Page 105 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 4

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93
R ITTENBERG ----CRITICS SAY
My Caravan of Years.
B y G
o ld i e
S
t o n e
.
New York,
B
loch
P
u b l i s h i n g
C
om p a n y
,
1945. 251 pages. $2.75.
The history which this biography reveals constitutes an important par t
of Jewish world history. Fate has made it important. One could not
have predicted even twenty years ago tha t the fate of all world Jewry
would, to a large extent, depend upon the Jewish community of America.
But so it has proved to be. The hope and the destiny of Jews all over
the world depends to a very great degree upon the nature, the courage
and the vision of American Jewry. This Jewry of ours, with so heavy a
responsibility upon its shoulders, has been composed of many immigrant
elements, the largest by far coming since the 1880’s from Eastern Europe.
I t is this numerically preponderant and spiritually significant element
in America Jewry whose history, whose ideals and whose hopes are re-
fleeted in this beautifully written autobiography.
Mrs. Stone’s biography is the story of the growth of many social and
educational institutions in the great Chicago west side. The first Russian
Jewish Old Folks Home, the Orphan Asylum, the hospital and the Educa-
tional Alliance which was to become the famous Jewisn. People’s Institute.
She proved to be the ambassador between the new community and the
older American Jewish community. Her deep friendship with Julius
Rosenwald, her profound admiration for Emil G. Hirsch, the life of other
philanthropists and intellectualists in Chicago of the last generation, pre-
sent a clear picture of the growth and development of Jewish life in one
of the greatest Jewish communities in the world.
The book is written without literary pretentiousness but with simple,
literary strength. I t makes charming and touching reading. I t is the
friendly story of an aspiring life, an autobiography which gives the living
material for the history yet to be written of the Jewish community of
America.
— S o l o m o n
B.
F r e e h o f i n
The Jewish Criterion
Americans All.
B y O
scar
L
e o n a r d
.
New York,
B
e h r m a n
s
J
ew i s h
B
ook
H
o u s e
,
1944. 232 pages. $2.50.
I t was a Spanish Jew, De Santagnel, who financed Columbus in his
quest tha t led to the discovery of America, and it was a Polish Jew whose
fortune and genius were placed a t the command of George Washington
to help defray some of the cost of the Revolutionary War; the man,
Haym Solomon, died a pauper.
I t was a Jewish Paul Revere, Francis Salvador, who, in colonial times
galloped a t night over a South Carolina countryside for help against
savage Cherokee Indians who were attacking the settlers; rescue came
but the rider paid for the deed with his life.
Following the examples of Pulaski, Lafayette, de Kalb and others, many
European Jews, secure and economically independent, rushed across the
ocean to lay down their lives in the cause of American freedom and
independence.
Americans A ll
is an episodical narrative consisting of these and more
than 25 other stories depicting the contributions of the Jew from the