Bernard Rosinsky wrote:
I have pictures of family members at the turn of the 20th century (some
end of 19th century). I know that it is possible to categorize a
tradiional jew by his clothing: Is he a Chassid or a Mitnaged and if a
Chassid, what group he belonged to. Is there a reference book that can
help me determine where I should categorize my ancestor?
Can I deduce more facts >from just a picture?
In general, you can deduce little >from such a picture. Traditional dress
in Russia, for instance, was virtually identical among both chasidim and
misnagdim. And in Lithuania, the dress was somewhat different >from in
Russia, but there again, chassidim and traditional misnagdim dressed
nearly alike. Ditto for Poland, and for Galicia, Hungary, etc.
The one thing I have heard is that chassidic men generally button their
coats right-over-left (for kabbalistic reasons) while misnagdim most
commonly do it left-over-right.
Vancouver, BC, Canada