Page 40 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 1

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which the first Wo r ld W a r imposed upo n us. T h e Congress has
issued a numbe r of pub l ica t ions which describe its organizat ion
and its activities.
T h i s year marks the centenary of the found ing of the
Independen t O rde r of B ’nai B ’r i th . Here is a con t r ibu t ion which
Amer ican Jewry has made to Israel the world over. Its origin
recalls the growing pains of an Amer ican Israel and the ability
of the people to ad jus t itself and find an answer to social and
ph i lan th rop ic problems. T h i s organization, too, publishes a
magazine of excellent quality.
T h r e e men were bo rn in 1843, and each has come to s tand for
a distinct type of Jewish life. David Hof fmann became a great
T a lm ud i s t and Bible scholar and founde r of an o r thodox
rabb in ica l ins t i tu t ion in Berlin. Kau fmann Kohler became the
foremost leader of the Reform movement in America and the
successor of Isaac M. Wise in the presidency of the Hebrew
Un ion College in C incinnat i . Mayer Sulzberger, a p rom inen t
jurist in Ph i ladelphia , a t ta ined a wor ldwide r epu ta t ion because
of his leadership of American Jewry and the pa r t he played in
the found ing of several im po r tan t inst i tut ions . T h e names of the
last two will be found in every history of the Jews in the Un i ted
States. T h ey should be be t te r known for the services they ren-
dered to Amer ican Israel.
One hund red years ago, Isaac Leeser founded
T h e Occident ,
one of the earliest monthl ies in the Un i ted States. T h e pious
founder hoped to strengthen Jewish life and to s t imu la te Jewish
cu l ture mid the chaotic circumstances in which the Jewish
commun i ty in America then found itself.
O the r anniversaries migh t be ment ioned , b u t there is one
which must no t be omi t ted, a l though every Amer ican Jew will
remember it himself. Fou r h und red and fifty years ago America
was discovered. Of the pa r t played by Jews in tha t momen tous
event and of its significance in the history of ou r people, volumes
have been wri t ten , and more are sure to come. W ie rn ik ’s
His tory
of the Jews in America
is still the most comprehensive. Lev inge r ’s
volume on the same subject is a clear tex tbook presentat ion .
T h e Amer ican Jewish Histor ical Society has issued thir ty-four
volumes of essays and articles on various phases of American-
Jewish history. T h e latest volume of essays on the subject is
Lee M. F r iedm an ’s
Jewish Pioneers and Patriots.
T h e r e are many
others, so tha t anyone interested will find no lack of read ing
matter .
We shall now tu rn to o the r anniversaries w i th which it is
possible to deal at somewhat greater length.
S. G.