JewishGen Weekly News Nosh November 20, 2022
The Weekly News Nosh
JewishGen Weekly E-Newsletter
Phil Goldfarb, Editor
Date: November 20, 2022
“A Family Without The Understanding Of Their Past History, Foundation And Ethnicity Is Like A Tree Without Roots”
Enjoy this week’s Nosh!
A Happy, Healthy and Enjoyable Thanksgiving to all!
1. Upcoming JewishGen Webinar: Enemy, Alien, Declarant...Grief: Learning from Missteps in the Naturalization Process. Date: Wednesday, November 23, 2022. Time: 2:00 PM Eastern Standard Time Registration: Free with a suggested donation. Please click here to register now! Speaker: Emily Garber About the Talk Naturalization is a legal procedure whereby an alien becomes a citizen. Records created before, during or after the citizenship process may provide additional understanding of the legal and societal challenges faced by immigrants. There will be a short summary of the United States naturalization process in the early Twentieth Century. The majority of the presentation includes several unusual cases whose records provide a deeper understanding of the context of our ancestors’ experiences both in the old country and in the U.S.
2. MyHeritage Introduces the AI Time Machine™. Using advanced technology, AI Time Machine™ creates stunning images of a person in different time periods throughout history. With the AI Time Machine™, you can see yourself as an Egyptian pharaoh, a medieval knight or a Viking, a 19th-century lord or lady, and much more, in just a few clicks! It will be free for a limited time. Go to their blog to see more: Transform Yourself Into a Historical Figure Using Everyday Photos - MyHeritage Watch the video about it: Introducing AI Time Machine™ - YouTube
3. 60 Minutes Episode on Paper Brigade in Lithuania and How Hidden Jewish Papers Survived. In the event that you missed the episode on the Paper Brigade on 60 Minutes, November 13. When the Germans invaded Vilnius, Lithuania a special squad of Nazis commandeered YIVO’s headquarters with the intent of looting the rare books and art and burning everything else. However, the Nazis needed help in assessing what was valuable, so they rounded up 40 Jewish writers and artists mockingly nicknamed the Paper Brigade to sort through rooms upon rooms housing YIVO's collection. The Paper Brigade had other ideas. They set aside the most significant manuscripts and art, including a sketch by Picasso, and organized a smuggling operation back to the ghetto. Homemade diapers sewn into their pants concealed the contraband from the Nazi guards. They had ten hiding places, the largest was underneath a house, 60 feet down and accessible only through a sewage tunnel. To see the episode, go to: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/paper-brigade-jewish-artifacts-holocaust-60-minutes-2022-11-13/
4. Digitization of the Ireland 1926 Census. The Irish Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media announced the digitization of the 1926 Census, to be published online, searchable and free of charge in April 2026. There is a 100-year embargo on releasing the personal data which is why the release date is 2026. The project will be undertaken by the National Archives of Ireland. Read more from their press release: gov.ie - Digitisation of the 1926 Census (www.gov.ie) Thanks to Jan Meisels Allen, Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee for this information.
5. Rare editions of Shakespeare among books donated to National Library of Israel. Earliest piece is a 1499 erotic fantasy titled ‘The Dream of Poliphilus. The anonymous donation comprises seven texts spanning 400 years, enriching the library’s collection. Read the full story from the NLI: Donation of Rare Books to the National Library of Israel (nli.org.il) Editor’s trivia note. I am very proud of the fact that the #1 read article last year (2021) for the National Library of Israel was a story that I wrote about Tulsa Jews and the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre on the 100th anniversary of this tragedy: The Tulsa Race Massacre and Oklahoma's Jews (nli.org.il)
6. Findmypast Newspaper Updates (U.K.) This week, Findmypast has added two brand-new titles from Cheshire and Surrey, as well as updated 43 of our existing titles from all across the British Isles. Read on for a full list of everything that's new: Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter - Findmypast Newspaper Updates (eogn.com) Thanks to Dick Eastman and EOGN for this update.
7. History of the Jewish Reform Movement. America's largest Jewish denomination, Reform began in 19th-century Germany. Reform Judaism is the largest of the three main American Jewish denominations. The movement’s principal North American organization, the Union for Reform Judaism, has roughly 900 member congregations and 1.5 million adherents, and is an affiliate of the international arm of Reform Judaism, the World Union for Progressive Judaism, based in Jerusalem. Read more from My Jewish Learning: History of the Reform Movement | My Jewish Learning
8. Remembering a Nova Scotia base's role training World War I Jewish Legion soldiers. Fort Edward was the training ground for Jewish Legion soldiers from across North America during WW I. Three decades before he became Israel's first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion was a soldier training in Windsor, N.S. Ben-Gurion arrived in Windsor on June 1, 1918, to train with the Jewish Legion, a term that collectively referred to four battalions made up of Jewish soldiers. Besides training soldiers for the Canadian Expeditionary Force, Fort Edward was the training ground for Jewish men from North (and even South) America who wanted to fight in the First World War but had no country to represent. Read the story from CBC Canada: Remembering a Nova Scotia base's role training WW I Jewish Legion soldiers | CBC News Thanks to Elaine Berghausen for passing this story along to me.
9. Birthright participants feel closer to Israel, Judaism after trip – Pew. The new Pew survey is the first true indicator of the Birthright program, which offers American Jewish youth all-expense paid trips to Israel. Birthright Israel, a program that since 1999 has brought more than 800,000 young Jewish adults on a ten-day, all-expenses paid trip to Israel to introduce them to the Jewish state’s ancient historical and cultural roots, is held to significantly strengthen American Jewish young adults’ connection to Israel and commitment to leading Jewish lives. A new Pew Research survey shows that the trip is achieving those goals. For instance, 34% of the 5,000 American Jewish respondents said they were “somewhat/very” attached to Israel before the trip – a figure that rose to 63% after the trip, marking an 85% increase in the respondent’s attachment to the Jewish state. Read the story from The Jerusalem Post: Birthright participants feel closer to Israel, Judaism after trip - Pew - The Jerusalem Post (jpost.com)
10. How Jews Became Citizens: Highlights from the Sid Lapidus Collection. What does citizenship mean to you? What are the rights and responsibilities that come with citizenship? The Center for Jewish History raises these meaningful questions in the special exhibition, How Jews Became Citizens: Highlights from the Sid Lapidus Collection. The exhibit showcases rare books and historical documents while telling the complex, ongoing story of the Jewish people’s path to European Jewish emancipation from the 17th to 19th centuries when Jews obtained their rights. Read more about this new exhibit: https://www.cjh.org/visit/exhibit-info/jews-became-citizens?utm_source=NYJW_Maropost&utm_campaign=NYJW_Daily_Update&utm_medium=email
11. Drones to help survey thousands of Jewish cemeteries across Europe. An EU-funded heritage initiative using drones flown over Jewish cemeteries is being held in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv this week. Far from the kind used in war, the heritage mapping drones are designed to survey more than 3,000 Jewish cemeteries located across central and eastern Europe, with hundreds in Ukraine. Read the story from Jewish News UK: Drones to help survey thousands of Jewish cemeteries across Europe | Jewish News
12. Israeli-led study finds oldest evidence yet of cooked food. Fish remains discovered at Israel’s Gesher Benot Yaakov archaeological site indicate that humans were cooking food as long ago as 780,000 years. Until now, the earliest evidence of cooking is claimed to date back about 170,000 years. However, these findings, published in Nature Ecology and Evolution, indicate that the practice is much older, dating back as far as 780,000 years. Read the story from JNS: Israeli-led study finds oldest evidence yet of cooked food - JNS.org
13. Patagonia’s first new synagogue in over 40 years reveals a growing Argentine-Jewish community. Patagonia, Argentina’s famously beautiful southern region, has been a haven for Israeli backpackers, vacationers from Buenos Aires and, in the 20th century, Nazi war criminals. What the scenic territory hasn’t had for nearly 40 years is a new synagogue. Read the story from JTA: Patagonia's first new synagogue in over 40 years reveals a growing Argentine-Jewish community - Jewish Telegraphic Agency (jta.org)
14. How a Catholic university amassed a treasure trove of Jewish artifacts from the Bronx, New York, USA . A Catholic university may be the unlikeliest place for what may be the largest depository dedicated to the Jewish history of the Bronx. At Fordham University, the private, Jesuit institution in the Bronx, decade’s worth of archival documents and artifacts from the local Jewish community have found a home, thanks to its Jewish studies department. Read the story from JTA: How a Catholic university amassed a treasure trove of Jewish artifacts from the Bronx - Jewish Telegraphic Agency (jta.org)
15. WWII-Era Boxcar Arrives Ahead of Auschwitz Exhibit Premiere. The freight car is a key artifact in “Auschwitz. Not long ago. Not far away,” a traveling exhibition that will be making its West Coast premiere at the Simi Valley-based Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in the spring. The boxcar is one of 700 artifacts of historic and human interest that will be displayed in the upcoming exhibition, which was created by Spanish traveling exhibit company Musealia in partnership with the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum in Poland. Read the full story from Jewish Journal: WWII-Era Boxcar Arrives Ahead of Auschwitz Exhibit Premiere (jewishjournal.com)
16. Memorabilia collector to display items from Jewish athletes during the Holocaust. The Adolph & Rose Levis Jewish Community Center in Boca Raton, Florida, is hosting an exhibit on Jewish athletes during the Holocaust from Jan. 5 to Feb. 28, 2023. The exhibit’s curator, Neil Keller, has over time collected 22,000 memorabilia items pertaining to famous Jews in sports, entertainment, politics and more. Read the story from JNS: Memorabilia collector to display items from Jewish athletes during the Holocaust - JNS.org
17. A New Focus on Jona Ostiglio, a Jewish Artist Who Broke Barriers. The life of Jews in 17th-century Florence was quite constrained. They were confined to a ghetto, a cramped area about the size of a football field that housed about 200 families. They could work only in certain professions and were not allowed to join professional guilds or corporations. Their interactions with Christians were strictly regulated. This is why scholars are puzzling over the life of the Jewish painter Jona Ostiglio, a card-carrying member of a prestigious academy founded by the famed artist Giorgio Vasari. A painter at the Medici court, Ostiglio’s existence was practically unknown until now. Read the story from MSN: A New Focus on Jona Ostiglio, a Jewish Artist Who Broke Barriers (msn.com)
18. Study suggests Nazis attempted to sterilize Jewish women in camps with food additive. New research finds it likely wasn’t just trauma and starvation that caused 98% of women to stop menstruating upon arrival at Auschwitz, and many to later struggle with infertility. According to the study, the uniformity — and uniformity of timing of cessation of menstruation — possibly point to the surreptitious administration of exogenous sex hormones (sex steroids) to female prisoners. Read the story from the Times of Israel: Study suggests Nazis attempted to sterilize Jewish women in camps with food additive | The Times of Israel
19. The percentage of Jews in Europe has returned to the same level as in the Middle Ages. Europe was for centuries home to the world’s largest Jewish population center, and the community’s presence on the Old Continent dates to Antiquity. Around 1880, European Jews represented 90% of the world’s Jews. After the Holocaust, they accounted for only 35% of the total Jewish population, and by 2020, European Jews made up merely nine percent of world Jewry. Read the story from K-Larevue: Sergio Della Pergola : "The percentage of Jews in Europe has returned to the same level as in the Middle Ages” - Jews, Europe, the XXIst century (k-larevue.com)
20. Ten Repurposed Synagogues in New York City. The architecture of New York City changes and adapts to the ever-changing lifestyles of New Yorkers. Many buildings, whether they start out as mansions or firehouses, churches or libraries, serve multiple purposes throughout their life cycle. In this list, they explore ten repurposed synagogues of New York City, the sacred spaces that now serve as everything from condos and nightclubs to community centers and artist studios! Read the story from Untapped Cities: 10 Repurposed Synagogues in NYC - Untapped New York (untappedcities.com) Thanks to IAJGS volunteer extraordinaire Nolan Altman for passing along this story to me.
21. Lithuania mulls expanding compensation for Jewish property seized in WWII. Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte files draft legislation to provide 37 million euros in reparations; 95% of country’s Jewish population was killed by Nazis and local collaborators. With the new initiative, the EU member seeks to definitively settle the matter, which is regularly brought up by Jewish organizations at home and abroad. Read the story from the Times of Israel: Lithuania mulls expanding compensation for Jewish property seized in WWII | The Times of Israel
22. More acquisitions at the NLI. Trove of publications by WWII Jewish soldiers from Palestine gets new home at the National Library of Israel. Newspapers, journals, and other periodicals produced by Jewish units from Palestine in British Army reveal rich intellectual and emotional lives of soldiers fighting in Europe. Read the story from the Times of Israel: Trove of publications by WWII Jewish soldiers from Palestine gets new home at NLI | The Times of Israel
23. Holocaust Survivor and Hogan’s Heroes Star dies. Fans of Hogan’s Heroes - which featured a group of Allied POWs outwitting their hapless German captors during WWII might not have known they were watching people with real-life experiences of the war. The show’s cowardly camp commander Col. Klink was played by Werner Klemperer, a German Jew and the son of world-famous orchestra conductor Otto Klemperer. Dim-witted Sgt. Shultz was played by John Banner, a Jewish refugee from Austria. However, none of the cast’s stories were as harrowing as that of the actor who played French POW Corporal Louis LeBeau, Robert Clary, who died this week at the age of 96. Read the story from Aish: Holocaust Survivor and Hogan’s Heroes Star - Aish.com People, Modern, Featured, History, Holocaust Studies
24. Israel greenlights project to document Holocaust survivors’ testimonies. Photographic evidence of survivors from Israel and the world will be promoted on social media for a younger generation. Israel this week approved a proposal to allocate 3.5 million shekels ($1 million) toward documenting the testimony of Holocaust survivors worldwide. Read the story from JNS: Israel greenlights project to document Holocaust survivors’ testimonies - JNS.org
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