# Untitled - American Jewish Archives

## Untitled - American Jewish Archives

In This Issue T H E COVER: T h e Reverend Gershom Mendes Seixas, the New York rabbi who fled to Connecticut to avoid living under the British. This p...

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In This Issue T H E COVER: T h e Reverend Gershom Mendes Seixas, the New York rabbi who fled to Connecticut to avoid living under the British. This portrait is reproduced here from the original miniature through the courtesy of ilnnie Nathan Meyer. T h e copy was made by Peter A. Juley 8c Son of New York City.

LIGHT O N EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY. . . . . . . . . .JACOBRADERMARCUS

3

Although Jewish traders had settled in the colony of Connecticut as early as 1659 no permanent Jewish community was established there till the middle nineteenth century. Individual merchants were frequently found in the towns and villages where, almost invariably, they reared their families in the Christian tradition. During the Revolutionary War there was an influx of Jewish patriotic Cmigrb from Rhode Island and New York, but once the conflict was over these merchants returned to their former homes where there were Jewish communal organizations, synagogues, established businesses, a milder religious climate, and a more inviting future.

LETTERS: SAMSON MEARSTO AARONLOPEZ February 23, 1779. Illustration.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . '3 May l o , 1779. Illustration. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 1 6 November 24, 1779. Illustration.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 9 AFFIDAVIT WILL

OF

OF MYERMYERS AGAINST THE TORY RALPH ISAACS. Illustration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 3

MICHAEL JUDAH December 31, 1784. Illustration. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 9

THEWAR OFFICEIN LEBANON, CONNECTICUT Illustration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 3 6

Patrons for 1949 ARTHUR FRIEDMAN LEO FRIEDMAN BERNARD STARKOFF

Manuscrtfts for consideration by the fublGhers should be addressed to: DIRECTOR OF ARCHIVES, HEBREW UNION COLLEGE CLIFTON AVENUE, CINCINNATI 20, OHIO

DIRECTOR:

JACOB RADER MARCUS, PH. D., Adolfih S. Ochs Professor of JewishHistory

ASSOCIATE DIRBCTOR:

RABBI BERTRAM W. KORN, M.H.L., Assistant Professor of American Jewish History

ARCHIVIST

SELMA STERN-TAEUBLER,

PH. D.

AMERICAN JEWISH

Light on Early Connecticut Jewry JACOB

Although the first permanent Jewish congregation was not established in Connecticut till 1843 there were Jewish families in the scattered towns and even an occasional religious service long before that time. Individual Jews had peddled, traded in horses, and done business in the Connecticut river towns and seaports ever since 1659, but they were hardly welcomed in that colony which so strongly reflected the spiritual influence of neighboring intolerant Massachusetts. As early as 1670 Jacob Lucena, a New York and Hartford peddler and merchant, had been fined severely by the Connecticut magistrates. This man, a son or a brother in all probability of one of the first Jewish immigrants to New Amsterdam, made a living trading with the settlers and the Indians. In 1670 he ran into a great deal of trouble across the New York border, in Connecticut, where he was tried and found guilty of having been "notorious in his lascivious daliance and wanton carriage and profers to several1 women." T h e Court of Assistants fined him fno and threatened him with a severe

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flogging if he failed to pay. We are quite safe in assuming that the fine and the threat contributed mightily to the cooling of his ardour. Twenty pounds was a huge fine and he immediately appealed his case. Two days later the General Court abated half of the sum imposed . . . because he was a Jew! Is it possible that they did not expect a Jew to maintain the same high moral standards as a Christian? They were hardly that naive for they were certainly conscious of the fact that the colony's standards were anything but high. T h e last three decades of the century, we know, witnessed a decline in colonial morals due, in part, to the immigration of foreigners with non-Puritan standards, and, in part, to the natural reaction of the settlers themselves to the prurient censorship of the magistrates and ministers. Drunkenness and sexual vice were altogether too common in Connecticut and New England at this time. I t is far more probable that Lucena's Connecticut judges cut his fine in half because he was one of God's Chosen People . . . but ten pounds was still too much to pay. Consequently our amorous hero appealed to Asser Levy, the New York butcher and amateur attorney, who had sufficient influence to have the penalty again halved. No doubt Lucena paid the five pounds. By the first quarter of the next century a few Jewish merchants had established themselves in Hartford, Stratford, and other towns. Their activities are documented primarily in court records which reveal them as litigants along with some of their coreligionists from neighboring New York. Among the more notable merchants whom we find enmeshed in the court proceedings during the first half of the eighteenth century were men like Moses Levy, Jacob Franks, and Judah Hays, all of New York City. One of the more venturesome of these New York families, the Pintos, moved eastward from the border county of Fairfield and settled in New Haven in the i7jo's; by the time of the Revolution they were a well-known clan, active Whigs and patriots, fighting as soldiers and officers in the ranks of the Continental troops. T h e so-called Jewish families resident in the state -most of whom, as we shall see, had deserted their original faith and had joined their neighbors religiously -received additional recruits, with the outbreak of war, from the Jewish 6migrks of Newport and New York who sought safety in nearby Connecticut. Isaac Seixas, for instance, fled Newport, which was occupied by the British in December, 1776, and took refuge in Stratford. Quite a number of Jews had assembled in this Connecticut village on the Boston Post Road. As far as we know most of the refugees who fled to this town and county haled from New York and neighboring Long Island. They brought their rabbi with them, the Reverend Gershom Mendes Seixas, the son of Isaac of Newport.

LIGHT O N EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

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Whether the motivations behind the London, the Newport, and the New London coups were the desire to implement the Navigation Acts, to earn rewards as informers, or to drive the Jews out of business, the attempts all failed, because in both lands, in this age of mercantilism, the authorities believed that the Jew was an economic asset. If this was their hope, then future events in both London and the Americas fully vindicated them.2 New London - where Carsen had his troubles - apparently did not encourage the settlement of Jews. It was one of the few large towns of Connecticut in the eighteenth century which did not shelter even a single Jewish family. T h e attitude toward Jews manifested in 1753 by a Mr. Andrew McKenzie, a merchant, may account in some degree for the absence of Jews from this port. Hearing that one of his correspondents, Miguel De St. Juan, was utilizing the services of a [Spanish?] Jew, he wrote St. Juan and reproached him for "being led by the nose ,by a faithless Jew whose nation sold their God for money and crucified him afterwards. How cou'd you think that he [a Jew] cou'd be true to you [a Spaniard] who ii of a place where none of their sect is tollerated?"S. Throughout this entire period, the people of Connecticut were governed by the charter of 1662 which was to remain substantially in effect till 1818; it declared significantly that the Christian faith "is the only and principal end of this plantation." It is not without its touch of irony that this famous charter, which left little room for religious tolerance of Jews, was decorated with a beautiful miniature portrait of Charles I1 which had in all probability been drawn by the greatest miniature portraitist of Restoratioil England, Samuel Cooper, whose older brother, Alexander, was a convert to J ~ d a i s m . ~ I t was because of the typical religious exclusivism, of which this 2The Carsen papers are in the Connecticut State Library, Ms. Archives, Trade and Maritime Affairs, 1668-1789, Series I, Val<. I, Doc. 15-33. See also, T h e Public Records o f the Colony o f Connecticut, I11 (1859). 344-345; C. M. Andrews, T h e Colonial Period of American History, IV, 73-74. Check also "William Dyer" in the Index of Andrews' work. Dyre did not appear against the Rhode Island Jews on March 1685 and he may not have appeared against Carsen in 1685/6 because his commission had expired in January, 1685 (Andrews IV, 199). Aridrews, however, still refers to Dyre as surveyor general in March 1685 (IV, 196). For Wetherell, see, Andrews, IV, 196-97. See, also, M. A. Gutstein, T h e Story of the Jews i n Newport, New York, 1936, pp. 40ff. See, also, Goodman, American Overture, pp. 4off. For the London attempt to cancel the endenization of the Jews, see, Cecil Roth, History of the Jews in England, Oxford, 1941, pp. i7gff.

3Collections of the Connecticut Historical Society, XVI (1916), 275. See, also, pp. 203, 289, 298, 304. 4"Connecticut," in Harper's Encyclopaedia of United Slates History, New York, 1905, 328a; Franz Landsberger, A Histoly of Jewish Art, Cincinnati, 1946, p. 228.

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Ben married Zipporah the following January. l t was a very successful marriage, certainly in one respect: they had seventeen children. Seixas stayed on in Philadelphia until the war was over when he returned to New York about the same time that Gershom his brother came back. In later years he became one of New York's most distinguished Jewish citizens, a founder of the New York Stock Exchange and a president of the synagogue. T h e Seixas' were but one of the many families that took refuge in nearby Connecticut. Most of the Jewish refugees - there were of course many Gentiles, too-who had fled from New York to the neighboring state settled in Fairfield County, just across the line, in the towns of Stamford, Norwalk, Wilton, Danbury, and Stratford, where they could keep an eye on their property and their interests in British-occupied New York. T o their dismay, some of them found that they had gone from the frying pan into the fire, literally. T h e English and the Tory governor, General William Tryon, started a series of raids in 1777 that increased in violence until they reached their peak in July, 1779. All the harbor and river towns were now exposed to fire and plunder and the hazards of guerrilla warfare. Long Island and the Sound were completely in the hands of the enemy. Feeling themselves particularly exposed, the Norwalk citizens besought the Connecticut state authorities for an armed vessel to patrol the Sound. A number of the signers of this October, 1777, petition were Jewish Cmigrks, and among them were members and relatives of the widespread Mears family. T h e name, Mears, was very probably an Anglicization of the German Meyers or Myers. The fact that they were German in origin did not deter them from using Spanish or Portuguese phrases in their letters. This they picked up in the Sephardic synagogues or from their Spanish-Portuguese Jewish friends. By the same token, Gershom Mendes Seixas did not hesitate to use Judaeo-Geman terms . . . especially for the foods which tickled his palate! T h e Mearses -one branch at least - had come from England and had settled in New York some time during the first quarier of the eighteenth century. There was also a Mears family- probably a 5Samuel DeLucena: biographical details in PAJHS, VI (1897). 102; XXI (1913). 38, 79; XXIII (igi5), 150; XXVII (1920). 41, 248, 461-462; XXXI (1928), 86. See, also, M. A. Gutstein, T h e Story of the Jews of Newport (New York, 1936), p. 55. The petition to the General Assembly, now in the archives of the Connecticut State Library Industry, 1708-1789, Series I, Vol. 11, Doc. 110, was reprinted in Norwalk After T w o Hundred And Fifty Years, p. 361. T h e petition of Lucena to Congress, in Journals of the Continental Congress, IV, 396; XIV, 734. 844. See, also, PAJHS, I (1899), 68-69. The Seixas family: PAJHS, XXVII (1920), 161ff., 171 -178. Zipporah Levy: PAJHS, IV (1896), 210.

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LlGHT ON EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

Printed w i t h pemirrion of The Nawport Hirtoricnl S ~ d e t y

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frequently on the road executing commissions for his chief: riding as far as Newport or pushing on to the "happy hills of Leicester" in a snowstorm, but recoiling from an extra seventy miles on a sick horse through winter mud to New London. On some occasions he was away for weeks, returning to his family to find them distraught because his letters had not come through and they had conjured up the worst. The vicissitudes of a bonnet-box of ,plumes for the women of the Lopez clan are an eloquent commentary on the difficulties of transportation, if not on the vanity of woman. Lopez bought these plumes in Philadelphia early in 1779 while prosecuting his case before the Continental Congress for the recovery of his schooner. Employing a cumbersome overland cart he sent them in a large box to Mears who, knowing that the Lopez women at Leicester laid great store on this finery, examined them carefully on arrival to make sure that nothing was damaged. Hearing that a Norwalk neighbor was driving to Boston, he arranged to.have the plumes taken along, knowing it would be turned over to one of Lopez' agents there and then forwarded to Leicester. But the box was too big to be fastened on to the sulky and was sent by fast ship to Providence and thence on to 5ts final destination. T o make sure it would be protected adequately this time, Mears sewed it up carefully in two of Lopez' sheepskins which he had for sale in his shop. The chances are that it arrived safe for we hear no more about it in the correspondence. T h e difficulties of transportation were caused only in part by the bad roads. During the war there were hostile forces on all sides, regulars and guerrillas, to say nothing of the customs officers at the borders. Teamsters hesitated to leave home with their horses in those parlous days. Mears once scoured the countryside for twenty miles to find a man willing to take a load of goods to Philadelphia, and the man he finally found agreed to make the round trip for about $450 (paper money), exclusive of his expenses which amounted to$307. Not the least of the hazards was the teamster himself: as a true son of New England he liked his rum, and if he carried a hogshead of "spirits" it was almost inevitable that he would drill "spoil-holes" and syphon off a few gallon to while away the tedium of a long slow journey. After one trip Mears found a wantage of nine gallon! Mr. Lopez' problem of preserving his spirits from thirsty teamsters was nothing new in the history of Jewish commercial activity. In the early sixteenth century a Jewish merchant died while at the fair in Leipzig. Unfortunately, no Jewish cemetery or community was tolerated in that city at that time. The friends of the deceased were concerned about returning his body for burial but feared that the Leipzig magistrates and the states across whose borders the body was to be carried would, as was their wont, utilize this golden oppor-

LIGHT O N EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

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Printed w i t h permirrian o f The Newpart Hirtaricol Society

LETTEROF SAMSONMEARSTO AARONLOPEZ,MAY 10,

1779

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Printed m i t h perrnirrion of The Newport Historical Society

LETTER OF SAMSONMEARSTO AARONLOPEZ,NOVEMBER zq,

1779

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AMERICAN JEWISH

ARCHIVES,

JANUARY,

1949

LIGHT ON EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

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by pointing out that the absent defendant was "now under the protection of the common enemy." The plaintiff was Hyman Jacob Boghragh (Bachrach!) of Salisbury, of whom we know nothing; the defendant was Naphthali Hart Myers, of whom we know a great deal. Myers was a distinguished, successful, and philanthropic merchant who must have come to New York in the early 1740's, for by 1746 he was an officer in Shearith Israel. The following year he was the sixth largest taxpayer in the congregation, ranking with Isaac Seixas and Judah Hays, and by 1756 he was president of the congregation. Three years before this, however, he had gone to England, found himself a bride and brought her back to New York. This merchant -he dealt in European and East India goods, "very cheap for ready money" -was generous in his gifts to Jewish and Gentile institutions. T o the Redwood Library in Newport he donated some good books when it first opened, to the synagogue there he gave a chandelier, and in addition purchased the right, at a handsome sum, of laying one of its corner stones. T o the New York congregation he gave five candelabra which gave light to synagogue worshippers for seventy years before they were taken down, carted and shipped across the mountains, to grace the new sanctuary just built in Cincinnati, the first Jewish house of worship west of the Alleghenies. In May, 1780, Boghragh petitioned the General Assembly at Hartford to stay all proceedings directed against him by Myers who, in order to secure payment of certain debts, had taken possession of Boghragh's property on which he held a mortgage. 'The complainant was very careful to point out that Myers had returned to Great Britain. The implication, of course, was that he was a Tory. He probsidered a non-Jew. As far as this writer knows there is no data to support this assertion. T h e name "Isaacs" is not necessarily a proof of Jewishness or of Jewish origin. As we know "Jewish" names mean very little, particularly in New England. Moses Simonson arrived on the Fortune in New Plymouth, in November. 1621 (J. C. Hotten, T h e Original Lists of Persons of Quality, etc., New York, 1874 I?] p. XXVIII)!! Solomon Mears, a Connecticut contemporary of Samson Mears, was very probably a Gentile (Connecticut State Library, Ms. Archives, Supplementary Index to Revolutionary Mss). Gentile Hayses were not uncommon in Connecticut. A letter of Ralph Isaacs to Aaron Lopez indicates that they were not acquainted (Letter from New Haven, December 4, 1774. in Lopez letter-book, library of T h e Newport Historical Society). Possibly of significance is the fact that Isaacs was a friend and executor of the will of Andris Trube, a Fairfield Jew (Will of Andris Trube, Connecticut State Library, Fairfield district, 1759, No. 1949. See, also, T h e Public Records of t h e Colony of Connecticut, XI [1880], 533). Jacob and Abraham Pinto were among the New Haven Whigs who signed a petition, September 17, 1776. to Governor Trumbull and the Council of Safety, voicing their suspicion of Tories who were believed to be agents of the British. Among the Tories listed was Ralph Isaacs, Connecticut State Library, Ms. Archives, Doc. 42.5, pp. 2-4. Also in Hinman, Revolutionary War, 1763-1789, Series I, Vol. Historical Collection, pp. 566-567). \J,

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LIGHT ON EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

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In the adjoining county of New Haven, there was a London Jew by the name of Mordecai Marks who had married a Derby girl to become the founder of an old Connecticut family. We may assume that he first came to New York, moved on to Stratford, and then went u p the Housatonic River to the town of Derby. Since we know that the Boghraghs lived in Salisbury, that there were Solomons during the French and Indian War in Middletown, and a family of Venetian Jews in New Haven in the 1770's, we may be sure that this does not exhaust the list of Jewish settlers and that there were other families scattered in the different villages throughout the colony. What sort of "Jews" were the Pintos of Stratford, the Trubes of Fairfield, the Judahs of Norwalk, and the Markses of Derby after two or three generations in a colonial Connecticut village? What happened to a Jew qua Jew who lived alone, religiously speaking, away from a Jewish community and Jewish family life, in a homogeneous Christian world? Michael Judah did not have to consult his Bible to learn that it is not good that a man should be alone, and so he married Joshua Raymond's daughter, Martha, a Christian. Surely it was not easy for him to make this decision, for he was a loyal Jew, desirous of maintaining his affiliations with his fellow Jews. When in the course of time Martha gave him a son, Michael turned to Mr. Abrahams, the ubiquitous iolzel of New York, and asked him to circumcise the child. This was done on November 23, 1756. I t is obvious that an observant Tew would want his son to be circumcised; it is not clear under what pretext Abrahams performed this rite for the child of a n unconverted Gentile woman. I t is doubtful if Martha Raymond ever became an adherent of the Jewish faith. At all events the child entered the world as David, the son of Meir, which proves also that Michael was only the civil, not the religious name of Mr. Judah. Twenty years later, in 1776, young David was a soldier in Captain Gregory's Company in the ~ o n n e c t i c u tline. Ultimately he made his home in neighboring Fairfield, married Constance Bennet, and became one of-the town's leading citizens. He was, of course, lost to Judaism.ll I n his description of the people of Fairfield, at the time of the Tryon raid, anc croft, the ~ m e r i c a nhistorian, wrote that they were "all of unmixed lineage, speaking the language of the English Bible." This statement was not quite accurate, for long before David Judah September 29, 1752, which does not include the name of Michael Judah but does include the names of Isaac Pinto and Atldris Trube. T h e endorsement on this latter petition indicates that it was denied in both houses (ibid., Series I, Vol. 111, Doc. 25, pp. a-c). "See, below, for references to Michael and David Judah.

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name of the next to come along and he grew u p to become a good Christian and one of Fairfield's well-known citizens. He certainly spoke "the language of the English Bible," for his Yiddish-brogued father who wrote his English name with labored care had died ([email protected]) when little Ansel was only eleven years of age. Ansel Trubee, Anshil's son, and David Judah were well acquainted with one another.14 Mordecai Marks - sometimes called Mordica or Mordeca - was born in London in 1706 and migrated to the colonies about 1726. Three years later he was in Stratford, Connecticut. On April 20, 1729, according to the record, "Mordecai Marks, Jew," was baptized in the local Episcopal Church. Eight months after he had accepted this new religion he married Elizabeth Yorieu, and when she died he selected as his second wife, Elizabeth Hawkins of Derby. It would seem that he had become a Christian in order to be accepted in marriage. Of these two marriages six children apparently survived, four boys and two girls. Abraham died in 1766 at the age of eighteen, during his father's lifetime; Nehemiah, born in 1746, was a Tory and fled to Nova Scotia. Although the evidence is not conclusive, it would seem that Mordecai lived the rest of his life either in or around the towns of Huntington and Derby; certainly his last twenty years were spent in the latter place. As we know, he was a n active member of the Episcopalian church in Derby not later than 1747; his children were reared as Christians, and his wife, of course, shared her husband's Christian faith. Four generations later, his descendants wrote of him as a Jew. There is no question that he lived as an observant Christian after-he settled in ~ e r b yfor his tombstone says that he was "a useful member of society, an affectionate husband, a tender parent, and a constant communicant of the church, and on the 8th day of January, 1771, he departed this mortal life in hopes of life immortal." One of his sons, Mordecai I1 (1739 or 1740-1797) was a well-to-do merchant and farmer who owned his own trotting and pacing mares, a negro slave, and a small library. He was a man of some education and in his will, in which he invoked "our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ," he provided for a "liberal education" for a minor son. A great-grandson of Mordecai I, David Marks, born in 1778, was a minister in the Calvinistic Baptist Church.15 14George Bancroft, History of t h e United States of America, etc., Boston, 1878, VI, 209. T r ~ i b ein New York: PAJHS, XXI (1913).16. T h e 1722 bond: Connecticut State Library, Ms. Archives, Trade and Maritime Affairs, 1668-1789, Series I, Vol. I, Doc. 85. Details of marriage and birth of his children may be found in D. L. Jacobus, History and Genealogy of the Families i n Old Fairfield, 1932, 11. 971-972. Will: Connecticut State Library, No. 1949, Newtown district, December 5, 1758; proved, January 2 , 1759. 15Memoirs o f the L i f e of David Marks, Minister of t h e Gospel, ed. by Mrs. Marilla Marks, Dover, N. H., 1846, further proves the Jewish origin of the family, Chapter I,

1,ICHT O N

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7

We have followcd the assimilatory process in the history ok three of the foul Jewish families and now turn to thc Pintos of Stratford. Like the others, they had n o doubt crossed into this county of Fairfield from ncighboring Ncw York. By 1725 there were already two mefibers of this family in Stratford, one of whom was Abraham Pinto. It is probably safc to identify him with that Abraham Pinto who later became a shohet or ritual slaughterer for the New York Jcwish community. Abraham Pinto of Stratford had a son Jacob -or he may have been a more distant relative -who later moved the fifteen or so miles to New Haken and there, apparently, joined the Congregational Church.16 We know that he was in New Haven as early as 1755, that he married a Christian-her name was Thankfuland for many years was to be the only "Jew" in town. For Ezra Stiles, our informant, a Jew was a Jew no matter what his religion was. Later in the 1770's Stiles referred to him as onc who had "renounced Judaism and all religion." Evidently he and some of the other Pintos in town had become deists or possibly even atheists. Akter the death of Thankful, his wifc, Jacob lived in a common-law marriage with another woman by whom he had four children. It was thcsc four natural children who inherited his estate when he finally died in 1806. T h e three legitimate sons needed no help from their father bccause they had all been successtul in life. Abraham - so called, probably, after his deceased grandfather the shohet - Solomon, and Willam were the names of the three sons, all students at Yale, two of them graduates of the class of 1777. All of them served with excellent records in the revolutionary armies, Solomon as an officer. William, known for his ability to write a fine hand, was asked to make a copy of the Declaration of Independence for Governor Jonathan Trumbull and for President Daggett of Yale. None of these Pintos practiced Judaism.17 p. 13 (See, A.S.W. Rosenbach, A n American lewish Ril~liography,No. 592, p. 417). For data on the Marks family, see, Samuel Orcutt, T h e History of the Old T o w n of Derby, Connecticut, etc., pp. 153.154, '745; Orcutt, T h e History of the Old T o w n of Stratford, etc., I1 (1886). 980, i2q3-izqq; E. J. Lines, Marks-Platt Ancestry, 1902, pp. 33-34; T h e Public Record, of the Colony of Connecticut, XI11 (1885), 148, 476-477. For the will of Elizabeth Hawkins Marks see KO. 6824, New Haven district, in the Connecticut State Library. For will of Mordecai Marks 11, see No. 1316, Stratford district, Conr~ecticut State Library. These nineteen documents in No. 1316, with their sever1 inventories, are useful for a study of the social background of the deceased. l0I say "apparently" for though h e may have been compelled to pay taxes to the state church, lie need not have been a commi~nicant.

17For older XIX (igio), necticut, \TI XXI (1913).

material on the Pintos, see, PAJHS, I11 (1895). 150; XI (1903). 89-95: 111-113. Pintos at Stratlord: T h e Public Records of the Colony of Con(1872), 526, 577; IX (1876), 406. Abraham Pinto, the shohet: PAJHS, 46-47, 54. Although we identify this Abraham with the Abraham of

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JANUARY, 1949

There s e e m to have Ixcn a general trend toward religious assimilation and complete submergence in tlle local Christian colnmunity on the part of the individual Jewish fanlilies living an isolated life in the villages and towns. Jewisll immigrants to Kew York in the first half of the eighteenth century, in search of wider opportunity and less competition, occasionally pushed aci-oss the border to the neighboring state of Connecticut. Naturally, the clegrcc of assimilation to which they were cxposed in their new environment varied with the individual and the circumstances. Anshil Troib reluctantly surrendered nio'st of his Jewish affiliations ant1 ethno-religious habits, and as Antlris Trube was certainly given a Christian 1,urial. Of Mordecai Marks we know even less. As with the Pintos and the Judalls, his children were Christians or Gentiles by he second generation. Michael Judah was hardly typical in his attempt to maintain himself as a Jew, even undcr the most difficult of circumstanccs. He could savc himself 'Jcwishly," but not his child. He stubbornly persisted, living and dying as a Jcw. Among the articles found in his pitifully meager inventory of belongings was a "killing knife," certainly a halif used by the shol~etin slaughtering animals. Apparently he attempted to provide himself with kosher meat and poultry. In his will he left his son. David, 25. Was this the bulk of his possessions? 0 1 -is it too farfetched to assume that he was dissatisfied with this his only child, his circumcised son, David, who hat1 moved to Fairlieltl, married a Gentile, and had brokcn corllpletely with the tratlitions 01 the fathers? Michael left his estate to the Jewish people o l New York: one half to the synagogue and the other half to thc poor widows Stratford ant1 as he father of Jacob of New Haven, Orcutt, History of Stratfortl, 11, 1269, does not know of a Jacob among the sons of Abraham of Stratford. Jacob could then have beer1 a son of Isaac Pinto of Stratford who may be the Isaac I'into who tra~lslatetl the Hehrew prayer book into Euglish, 1766 (P.IJHS, XXX [1gz6], No. 47. p. 58). 1757: August, Jacob Pinto supplied a horse for the defense of Ft. TVilliarn Henry ant1 parts adjacent (Connec~icutState Librar), Als. Archives, Tliar, 1675-1754. 1'01. VII, Doc. 36, pp. a-b). I 558, hlay: a committee of the Assembly was appointed to tleterrni~ie\\,hat 1lum11cr of sen iceable arms were available. hlr. Pinto of New Have11 had ten weapons (ibitl., \Vat., 1675-1774. Vol. VII,, L)oc. 213). Isaac Solomon(s) had onc gull (ibid., \'ol. VIII, lloc. 15). This Jew, of whonl we know very litlle, was a member of Shearith Israel in Xew York in 1749 (PAJHS. XXI [1g13], 60) ant1 was engaged in litigation in Connecticut in 1748 ( T h e Plrblic Records of the Colony of Conirecticut, IX [1876], 522). H e is there listed as dwelling in hfiddletown. Solomon also sold supplies lo Jabez H ; I I ~ ~ ~ comn~iss;~r! II, for the 1760-1761 troops oE the Colony of Connecticut it1 the expetlitiol~ against Can;~tl;~, (Colulecticut State Library, Ms. .L\rchives, War, 1675-1774, Vol. IS, Doc. loo; 261). 1759, October: Jacob and Solomo~lI'into as p l r t of the First [Church] Society in New Haven (The Public Records of the Colony of Co?inecticut, XI [1880], 325). 1768: T h e Pinto store on the long wharf at New Haven (ibid., XI11 [1X8g]. 37-38). 1775, Julv: Abraham Pinto's service in the loth Cornpal~y, 7th Kegimel~t, pay roll

Printed ~fiitli pr.rr,iiirinr! of t h e llonr-izcticuf S t n i i I,ihi..ii.)

~ ' V I1.I or NIICHAEI.JIJDAI-I, I)E(:E;\.~uER 31, 1 784

30

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

1949

'

(Connecticut State Library, Revolutionary War, 1763-1789, Series I, Vol. IIC, Doc. 43, p p b-c). 1776, May: Pintos :IS land appraisers: T h e Pliblic Recorcls of the Colony of Connectictrt, XV (18go), 350. 1777, Api-il 15-23: Jacob Pinto as appraiser oE army l~lallketsp~lrchased (Connecticur State Library, Kel-olutionary \2'ar,17631789. Series I, Vol. XI, Doc. 129, 130. 143). 1780, December 31: pay roll of Capt. Hall's Cornpany of tlie 7th Connecticut Regiment. Made u p 11)- Ensign Solomon Pinto (ibid., Vol. XVII, Doc. 22). 1783, Septcmber 22: Jacob Pinto was among those who signed a petition asking for rights of incorporation for the tow11 of New Haven (ibicl., Towns arid Lands, 1629.1770, Series I, Vol. X, Doc. 1, pp. a-d). 1784, October: recolnmendations in report of coin~nitteeon tax abatement for the New Haven sufferers in the Tryon raid of 1779. Relief giver1 to Jacob Pinto ( i l ~ i d . ,Revolutionary \Var, 1763.1789, Sei-ies I, Vol. XX\'II, Doc. 336, pix a-c). 1786, Oc~ober4: interestiiig metnorial of citizens of New Haven and Hamden with rcspect to ~ z t c h i n garid shooting of tvild pigeons for food and sale, signed b y Jacob Pinto (ibid., Industry, 1708-1789, Series I, Vol. 11, Doc. 67, pp. a-d). 1787. Septenlber 11: will of Jacob Pinto. Codicil, January 14, 18oG. Proved. 1806 (ibid., Xew Haven district, No. 8285: inclr~desinventory of February 17, 1806.)

LlGHT ON EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

3l

3'

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

1949

LIGHT O N EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

33

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AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

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During the war Solomon and his aged father, loseph, had lived and wandered and done business in half a dozen ~ o n n e c t i c u ttowns rather than remain in Tory New York. One of Solomon's sons was born in Danbury; Wilton knew the family for a time, and it was in nearby Norwalk that the Simsons were plundered in the raid of 1779 ~ h k eternal pursuit to make both ends meet during these troublous times brought Solomon to Stamford in the yestcrn corner of the state and to Lebanon in the east. I t was no small concern that led Simson to come to the little village of Lebanon in 1782. The town was by no means obscure in those days. I n a way it &as the unofficial capital of the state during the war years, for this was the home of Governor Jonathan Trumbull. Here in the little red two-room house, the War Office, the Council of Safety met to deliberate on matters of import, and here it was that They had probthe New York merchant came to see the ably met before tliis; both were active business men, and - this is only a guess - the Governor may have sought enlightenment from Simson 's Joseph, on-some knotty problem of Hebrcw grammar. ~ o l o m o ~ lfather, was a good Hebraist. I t was not Hebrew, however, but salt, precious salt, that brought the merchant to this distant village. He had some time before this received a permit from the Council of Safety to ship goods into the state but now felt that this certificate would not give him the propatrols were tection he needed to bring in a cargo of salt. T h e ~1-itish too numerous to risk running the blockade; equally bad were the Connecticut privateers who seized ships first and asked questions later. He was between the devil and the deep blue sea. There can be no question that he was well aware of the anguish -and this is literally true - which almost crushed the urbane Lopez as he fought to rescue his valuable cargo " in the Hobe which had been seized bv the voracious Connecticut prowlers in 1778. That was four years ago and in spite of favorable Congressional and state court decisions, Lopez, by October,

over nor.

Congress, Division of Manuscripts, Hamilton Legal Papers, No. 94329. See, also, PAJHS, XVII [1g20], 66). 1782, January 7: memorial of Manuel Myers, Stamford, to the Connecticut General Assembly (Connecticut State Library, Ms. Archives, Revalutionary War, 1763-1789. Series I, Vol. XXIII, Doc. 286; accompanying letter of recommendation, ibid., Doc. 287; list of debts due him, ibid., Doc. 288). This memorial is printed as Appendix V. 1799, May 13: will of Manucl Myers; proved May 28 ( A b stracts of Wills on File in the Surrogate's Ofice, City of New York, Collections of T h e New-York Hzstoricnl Society, XXXIX [1907], 156.157). This will indicates his wife's name was Judith, obviously a second wife, since Miriam Pinto Myers had died in 1781 (PAJHS [1g20], 122). H e had no surviving children. His Furth connections are also described in the will. For the importance of his Furth relatives see, Jahrbuch der jiidisch-literarischen Gesellschaft, VlII (igio), 140-141 Ephraim Hart. Manuel Myers' executor, one of New York's outstanding merchants, was also a Furth compatriot.

LIGHT O N EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

35

* * * * *

Although no attempts were ever made, as far as we know, to build a permanent Jewish settlement in Con~lecticut prior to thc middle nineteenth century, Jewish merchants and traders had established themselves in the different Connecticut towns and villages ever since the middle sixteen-hundreds. I n the next century, moving into 21Data on the Simsons in Connecticut: PAJHS, XI (1903). 91; XVIII (1909). 106. 209; XXV (1g17),go; XXVII (~gzo),371; XXXIII (1934), 202. Simson as possible part owner of the Middletown lead mine: see the Elenshaw report quoted above. That the Simsons had business relations with the chemist, J. S. Stephany - who

LIGHT O N EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

,

37

the colony from Rhode 1;land on one side and from New York on the other, they dotted the landscape from Woodstock in the east to Stamford in the west. It is certain that most of these immigrants stayed but a short time- it is the accident of an obscure letter, a voucher, or a court entry that betrays their presence - and then returned to the neighboring Jewish comnlunities of Newport or New York city. They realized that if they treasured any hope of remaining as Jews, of continuing a Jewish family life, there was no future for them in the monolithic religious and social life of Congregational Connecticut. If they stayed, and a number of individual families did remain, they were destined to disappear as Jews in the overwhelmingly Christian environment in which they found themselves. They might struggle to maintain the cherished faith, and even to rear their children as Jews, but the struggle was a hopeless one. The one chance to create a congregation came during the Revolution when a number of .patriots fled from Newport and New York and settled in Fairfield County. But these families of merchants and shippers remained in the state only for the duration of the war. There was no incentive to tarry in a community where they had no roots, no institutions, no great economic hinterland; there was every reason to go back to their original homes, to their synagogues, and to their co~nmunities: to Newport, the second largest town in New England, and to New York, the second or third largest port in the country. They did not hesitate to abandon their temporary asylum where their economic future was precarious in order to return to familiar surroundings where opportunity was sure and the future, certain.

was also one of the owners of the Middletown mine - is evidenced by the will of Joseph Simson, the father of Solomon (Collections of the New-York Historical Society, XXXVIII [1go6]. 218-219. T h e will was dated November 5. 1781). Hensharv also consulted a chemist at Bound Brook, New Jersey: Ramsalnen. This man is certainly identical with the well-known Bavarian chemist, Jacob Rubsamen, whom Ezekicl and Lichtenstein in lheir History of the Jews of Richmond, pp. 336-342. consider a Jew. Judging, however, by the names of a sister and a brother, the family was Christian, unless, as converts to Christianity, they had taken on Christian names. The Simsons as merchants: Walter Barrett, Tile Old Merchants o f .Ve.;v Y o l k City, New York, iS70, 11, 2, p p 234,240. For Lebanon, Connecticut, during the Revolution, see, Connecticut (American Giude Series), Boston, 1938, pp. 413415. T h e letters of Solomon Simson: 1782, October g: Solomon Simson, New Haven, to Governor Jonathan Trumbull: same to same, Fairfield, October 11, 1782, in Connecticut State Library, Trumbull papers, M.H.S., 1631-1784, Vo1. XVII, DOC. 12;. pp. a-b; Doc. 132. p. a. These two letters are printed as Appendix VI. For t, (~gqr), Henry Van Dyck, see: T h e P ~ r b l i cRecords of the State of C o n n e c t i c ~ ~IV 305. Also, Samuel Orcutt, History of Stratford.

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

1949

APPENDIX I

My brother [-in-law Solomon] Simson and his family with the rest of my connexions here begs your acceptance of their respectful regard, and, believe me, none with greater warmth than your much esteem'd friend and most Humble servant, SAMSONMEARS. Price Curr't Sugar £60 Rum W[est]. I[ndia]: 18 dol'rs, ria[in]g. Do. Cont[inentaItl, l o a 12 do[llars]. Mad[eir]a. wine, 12 do. Ten[erif]f.[e] and Fay[l] do. 8 a g dol'rs. Best foreign salt, 40 do. Home made 20 Tea 1 2 a 14 do. To MR. AARONLOPEZ

Norwalk, January noth, 1779. Mr. Aaron Lopez, Dear Sir: Yesterday came here a team load of two h[ogs]h[ea]'ds of merchandize, one of spirits, and two barrs of lead, forwarded by Mr. Josiah Blakeley of Hartford. H e informs me he could not procure a team to carry it further than this place. I have sent out to engage one to carry it on to you, which shall be done with all the despatch the nature of the season will admit of. T h o I had no acco[un]'t what the h[ogs]h[ea]'d of spirit should contain, yet I thought it necessary to examine the contents, and found by an inch rule (not having a gu'ging rod) a wantage of five and onequarter inch's, of wh'h I advised Mr. Blakeley by the return of the teamster with whom he is to settle. I also discovered several spoil holes about the h[ogs]h[ea]'d and shewed them to the teamster who seemed to know nothing of it. However, if the loss is sustai~iril

LIGHT O N EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

between this [Norwalk] and Haltford, I make no doubt proper steps will be taken by Mr. Blakeley. In my last of the 13th cur[ren]'t p r post, to wh'h be pleased to be refered, I ment~on'da person's having seven or eight hundred bushles of flaxseed, which Mr. [Solomon] Simson and self found to be very good. I have purchased it at two dollars, which I shall continue to do till I have got your quantity. T h e teamster delivered me two of your caps, a worsted and a linen one. He says Mr. Blakeley desired him to call a t a place between this and Hartford for your overhalls and book where he had forwarded them, but he forgot the place and taking a diffelent road has not brought them. If they come to hand before I send off the team (wh'h I vely much doubt) they shall be sent along [to Philadelphia]. Mr. Simson and family joins in our best respects, and be assured I am, with esteem, d[ea]'r sir, your friend and h[um] 'ble serv't, SAMSON MEARS. Rum is at

20

dol'rs and rising.

A parcel of ready made buckskin breeches will sell well from forty-five to sixty dollars p r [pair], and some ready dress'd skins, some sheep skin breeches also will do.

Norwalk, January 28th, 1779. Mr. Aaron Lopez, Dear Sir: My last uf the 20th curr't p'r post advised you that I had sent out to engage a team to carry your goods forward, but I have met with no success yet. T h e badness of the roads at present and the distance of the journey are the objections made by those I have spoke to. My best endeavours shall be continued to forward them along as soon as possible. I recollect you to have said when you

39

40

AMERICALN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

1949

of forwarding them on immediately, was the reason I did not forward it p'r last post, reserving it to go with them, and as it's uncertain how long i t will be ere they go on, and lest it might contain some other matter you may want to be advised of, I now forward it. I have not since your absence been favor'd with any advice from your families. That I may soon have that pleasure from them and your self, is the wish of, dear sir, Your faithful friend and most h'ble serv't, SAMSON MEARS.

.

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LIGHT ON EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

address conjunctively with my self, and we are happy that the notice you justly merited from us has been so kindly received. We are wishful that you will on your return home give us a fresh occation to express the friendsh'p and esteem with which I have the pleasure of subscribing my self and in behalf of Mr. Simson, Your most ob't and very humble serv't, Mr. and Mrs. [Moses] Isaacks's best regard attends you with their prayers for your prosperity, with both the Mr. Myers's [Asher and Myer] and their family's. Price Cur't: Sugar 250 Rum 26 Molases 72s Foreig. salt 27.10 Tea 72s Tobacco 218 Snuff 20s Indigo 42s Gineva [gin] (home made) 84s Coffee 14s Black pepper 30s Writ'g paper Liz

Norwalk, February 23d, 1779. Mr. Aaron Lopez, Dear Sir: T h e bearer intending to set off tomorrow morning for Phil'a just gives me an opportun'y to acknowledge the rec't of your favor of the zd ins't and to advise you I have this day engaged a waggon to set off tomorrow with your goods. Having already wrote you this day at large to accompany the goods, have nothing further to offer than that if you have riot got any load to send back, nor are inclineable, either on yours or our joint account, to send any, to let Mr. Nathan Bush [of Philadelphia] know of it, as I have given him directions in your absence to procure a load on my accou't,

4l

rvhich he can be geting ready by the time the waggon gets in. In case you sho'ld incline to benefit by it, it would be most agreeable to me that you should, and I will annex the articles I order'd him to procure, to wh[ic]'h be pleased to be refer'd, and accept of the cordial esteem of, &[ear] sir, Your assured friend and h'ble serv't, 1/4 hund'd iron wire assorted from the size of a coarse liniting needle to the size of card wire and a less qu'ty of smalest size. A small box of short pipes. 150 w't of best pigtail and tjo w't hogt'l tobacco, and the remainder in the best Scotch snuff. If no pipes and wire to be had, that difficiency to be made u p in snuff.

Norwalk, February 23d, 1779. Mr. Aaron Lopez, Dear Sir: Yesterday your favor of zd current came to hand. Mine of the 16th ins't will acknowledge the receipt of yours of the 18th ult'o with advice of the sale of your rum a t twenty-four dollars, and for its further contents be pleased to be refered to the same. From the sudden change and fall of the article of salt you need not regret that you did not order more of it this way for the present. I t has become a great drugg for the cash which will, 1 apprehend, affect the favorable prospects I had some time ago of bartering it for flaxseed. T h e little call there is for the latter is the chief dependence 1 have of putting off the salt. T h e other articles I still have an expectation of vending to a good advantage. I am glad to have your approbation oE the purchase of the seven or eight hundred bushles of flaxseed and shall duly attend to your further instruction on that matter.

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AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

1949

his and horses expences you'll have to bear back, but if any other person or himself loads him back, you will be free from that charge. Wishing that your goods may be safely delivered and that success may reward all your toils is, with Mr. and Mrs. Simson's and the rest of my connexions best regard, the ultimate condusion of, dear sir, Your esteem'd friend and h'ble serv't, P. S. In case you load the waggon back

I must beg the favor you'll let Mr. Heyman Levy [the New York and Philadelphia merchant] know it who may have about fifty w't of sheet copper to send Mr. Asher Myers. Your indulging him with a chance of conveyance in the waggon will be gratefully acknowlelged. Finding that the person I wrote by the 16th was not gone yet nor does not go this week, I have taken my letter from him and here enclose it. T h e rec[eip]'t for your goods is enclosed in Mr. Hows's letter lest you mig't not be there when they arrive.

LIGHT O N EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

Norwalk, April i8th, 1779. Mr. Aaron Lopez, Dear Sir: Last evening your esteem'd favor of 29th ult'o came to hand, and if mine of the 4th ins't reaches you before you leave Phil'a (wh'h I hope it may) you'll be advised of the safe arrival of your

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AMERICALN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

thc subject I shall quote you verbatim that part of their letter which refers to it and is as lollows: "The 27 July last was handed us your favors of the 1st Feb'y, and 4 March, 1778. Did not answer the same in proper time, having ever since done all our endeavours to get the bill on Mr. Werden return'd or protested. Our trouble has been needless,' and cannot obtain any plain knowledgc wether its paid, protested, or in being. We are greatly surprised your mentioning that you car1 not acco't for Mr. Vance's backwardness, giving us to understand that before the definition of this bill we cannot expect payment from you. Our disbursemcnts were for your account, and every risque until1 paid must naturally be likewise, particularly whilst you can not alledge the cause of your disappointment to us, for we can always prove you that we sent th't bill to the principlest merch't at Dominico [the British West India Island] and never had a n answer from him of the reception. Therefore can not oblige him (for want of proof) to deliver up the bill protested or otherwise. But in order to try the result of this troublesome and disagreeable affair, you will be pleased to forward us a second, third, fourth, and fifth of the same tenor and date, at the reception of one of them will commission some attentive and faithful person to present the same to Mr. Werden. If it's noted shall know the reason, and in case he really has paid the bill to Mr. Vance, we may then call on him with propriety. Must likewise observe to you that by what we can learn, Mr. Werden and Mr. Vance are very intimate and have many connections together, and they will both try to delay this affair as long as they can; [this information is] for your government." It seems but one of those drafts have come to their hands out of the three you drew. One of them must have miscarried; the other one I have, wh'h I herewith return and beg you'll be so obliging as to renew your draft on Mr. Werden either in the same tenor, or

1949

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LIGHT ON EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

they will be ready is very uncertain. They ask five and six dollars a p's for them. I don't apprehend much danger here from the enemy, especially as it's near opening the campain, and they will have greater objects to attend to than this insignificant place. However, when I have the seed ready to move, and you continue in the desire to have it moved, it shall be done. With the pleasing expectation o! hearing from you soon, this concludes me, with the joint respects of all our families here to you and your worthy connexions, Your assured friend and most humble servant, SAMSONMEARS. My best regard awaits Mr. and Mrs. Rivera. Please to let him know I honor'd my self in address'g him lately by Mr. Jarvis.

Norwalk, May loth, 1579, Mr. Aaron Lopez, Dear Sir: My letter of 28th ult'o p'r Mr. Cannon will inform you of my intention of sending your box of plumes by him. But he could not make i t any ways con- . venient to fix it to his sulky and was obliged to leave i t behind. Captain Whitney in a fast sailing boat presents this day for Providence, and judging you are desireous of receiving it, and no prospect of sending it by land, induces me to venture it >by him to the care of Mr. David Lopez Jun'r, through which channel I hope it will come safe to hand. I have only to confirm what I wrote you last, and add the respectful regard of all our families to you and yours from, dear sir, Your assured friend and very humble servant, SAMSONMEARS.

P. S. Nothing yet arrived from your quarter.

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

q6

We are to the 20th May, and I find the demand increases for salt. It's got u p again to forty dollars the coarse kind. There has been one or two persons here abo't purchas'g the snuff. It's not being of the best quality they declined it. No sale yet for the breeches and skins.

1949

LIGHT ON EARLY CONNECTICUT J E W

between MI. Welden and my friend but I can't entertain the least idea it is so unless it's been very lately. Mr. Simson joins in thanks for your good intentions of a mutual improvem't of our situation if the times were encouraging. Until it is, we only can assure you of our anxious desi~esto hare it in our power to convince you by our services the advdncement of your interest would ever be the actuating principles we would be governed by, and that you may ever experience the smiles of Providence in everything that concerns you is, with our joint regard to you, your worthy lady, and every other branch of your family, the wishes of, dear sir, Your assured friend and very h'ble serv't, SAMSON MEARS.

Wilton, October Sth, 1779. Mr. Aaron Lopez, Dear Sir: Your esteemed favor of gd and 6th ult'o have received some time, which I should have answered ere now, but my time has been greatly taken u p in riding about the country to procure convenient places to house our families for the ensuing winter, and notwithstanding our assiduous endeavours, we have not been so fortunate as to obtain a single entire house [away] from the sea-coast. And rather than to go any great distance in the country for the sake of a room or two in a house with other families, we have concluded to accommodate ourselves in that manner within a few miles of this house and within the same township. Your indulgent disposition, I flatter my self, will from the above reasons plead a n excuse for my plotracted reply to your favors and [for] the benevolence of youl- generous family towards the relief of the unhappy suffer[er]s of Norwalk (who ever anticipates the occasions of the distressed and this large donation

AMERICA.N JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

48

perity. The additional blessing to your family of a son gives me great pleasure to hear, on which occasion our family heartily joins in congratulating you and your worthy connexions. I am extremely sorry to hear of the loss you met with by the damage of your goods by Wentworth who had my strict injunction to carry the casks on their bulge and which he promised me to do. It's a pitty they were not examined immediately in the delivery of them, as then his neglect would have been discovered and the damage less and then you might have stopt the amo't of the damage out of his freight which I think he ought to forfeit for his carelessness. I must yet beg your patience for your acco'ts as we have not yet collected our scattered effects among wh'h is my books and papers. In my next I hope to be able to convey it. I n the interim beg leave to command our families united regard to you and your extensi~econnexions, and with the greatest sincerity am, d'r sir, Your esteemed friend and very humble servant, SAMSOU MEARS.

1949

myself of your being at Boston, and of your friendly services, I am induced to beg the favor of you to let me know if there is a brobability of disposing of one hundred boxes of spermacity cand's deliverable a t Nonvalk for hard money or good bills of exchange, and what price may be obtain'd. They are as yet disingaged, which I shall keep so till I hear from you, reserving a preference to you or any of your friends. I understand there is a few boxes in this town which they ask six shilling sterl'g for. If it will not interfere too much with your more consquential concerns, I shall he highly obliged by hearing from you as soon as possible, as I am make'g some preparation to leave the Contincnt [North America, for the West Indies] in persuit of better fortune than I have met on it, and if I should be so happy as to be able to render you any serviccs abroad no one will be more devoted to your commands. I n expectations of seeing you soon, I remain, dear sir, Your devoted frie~ldand most humble servant, SAMSON MEARS.

Wilton, January ~ 1 s 1780. t~ Nervport, November 24th, 1779. Mr. Aaron Lopez, Dear Sir: I arrived here the 19th ins't and flattered myself with having the happiness of seeing you and part of your worthy family before you return'd home. The difficulty of procuring a horse proved that disagreeable disappointment. I brought with me your accounts, which I was in hopes to have handed ere this, with a balance of fi16.1.111/4 Lmo [lawful money] which is now held at your disposal. Judging it unnecessary of sending the acco'ts where you are, and a flattering expectation of secing you soon, is the reason of my not sending them by this conveyance. I n the meantime, desireous of availing

Dear Sir: T h e Tuesday morning after lcaving you and encountering a severe cold journey I had the happiness of joining our families here, who I found in great anxiety about my long absence. T h e means I took to advise them of the cause fail'd, and of course their conjectures were many, some not of the most favorable kind. However, I I I ~ arrival put an end to every painful feelling and gave way to the inexpressible enjoyment of embracing each other in perfect health. My intention of going to New London was obstructed by the information I rec'd at the place, where I was to take that road, of its being shut up. T h e only road I could then take was from

LIGHT ON EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

Hartford, which would have encreased my journey seventy miles. My being out so long, and the great risque I run of being as much longer detained out by an other fall of snow, and the infirmity of my horse, were strong inducements for me to avoid that and proceed home immediately and defer my business at New London for a future journey. From the information I obtain'd on the road of the price of produce that way, coffee was mention'd at six dollars, so that if I had got there there was no probability of effecting your order respecting that article. I cannot pass over in silence yours and every branch of your worthy family's friendly civilities during my stay at your hospitable house. It fills me with every

49

sentiment of gratitude while I offer my grateful acknowledgments for the many kindness I have repeatedly received. Our families begs ?? their united regard to you, yonr good lady, and the rest of your family, while mine in a most particu'r manner attends them and your self with the greatest sincerity of, dear sir, Your assured friend and most humble serv't, SAMSONMEARS. P. S. Should Capt. [Benjamin] Wright [your factor] yet be with you, please to make my best regard acceptable to him, and let him know my warmest wishes are for the restoration of his health, and that I shall be happy in the continuance of his friendship.

APPENDIX I1 Peter Betts and Myer Myers, both of Norwalk in the County of Fairfield, of lawful age, testify and say that some short time after the Continental troops retreated from Long Island they were at a public house in said Nonvalk where they saw Ralph Isaacs of New Haven and heard him and a gentleman called by the name of Hazzard conversing and disputing about the times. And that in said conversation they heard said Isaacs declare that in the battle on Long Island the ministerial [British] army suffered or sustained a very inconsiderable or small loss, and the Continental troops sustained a very great loss. And that the Continental troops will not stand fire but always will give back, and that the people to the westward had come in [to the British] and numbers more would come in, meaning they would come in in the same m[anner?] the people have done in Long Island.

And these deponants say that from the conversation and declaration of s'd Ralph Isaacs it evidently appeared that he was of the opinion that wherever the British troops should pass the people there would readily submit to them, and that said Isaacs's whole conversation was very discouraging with respect to success on the Continental side, and these deponants further say not. Myer Myers Peter Betts Fairfield County, SS., Sorwalk, 16th October, 1776. Personally appeared Myer Myers and Peter Betts, the signers of the above deposition, and swore to the truth of the same. Before me Tho's Fitch, Justice of Peace. Opened in the General Assembly at New Haven, October 1776, bv George Wyllys, Secr'ty.

APPENDIX I11 Norwalk. Novenlber the 28th. 1780. Gentlemen: As I am under nesessety, I hope you

will excuse my, boldness in addressing my self to you. I have done but little business this four years, and what little I have done has been done to disadvan-

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

50

tage on account of the depreation of the money. When these times begun I had about twelve hundred pounds, good money, that I could call my own, and as I had nothing else to depend upon but a little traffick to git a support, I laid i t out in the artickel of suger, and at that time expected to advance my self greatly by it, and kept them by me some time before I disposed of them. Soon after I dispos'd of them the money bigun to depredate fast, and by the advice of my friends I kept the money by me for some time, I expecting i t would be good in time. But to my misfortune it sunk so fast that I got but little or nuthing for the hool [whole], as low as a penny for a doller. So that I have all most sunk my hool substance so that I am not able to carry on any business, and as I cannot go to New York for supplyes, and you are gentlemen that has goods on hand and willing to do all the good you can to people under misfortunes, I beg that you will

1949

befriend me, to let me have a small assortment of goods. I am so far advanc'd in yeals that if I don't do something, I shall soon spend what little I have left. You may relye upon me that I will be puntual to my engagements to you, either in money o r any kind of produce that you shall chuse. Goods will sell well hear and quidc if I should be so fortunate that you will let me have a supply. I beg you will favour me with an answer from you. I do not mention the quantity, more or less, but leve i t to you to let me have as much as you think proper. This, gentleman, is the truth 01 my 11001 affairs. Please to ask Mr. Ralph Jacobs [of Newport, Solomon Simson's brother-in-law]. H e is knowing to it. No more a t present but rain. Your very hurnble servent, Mica1 Judah. T o Mr. Jacob Dilevarey [De Rivera] and Mr. Aron Lopous.

APPENDIX IV Woodstock, 15 August, 1781. Honoured Sir: By the arrival of Mr. Benj'n Jacobs [a nephew of Solomon Simson] I reec'id a verbal message from you which gave me great uneasiness to find i t was not in my power to accomplish. You may depend on it that I have been very unlucky this two months as the trade has been very dull occasion'd by the people harvesting. When that's done, mine, I hope, will commence, God willing. Have been obliged to do my endeavours to raise some small matter to settle all my debts before I go from hence which will be to my new shop next week, when and where hope that m(a)y removal will be reciprocal both to myself and creditors. And as soon I have settled Mr. Jacobs, shall return to collect my debts of which you may depend on being the first person that I shall pay as far as I can.

I know you indulgence has been such that with shame to my self, may i t be said, I did not nor could not perform my duty in my engagements, yet must crave your farther indulgence, and hope in a short time after my removal to be able to pay a part if not all what I owe. T h e worthy Mr. Rivera [your father-in-law] can tell in what situation my shop is now, by which you may see if I have enough to pay in) just debts. I cannot in consciance ask any more favours. But you know in order to attract custom we are obliged to furnish a shop as much assorted as possible [with] the little of each article. Therefore, if I can crave a little farther of your help, I make no doubt it will enable me to pay you the old debt much sooner, as the place where I am going is more populus, and you are celtain everybody comes to a new shop thinking thereby to purchase much cheaper. Therefore if I have such things as is

LIGHT ON EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

most vendable [saleable] will then afford me a good assortment. The things that I shall want, Mr. Jacobs has a list, and if you chuse to let me have them, shall then think myself doubly indebted to you for your favors, besides paying you well for them. Pray, dear sir, don't take it amiss what I write. You have been so good to assist me in my first beggining, therefore beg it is as a favour you'l continue it, and it shall be my chief study to forward myself by my assiduity and punctuality in paying you, all as soon as possible, for it gives me a great uneasiness to think have not been able to have settled with you before, but

5l

must tell you that instead of diminishing in my shop have added to it daily, so that having good sales may then be able to finish [paying] all my old accounts. Cannot proceed without first asking after your good family's health; hope they are all well -as these leaves me aL present - to whom you'll be pleased to tender my best regards in general and particular, you'l receive the same sincerely, and believe me to be, D'r sir, Your true friend and most h'[um]b[l]e serv't, JOSEPHDEPASS. [To Aaron Lopez]

APPENDIX V T o the honorable General Assembly to be holden at Hartford on the second Thursday of instant January: The memorial of Manuel Myers of S t a d o r d in Fairfield County and State of Connecticut humbly sheweth that he fled from the city of New York in the year 1776 to avoid the enemy and came to this place where he has resided till this time doing very little business, but living upon the little he saved from the city. The memorialist further observes that his buildings since he left New York, the principal part of them, have been destroyed by fire, and that the memorialist has large sums of money due to him from persons living in N-e~vYork who would be willing to pay him in ~oodwares and merchandize of some Cind and not in money.

And the memorialist further begs leave to observe to your honors that he is near sixty years of age, and has with him in Stamford an aged mother and brother-in-law who depend upon him for support, and that he has not much property of his own left in the country [Stamford]. He therefore prays your honors to grant him liberty to collect of debts due to him in the city of New York in good wares or merchandize to the amount of six hundred pounds lawful money, and bring them into this state to sell and dispose off, so that he may be enabled to support himself and family. And your memorialist, as in duty bound, shall every pray. Dated at Stamford, the 7th day of January, A.D., 1782. MANELMYERS.

APPENDIX VI A it please your Jonathan Trumbull]:

LGovernor

When I had the honor of paying my respects to your Excellency in person at Labanon, I then mention'd iny hav-

ing a vessel and cargo with salt which I expected daily, agreeable to permit from your Excellency and Council of Safety. Your Excellency's reply was that you was requested by Geneial Washington not to grant any flags [of truce], and that I must act by the old permit.

52

AMERICA N JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

1949

New Haven, 9th Oct'r, 82.

22Nathaniel Wales (1722-1783): influenital Connecticut patriot, gunpowder manufacturer, member of Council of Safety, friend of Governor Trumbull (Commemorative Biographical Record of Tolland and Windham Counties, Connecticut, Beers, Chicago, 1903) .

23Pierpont Edwards (1750-1826): member of the well-known Massachusetts Edwards family. N e w H a v e n attorney, member of Continental Congress (Riographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1927).

LIGHT ON EARLY CONNECTICUT JEWRY

Acquisitions Since we have written our last report about the acquisitions of the American Jewish Archives, our collection of manuscripts, records, and documents has been considerably increased by copies of material which we have purchased from Archives and libraries and by gifts and loans which we have received constantly through the kindness and the interest of congregational officers, community leaders, secretaries of societies, fraternities, committees, lodges, clubs and homes, and through the courtesy and helpful cooperation of rabbis and others all over the country. T h e following Minute Books which we have already arranged, catalogued, and bound are available for any research touching on the problems of Jewish settlement, immigration and emigration, geographic expansion and increase of population, the development of the various types of American Jewry, the difference between European and American communal life, the changes in the concepts of religion within the various congregations, and the gradual assimilation to the cultural, social and economic surroundings.

Congregation Temple Israel, Hollywood, , Congregation B'nai J e s h u 1.u n , D e s Moines, Iowa, 1873-1890 California, 1926-i gqo Congregation Beth Israel, Hartford, Con- Congregation B'nai Jeshurun, Leavenworth, Kansas, 1892-1931 necticut, 1870-1920, German and EngT h e Gates of Prayer, New Orlearis, lish Louisiana, Vols. 1-111, 1850-1884 Congregation New Britain, Connecticut, Congregation Temple Sinai, New Or1896, Yiddish leans, Louisiana, Vols. I-IV, 1870-1943 Congregation Bnai Israel, Columbus, Congregation Temple Sinai, New OrGeorgia, I 880-1919 leans, Louisiana, Board of Trustees, Congregation Bnai Israel, Columbus, Vols. 1-11, 1870-1921 Georgia, Correspondence, 1898-191g Congregation Bnai Israel, Columbus, Baltimore Hebrew Congregation, Baltimore, Maryland, Vols. I-IV, 185~-1922, Georgia, Cash Book, Vols. 1-11, 1889Original 190s North Shore Congregation Sinai, Winnet- Baltimore Hebrew Congregation, Baltimore, Maryland, Vital Records (Marka, Illinois, 1920-1927 riages - Births - Deaths), 1840-1861, Hebrew Congregation Temple Israel, Original Terre Haute, Indiana, 1908-1936 Hebrew Congregation Temple Israel, Baltimore Hebrew Congregation, Baltimore, Maryland, Checkbooks, 1865Terre Haute, Indiana, Ledger, 19041919, Original 1908

54

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

1949

11, Vols. I-IV, 1817-1858 Baltimore Hebrcw Congregation, BaltiVol. I, Receipt Book, 1817-1858 more, Maryland, Ledger of Charity Vol. 11, Cash Account, 1818-1824 Collection Fund, 1904-1914, Original Vol. 111, Offerings Book, 1824-1856 Baltimore Hebrew Cong~egation, BaltiVol. IV, List of seats in the Synagogue, more, Maryland, Record Rook of Of1827-1845 ferings, Vols. 1-11, 1842-1920, Original Congregation Oheb Sholom, Baltimore, Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Financial Records, Group Maryland, Vols. 1-111, 1870-1905 111, Vols. I-IV, 1830-1859 B'er Chayim Congregation, Cumberland, Vol. I, Offerings Book, 1830-1859 Maryland, Treasurer's Book, 186;-lgoo Vol. 11, Lists of persons having MitzMount Zion Hebrew Congregation, St. vah, 1840 Paul, Minnesota, Vols. I-IX, 1859-1946 Vol. 111, Offerings Book, 1844-1847 Mount Zion Hebrew Congregation, St. Paul, Minnesota, Board of AdminisVol. IV, Cash Account, 1848 tration, 1946-1948 Vol. V, Offerings Book, 1848-1851 Congregation B'nai Jehuda, Kansas City, Cong~egationMikve Israel, Philadelphia, Missouri, Vols. I-VI, 1855-1916 Pennsylvania, Vital Records, Vols. I-V, United Hebrew Congregation, St. Louis, 1776-1884 Vol. I , Records of Marriages, Births Missouri, 1841-1859 and Dcaths, 1776-1842 Congregation Elnann El, New York, New Vol. 11, Register of the Deaths, 1803York, 1865-1868 (Some excerpts from 1818 the Minute Book.) Jewish Community Center, White Plains, Vol. 111, Certificates of Birth, 1841New York, Vol. I, 1924-1925 1862 Temple Beth Emeth, Brooklyn, New Vol. IV, Certificates of Birth, 1843York, Vols. 1-11, 1911-1934 1884 T h e Temple, Cleveland, Ohio, 1885-1894 Vol. V, Record of Circumcisions, 1810Congregation Rodeph Shalom, Philadel1829 phia, Pennsylvania, Vols. I-V, 1811- Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Correspondence, V o 1s 1910, German and English I-IV, 1782-1899 Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, Vol. I, 1782-1805 Pennsylvania, Minute Book, Vols. I-IV, Vol. 11, 1806-1831 1781-1895 Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, Vol. 111, 1831-1857 Vol. IV, 1858-1899 Pennsylvania, Minute Book (Resolu(Among the correspondents are: tions), 1810-1883 1783. Manuel Noah, Jonas Phillips, Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, Myer Hart, Simon Nathan, lsaac Pennsylvania, Board of Managers, Moses 1824-1859 1784, Jonas Phillips, Gershon Seixas, Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, Moses Nathan, Barnard Gratz, Pennsylvania, F i n a n c i a l Records, Mordecai M. Mordecai Group I, Vols. I-VIII, 1782-1796 1785, Jonas Phillips, Benjamin Nones Vol. I, Subscription for the Building 1786-1793. Manuel Josephson, Jonas of the Synagogue, 1782-1784 Phillips, Benjamin Nones Vol. 11, Cash Account, 1582-1792 1791. Naphtali Phillips, Jacob Cohen, Vol. 111, Offerings Book, 1786-1787 David Franks Vol. IV, Cash Account, 1790:17gr 1792, Isaac de Costa, Charleston Vol. V, Offerings Book, 1791 1793, Levi Phillips, Benjamin D. Hart Vol. VI, Offerings Book, 1792 1800, Isaac Hays, Simon Gratz, Jacob Vol. VII, Receipt Book, 1792-1796 Mordecai, Richmond, Va. Vol. VIII, Offerings Book, 1795-1796 1804-1805, Hyman Gratz, Jacob Hart, Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, New York, Sirnon Gratz Pennsylvania, Financial Records, Group

.

ACQUISITIONS

1812-1816, H. S. Polak, B. J. Phillips, Abraham Hart, Samuel Hays 1825, Haym M. Salomon, New York 1839, Lewis Allen I 841, Moses Montefiore, London 1832-1849, Isaac Leeser Congregation Rodef Shalom, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Vols. 1-11, 1880-1912 Congregation Tree of Life, Pittsburgh,

55 Pennsylvania, Vols. 1-11. 1858-1917 Congregation Tree of Life, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Board of Trustees, 1907'917 Congregation Tree of Life, Columbia, South Carolina, Vols. 1-111, 1905-1943 Board of Delegates of the Israelites of the United States, Minute Book, 18591860

Most of these minute books include the constitutions of the congregations, but we are also in possession of separate by-laws, charters and amendments of which the following are typical:

Congregation Gates of Prayer, New Orleans, Louisiana, Constitution and Charter, 1850 Congregation Gates of Prayer, New Orleans, Louisiana, By-Laws (Verbesserung der Nebengesetze) , 1859-1861, German Congregation Temple Sinai, New Orleans, Louisiana, Constitution and ByLaws, 1870

Congregation Adas Emunu, Hoboken, New Jersey, Certificate of Incorporation, February 2, 1872 Congregation Ohev Sholem, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Constitution, December 12, 1855. Congregation Ohev Sholem, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, A m e n d e d C h a r t e r , May 5, 1868

The philanthropic, cultural, social, and educational activities of Jewish corporate life are reflected in the following documents:

Hebrew Social Club, Bridgeport, Connecticut, 1896-1899 Hebrew School, Norwalk, Connecticut, 1915 Jewish Ladies Aid Society, Columbus, Georgia, I 874-I 927 Kehilath Anshe Mayriv, Chicago, Illinois, Board of Education, I 859-1877 Jewish Ladies Aid Society, Kokomo, Indiana, 1914-1925 Mount Sinai Sisterhood, Sioux City, Iowa, Ledger, 1919-1926 Mount Sinai Sisterhood, Sioux City, Iowa, Minute Book, 1925-1936 B'nai B'rith, Sholem Lodge No. 78, Leavenworth, Kansas, 1866-1915 Jewish Orphans Home, New Orleans, Louisiana, Board, Vols. I-XIV, I 855'939

Association for the Relief of Jewish Widows and Orphans Home, New Orleans, Louisiana, I 854-1913 Annual Reports and Orations of Jewish Orphans Home, New Orleans, Louisiana, Vols. I-XX, 1855-1920 Social Club, St. Paul, Minnesota, 1885 Social Club, St. Paul, Minnesota, Ledger, I 883-1884 Purim Association, New York, New York, 1872-1895 Frauenverein, Hamilton, Ohio, 18731881, German Congregation Covenant of Peace, Easton, Pennsylvania. Kranken-und LeichenWache-Verein, 1856-I 887, German Congregation Ohev Sholem, Ladies Hebrew Social Circle, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Vols. I-VI, 1870-1925

56

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

Congregation Ohev Sholem, Ladies Hebrew Social Circle, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Ledger, 1907-1918 Congregation Ohev Sholem, Ladies Hebrew Social Circle, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Record of Sisterhood members, igi3-ig35 Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Hebra Kaddisha, 18131866 Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Hebrew Education Society, Constitution and By-Laws, 1848 Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, The Teachers and Parents Assistant, 1844 ~

~

1949

Hebrew Sunday School Society, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Board of Managers, 1859-1882 (Including a Treasurer's Report, 1859, and the charter of May lo, 1838 "For the instruction of Children belonging to the Jewish faith.") Congregation Rodef Shalom Sisterhood, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 1906-1912 Congregation Tree of Life, Ladies Aid Society, Columbia, South Carolina, 1901-1930 Council of Jewish Women, Columbia, South Carolina, 1919-1921 Isaac Mayer Wise, Plan for a philanthropic society, no date

Collections of inscriptions on tombstones in old Jewish cemeteries enable us to determine important vital statistics dealing with Jewish personalities. For instance:

Small Jewish Burial Ground, Cohen and Spruce Streets, Savannah, Georgia, 54 Tombstone Inscriptions, 1797-1882 (Among them the graves of Abraham J. Abraham, b. 1769, d. 1844; Jacob Nunez Cardozo, b. 1786, d. 1873; Isaac Cohen, b. 1793, cl. 1871; Mrs. R. B. Cohen, b. 1798. d. 1881; Isaac Russel, b. 1787, d. 1845; Mordecai Sheftall, d. 1798; Sheftall Sheftall, d. 1817.) Congregation Mikve Israel, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Records of Burials, Vols. 1-11, Spruce Street Cenietery, 1843-1886; Federal Street Cemetery, 1844-1909

The personal and everyday life of Jewish individuals, their relationship to their families, to Jewish and Christian friends, their activities in trade and industry, academic or military professions, as peddlers, merchants, storekeepers, manufacturers, farmers, pioneers, teachers, rabbis, physicians, lawyers, soldiers, captains, midshipmen, army commissioners, agents or interpreters, their participation in religious and philanthropic affairs, their first experiences and hardships as immigrants, their contributions to the social, cultural, economic development of the United States, their attempt to combine the old European traditions with the ideologies of the new country, in short the whole process of Americanization are revealed by a large collection of letters and memoirs. Considerable progress has already been made in indexing this material. LETTERS ALLEN,MICHAELMITCHELL; l e t t e ~ ,1873, H a n n o v e ~ ,Ce~nzany,Photostat A letter of this teacher and secretary of the Philadelphia Hebrew Education

Society to a friend in the United States, during a visit in Germany, describing his impressions of the Jewish Congregation in Hannover whose members he

57

ACQUISITIONS

Alsberg, Scholem Asch, Paul Baerwald, Meyer Berlin, Thomas C. Barringer, James H. Becker, the Lazard Freres, Herbert and Irving Lehman, Judah Magnes, Henry Morgenthau, Charles Montefiore, Felix Warburg, Stephen S. Wise, Herbert Hoover, and many charity organizations and committees. T h e correspondence touches on his relief work with Jews in Poland and Russia, the distribution of funds he received from American Jewry, and his ac~ivities traveling with the Hoover mission as an agent of the Joint Distribution Committee. (Gift of the Bogen family.) BONDI, AUGUST,1833-1907, Corresponcleizce; 36 letters, 1883-1906, Salina, Kansas, Photostats Fourteen letters, 1883-1884, of this pioneer of Kansas, opponent of slavery, soldier in the Civil War and a Kansas public official, to the Kansas Governor G . W. Glick, dealing with political campaigns, elections, Kansas affairs, politicians and enemies of the government. Twenty-one letters, 190.7-1906, to G . W. Martin informing the Kansas State Historical Society, oC which he was one of the directors, of his participation in the student's revolutionary movement of Vienna, where he was born, of his membership in the Vienna Academic Legion in 1848, and especially of his military campaign with John Brox\ln in Kansas, 1855-1856. He served as a volunteer with Brown and participated in the battles of Black Jack and Osawatomie in 1856. He also describes the men who fought with him. (Copies from the Kansas State Historical Society.) ,

CIIAI'MAN, ABRAHAM, Papei-s; 2 letters, 1776-1778, Montreal, Canada, Photostats In a letter to Governor Frederick Haldimand in 1778, Chapman emphasized his loyal conduct and his animosity to the rebels. H e supplied several regiments during the war, was one of those who repelled the rebels at Long Point and served as a volunteer with the troops when the rebels were defeated at Three

58

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

1949

ACQUISITIONS

1945. The seventieth anniversary of the Hebrew Union College a significant event. America has received notable contributions from the theological, intellectual and social thought of the Hebrew Union College. Isaac M. Wise to Henry Marks, 1898. concerning the wedding of Marks's daughter. Three letters of Isaac M. Wise to Julius Mayerberg, 1888-1893.Will make him a competent Jewish preacher. Advises him how to instruct a proselyte. Isaac M. Wise to H. N. Son, 1889, concerning the Hebrew Union College. (Gift of the Hebrew Union College. T h e Archives takes this opportunity to thank Dr. J. Victor Greenebaum, Chairman of the Library Committee of the Board of Governors of the Hebrew Union College, for his efforts to further the collection of Americana manuscripts and materials during the period when the Americana manuscript division was a part of the Hebrew Union College Library.) HOFFMAN, MARVIN,CAPTAIN; Letter, June 28, 1948, Dallas, Texas, Typewritlei2 copy T o William J . Mack, Cincinnati, about the heroism and soldierly death of his son Leon.

59 New York, Washington, D . C., Original Brandeis, Louis Dembitz; three letters to Marcus from Washington, D. C., 19291937. Thanks for interesting articles and papers. Kagan, Solomon R., M. D.; letter, 1948, Roxbury, Massachusetts, to Dr. Marcus. Information about Dr. J. Horwitz, the great American Jewish physician, a pioneer in his field and the first American Surgeon-General of the Navy. Marcus, Jacob R.; letter, July 18, 1926, Jerusalem. In this letter to Judah Magnes he gives his impressions of Palestine, his opinion of the political, economic, cultural conditions, the English foreign policy, the Balfour declaration, the Arab-Jewish relations, the probability of a big-visioned university, declaring the university must produce not only students, but also Jews. H e also includes a short history of Palestine and a brief description of Palestine as a Jewish cultural center. Roosevelt, E l e a n o r ; letter, 1947, New York. Thanks for sending an article in which she was mentioned.

MINIS,ABIGAII.;Letter, 1780, Charleston, South Carolina, Photostat Requests payment for some articles of provision she delivered to the allied army. Law, ISAAC; SOLOMONS, LEVI;LYON,BEN(Copy from the Georgia Historical SoJAMIN; LEVI, GERSHON; SOLOMONS, EZE- ciety, Savannah, Georgia.) CHIEL; CHAPMAN,ABRAHAM; Letter, no [late, probably between 1.768-1770, Que- RAISIN,JANE L., Papers; 4 letters, 2 pabec, Canada, Photostat pers, I ancestry table, 2 poems, 1897Addressed to Guy Carleton, the Com- 1910, Wilmington, North Carolina, mander-in-chief of the Province of Que- Brentwood, Long Island, London, Manubec. T h e petitioners who suffered heavy script and Typewrittefi losses and misfortunes as commissaries Two letters from William Calder to of the armies during the French and Mrs. Lee C. Harby, 1901, deal with the Indian War, 1763, are unable to pay Lazarus family. One letter from B. F. their creditors and ask for help through Stevens for M. E. Harby, 1897, deals the settling of their affairs by a com- with Sir Clement Harby, Consul at the mission of bankruptcy. Morea, 1681. (Copy from the Public Archives of (Gift of Jane L. Raisin.) Canada, Ottawa.) ROSENAU,WILLIAM,1865-1943, Papers; MARCUS, JACOBRADER,Papers; 8 letters, 1889-1943, Ma7~uscript and Typewritten I 929-1948, Cincinnati, Ohio, Jerusalem, Correspondence with rabbis, congrega-

'

60

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

tions, Catholic leaders, communities, the Hebrew Union College, the Mayors of Baltimore, the Governors of Maryland, Presidents of the United States, students, the HIAS, CCAR, and refugees from Germany. Among the correspondents are: Bernard E e l s e n t h a l , Gotthard Deutsch, W. F. Albright, 1938-1942, Cyrus Adler, 1933-1939, Michael J. Curley, Archbishop of Baltimore, 1929-1939, ISmar Elbogen, 1942-1943. Maurice Eisendrath, 1943, Sol Freehof, 1939-1943, Harry Friedenwald, 1933-1939, ChieE Rabbi Hertz, London, 1936, Judah Magnes, 1939, Israel Zangwill, 1929. Woodrow Wilson, 1916, William Howard Taft, 191 1 , Claude Montefiore, Henrietta Szold, 1903-1906, Kaufman Kohler, 1906. Now being catalogued. (Gift of the Rosenau family.) ROSENWALD, JUI.IUS, Papers; 1 ancestry tree, I letter, 1861, Manuscript One ancestry tree of the Rosenwald family. No date One letter of Moritz Mannheimer to his children, Dinkelsbuehl, Germany, 1861. I n the hour of his death he begs his children not to depart from the path of virtue. German with an English translation. (Gift of Dr. Robert Rosenthal, St. Paul, Minn.) SCHLESINGER, Papers; letter, 1871. German, Manuscript

Records of the Myers, COHEN,CAROLINE; Hays and Mordecai Families from 17031913, Published for the family, n o date, 57 PP. About family affairs, social relations and intermarriages with Christians, the economic, social and commercial conditions of that period, the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, society life in Boston, Richmond, Virginia, Mobile, Alabama, Philadelphia, Petersburg, Virginia, and the Mordecai School in Warrenton, North Carolina.

1949

I n a letter to her uncle, hloritz Schlesinger, living in Des Moines, Iowa, Julie Schlesinger, living in Olnhausen, Germany, writes of her intention to emigrate to the United States. (Gift oE Dr. Robert Rosenthal, St. Paul, Minn.) SCHULMAN, SAMUEL,Letter; 1921, New York, Original T o Joseph Krauskopf concerning an educational lecture WOLSEY,LOUIS,Papers; 19 items, 18771925, Cleveland, Ohio, Cincinnati, Ohio, Charleston, West Virginia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, New Yorlt, Manuscripts, Typewritten and Photostats A letter of Abraham Cronbach, 1923, to Louis Wolsey deals with the the problem of intermarriage. I n three letters, I 879-1881, to William and Mrs. Hackenburg, Philadelphia, Marcus Jastrow, the rabbi of Rodeph Shalom Congregation, Philadelphia, criticizes American Jewish students, their education and knowledge. Not yet emerged from medieval ignorance. These papers include Jastrow's contract with t h e Congregation R o d e p h Shalom. May 29, 1866. Julian Morgenstern discusses, in a letter to Louis Wolsey, 1924, the affairs of the Hebrew Union College, some students, and the question of intermarriage. (Gift o l Rabbi Louis Wolsey.)

EI.SAS,JACOB;autobiography, Typewritten Memoirs of a man who was born near Stuttgart in Germany, in 1818, came to the United States in 1839, began as a peddler in Philadelphia and Cincinnati, entered a dry goods and clothing business in Portsmouth, Ohio in 1841 and ended as a well-known and respected businessman in Cincinnati (Courtesy of Mrs. Fred H. Roth, Cincinnati, his grand-daughter.)

NONES,JOSEI'HB., 1797-1887; Naval R e m iniscence~, 1812-1822, Pizotostat Memoirs written in 1887, at the age of go, dealing with his ancestors in Italy and Spain, his father Benjamin Nones, the career oC his brothers and nephews in the army and in public service, but mainly oC his own experiences as an American sailor and midshipman durlng the War of 1812, as private secretary to Henry Clay, the peace commission of the Ghent mission which concluded the peace between England and the United States. These memoirs also touch on his service under the command of Decatur on the Gueniere during the Algerian War in 1815. and his participation in naval encounters. T h e memoirs are interspersed with many anecdotes, drawings, pictures, historical essays, economic and social observations, descriptions of foreign countries he visited such as Holland, England, Norway, Spain, Italy, Algier, Tunis, Tripoli, India, and biographical sketches of famous personalities he met when abroad. (Copy from the American Jewish Historical Society.) JOHN;Reminiscences of his PROSKAUER, life written by his grand-datrghter, Jenny Proskauer, St. Louis, Missouri, 1948, &fanuscript

ALLEN,MICHAELM.; Sermons and diary as Jewish Army Chaplain, July-September, 1861 (Courtesy of Mrs. Clarence Allen, New York.) , EINHORX,I)AVID;Znc~ugural sermon before Har Sinai Verein, September 29, 1855 (Through Rabbi C. A. Rubenstein, Baltimore, Maryland.) CRIES,MOSESJ.; Addresses delivered i n Cleveland at Special Services, Convenz~entions,etc.: 1896 Cleveland Associated Charities Annual Meeting

John Proskauer, a son of Professor Joseph Mayer ben Halevy, native of Breslau, Germany, a follower of Carl Schurz, came to Philadelphia in 1848 after he was forced to flee from Germany. He was on the side of the Union during the Civil War, while his son Adolph fought as a major on the Southern side. After the war John joined the Portuguese Temple in Richmond, Virginia. (Courtesy of Miss J e m y Proskauer.) SEESEL,H.; Merr~oirs of a Mexican Veteran, 1822-1897, Printed His youth as an orphan in Southern Germany, his emigration to Paris in 1838 and to the United States in 1842. At first he was a peddler in Natchez, Mississippi, a trunk maker in Cincinnati, a clerk in Lexington, Kentucky, then a soldier in the Mexican War, 1846.1847, and a peddler again in Lexington, Kentucky. In 1848 he made a trip to Germany where he married, came back to the United States and lived in New Orleans, Louisiana, Vicksburg, Mississippi, Richmond, Virginia, as a peddler, boarding-house proprietor and so on, till he moved to Memphis, Tennessee, where he entered the butcher business and bought a farm.

1899 Cleveland Chamber of Commerce 19m Convention of Council of Jewish Women 1905 Citizens Thanksgiving Service at Unity Church 1907 Installation of Rabbi Louis Wolsey Addresses without date and place: "The Faith by Which We Live" "The Jew of History" "The Religion of History" "The Jew through the Centuries" "The Immigrant" "Humanity and the Bible" Addresses in Memoriam and Tribute Addresses and Reports to Central Conference of American Rabbis

62

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

Addresses delivered before out-of-town organizations Addresses at meetings of the TJnion of American Hebrew Congregations Holyday Sermons during the period 1902-1907 Sunday Morning Addresses at the Temple, Cleveland, Ohio, 1902-1917 ROSENAU, WILLIAM; Addresses delivered at Baltimore and out-of-town synagogues Papers read at and prepared for learned societies Addresses and papers for the Jewish Chautauqua Society Addresses at Jewish institutions in Baltimore and elsewhere

1949

Addresses at U.S.O., Jewish Welfare Board, etc. Funeral Services Prayers for Bar Mitzvah Boys Wedding Addresses Prayers for various occasions Memorial Services for Cemetery Thanksgiving Services Lectures on the Talmud, Prophets, and Biblical Archealogy, the Midrash, 011 Jewish History, etc. ROSENWALD, JULIUS;Address, lvovember 26, 1920 Delivered at the Euclid Avenue Temple, Cleveland, Ohio, on behalf of the Hebrew Union College

HISTORYOF THE JEWS OF CALIFORNIA, (Copy from Orcgon State Archives.) I 848-1880 Excerpts from books, newspapers, al- A BRIEF HISTORYOF THE CONGREGATION OREGON( T h e manacs, encyclopedias, historical works, BETH ISRAEL,PORTLAND, memoirs, and the publicatiorls of the Golden Book), 1858-1888, Manuscript Academy of Pacific Coast History (Copy from T h e American Jewish SHORTHISTORYOF THE LADIESBENEVOLENT SOCIETY, WILKES-BARRE, PENNSYLHistorical Society.) VANIA,1888-1948 HISTORYOF THE TEWS AND THE CONGREBETH GATION OF HENDERSON, KENTUCKY, by S. HISTORYOF THE CONGREGATION ELOHIM,CHARLESTON, SOUTHCAROLINA, 0 . Ileilbl-onncr, 1 g q 2 N o date NATCHEZ, M~SS~SSIPPI Handwritten transcriptions and news- HISTORYOF THE JEWS I& GALVESTON, by RABBIHENRYCOHEN paper clippings concerning the history, TEXAS, the business life, the community affairs (Newspaper clippings concerning the of the Congregation B'nai Israel, the Jewish Congregation.) Hebra Kaddisha, the Hebrew Ladies FORTHWORTH,TEXAS Aid Association, etc. Notes concerning the Jews in Ft. (Courtesy of Mrs. E. H. Beckman.) Worth, especially their part in the meat OF TEMPLE B'NAI ISRAEL, packing business, 1850-1880. Excerpts EARLYHISTORY OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA, 1903-1946 from a manuscript of many volumes prepared by the IIistory Records Survey PORTLAND, OREGON Church records and notes concernirlg oE W.P.A. (The original volumes are in the PubJews in Oregon and notes on Jewish lic Library, Ft. Worth, Texas.) Congregations

BLACHSCHLEGER, ABE; Citizenship paper, October lo, 1888

A Russian, admitted as a dtizen at the Court House in Cincinnati, Ohio

(Gift of Rabbi Eugene Blachschleger, Montgomery, Alabama.) LILIENTHAL-EISENBERG PAPERS; Geburtsurkunde der Louise Lilienthal, Volkmarchen, Germany, November 27, 1837 Todesurkunde des Moses Lilienthal, Volkmarchen, Germany, April 4, 1847 Reisepass fuer Louise Lilienthal, Kurfuerstentum Hessen, March 31, 1R57 Heiratsbewilligung des Kurhessischen Landesrabbinats Kassel fuer Louise Lilienthal and Levi Eisenberg aus Hofgeismar, April 4, 1857 Buergerbrief fuer Levi Eisenberg, Kassel, November 16, 1850 Citizenship paper for Levi Eisenberg, St. Clairsville, Ohio, May 18, 1868 (Courtesy of Dr. Bernard Bamberger.)

SALOMON, HAYM,Collection; An issue of T h e Pennsylvania-Packet. September 21, 1784, containing on the last page a full column of the advertisement of Haym Salomon A photographic record of the Diary in Office of Finance, 1782, showing the actual notation in the hand of the Finance Officer, Robert Morris, of his contact with Haym Salomon, on the date of May 8, reading: "This morning I sent for Hayni Salomon, etc." A photographic reproduction of the marriage license of Haym Salomon as well as a Promissory Note of \$400.00 by F. Hopkinson, Treasurer of Loans of Pennsylvania dated 1780, and also a Promissory Note made out to Haym Salomon in the sum of 67 pounds by John W. Wilcocks in Philadelphia in 1783. (Courtesy of A. Straus, Baltimore, Maryland.) ANDREW CLOU& CO.; September 21, 1790 Check payable to Mr. Jonas Phillips POLOOK,RACHAEL; Last Will, August 23, 1817, Chatham County, Georgia

OF EMILEKAHNTO MARRIAGE CERTIFICATE AURELIAHYMAN,Cincinnati, Ohio, February 2, 1869, signed by Isaac M. Wise, Original

MARRIAGE CERTIFICATE OF LEOPOLD MOCK TONY WEIL, Cincinnati, Ohio, February 16, 1865

TO

CERTIFICATE OF BIRTH OF KATHARINA FRANC~SCA HOLZER,daughter of Salomon and Rachel Holzer, nee Klauber, Neustadtl, Austria, September 5, 1834. mother of Rabbi Moses Gries POLITICAL MATRIMONIAL CONSENT OF THE IMPERIALAND ROYALDISTRICT COURT OF ECERfor Katharina Francisca Holzer to marry Jacob Gries of Altofen, Ofen, September 16, 1856

LEVY, U R ~ A HPIIILLIPS; Last Will and Testament, May 13, 1858, New York OI'PENHEIMER, E.; Inwme Tax, June 19, 1868 Collector's office received payment (Courtesy of Mrs. Frank L. Weil, New York.) GUTHEIM,JAMESKOPPELAND HEIDINGSE. WOHL; March 5, 1878, New Orleans, Louisiana Certificate for Emil R. Isaac (Toerner) Turner's conversion to the Jewish religion (Courtesy of Rabbi Julian B. Feibelman, Temple Sinai, New Orleans, La.) PELD,

KNOX, GEORGEWILLIAM; T h e Lion of the Tribe of Judah, October g, 1871, Fredericksburg, Virginia, Printed A missionary pamphlet to be distributed among the Jews (Copy from the Public Library, New York.) DE FORD COLLECTION; Paper clippings concerning the Gratz family, the beginnings of the Mikveh

64

AMERICAN JEWISH ARCHIVES, JANUARY,

Israel Congregation, Philadelphia, Isaac Moses, Jonas Phillips, Haym Levy, Haym Salomon (Copies from scrapbook in possession of Miss Alice de Ford, Philadelphia.)

1949

Congregation B'nai Israel, Columbus, Georgia Resolutions in memoiy of RABBI FRANKL. ROSENTHAL, March 13, igqo

Temple B'nai Jeshurun, Newark, New Jersey, Temple Museum Articles for DEATH OF HERMINEJOHNSTONE GRATZ, Centennial Exhibit at Newark Museum One Hundredth Anniversary, April 20, last grandchild of Benjamin Gratz, Lex1948 ington, Kentucky Newspaper clipping from the Lexing- GENEALOGY OF SEVERAL OLD NEW YORK ton-Leader, May 15, 1948. FAMILIES Arranged with particular reference to Some newspaper clippings from the New the Ancestry of the Lewis, Goldstone, Orleans Bee, 1852, touching on the Jew- Hendricks arid other families ish Burying Ground and the election of (Courtesy of Rabbi Daniel L. Davis, J. P. BENJAMINas Senator New York.)

The Archives also possesses many scrapbooks of clippings, papers, and pamphlets touching on Jewish notables, historic, economic, cultural, congregational affairs, meetings, conferences, cases, trials and the like, and a collection of reproductions of portraits and silhouettes. For instance: Barnard Gratz by Charles Peale Polk Mrs. Barnard Gratz by Robert Feke Mordecai Manuel Noah by John Wesley Jarvis Mrs. Solomon Etting by John Wesley Jarvis Samson Levy, Jr., 1761-1831, charcoal drawing by Saint-Mkmin Samson Levy, Jr. by Thomas Sully Solon~onJacobs by Thomas Sully Comn~odoleUriah P. Levy by Thomas Buchanan Read Manuel Josephson by Jeremiah Theus

Rebecca Gratz by Thomas Sully Michael Gratz by Thomas Sully Rachel Gratz by Edward Greene Malbone Abraham Touro, Mrs. Michael Gratz, Samuel Myeis, Judah Hays, Moses Myers, Mrs. Myers, Colonel Isaac Franks, Solomon Moses by Gilbert Stuart (This material was secured from Mrs. Hannah London and is knolvn as the Hannah K. London Collectioii of Portiaits and Silhouet~esof Early American Jews.)

We are also very grateful to the Reverend Dr. Abraham J. Feldman of Hartford, Connecticut, for a collection of photographs of American Jewish notables, most of them autographed. This collection includes pictures of Benjamin Winter, David Belasco, Saul Raskin, Leo Orenstein, Herman Bernstein, Otto Rosalsky, George Gershwin, Ossip Gabrilowitch, Richard Gottheil, Mortimer L. Schiff, Felix M. Warburg, Paul M. Warburg, Simon Wolf, Adolph M. Ochs, Louis Marshall, Irving Lehman, Louis D. Brandeis, Boris D. Bogen, Ernest Bloch, Jacob Billikopf, Cyrus Adler, Yehudi Menuhin, Mischa Elman, Fannie Hurst, Eddie Cantor, Waldo Frank, Herbert H. Lehman, David Philipson and Joseph M. Proskauer. This collection will be known as T h e Abraham J. Feldman Collection.