Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wily Marriage Makers of the East Side, 1905

The schatchens, i.e. the matchmakers, of the lower East Side in a 1905 article in the Los Angeles articles were described as both good and bad.

The schatchen is almost invariably of one type. He is not very tall; he is bearded, patriarchial and intensely Yiddish. he walks silently and watches every chance passerby with eyes that are both furtive and keen. He slips in and out of places almost without making his presence felt. When he speaks it is with a marked desire to please, but with strangers he is cautious and slow of tongue...

The article further states that the schatchen--

is a busy, prosperous man, with a good business and a large following of clients, and he has developed his ancient and picturesque trade along the modern lines of commercial America, but withal he remains the schatchen--the matchmaker, the trafficker in young men and maidens, the indefatigable, serene, obsequious, popular marriage broker.

However, the article's author states, there are also crooked, swindling schatchens, who are "next to impossible to arrest or convict."

So then if you are interested in learning about the good schatchen and the bad schatchen, please read this article. The article can be found at .

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