Page 54 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 38

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Philip P. Joachimson. T h e list o f contributors was headed by
Jacob H. Schiff, who donated $50.00 out o f the total o f $97.00
that was raised.
T h e by-laws setting forth the aims and purposes o f the Society
indicate that its read ing room was to be kept open du r ing the
evenings from 7 to 10 P.M. and on weekends and holidays from 2
to 10 P.M. A lend ing fee o f $2.00 annually o r o f $.50 quarterly
was to be charged fo r the privilege o f borrow ing books. A weekly
lecture was to be o f fe re d on the Sabbath in Hebrew o r any other
language on a suitable topic. Am on g the pro jected activities o f the
Society would be the publication o f
which was to in­
clude contributions by the members. In addition to a monthly
meeting o f the directors, a general membership meeting was to be
held quarterly. A f te r meeting expenses, the balance o f any in­
come was to be set aside fo r the purchase o f books.
T h e contents o f
reflect the cultural program o f the
Society and consist fo r the most part o f literary contributions
which were first presented as lectures by some o f the members.
N o ed itor is listed but it may be assumed that Jalomstein, who
contributed the open ing article and the annual report, was re ­
sponsible fo r seeing the material through the press.
Mordecai Jalomstein (1835-1897) was born in Suwalk, Poland.
H e possessed a rich Jewish background and was well versed in a
number o f languages. H e came to Am erica in 1865 and a fter
return ing to Warsaw, where he learned typesetting, he settled
here in 1870. A talented writer in both H ebrew and Yidd ish , he
contributed to the European Hebrew press and collaborated with
Z.H . Bernstein on
Hazofeh Ba’arez Hahadashah.
Jalomstein was
also a pioneer o f the American Y idd ish press and published the
Yidishe Presse
(1866) and
New Yorker Israelit
(1873). H e
jo in ed with his brother-in-law Sarasohn in 1874 in publishing the
Yidishe Gazetn,
a weekly which lasted down to 1928. In 1893 he
issued in H ebrew the first part o f a history o f Am erica which dealt
with the Colonial period. When he d ied he was characterized in
both the Y idd ish and Hebrew press as the most learned am ong
the imm igrant writers o f his time.
Kasriel H. Sarasohn (1835-1909) was the author o f an article
on the terms “ Kasher, T e re fah , H ave r and Am H a ’arez,” which