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March 05, 1976 - Image 56

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1976-03-05

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56 Friday, March 5, 1976


A Bicentennial Feature

A Cultural Chronology of American Jewry

don, becomes spiritual
Prepared by the Tarbuth Foundation
leader of Mikveh Israel in
for the Advancement of Hebrew Culture Philadelphia and one of the

Distributed by the American Jewish Press Association

1654 — Twenty-three
Jews land in New Amster-
dam on the St. Charles.
1730 — Cong. Shearith
Israel founded in New York
1735 — Cong. Mikveh Is-
rael starts services in Savan-
1745 — Cong. Mikveh Is-
rael established in Philadel-
1750 — Cong. Beth Olo-
him organized in Charles-
1790 — Touro Synagogue
opens in Newport, Rhode
1802 — Rodeph Shalom,
German Hebrew Society
organized in Philadelphia.

forms first congregation in
1841 — Isaac Leeser is-
sues call for an organized,
Jewish community in
1842 — First congrega-
tion in Boston — Ohabei
Shalom founded; Adath Is-
rael, first congregation in
Louisville, established.
1843 — Independent Or-
der Bnai Brith founded by
Julius Bien of New York,
one of the leading engrav-
ers and cartographers in
America; The Occident
and Jewish Advocate, first
Jewish monthly, published
by Isaac Leeser.
1844 — Mordecai Manuel
Noah delivers "Discourse on
1824 — Ten Orthodox the Restoration of the Jews"
Jews from England organ- before a Protestant congre-
ize Cong. Bene Israel in gation in Philadelphia ("The
Cincinnati; first Jewish Time Will Come, The Prom-
periodical in the U.S. ise Will Be Fulfilled").
comes off the press in New
1845 — Temple Emanuel
York: "The Jew," edited in New York founded; Lloyd
by Solomon Henry Jack- Street Synagogue in Balti-
son; 47 members of Cong. more, oldest in the city,
Beth Elohim in Charleston built; Jewish Publication
call for introduction of re- Society initiated by Isaac
form in Jewish ritual.
1825 — Mordecai Manuel
1847 — Cong. Anshe
Noah stages foundation cer- Maarab (Men of the West)
emony for "City of Refuge" organized in Chicago.
— Ararat — a Jewish state
1849 — Isaac Leeser ini-
on Grand Island in nearby tiates Jewish high school in
Buffalo; Bnai Jeshurun America, Hebrew Educa-
Synagogue established in tion Society High School in
lower Manhattan.
Philadelphia; Order of Free
1829 — Isaac Leeser ap- Sons of Israel founded in
pointed "Hazzan" of Cong. New York; First Jewish
Mikveh Israel in Philadel- weekly in U.S. — The As-
monean — makes its ap-
pearance; Israel's Herold,
1837 — First Passover first German-Jewish weekly
Hagada printed in America; in America published; Yom
published by S. H. Jackson.
Kippur services are held in
1838 — Rebecca Gratz San Francisco in a tent.
starts first Jewish Sunday
1850 — Beth El, first
School in America: "The He- congregation in Detroit,
brew Sunday School So- founded.
ciety" in Philadelphia.
1851 — Sabato Morais, a
1839 — Israelite Society Sephardic rabbi from Lon-

Stamp for Purim Issued

1855 — National Rabbini-
cal Conference, called by
Isaac Leeser and Isaac
Mayer Wise, _is hcld in
Cleveland — they split.
1856 — Minhag America,
one of the basic books of Re-
form Judaism appears, aut-
hored by Isaac Mayer Wise;
Sinai, a monthly, edited by
Rabbi David Einhorn (Re-
form) begins publication in
1858 — Sabato Morais
protests America's attitude
in Mortara case — omits
prayer for President.
1859 — Board of Dele-
gates of American Israelites
established in the wake of
Mortara Affair.
1860 — New (third)
building of Cong. Shearith
Israel, Spanish Po-
rtuguese Synagogue in
New York City conse-
crated; Abraham Kohn,
city clerk of Chicago, pre-
sents Lincoln, on his de-

founders of Conservative
Judaism in America.
1852 — First Orthodox
congregation established in
New York; Washington,
D.C. Hebrew Congregation
1853 — First known
Christian woman in Amer-
ica is converted to Judaism
— by Constituted Rabbi-
nate Collegium in Chicago,
under the leadership of Rev.
Ignatz Kunreuther.
1854 — Isaac Mayer Wise,
protagonist of Reform Juda-
ism, becomes rabbi of Cong.
Bnai Yeshurun in Cincin-
nati and begins to publish
The American Israelite," a
weekly — a German supple-
ment, Die Deborah, was
added later; Isaac Leeser's
English translation of the
Bible, issued; First YMHA
established in Baltimore.

1873 — Union of Ameri-
can Hebrew Congregations
(Reform) founded.
1874 — First YMHA in
New York begins to operate.
1875 — Hebrew Union
College (Reform) opens in
1876 — Centennary of
America's independence
marked by placing of
Moses Jacob Ezekiel's
sculpture "Religious Lib-
erty" in Fairmount Park,
Philadelphia on behalf of
Bnai Brith.
1877 — First Yiddir
book with an American in.
print — a volume of verse by
Jacob Zebi Sobel.
1879 — The American He-
brew, edited by Philip
Cowen, commences its ca-
reer of many decades.
1880 — First meeting of
Reform rabbis in Cleveland.
(This feature will be
continued in upcoming is-
sues of The Jewish News).

parture to Washington,
with American flag in-
scribed with Hebrew
verses from the Book of
1861 — David Einhorn,
threatened by mob-action
because of his anti-slavery
sermons, flees Baltimore
and becomes rabbi of Cong.
Knesset Israel in Philadel-
1862 — Michael M. Allen
is appointed military chap-
lain by General Grant —
first Jewish chaplain in the
U.S. Army.
1867 — Maimonides Col-
lege, the first seminary for
training rabbis opens in
Philadelphia. Its initiator
was Isaac Leeser.
1870 — Di Yiddishe Zeit-
ing, first Yiddish newspaper
in the U.S. appears.
1871 — Hatzofeh B'Eretz
Hahadashah, first Hebrew
weekly in America, pub-

The Purim Masquerade A Tradition
With Numerous Religious Connotations


(Copyright 1976, FTA, Inc.)

It is customary to mas-
querade on Purim. Tradi-
tionalists offer a variety of
reasons for this practice.
Some claim that this is
done because Jews who
were basically religious in-
wardly seemed to appear
like Persian idolaters out-
wardly. In front of their
Persian neighbors, espe-
cially at the king's feast,
they seemed to masquerade
as fellow Persians.
Likewise, the Almighty
disguised his role as the sav-
ior inwardly so that the
events of Purim seem to
look like an ordinary devel-
opment in the affairs of
men while the Almighty
was directing the sequence
from a hidden vantage
point. This is one of the rea-
sons why the name of God
does not appear in the Me-
In a similar vein some
commentaries derive this
practice from a verse in
the Bible (Deuteronomy
Chapter 31) where the Al-
mighty threatens "I will


hide my face." To comme-
morate the events, which.
at first seemed as if the Al-
mighty was concealing his
presence behind the stage
of history, Jews hide their
faces behind masks on
A third explanation for
this practice relates it to the
original case of hatred be-
tween a Jew and his
brother. Jacob seemed to
have incurred the wrath of
his brother Esau by disguis-
ing himself in order to re-
ceive the blessing of his
father who had intended to
give it to Esau.
By masquerading, Jews
indicate that Jacob's mas-
querade was not a case of
winning his father's bless-
ing by false pretenses;
rather, the blessing be-
longed rightfully to him and
thus his so-called "mas-
querade" was justified.
Jews masquerade in order
to show that sometimes, in
the course of events, mas-
querading is fully justified
in order to acquire some-
thing which is rightfully
ours. Apparently, there

seemed to have been some Chayyim 696:8) stating that
objection to this practice there is no prohibition
since we find Rabbi Moses against it as long as other
Isserles (Commentary to forbidden behaviorisms are
Shulkhan Arukh, Orach not involved.

JWB Affiliates Planning Purim
Activities at Bases, in Canada

These members of a National Jewish Welfare
Board-affiliated Jewish Community Center — the To-
ronto YM and YWHA — developed a clown act for the
Y's Purim Carnival that was so successful they decided
to go on a year-round tour of hospitals and other commu-
nity institutions. JWB encourages its affiliated Centers,
Ys and camps in the U.S. and Canada to do creative pro-

• .......

Purim Katan in Leap Year


(Copyright 1976, JTA, Inc.)

The Philatelic Services division of the Israel Minis-
try of Communications has issued a new stamp for
Purim. Consisting of ancient Purim scenes, the multico-
lored issues are being distributed in denominations of IL
0.40, 0.80 and 1.60.

"Purim Katan," the mini-
ature Purim is a day which
is celebrated as a minor fes-
tival in the case of a leap
year in the Hebrew calendar
such as this year happens to
Traditionally, the festival
of Purim is destined to take
place every year on the 14th
day of the Hebrew month
Adar. This year, a leap year,
there happens to be two con-
secutive months called
The question arises as to
which of these two months
should be designated as the
month in which Purim is to
be celebrated on the 14th
'clay. Since the event of the

original Purim is claimed to
have taken place on a leap
year and in the second of the
two months called Adar, it
has been ordained that
Purim shall always be cele-
brated on the second of the
two Adars.
Still, because the 14th
day of Adar generally be-
came known as a day of
good fortune for the Jew-
ish people, even the oc-
currence of the 14th day of
the first Adar in a leap
year is marked by some
spirit of rejoicing even
though none of the mitzvot
and practices of Purim are
observed on that day.
We thus eliminate peni-
tential prayers from the
service on that day.

x \•".•


The numbers of children in Jewish military families
are increasing, as this scene outside the Fort Ord, Calif.
Jewish chapel indicates. Their Jewish education is very
much a concern of the National Jewish Welfare Board.
This Purim program under the supervision of the Jewish
chaplain is typical of scenes at bases and installations
throughout the U.S. and overseas.

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