Monday, November 16, 2009

The Russian Jew in the United States

This past summer the Museum introduced the first of three sections of a book published in 1905 entitled "The Russian Jew in the United States" (also entitled "The Immigrant Jew in America" in a later 1907 edition.) Now the second section, about the Russian Jews of New York, has been readied for you.

It should be noted that the editor of this book makes a distinction between the three major Jewish populations that have lived in the United States over the past two and a half centuries (i.e. from 1655): The Spanish-Portuguese, the German and the Russian population. Thus, some of you who have limited or no interest in the lives of Russian Jews, but who are interested in the Jews of such regions as Lithuania, Volhynia, Bessarabia, Galicia, Poland or Romania, might be misled by the term "Russian Jew" and disregard this book because you think it doesn't apply to your interest or research. In the case of this book, "Russian Jews" include all Jews that lived within the Russian Empire in 1905.

The Museum then has now put online the second of three sections of this book--the first part was about the Russian Jews of Philadelphia; the third part is of the Jews of Chicago--hopefully this part will be placed online within the next few months. The second part now online is that of the Jews of New York and covers such topics as general aspects of the population, philanthropy, economic and industrial condition, religious activities, educational influences, amusements and social life, politics, health and sanitation and law and litigation.

This section on the Jews of New York is a nice tie-in with the number of articles the Museum has recently presented to you about the immigrant Jews who came to New York during the years of high immigration, i.e. from the late 1880s to 1910. The link to the main exhibition is Just click on the word "enter" to view the table of contents.

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