_All Snapshots


Black and white image of Rabbi Franklin sitting with young students.

The Interdenominational Community Thanksgiving Service was founded in 1902 by Dr. Leo M. Franklin, Rabbi of Temple Beth El in Detroit, Michigan from 1899-1941. The first service, called “A Citizens’ Interdenominational Thanksgiving Service”, was held on November 27, 1902, in the Detroit Opera House. An account in the Detroit News stated that a capacity crowd…

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Black and white photograph of Julian Morgenstern.

After his ordination at HUC in 1902, Julian Morgenstern studied in Europe and received his doctorate from the University of Heidelberg. He served several small congregations in the Midwest, and then returned to HUC in 1907, the first American-born scholar to be appointed to the HUC faculty. He was named Acting President of HUC in…

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Black and white photograph of Alfred Gottchalk.

Alfred Gottschalk was born in Oberwesel, Germany on March 7, 1930.  His father fled to New York in 1938 after narrowly escaping arrest by the Gestapo. Alfred and his mother joined him in 1939. After graduating from Brooklyn College, Gottschalk attended HUC-JIR (first in New York and then in Cincinnati), where he received his rabbinical…

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Drawing by Ostendorf, 1975, of President Abraham Lincoln with Samuel G. Alschuler in Alschuler's photography gallery. The sign reads, "S. Alschuler's Gallery, Photographic & Printing Studio." The image is captioned, "Abraham Lincoln sits for ambrotype by Samuel BG. Alschuler in the photographer's coat as Judge J.O. Cunningham watches, Urbana, Illinois, April 25, 1858."

President Abraham Lincoln delivered his famous Gettysburg Address during the American Civil War at the dedication of the Soldiers National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.  Five years prior to the address, Lincoln – who was campaigning for senator at the time – encountered the Bavarian-Jewish Photographer, Samuel G. Alschuler while representing clients in court in Urbana,…

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Black and white photograph of Adolph S. Ochs.

Do you enjoy the Times Square ball drop ushering in the New Year? You have American Jewish newspaper publisher and immigrant Adolph S. Ochs to thank for this beloved tradition. Ochs was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on March 12th, 1858. Ochs began his work in the newspaper business at a very young age, delivering newspapers,…

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Black and white image of the Touro Synagogue, undated.

December 2nd, 1763, Members of the Jewish community of Newport, Rhode Island witnessed the dedication of the Touro Synagogue, the oldest standing synagogue building in the United States. It is the only synagogue to survive from the colonial era. The synagogue was designed by Newport citizen Peter Harrison. At the onset of the American Revolution,…

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Black and white photograph of Golda Meir in a robe and seated in front of an Israeli flag.

Golda Meir was the fourth Prime Minister of Israel. She was born May 13th, 1898 in Kiev and immigrated to Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1906. As a child she was drawn toward helping others; she once raised money for classmates who could not afford to purchase textbooks. Her parents were set on her getting married rather…

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“Too Early to Intervene”: Rabbi Stephen Wise and President Franklin D. Roosevelt

Stephen S. Wise sitting in his study

Rabbi Steven Wise was born in Budapest, Hungary, in 1874, before immigrating with his family (as an infant) to New York. He grew into one of the most renowned American Reform rabbis and Zionist leaders of the 20th-century. In 1922, Wise founded the Jewish Institute of Religion. He was also a founding member of the…

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Emma Lazarus: Writings and Philanthropy

“Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” Emma Lazarus (1849-1887) wrote these words memorialized on the Statue of Liberty. Lazarus was born to a Jewish family in New York, near Union Square, on July 22, 1849. She held a strong classical education along with fluency in German and French.…

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