|Vol. IX. No. 2
Iyar 5611 May 1851
Philadelphia.—On Sunday the 6th of April the school of the Hebrew Education Society of Philadelphia was formally opened by an address from Mr. Leeser, conformably to a resolution of the Board of Managers. The address, such as it is, will be found in this month’s Occident, where it appears by general request of the meeting who desired its publication. We regret to observe that many were absent who ought to have taken an interest in the matter; we could easily assign a reason for this, but it is nothing more than has taken place on other occasions, that those who are loudest and most active where injury can be done, are generally among the missing when a great and a good deed is to be accomplished. For our part we thank the audience for the marked kindness with which they received our remarks, and only hope that they may support the institution in behalf of which we spoke, in every possible way, so as to secure its permanence, when even its original proposers are no longer among the living.—On Monday, the day following, the scholars assembled to the number of twenty-two, in the presence of the members of the school directors who were in the city, and the business of instruction commenced forthwith. The little time that has since elapsed does not enable us to say much of progress; but what has been done proves that the teachers are faithful and capable, and that the plan of the society is easily susceptible of a successful execution.
The Young Men’s Literary Association is progressing; it has a small library and some little funds; but it will no doubt increase is both in a brief time. It was organized on the 23d of June last, and the first lecture was delivered on the evening of the 10th of April by Mr. L. Tobiason, a member of the society, the meeting having first been opened by the Chairman, Mr. M. M. Allen, who was followed in <<117>>a brief address on the objects of the Society by Mr. Leeser. The next lecture of the course will be delivered by Mr. S. C. Van Beil, on the character of Mohammed, in the evening of the 8th of May. Mr. Tobiason’s lecture was on Moderation and displayed a great deal of correct thinking, and more good sense than one had reason to expect from so young a man; it would have done credit to older heads. The officers for the present season are M. M. Allen, President; S. C. Van Beil, Treasurer; Jacob Lyons, Secretary; S. L. Linsé, Librarian; Morris J. Arch, L. H. De Young, and J. M. Emanuel, Managers.
Easton, Pa.—On Sabbath Eve before the Passover the congregation Emanuel of Easton consecrated their Synagogue to the worship of God. We learn from an eye-witness that the building was filled with an attentive audience, and the ceremonies were both impressive and conducted; so as to reflect high credit on all concerned. Mr. M. Loeb, Editor of the Doylestown Morning Star, was present by invitation and delivered an oration on the day following (Sabbath Haggadol) which received universal approbation. On Sunday, the 13th of April, a meeting was called of the members of the congregation, when Mr. M. Cohn, the Vice President, was called to the chair, and Mr. L. Traugott appointed Secretary. A committee composed of Messrs. A. Hofhimer, M. Marx, and L. Adler, drafted suitable resolutions expressive of the sense of the members, which were adopted and duly communicated to Mr. L. We are pleased to witness an appreciation of services thus rendered, and the fact that there are men among us, others than those connected with the ministry, who are able to do our cause justice.
New York.—The Congregation Bnai Israel, composed mostly of Netherlandish Jews have left their place of worship in Pearl Street, and taken possession of a more commodious house in Chrystie Street, which they dedicated to God on the second day of Passover. The officiating ministers were Rev. S. C. Noot, the Hazan of the Kahal, and Rev. Dr. Raphall, who preached an appropriate sermon.
Albany, New York.—We learn from Dr. Wise that the formerly existing amity between the various Jewish inhabitants of the capitol of New York, has been restored; and that his Synagogue has been well attended during the Passover. The usual examination of his school took place on one of the days of the festivals, and we are assured that the scholars distinguished themselves greatly by the proficiency they exhibited in their studies.
Syracuse, New York.—The Hebrews residing in Syracuse, are about to erect a Synagogue. Its estimated cost is from $7000 to $8000.
Memphis, Tennessee.—The Israelites of this city, which is situated on the Mississippi River, in Western Tennessee, have been presented with a burying-ground, through the liberality of Mr. Joseph J. Andrews, formerly of Philadelphia. The people have lately formed themselves into a Hebrew Benevolent Society and adopted a constitution and by-laws for their government. The officers for the current year are Benjamin Emanuel, President; Moses Simons, Vice President; Emanuel Levy, Secretary; Jacob Bloim, Treasurer; and Nathan Levy, Henry Oppenheimer, and Moses Bamberger, Trustees. The Society have charge of the burying-ground, and the pamphlet before us, embracing their regulation contains also rules respecting the mode of internment, and we see that they will be at the expense of putting it in proper order. We doubt not that with the usual energy attending on new settlements of Israelites in this country, those of Memphis will duly made the trust they have received, and speedily organize a regular congregation for public worship. We hope to be soon favoured by their worthy president and his colleagues with substantial tokens of progress to effect the end we have indicated.
Mobile.—We hear from a valued correspondent that the Synagogue about to be erected there is to cost about $15,000. The brick work is to be finished during the course of the summer, and the basement, which is hereafter to be used as a school-room, is to serve temporarily as the place of worship. When the building is completed, the people, we understand, wish to engage a preacher, and we are pleased to record this desire, as it shows that they have a true appreciation of public religious instruction.
San Francisco, California.—We are pleased to learn that at the latest account the Israelites were busily engaged to devise means to erect a Synagogue forthwith. We see in the Evening Picayune of March 14th a call for a meeting of Israelites of that place to convene on the evening of 16th at 7 o'clock, (signed by Messrs. J. J. Joseph, H. Hart, J. Solomon, A. Watters, Samuel Marx and Louis Cohen as committee,) to receive a report and to devise means to effect the object in view, and we cannot doubt that before this the work has been actively begun. We extract an editorial notice from the paper mentioned, to show the estimation in which our people are held in California.
“The Israelites.—We are highly gratified to notice that the large and respectable class of our fellow-citizens, above named, are taking spirited measures towards the construction of an edifice suited to the convenience of their solemn religious services—the most ancient and revered known among the worshippers of the ‘One Living and True GOD.’ We are glad for them, that they have chosen to cast their lot amongst us, under a government that gives them the fullest protection in the exercise of their faith and worship, and which affords them equal opportunities with all other citizens to develops any extent of their aspirations their political, social, religious, and civil interests.
“In the flourishing condition of our city, we notice with pleasure among this class of citizens, a steadily progressing prosperity, and the evidences of permanent thrift, based upon their habits of close application to business, and an honest fulfilment of the engagements which they undertake. Their increasing wealth; their consistent and intelligent support of our political system of government; their open-handed charities to relieve the wants of sufferers of whatever country or religion, and the good moral influence of their general character, render their admixture with us on the grounds of a common civilization most able and useful; and we trust that their purpose to accommodate themselves, and adorn our city with such a religious edifice as their wealth and liberality will enable them to erect, will be perfectly successful.
Montreal.—The annual examination of the Sunday School took <<120>>place on Sunday, the 23d of March, and was attended by the President and all the members of the congregation. The children present amounted to near thirty, and all acquitted themselves well. The elder boys, under the immediate tuition of the able Hazan, the Rev. Mr. De Sola, translated portions of the Mishna, Bible, prayers, &c., and were made to analyze several difficult sentences, which they did with great facility, affording evidence of the great progress they have made since last year. The younger ones, both boys and girls, under the tuition of the lady teachers, were carefully examined in “Scripture Questions,” “Pyke’s Catechism,” “the Creed,” “Ten Commandments,” and also replied with great readiness and evinced much improvement, thus showing how faithfully their teachers perform the pleasing duty they have voluntarily assumed.—Before commencing the examination, the whole together sung Ane Kelohanoo, in very good voice, and closed with repeating the Shemang.—Our correspondent also informs us that the congregation have repainted and otherwise improved their place of worship. It is indeed gratifying to find the spirit for adorning the house of God prevailing everywhere, and we only hope that Israelites whilst so engaged will not forget to adorn themselves with righteousness and purity, and to remove from theft the odious sins of hatred and envy which are so unsightly in their councils, and derogate from their character as true servants of the Most High.
Sweden.—A letter from Stockholm, of the let of March, says:— “The committee charged by the general Diet of the kingdom to examine the motion having for its object to grant the Israelites the same civil and political rights which are enjoyed by other dissenting citizens, which means those who do not belong to the Lutheran Church,—have declared themselves by a large majority in favour of this motion. Five of the members of the committee, Baron Stedingk, Count Selverstolpe, Messrs. Gustafson, Sunblatt, and Wasse, have recommended a perfect emancipation of the Swedish Jews.”—Archives Israélites of April 1st.
Switzerland.—A letter from Luzern, dated the 9th of March, to the Journal of Geneva, says,—“The Grand Council which has been in session since Tuesday has passed a law granting to the Jews the liberty of establishing themselves and carrying on business.—Ibid.
[The wording of this paragraph leaves us in doubt whether it is for the Canton of Luzern alone or the whole of Switzerland,—we are in-dined to regard it as the first. Perhaps some better acquainted than we with the internal affairs of the Helvetian: may be able to inform us. —Ed. Oc.]