Riots Break Out After Bank Loses Money

Did Karl Marx Have Jewish Roots?

By Eddy Portnoy

Published August 09, 2014, issue of August 15, 2014.
Escape: A podiatrist during the day and famed escapologist at night, Dr. Aaron Weiss emulated his Jewish hero Harry Houdini’s act in front of stage, radio and television audiences.
Cine Weiss/Forward Association
Escape: A podiatrist during the day and famed escapologist at night, Dr. Aaron Weiss emulated his Jewish hero Harry Houdini’s act in front of stage, radio and television audiences.

1914 • 100 years ago

The Bank With No Money

A wild riot took place last week on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, in front of Yarmulovsky’s Bank on East Broadway and Essex Street, after depositors discovered that the bank had no money for them. The police made multiple arrests after rioters attempted to break down the doors. Among those arrested were 30-year-old Bessie Albert and Philip Grabitz, who both live in the neighborhood. The magistrate said that even though he felt bad for the depositors, they must behave according to the law. He nonetheless allowed them to go free, but said that if they attack the bank again, they will be severely punished. Days later, depositors petitioned the U.S. District Court to place M. & L. Yarmulovsky’s bank in bankruptcy. The Forverts sent a reporter to Yarmulovsky’s office to inquire about the events in question, but no one was to be found.

1939 • 75 years ago

Karl Marx And His Jewish Roots

If you asked a religious Jew what the connection is between the brilliant creator of socialist theory, Karl Marx, and the brilliant rabbinical exegete Rashi, he would probably think it was a very strange question. But as it turns out, the reality is that Marx was a descendant of many famous rabbis, among them Rashi, who is best known for biblical commentaries. Although Marx’s parents converted themselves and their children when Karl was 6 years old, the family had very deep and quite esteemed Jewish roots. This information came to light after a Viennese researcher, Bernard Wachstein, was enlisted to research the Marx family’s history in connection to an inheritance case involving a number of descendants and relatives. The number of important rabbis in Germany and Poland in Marx’s family is quite impressive.

1964 • 50 years ago

An Argentine Under Suspicion

Enrique Rauch, the Former Argentine Interior minister, has denied an anti-Semitic libel that has been attributed to him by the newspaper Nacion Arabe, which is published by Hussein Triki, the Arab League’s representative in Buenos Aires. The newspaper claimed that the “Zionists” had targeted Rauch for assassination for his nationalist stance, as they had done to the paper’s editor, Triki, as well as a priest from Buenos Aires, Father Julio Meinvielle. Rauch responded to the paper with a letter in which he mocked their assertions that racial issues had anything to do with his work as minister of the Interior, and said, “Argentina’s problems actually brotherhood between Argentina’s different groups.”



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