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Culture

Looking Back: May 11, 2012

100 Years Ago in the Forward

A Philadelphia sweatshop exploded into chaos as two sewing machine operators got into a vicious fight. As workers received their bundles of piecework in the morning at Dotkin’s shop on South Street, Louis Getor thought that Samuel Ravitz’s bundle was bigger than his, so he began complaining about it, demanding a bigger bundle. He and Ravitz exchanged words, and the argument became heated. The dispute soon turned physical, and it turned ugly when Getor grabbed a knife and stabbed Ravitz in the chest. Ravitz was rushed to The Mount Sinai Hospital, where he is in stable condition. Getor tried to escape, but he was caught and arrested. He is currently awaiting trial.

75 Years Ago in the Forward

In the wake of the recent Hindenburg zeppelin disaster in Lakehurst, N.J., the chief of the Zeppelin company. Hugo Eckener, is expected to travel from Vienna to America in order to inspect the wreckage and see what caused the crash. The disaster shocked Eckener, who said that he has subsequently received a large number of threatening letters. When asked what he thought the cause might have been, Eckener suggested sabotage. As a result of floating that possibility, the Nazi-run German press is attempting to lay the blame on the Jews, claiming that, as “enemies” of Germany, they would attempt to hatch such a plan.

50 Years Ago in the Forward

The Jewish lord mayor of Dublin showed up in the Forverts building to greet the editorial staff and wish the paper a happy 60th birthday. Dublin’s lord mayor, Robert Briscoe, talked about the incredible influence the paper has had on the American Jewish community and about how he had the honor of meeting Abraham Cahan, the paper’s founding editor, during a visit to New York in 1938. Upon being shown a copy of the first edition of the Forverts, Briscoe said — in juicy Litvak Yiddish — that he thinks Yiddish will remain the language of the Jewish people throughout the world. He added that he reads Yiddish excellently.

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