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December 12, 1969 - Image 34

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1969-12-12

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Constantine: the Arch Anti-Semite

Constantine was the first Chris-
tian Emperor and was one of
Rome's most colorful rulers. Rom-
an rule in the third and fourth
centuries are described in the bi-
ography "Constantine," by Ram-
say MacMullen, published by Dial
Press as part of the Dial Cross-
currents in World History Series,
and the role of Constantine and his
wife are depicted here in all their
dramatic details.
MacMullen describes Constan-
tine's religious fervor. He points
"His was a predominantly Chris-
tian court, it was slowly but visibly
becoming a Christian empire, and
proof lay in the privileges showered
on the church; hence a law of 329,
restricting rights to join the clergy.
Holy orders had become a refuse
from burdensome taxes and muni-
cipal duties. Before the reign was
over, pagans and Christians alike


Claims New Data
on Michigan History

Editor, The Jewish News:
The first historiographer of the
Michigan and Detroit Jewish com-
munities was David Emil Heine-
man, who told the story of Ezekiel
Solomon, Michigan's first Jewish
settler, and related Heckewelder's
account of Chapman Abraham, be-
lieved to be Detroit's first Jewish
resident. He was the author of
other brief biographical sketches
of early Michigan Jewish settlers,
and recorded the names of Jews
appearing in a number of Detroit
directories published prior to 1850.
However, later students interested
in the history of Detroit's Jewish
community felt that Heineman's
list was incomplete, believing that
more Jews resided in Detroit be-
for 1850, even though their belief
could not be documented.
Contemporary research by the
present writer in the United States
decennial reports does indeed con-
firm the earlier hypothesis; the
"missing gap" has been filled. Not
only do the decennial census rec-
ords list Jewish names, but also
give new dimensions to the study
of Detroit and Michigan Jewish
The census records both Jews
and non-Jews, their families, ages,
places of birth, and occupations.
The census of 1850, for instance,
records the name of the man who
was probably the first Polish-born
Jew who settled in Detroit. A list
of Jewish individuals and families
residing in Detroit on July 15, 1850,
will appear in the January 1970
issue of Michigan Jewish History
published by the Michigan Jewish
Historical Society.
The 1850 and subsequent census
reports contain a mine of informa-
tion concerning Jews and non-Jews
who came to Detroit from different
parts of Europe.
Michigan Jewish History,
21721 Parklawn, Oak Park

could discern, with pretended or
genuine distress, the contamination
of the Church by persons convert-
ed only on the surface, or for the
wrong reasons.

lie was Constantine the anti-
Semite. MacMullen explains that
Constantine was personally press-
ing for reform of the Easter ,

"which some churches celebrated
on the same day as the Jewish

Passover. The emperor's pas-
sionate anti-Semitism would not
suffer this, and a date already in
use in Egypt and elsewhere was

agreed on by all ..."
There is added interest in Mac-

Mullen's biograph in the following
references to his and his wife
Helena's interests:
"Constantine never saw the Holy
Land, but through his and Helena's
work it became, within a genera-
tion or two, the center for Chris-
tian pilgrimage that it has ever
since remained.
"In his own efforts to provide
Christian worship with a suitable
architectural setting, he circular-
ized the eastern bishops in 342, in-
structing them to repair what had
been ruined or neglected under

Holocaust Library
Formed at Dropsie

A special section for books deal-
ing exclusively with the Holocaust
has been established in the library
at Dropsie University by the Sho-
lom Aleichem Club of Philadelphia,
it was announced by Dr. Abraham
I. Katsh, president of the post-
graduate university.
The collection will be named in
honor of Dr. Emanuel Rigelblurn,
historian of the Warsaw Ghetto
and founder of the ghetto archives.
Dr. Wililam M. Glicksman, a sur-
vivor of the Holocaust and a 1957
graduate of Dropsie University,
was the prime mover in the estaL-
lishment of the special library sec-
Max Rosenfeld, representing the
Sholom Aleichem Club, local cul-
tural organization stated that Drop-
sie University was selected to
house the book collection because
of the "strong interest in this pe-
riod" manifest by Dr. Katsh. The
university president is the transla-
tor and editor of "The Scroll of
Agony," the diary of scholar
Chaim A. Kaplan which is the
most comprehensive account of the
Warsaw Ghetto. Originally pub-
lished in this country in 1965 by
the Macmillan Company, the book
has since been published in seven
foreign languages. It is a day-by-
day journal begun in September
1939, on the day that Germany de-
clared war on Poland.
Dr. Katsh emphasized the sig-
nificance of this period in Jewish
life in announcing the establish-
ment of the special book section.
"No other period in the memory of
contemporary man," said Dr.
Katsh, "can match the Holocaust
in sensitivity of Jews. There is
much that all humanity can learn
from this episode and Dropsie Uni-
versity is proud to be the reposi-
tory of literature dealing with this
Dropsie University is the only
non-theologcial, non-sectarian grad-
uate university in the United States
completely dedicated to the study
of Hebrew, Biblical, and Middle
Eastern cultures and languages,
and higher Jewish education.

'that serpent' Licinius. The prae-
torian prefect and governors stood
ready to provide everything neces-
sary in the way of a work force
and money. One of his counts, Jos-
eph of Tiberias in Palestine, hav-
ing been interestingly converted
from Judaism by 'divine visions of
every kind', obtained drafts on the
treasury and special authority to
go about in predominantly Jewish
regions erecting churches."
There is an element of retribu-
tion in the Constantine story. Mac-
Mullen relates:

Friday, December 12, 1969-35


Status of Peru Jewry Is Outlined by Leader

NEW YORK—Dr. Azi Wolfenzon, press is divided in its approach to
dean of the school of industrial the problem of the Middle East.
science at Peru's National Engi-
neering University, was in New
York last week and, in his capacity
as head of the Association of Jew-
ish Societies in Peru, met with
leaders of the World Jewish Con-
gress, with which the association
is affiliated.
The association is composed of
the three communities, Ashkena-
zim, Sephardim and German, each
of which has its own synagogue
"Few of the essential elements and rabbi.
There are between 6,000 and
of Christian belief interested
And His Orchestra
Constantine very much—neither 7,000 Jews in Peru, the majority of
God's mercy nor man's useful- East European origin or descent.
ness, neither damnation nor sal- Almost all live in Lima. A Zionist
vation, neither brotherly love Federation embraces all Zionist
nor, needless to say, humility. groupings; there is a Hebrew So-
Ardent in his convictions, he re- cial Club and a Bnai Brith lodge.
mained nevertheless oblivious to There is a Jewish day school,
Now Booking -
their moral implications. Modern which has an enrollment of ap-
historians have been bothered by proximately 900. Practically all
this; ancient pagans turned it to Jewish children of school age
good account. According to their attend.
and His Orchestra
The Jewish press in Peru con-
stories, the emperor experienced
no change of faith until after he sists of a monthly, Nostros
Good Music





had put to death his son and

wife, whereupon he sought for
purification from the old gods.

(now approaching its 40th birth-
day), and a bulletin published by
the Ashkenazi community.
There is no significant anti-

for All Occasions

LI 4-9278

Denied it by their lofty justice he
resorted to Christianity, through Semitism in Peru. The Peruvian Classified Ads Get Quick Results
which he obtained a spurious
substitute. Retribution at last
caught up with him. His brothers
poisoned him in revenge for the
killing of Crispus (his son)."


Ramsay MacMullen, one of the
leading scholars among the young-
er generation of American histori-
ans of the Roman Empire, was
born in New York City in 1928. He
attended Exeter (1942-1946) and
Harvard University (MA 1959;
PhD 1957).
Having taught . at the University
of Oregon and Brandeis University,
MacMullen has been a professor of
history at Yale University since
1967. He has been the recipient of
several grants for research in
Rome — a Fulbright grant (1960-
1961) and a Guggenheim grant
(1967). In 1967 he also received a
grant to the Center for Advanced
Research at Princeton.

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CO., Inc., realtors, announce the

opening of new offices at 21311
Civic Center Dr., Southfield. The
move was part of an over-all expan-
sion of the firm's business, which
includes real estate brokerage,
property management, mortgage
financing, construction, and real
estate development.
* * *
SHOP will hold its third monthly I
program-meeting 8 p.m. Sunday at
the Detroit Institute of Musical
* * *
Dr. LEON LUCAS. a certified
marriage counselor and professor,
BERG, associate professor, both
on the faculty of the Wayne State
University School of Social Work,
have had their book, published by
Whitehall Co. in Northbrook, Ill.
COUNSELING reflects their long-
standing interest in experimenting
Ben-Nathan at Farewell:
with and developing methods of
Germany of Today
more effectively helping troubled
families and their individual mem-
`Quite Another Germany'
bers. Methods of teaching and cur-
BERLIN (JTA) — Asher Ben
riculum for preparing counselors
Nathan, Israel's outgoing ambas- Israeli Electronics Firm
are presented. The research work
sador to West Germany, was given Wins at World Hotel Fair was assisted by a training grant
TEL AVIV—An exhibition of new from the National Institutes of
a farewell reception here by the
German publisher,- Axel Springer. types of multiline telephone sys- Mental Health.
Ben Nathan will conclude his tour tems designed for hotel and insti-
Of duty at the end of the year. He tutional use by Telrad of Lydda Center Theater Tryouts
will be succeeded by Elyashev was awarded the Grand Cup at the
Ben Chorin, deputy head of the first International Hotel Fair here to Be Held This Week
Tryouts for "You Can't Take It
foreign ministry's information sec- recently.
Tetrad Telecommunications and With You" by Kaufman and Hart.
tion in Jerusalem.
Center Theater's second produc-
Ben Nathan told his well-wishers Electronics Industries, Ltd. is Is- tion of the season, will be held at
that he thought he had achieved rael's largest producer of tele- the Jewish Center 2-5 p.m. Sun-
much of what he had set out to do
day; 8-10 p.m. Monday; and 8-10
to improve Israel's relations with patented a new type of fully elec- p.m. Tuesday.
which is
the Federal Republic. He said it tronic multi-line system install
The play, which is to be directed
was understood in Israel now that efficient, economical to

by Hal Youngblood of WJR, will be
the present Germany is quite has minimum breakdown incid- presented Feb. 14, 18, 19, 21 and 22.
"another Germany."


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