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American Jewish Historical Society Collections

Campfire Magic: Pluralism of Jewish Summer Camping

Today, many think of summer camp as a uniquely Jewish phenomenon. In reality, Jewish educational camps developed as a branch of American organized camping. At the turn of the 20th century, camping was a major tenet of American Progressivism and the Fresh Air Movement, which sought to provide relief for poor immigrants in overcrowded cities during the summer, while also assimilating them into American…

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Kosher Food Production in the United States and the Manischewitz Empire

The Jewish population in the U.S. currently makes up just under 2.5% of the total population, with an even lower percentage keeping kosher. Yet, over 40% of the packaged food produced in the U.S. is labeled as kosher, and American food production companies dominate the global kosher market. Many of the brands that we see on the shelves, such as Coca Cola, Kraft, and…

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A Survivors’ Haggadah

“And the khaki-clad sons of Israel commanded by Lt. General Truscott gathered together as was the custom in Israel, to celebrate the Passover festival.” So begins the preamble to the so-called Survivors’ Haggadah (left), published for the first Passover after Liberation by the U.S. Army of Occupation in Bavaria, a copy of which was donated to the American Jewish Historical Society by CJH and…

German-Jewish Americans at Home at the Turn of the Last Century: A Late 19th-Century Photo Album

“. . . the [Jewish) religion which was to be prized and saved is fast becoming a watery Unitarianism, and its adherents are allowing themselves, where permitted, to become completely assimilated. Reform Judaism which began as a compromise is ending as surrender.” —Marvin Lowenthal, “Zionism: A Menorah Prize Essay [part 1],” Menorah Journal vol. 1:2 (1915): 118-19 Marvin Marx Lowenthal (1890-1969), a leading Jewish…

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Highlight from the Sidney Lapidus Collections of Judaica: Discourse on the Restoration of the Jews

AJHS Board Chairman and CJH Board Treasurer Sidney Lapidus is not only a dedicated and generous philanthropist, but also a great collector of Anglo-American political treatises and essays and lawbooks on slavery, many of which he has donated to his alma mater, Princeton University, and to the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, where he has established the Lapidus Center for the Analysis…

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A Night at the Ballpark

By James Benjamin Nadel, Communications Outreach Associate The Chicago Cubs took center stage in the world of baseball, winning their first World Series Championship in 108 years. But the Cubs are not the only baseball team that has recently achieved a first. Late last month, on a Sunday night at MCU Park in Brooklyn, where the luminescent rides of Coney Island tower over the…

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Get Out the Vote: Jewish History and Past Elections in the Great Treasures in the Great Hall Case

By James Benjamin Nadel, Communications Outreach Associate As the nation prepares to head to the polls this November 8th, the American Jewish Historical Society and the Yeshiva University Museum have developed a display of their materials that demonstrate Jewish involvement in political elections of the past. The items included, which span across nearly a century of American history, exemplify the various political activities in…

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Stories from the Collections: AJHS connects Bat Mitzvah twins

In celebration of Archives Week 2016, Center and partner staff collected and recorded stories about the collections and services at the Center and its partners. If you have ever wondered why archives matter and how archives can change lives, just have a listen. In this recording, archivists Boni Joi Koelliker of the American Jewish Historical Society and Leanora Lange of the Center for Jewish…

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Stories from the Collections: Former AJHS Executive Director on the Archive of the American Soviet Jewry Movement and finding his Bar Mitzvah twin

In celebration of Archives Week 2016, Center and partner staff collected and recorded stories about the collections and services at the Center and its partners. If you have ever wondered why archives matter and how archives can change lives, just have a listen. In this recording, archivists Andrey Filimonov and Leanora Lange of the Center for Jewish History talk with Evan Kingsley about his…

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Chutzpah in Style: Hats and Deeds of Rose Halprin

#Out of the Archives By Andrey Filimonov  "Rose Halprin’s joie de vivre was reflected in her love of the arts and of people. The resplendence and distinctiveness of her hats was proverbial, but beneath that varied headgear was a Yiddisher kop—a brilliant, analytical Jewish mind—together with a warm and sensitive Jewish heart.“ – Rabbi Israel Goldstein Rose Halprin in 1948; Hadassah Archives on Long-term…

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Nibbles, Noshes, and More: Baking Historical Hadassah Recipes

By Nicole Greenhouse Hadassah chapters have a long history of fundraising for Israeli public welfare projects and the Hadassah hospitals in at Mount Scopus and Ein Kerem. As part of their fundraising efforts, chapters produced cookbooks, made up of beloved recipes of chapter members. Many of these chapter cookbooks can be found in the Hadassah Archives.  The team working on the processing of the…

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