Our Promised Lands

Horror Hits Home: Producer and uncredited director Steven Spielberg (far left) on the set of 'Poltergeist' with director Tobe Hooper, actors James Karen and Craig T. Nelson in 1982.

Close Encounters of the Steven Spielberg Kind in Arizona

Ever notice that suburbia and science fiction star in Steven Spielberg’s movies? That’s partly because the filmmaker spent his teenage years in Phoenix, Arizona.

Back in the Saddle Again: Rose Sinkin’s eldest daughter Nancy models the company’s western wear in the late 1950’s.

The Secret Idealism of My Grandma Rose of Texas

Grandma Rose was cranky till the day she died. It was only later that Deborah Kolben discovered that her tough-as-nails grandmother from Texas was a bleeding heart revolutionary.

Your Vote? Kinky Friedman unsuccessfully ran as an independent candidate for governor of Texas in 2006.

Of Neiman Marcus, Kinky Friedman and 12 Other Things About (Jewish) Texas

Did you know that Neiman and Marcus were Dallas retail pioneers — or that two Jews had ties to the JFK assassination story? Here are 11 other things about the Lone Star State.

The Rail Thing: The B & O Railroad spurred much of the development of West Virginia in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Country Roads Took Me Home to West Virginia

What kind of place is West Virginia for an aspiring young Jew? Turns out, for Marc Bailes it was perfect. There, in a shul of 10 people, he found his Jewish identity.

I Survived Teaching Jewish Studies in North Carolina

What’s it like to teach Jewish history in Wilmington, North Carolina, a sweltering Bible Belt town? Jarrod Tanny offers a few unexpected vignettes from a clash of cultures.

Of Howard Cosell, Cecil De Mille and 10 Other Jewish Facts About North Carolina

Ever since a Jewish metallurgist set foot in North Carolina in 1585, the Tar Heel state has been home to a diverse community. And it’s got the annual Kosher Barbecue Competition.

Madeleine Kunin Never Felt Anti-Semitism in Vermont — but Switzerland Was Different Story

When Madeleine Kunin was elected the first female governor of Vermont, few cared she was Jewish. It wasn’t so simple when she became ambassador to Switzerland.

What Was a Nice Jewish Girl Like Her Doing in a Church Like This?

Growing up among Catholic friends in Maryland, Jennifer Gilmore wanted to be part of that community. But even after receiving communion, she still felt like an outsider.

Made in Vermont: In 1977, Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield opened the first Ben & Jerry’s Homemade Ice Cream Parlor in Burlington.

Of Ben and Jerry's, Maple Syrup, Bernie Sanders and 8 Other Things About Jewish Vermont

From one of America’s most beloved ice cream brands to a ‘lost shul,’ the Green Mountain State has more Jewish influences that one might think — including maple syrup.

Made in Maryland: Actress Goldie Hawn went to high school in Silver Spring.

Of Goldie Hawn, Barry Levinson, Leon Uris and 10 Other Things About Jewish Maryland

Ever since the first Jewish resident settled in Maryland in 1656, the state has been home to a dizzying array of famous Jews.