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February 16, 1979 - Image 15

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1979-02-16

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

F

Friday, February 16, 1919 15

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

First American Jewish Families Traced
in Stern's Expanded Genealogical Tables

By IRVING I. KATZ

Executive Secretary
Temple Beth El

After considerable delay,
the monumental work
"First American Jewish
Families - 600 Genealogies,
1654-1977" by Rabbi Mal-
colm Stern has been pub-
lished by Ktav Publishing
House, Inc., a project of the
American Jewish Archives
(Cincinnati) and American
Jewish Historical Society
(Waltham, Mass.).
The publication of the
costly book was made possi-
ble by many individuals, in-
cluding Detroit's communal
leader and bibliophile,
Leonard N. Simons.
The book revises, cor-
rects, updates, and greatly
expands Rabbi Stern's
"Americans of Jewish Des-
cent," originally published
in 1960, which served as the
basis for Stephen Birming-
ham's bestseller "The
Grandees." It contains fam-
ily trees of every family of
Jewish origin known to
have been established in
America prior to 1840,
traced to the present.
The index contains
over 40,000 names. Ap-
pended to the book is a
full bibliography of
sources.
In the historian's tool
chest there are few utensils
more helpful than genealog-
ical tables. Researchers in
early American Jewish his-
tory are, therefore, in great
debt to Rabbi Stern for
spending 11 years of his life
on the creation of the origi-
nal volume and many more
years to produce the re-
vised, mammoth edition.
Rabbi Stern has long been
recognized as the dean of
American Jewish
genealogies. Ordained as a
rabbi at Cincinnati's Heb-
rew Union College, he
earned his doctorate in

Administrators
Are Saluted

By RABBI SAMUEL
SILVER

(A Seven Arts Feature)

NEW YORK — Modern
American Jewry has pro-
duced a new profession: that
of synagogue adminis-
trator.
Never before were there
functionaries like these
executives who often carry
the congregation on their
shoulders, serving as
supervisors of the building,
financial monitors, liaison
between trustees and mem-
bership, shielding the rabbi,
etc.
Many of these adminis-
trators are knowledgable
and devoted Jews, almost
clerical in the sense of
ecclesiastic as well as man-
agers of offices, etc. Some,
like the celebrated Irving
Katz of Detroit, are or-
dained rabbis.
Each one of these people
(and there are women in the
profession) is worth many
times_ the salaries they get
in effectuating economies in
synagogal life.

Hebrew letters at HUC,
majoring in the field of
American Jewish history.
He serves presently as the
genealogist of the American
Jewish Archives and as the
international director of
rabbinic placement for the
national institutions of Re-
form Judaism.
Of special interest to
Michigan Jewish history in
"First American Jewish
Families" are the
genealogies of the earliest
Jews in the state who came
here in the 18th and early
19th Centuries. The follow-
ing are listed: Ezekiel Sol-
omons of Mackinac, the first
Jew in Michigan; Chapman
Abraham, the first Jew in
Detroit, and his wife,
Elizabeth Judah. They were
married in Montreal by Re-
verend Jacob Raphael
Cohen, the first hazzan of
Montreal's Sephardic Cong.
Shearith Israel.
Cohen later served for
many years as hazzan of
Philadelphia's Sephardic
Corig. Mikveh Israel.
(Elizabeth married
Moses Myers after Ab-
raham's death. They
moved to Norfolk, Va.,
where Myers became one
of the leading citizens of
the community. The
Myers colonial home is
still standing in Norfolk
and is now a public
museum.)
Also listed is Lucius Levy
Solomons, a cousin of
Ezekiel Solomons, who did
an extensive fur trade busi-
ness in Mackinac; Jacob
Franks and his nephew,
Captain John Lawe, who
lived in Mackinac and
served in the War of 1812;
Lt. Moses David, who lived
in Sandwich (now Windsor,
Ontario) when it was under
the domination of the
British, who also served in
the War of 1812.
Also listed in the book is
the genealogy of the Hart
family which includes Ida
Hart, a relative of the Rev.
Alexander Hart, first haz-
zan of Cong. Bnai Jeshurun,
New York's first
Ashkenazic congregation.
Ida was married in De-
troit to Sidney Silberman,
son ofJacob Silberman, first
president of Detroit's Tem-
ple Beth El, founded in

Mondale Given
Hospital Medal

WASHINGTON — Vice
President Walter F. Mon-
dale received a silver medal
in a White House ceremony,
commemorating the dedica-
tion of Shaare Zedek Hospi-
tal in Jerusalem.
The award was presented
by Charles Bendheim, a
member of the interna-
tional board of directors of
Shaare Zedek Hospital.
Bendheim headed a delega-
tion of 50 Shaare Zedek
supporters who flew to
Washington from all parts
of the U.S. for this presenta-
tion.
Mondale visited the hos-
pital during his trip to
Jerusalem last year.

1850.
The sons of Ida and
Sidney Silberman, Henry
and John Sills, are still
residents of our commu-
nity and are members of
Temple Beth El.
Also listed is Blanche J.
Hart, first professional
superintendent of Detroit's
United Jewish Charities.
David J. Workum also
appears in the book. He

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served in the Confederate
Army during the Civil War
and was president of De-
troit's Temple Beth El from
1866 to 1868.
Workum was the first
Jew in Detroit to serve as a
member of Detroit's Board
of Education. He moved to
Cincinnati in the 1870's.
The famous and popular
singer, Libby Holman, was
his granddaughter.

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