Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
Culture

August 20, 2004

100 YEARS AGO

• A greenhorn has disappeared from Ellis Island. Velvl Koifman (Yerukhem Osher Yankls), of Britshan, Bessarabia, arrived from Europe last Tuesday on the ship Rotterdam and has disappeared without a trace. There is evidence that toughs from the Beef Trust took him, together with a number of other immigrants, directly to Chicago to work in the meat-packing industry as a scab, since there is a large-scale strike currently in progress. As is well known, the Beef Trust has sent wagonloads of new immigrants to Chicago to work as scabs in order to break the strike. Relatives of these immigrants have had a difficult time extricating them from the grip of the trust.

75 YEARS AGO

• A terrible tragedy occurred in Hasidic circles in Galitsia after an 18-year-old granddaughter of the Belzer rebbe declared herself strongly in favor of the Zionist cause, in opposition to her family’s beliefs. As a result, she was chased and badly beaten a number of times by Belzer Hasidim, who are some of the fiercest opponents of Zionism. The girl is currently in the hospital in critical condition and hovering near death after being thrown out of a second-story window. It has not yet been determined who perpetrated this terrible act.

• According to a report from Warsaw, Armenian emissaries have been in the city, secretly visiting Jewish institutions. The reason for their visit is to get to know the religious leaders of Europe’s largest Jewish community in order to arrange for the conversion of up to 3 million Armenians to Judaism. Armenians, the report continues, are a deeply religious people with connections to Judaism. To further these connections, Armenian leaders have founded an organization called “Ararat-Zion,” a name that symbolizes the unity between Mount Ararat in the Armenian homeland and Mount Zion in the Land of Israel.

50 YEARS AGO

• Visitors to the Soviet Union can get a good picture of the downfall of Jewish life there, both secular and religious. There are about 500,000 Jews living in Moscow. There is one large synagogue, along with four small ones. There is only one in Leningrad, where there is also a large Jewish population. In all these shuls, there is nary a young face to be found. Among the large numbers of urban Jews in Russia’s two main cities, it is impossible to know which of them still consider themselves Jewish at all. There are no Jewish publications, books or newspapers; there are no Jewish schools, religious or secular. The only way to get a Jewish education is from one’s parents.

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.