Orthodox Rabbis Appeal for World Trusteeship to Control Palestine

The Union of Orthodox Rabbis of American urged President Truman this week to take immediate action for achieving international trusteeship for Jerusalem and for recruiting a non-Palestinian force to keep the peace in the Holy City. 

The telegram o Mr. Truman was signed by 530 Orthodox rabbis, including Rabbi Eliezer Silver of Cincinnati. 

Dr. Judah L. Magnes, president of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, through the organization Ihud, had proposed a trusteeship for Palestine several days ago. 

The Orthodox rabbi’s message fo Mr. Truman urged him o take immediate action to save Jerusalem. 

Meanwhile United Nations Security Council delegates discussed possibility of sending a UN commission to Palestine to  supervise the proposed Jewish-Arab truce. 

Manischewitz Reports Kosher Wine Demand 

Keeping pace with a Passover demand, the producers of Manischewitz Kosher wine reveal that this year’s production is the greatest in the history of the firm. Manischewitz announced that its Kosher wine again will be a country-wide favorite on the Seder table. 

“This is proof that taste knows no geographical boundaries,” the spokesman said. “People everywhere appreciate the sweeter, heaver, full-bodied quality that has made Manischewitz Kosher Wine America’s largest selling kosher wine.”

This year makes the introduction of Manischewitz Sparkling wine, a champagne kosher wine. 

— April 15, 1948


Bar Mitzvah

Mr. and Mrs. Leonard S. Meranus are proud to announce the forthcoming Bar Mitzvah of their son, James Moss, Saturday, April 21, at 10:45 a.m., at Rockdale Temple, 8501 Ridge Road. James is the grandson of Dr. and Mrs. Harold K. Moss and Mrs. Ada Meranus, of Hollywood, Fla., and the late Col. Norman Meranus. 

Friends and relatives are cordially invited to worship with the family and attend the Kiddush following services. 

No cards. 


Mr. and Mrs. Harold Pockrose announce the forthcoming Bar Mitzvah of their son, Andrew Michale, on Saturday, May 5, at 10:45 a.m., at the Isaac M. Wise Temple, Reading Road at N. Crescent Ave. 

Relatives and friends are cordially invited to worship with the family and to attend the Kiddush following the services. 

Andrew is the grandson of Mrs Pauline Pockrose and the late Mr. Pockrose of Miami, Fla., and Mrs. Jacob Bettman and the late Mr. Bettman of Cincinnati. 


Dr. and Mrs. Arnold Peck announce the forthcoming Bar Mitzvah of their son, Fred Howard, on Saturday, April 28th, at 9 a.m., at Adath Israel Synagogue, Ridge and Galbraith Roads.
Relatives and friends are cordially invited to worship with the family and to attend the Kiddush following the services. 

Fred is the grandson of Dr. and Mrs. Aaron Peck of this city and Mr. Morris Schucalter of Baltimore of the late MRs. Freda Schucalter. He is the great grandson of Mrs. Anna Peck of Miami Beach. 


Rabbi and Mrs. Jacob Lustig are happy to announce the forthcoming Bar Mitzvah of their son David on Saturday, May 5th, at 9 a.m., at Kneseth Israel Synagogue, 1515 Section Road. Relatives and friends are cordially invited to worship with the family and to attend the Kiddush reception following the services. No cards.

David is the grandson of Mr. and Mrs. Abraham Lustig and the late Mrs. Matilda Blau. 

April 19, 1973


Participants have ‘groovy’ time at ‘70s event 

Nostalgia was in the air as the State of Israel Bonds New Leadership Division, in cooperation with the Jewish Social and Sport Network, hosted “Psychedelic 70s” at Ohav Shalom (Love, Peace) Synagogue in March. More than 120 singles and couples had an “out of sight” time “grooving” to the live rock and roll music. 

The 70s extravaganza featured local band, The Generics. Many of their original “groupies” attending, bringing back Gond memories of their high school days (and nights). 

The hundreds of balsam covers which adored the walls, inspired party-goers to reminisce about their favor 70s bands. The ambience was enhanced with black lights, posters, happy faces, peace signs, and the smell of burning incense. Israel’s needs today are very different from her needs in the 1970s. Today, Israel needs new roads and highways, telecommunications, hi-tech industrial infrastructure, expanded air and seaport facilities, and of course, more and more energy. These are some the many new challenges for Israel’s expanding economy. 

By the year 2000, Israel must relieve congestion on main routes and intersections in metropolitan areas and improve roads connecting different regions, especially the Galilee and the Negev. 

An investment in State of Israel Bonds helps Israel developed in new directions to keep up with eh demands of her booming economy. For Israel bonds, the needs have changed, the need has not.

— April 23, 1998


JCC-ECS announces new staff positions 

The Mayerson JCC is pleased to announce that they are expanding the leadership and support team at the JCC Early Childhood School. Effective immediately, school staff will include Sheri Zimmer, as Director of Curriculum and Education, and Rabbi Shena Jaffee, as Director of Jewish Family Life. Rabbi Jaffee will be based in the JCC Early Childhood School, but will also work with Camp at the J, as well as other JCC programs for children and families. Taylor Siemon, who was recently hired as JCC Inclusion and Special Needs Coordinator, will work with all epartments, including the Early Childhood School and Camp at the J. 

Jordan Ottenstein, a JCC pre-school parent said, “We love sending our son to the JCC Early Childhood School, with dedicated teachers who provide a safe, loving environment and who foster his development and Jewish identity.” 

April 18, 2013