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May 7, 2010

100 Years Ago in the Forward

After having been arrested for trying to sell two women to officers from the District Attorney’s Office, Harry Levinson, a pimp on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, is spilling his guts in order to avoid jail time. According to the DA, Levinson has informed the officers that there are three main centers in Manhattan that serve as the major markets for the white slave trade. Levinson has also, apparently, snitched on the major players in the industry, naming the biggest pimps and madams in the city. He informed the police that the way the industry works is as follows: Elegantly dressed women comb theaters and concert halls for young female out-of-towners. They approach them in a friendly manner, eventually inviting them to their homes. There they meet other men and women, who try to convince them that there is an easy way for them to make a lot of money. If they agree, they are sent to one of the three major sales centers, where pimps pick them over and buy them. From there, it is a life of shame.

75 Years Ago in the Forward

Brooklyn-born Yosef-Leib Steinmetz, who stands accused of murdering two people, went on trial. Steinmetz, age 22, is alleged to have shot and killed his young wife, Ruth, and a priest, Joseph Leonard, after finding the two in flagrante delicto in a room in Manhattan’s Knights of Columbus Hotel. Steinmetz, who had been married only a short time, had converted to Christianity for his wife, who came from one of America’s aristocratic families. Ruth Piles Armstrong was the granddaughter of Senator Samuel Henry Piles. As jury selection began, it looked as though the trial would never begin, because the prosecutor and the two defense attorneys, both of them Jews — Kaminsky and Leibowitz, respectively — had a difficult time agreeing on who was fit to serve on the jury.

50 Years Ago in the Forward

Egypt’s ambassador to the United States blamed Israel and the Zionists for the pickets that surround the Egyptian ship Cleopatra, which sits in the port of New York. The ship is being picketed because of Egypt’s policy of blacklisting American ships that have stopped in ports in Israel. The ambassador angrily blamed America’s Jews for instigating the picketing, calling it an “act of aggression.” He added that if America wants the respect of the Arabs, it will call off the Zionists. He noted that relations between the Arabs and the United States are not that good, although he added a note of thanks for American economic aid to Egypt.

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