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YIVO Institute for Jewish Research Collections

Campfire Magic: Pluralism of Jewish Summer Camping

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…

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Yiddish Wall Newspapers

Yiddish Wall Newspapers “Wall newspapers”—large, hand-lettered or typed newsletters posted in a shared communal space—have their roots in Soviet propaganda. Among the rich historical resources available through the Center for Jewish History’s digital collections are wall newspapers that form a portion of YIVO’s Displaced Persons Camps and Centers Poster Collection, RG 294.6. Created in the aftermath of World War II, these fragile documents provide…

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

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…

Happy New Year from the Center for Jewish History!

Happy New Year from the Center for Jewish History. We’ve dug into our partners’ vast collections to find a wonderful selection of vintage Rosh Hashanah greeting cards to celebrate the Jewish New Year of 5773, which begins at sundown on Sunday, September 16, 2012. The colorful cards date from the late 19th and early 20th centuries and offer nostalgic greetings in English, Hebrew and…

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The Nutmeggers: The Jewish Community of Connecticut, Part 1 – History of Connecticut Jewry

The Nutmeggers: The Jewish Community of Connecticut, Part 1 – History of Connecticut Jewry The first reference to a Jew in Connecticut was to “David the Jew.” In 1659, he was fined 20 shillings by the city of Hartford. His crime: going into houses when the household heads were absent and trading with the children. In the decades that followed, there were several scattered…

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