In Honor of Mother’s Day

Posted on May 11th, 2017 by

I get “geeked out” looking at old things, stuff, history. I could spend hours looking through the JMM’s extensive collection that includes more than 11,000 objects, 55,000 photos and thousands of boxes of archival documents that tell the stories of more than two hundred years of everyday Jewish life in Maryland.

Being that Mother’s Day will be here this weekend, I thought it would be fun to do a search through the collections, and see what kinds of cool stuff I find about mothers.

Sepiatone photograph of Ella Gutman Hutzler with her two sons, Albert D. Hutzler and Joel Hutzler c. 1898, JMM 1991.26.9

Sepiatone photograph of Ella Gutman Hutzler with her two sons, Albert D. Hutzler and Joel Hutzler c. 1898, JMM 1991.26.9

Here is an image of one of the matriarchs of the famed Hutzler family, Ella Gutman Hutzler -wife of David Hutzler. Ella Gutman Hutzler (1855-1942) was the daughter of Joel Gutman, of Joel Gutman and Co., the first downtown department store (1852) located on Eutaw Street. Hutzler Brothers Company was founded in 1858 by Abram G. Hutzler, son of German-Jewish immigrants when he took over a small shop operated by his brother in-law, Elkan Bamberger. The original store dealt mainly in laces, fine fabrics and fancy goods, the majority of which were imported from Europe.

Ruth Greensfelder Frank, JMM 2010.60.12

Ruth Greensfelder Frank, JMM 2010.60.12

This is a lovely photograph taken in 1918 of Ruth Greensfelder Frank with her daughter Carol Jean Frank as a baby. .I was struck by the beauty of the mother and the simplicity of the photograph of mother and baby. How sweet!

JCC Collection, JMM 2006.13.430

JCC Collection, JMM 2006.13.430

This black and white photograph is from the JCC Collection. The photo is taken at a desk in the lobby at the Park Heights JCC in 1972. In this shot, there is a mother, her children, a stroller, along with other people. Our records indicate that there are many unidentified people in the photo. Can we be like the Baltimore Jewish Times- Can You Identify This Picture? If so, please contact Joanna Church, the JMM’s Collections Manage. Joanna’s email – jchurch@jewishmuseummd.org

AMIT Women’s Chapter Collection, JMM 2000.128.26

AMIT Women’s Chapter Collection, JMM 2000.128.26

This little gold pendant is has the Hebrew word on it – EMA or mother. The pendant belonged to Sylvia Simmie/Sima Ziegler Schneider and was a symbol for the women’s group AMIT – American Mizrachi Women. AMIT is an American-based religious Zionist organization that was established in 1925. They first created vocational schools for religious girls in Palestine and have helped shape the educational and social welfare landscape in the State of Israel for nine decades.

Small Yellow Pin, JMM 2007.2.5

Small Yellow Pin, JMM 2007.2.5

I thought that this was so perfect for Mother’s Day! What nice Jewish kid does not want to support their own Jewish mother!

Barbara Levy Dackman, JMM 2017.6.1

Barbara Levy Dackman, JMM 2017.6.1

Finally, I could not finish this blogpost without including my own beautiful mother, Barbara Levy Dackman. Here she is posing on her wedding day (February 4, 1951), the portrait was taken by Bachrach Photographers which was founded here in Baltimore in 1868. The studio’s founder, David Bachrach, took the only photograph at Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. This painting of my mother now hangs in my brother’s home.

You can see this beautiful painting along with other things about brides, weddings and marriages starting on June 18th, at the JMM’s next original exhibition, Just Married! Wedding Stories From Jewish Maryland. The exhibit will be on display from June 18th through September 17th.

Happy Mother’s Day!

ileneA blog post by Education Director Ilene Dackman-Alon. To read more posts by Ilene click HERE.

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Living History and Beyond!

Posted on April 14th, 2017 by

Over the past 14 years, the Jewish Museum of Maryland has developed significant expertise in the creation of compelling living history characters, along with a national reputation for excellence in this medium.  In consultation with a team of professional historians, script writers, directors and actors, we have created historical performances based on extensive research.  These performances illuminate key themes about American Jewish history in an accessible and personal manner.  These interactive  performances incorporate reproductions of artifacts, photographs, and documents from the JMM collections.

Our first four living history characters

The JMM has created five living history characters, Ida Rehr, a Ukrainian immigrant who worked in the garment industry; Saul Bernstein, a Lithuanian peddler who became a professional artist;  Bessie Bluefeld, a Russian immigrant who started a renowned catering business;  and Mendes I. Cohen, veteran of the Battle of Baltimore, businessman, and Jewish adventurer.  Our latest character is Henrietta Szold, daughter of Rabbi Benjamin Szold and born in Baltimore in 1860, who premiered in September, 2016.  All five characters have performed around the region for students and adult audiences alike.

Natalie Pilcher with students from Western High School

A few weeks ago, the Henrietta Szold Living History character performed at Western High School in Baltimore City.  The education staff contacted the administration at the school about the possibility of having a performance at the school. Henrietta Szold graduated from Western Female High School in 1877 and in 1901 she became the first president of the Western High Alumni. There is a plaque in the school’s library that bears Szold’s name.

At the school-wide assembly over 960 students and teachers were in attendance. Following the performance, the students asked many questions to the actress that portrays Henrietta, Natalie Pilcher. The students were especially interested in learning about how she prepared for the Henrietta Szold role, and how she teaches acting and performance to area students throughout Baltimore City.

Following the successful Henrietta Szold living performance at Western High School, we started to think about the impact that all of our living history characters and performances have had on the community over the years. We examined our attendance statistics from FY14 to the present, and were quite pleased to see the reach that our living history characters have had on the community. I am certain you will also be quite impressed!

Ida Rehr
Over the past 12 years, the actress Katherine Lyons has engaged school groups with her wonderful portrayal of Ukrainian immigrant Ida Rehr.  Since July 1, 2013 she has given 42 performances –to over 1864 audience members. (1,769 students/teachers and 95 attendees from adult groups)

Katherine Lyons as Ida Rehr

Mendes I. Cohen
Over the past 3 years, actor Grant Cloyd has engaged school and adult groups with his portrayal of Colonel Mendes I. Cohen.  Since July 1, 2013 he has given 20 performances as Mendes to over 890 audience members. (371 students/teachers and 519 attendees from adult groups)

Grant Cloyd as Colonel Mendes I. Cohen

Bessie Bluefeld
Over the past 4 years, actress Terry Nicholetti has engaged adult groups with her wonderful portrayal of Bessie Bluefeld.  Since July 1, 2013 she has given 10 performances. (437 adult audience members)

Terry Nicholetti as Bessie Bluefeld

Henrietta Szold
Over the past 7 months, actor Natalie Pilcher has engaged school and adult groups with her portrayal of Henrietta Szold.  Since her debut she has given 13 performances to 1,737 audience members. (1,447 students/teachers and 290 attendees from adult groups)

Natalie Pilcher as Henrietta Szold standing next to her namesake.

The Henrietta Szold Living History Character was made possible through the generous support of the Kolker-Saxon-Hallock Family Foundation, Inc., a supporting foundation of The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore. Educational opportunities were made possible by the Jacob & Hilda Blaustein Fund of The Associated.

With all of the numbers combined our living history characters have performed a total number of 85 performances, seen by 4,928 audience members throughout the region since July 2013! By the end of this school year, it is highly likely that our living history program we will reach more than 5,000 audience members and beyond!

Our Living History Program performances are available for schools, public and private events and can take place at the Museum or outside venues.  To schedule a Living History performance or to learn more, please contact Graham Humphrey, Visitor Services Coordinator, ghumphrey@jewishmuseummd.org or call 443.873.5167.

~Ilene Dackman-Alon, Director of Education

ileneA blog post by Education Director Ilene Dackman-Alon. To read more posts by Ilene click HERE.

Posted in jewish museum of maryland




My Family Story Sneak Peek!

Posted on March 9th, 2017 by

Last Sunday, over 200 people attended the JMM’s latest exhibition opening for Remembering Auschwitz: History, Holocaust and Humanity.  We are so grateful to the Holocaust survivors and their families that joined us that morning and took part in the art installation, Holocaust Memory Reconstruction: A Sacred Culture Rebuilt.  This installation commissioned by Lori Shocket and the Human Element Project, featured collages that were created by the survivors and their families documenting their lives from the past to the present.  What touched me most about the morning was watching these families (many inter-generational) looking at the collages and watching having younger family members call out, “Wow, I did not know that,” or “You never told me that before.”  These younger family members were learning about their family narratives and creating a “strong inter-generational self”, as described by psychologist, Marshall Duke from Emory University.

Photo by Will Kirk.

Photo by Will Kirk.

Watching this interaction between family members got me thinking about next week’s My Family Story Exhibition in partnership with Beit Hatfutsot, The Museum of the Jewish People in Israel.  Area students from Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School, Baltimore Hebrew Congregation and Bolton Street Synagogue have been on a journey, interviewing family members and researching their own family stories and learning about their family narratives.  These students have created art installations to reflect the research, interviews and stories that they have learned from their own families.   The journey connects students to their personal stories, to their family stories, and to the greater story of the Jewish People joining many from Israel and around the Jewish world who are also participating in Beit Hatfutsot’s My Family Story program

The student’s projects will be judged at the exhibition based on a rubric that includes four points, Jewish peoplehood, depth of research, aesthetics and creativity.  The projects will be scored and two winners from each school will be chosen and those projects will be sent on to Beit Hatfutsot and their museum staff has the responsibility of picking 40 international winners who will win a free trip to Israel.  The projects will be displayed at  the My Family Story exhibition later in June.  Over the past two years, area students and their projects have been selected to participate in the international exhibition.  Our staff at the JMM is hopeful to make it three in a row!

The My Family Story Exhibition will be on display at the Jewish Museum of Maryland from Tuesday, March 14th – Sunday, March 19th. Here is a sneak peak of some of the works in progress from the students at Bolton Street Synagogue…..

Can't wait to see the context for this figure!

Can’t wait to see the context for this figure!

Love this use of the stove for a thematic background!

Love this use of the stove for a thematic background!

Looking forward to the story that goes with this.

Looking forward to the story that goes with this.

Intriguing use of colors and photos!

Intriguing use of colors and photos!

 

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