The American Delegate(s)* at the First Zionist Congress Part 5

Posted on September 18th, 2017 by

Written by Avi Y. Decter. Originally published in Generations 2007-2008: Maryland and Israel

Sidebar II: The Other Americans: Davis Treitsch (1870 – 1935)

Missed the beginning? Start here.

Davis Trietsch, later in life.

Davis Trietsch, later in life.

Davis Treitsch was a prominent Zionist leader and author. Born in Dresden, Germany, he was educated in Berlin. From 1893 to 1899 Treitsch resided in New York, where he was studying immigration problems. It was during his period of residence in New York that Treitsch attended the first Zionist Congress and was listed as one of four participants from the United States (though it is not clear if he ahd ever entertained the idea of permanent settlement in the U.S.).

Treitsch was a proponent of “practical Zionism,” as distinct from Herzl’s “political Zionism,” and he advocated for immediate settlement of Jews in Cyprus, which he conceived as part of “Greater Palestine.” In 1899-1900 he attempted to settle a small group of Russian Jews in Cyprus, but this effort failed. Shortly after, when Herzl negotiated for Jewish settlement in El-Arish with the British authorities, Treitsch categorized this as “an acceptance by Herzl of his program without him.”

For a time, after the practical Zionists took control of the Zionist Congress in 1911, Treitsch was supportive. But he rejected “slow settlement methods” and purely agricultural colonization, agitating instead for “Zionist maximalism,” industrial development, and garden cities. He wrote several German-language books promoting his ideas, including Palestine Handbook (1907 with nine later editions) and Jewish Emigration and Colonization (1917), in addition to editing several journals.

During World War I Treitsch served in the statistics office of the German Army and published several pamphlets arguing for German-Zionist collaboration. Arnold Toynbee responded to Treitsch’s gambit, arguing that the Allies would be better partners with the Zionist project.[1]

Continue to Sidebar III: “The Time is Now!”

Notes:

[1] Rabinowicz, “Treitsch, Davis,” 146; Rabinowicz, “Davis Treitsch’s Colonization Scheme,” 119-206.

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A Naturalization Ceremony to Remember

Posted on June 20th, 2017 by

A blog post by Education Interns Sara Philippe and Erin Penn.

Program

Program

Today, June 20th 2017, the Jewish Museum of Maryland was lucky and honored to host a Naturalization ceremony especially in light of the fact that today is also World Refugee Day. Twenty-eight new Americans were welcomed and embraced by their families and our community. The ceremony kicked off with a welcome from our executive director Marvin Pinkert. He shared his own family heritage as he told the story of his grandmother Ida, who emigrated from Lithuania. Then, Raha Mirzadegan led the crowd in the Star-Spangled Banner with her strong, beautiful voice. Her rich vocals struck a cord bringing many people to tears.  The Immigration Services Assistant, Iyabode Sodipo read the names of the seventeen countries from which the immigrants hailed. These countries included Nigeria, China, Belarus, and the Dominican Republic. The room vibrated with excitement as the candidates stood up and were applauded upon hearing the name of their country of origin. As the candidates recited the Oath of Allegiance, the gravity and the importance of this event rang true. The new Americans pronounced their love for the United States and their willingness to “support and defend” it.

Taking the Oath of Allegiance

Taking the Oath of Allegiance

Martha Weiman, this event’s keynote speaker, shared her own immigration story: she emigrated with her family from Germany to the United States during the Holocaust. She offered her personal ties to naturalization and the American Dream as a parallel to the stories of the 28 people being granted citizenship.  The Baltimore community jumped into the ceremony again as the Museum’s community partner, City Springs Elementary and Middle School students led the new citizens and the rest of the attendees in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. This wonderful ceremony concluded as Bari Myers from the local Immigration Services Office handed out the Certificates of citizenship. Each person joyfully leaped up to receive his or her document. Some walked up with their children, others with an American flag. One man collected his certificate in his wheel chair. All were excited to take pictures with their certificates, families, and the American flag following the end of the ceremony.

Some of the happy families celebrating their new citizen!

Some of the happy families celebrating their new citizen!

This ceremony brought to life the immigrant experience for us. While the Jewish Museum’s Voices of Lombard Street exhibit displays the life of the immigrants from the turn of the century, this event put into perspective the hopes, dreams, fears, and other emotions involved in the immigrant experience today. These people who were granted citizenship today accomplished a huge dream, surely having overcome many obstacles; they have left their country, learned a new language, and vowed to support the United States. Both of us have a great grandmother who emigrated from Lithuania. They and their families traveled across the ocean to an unknown world in order for a better life and security. This ceremony today reminded us of our history and provided a chance to discover the true significance and continuation of the American dream.

Die cut card of an immigration scene, 1909 by the Heb. Publishing Company. Lady Liberty opens a metal gate for the family, while an American eagle watches overhead. JMM 1997.101.3

Die cut card of an immigration scene, 1909 by the Heb. Publishing Company. Lady Liberty opens a metal gate for the family, while an American eagle watches overhead. JMM 1997.101.3

 

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Family Fare: Baltimore Jewish Food Businesses Side Bar 3

Posted on June 5th, 2017 by

Article by Jennifer Vess. Originally published in Generations 2011 – 2012: Jewish Foodways

Side Bar: Benjamin Bober: “Milkmen them days, it wasn’t like today”

Miss the beginning? Start here.

Unidentified woman posing with milk can, c.1924. JMM 1998.47.7.1

Unidentified woman posing with milk can, c.1924. JMM 1998.47.7.1

“We landed on Ellis Island, and they brought us from there here to Baltimore…to my aunt.  And her husband then was a milkman.  And milkmen them days it wasn’t like today.  It was small milkmen that used to go around with milk – two cans and a little pint measure.  And you had your customers.  There was a lot of them milkmen around…. And then when I came, the first thing my uncle did was, he took me along with him…. Now when it came to Highlandtown there was already bigger milkmen.  There was milkmen that had maybe fifty cows or more.  And they used to deliver to these little milkmen….  Everybody, amongst the Jewish milk people, mostly all walked.  I think there was one had a horse and wagon….. I used to carry a can and a pint measure.  And whatever the woman wanted I would come in the house and give her whatever she wanted…. I didn’t get paid from my uncle.  I just used to help him…

See now, my mother at that time she had a little milk store.  And there was some in that neighborhood they used to come for milk and she would also sell butter….

I was in the fourth grade when my mother married a man that used to have a little farm…. On Johnnycake Road.  And that was a little Jewish settlement, [Yaazor]…. Now my stepfather, he tried to make a living from the farm itself.  He used to raise what he could, like tomatoes and corn.  And he used to have a couple of cows.  They used to make cream and cheese…. Now later on, when I got older…stepfather allowed me to have cows.  And…my mother helped and I used to also make cream cheese and butter.  I used to come in town and I had my customers,….

And then I had a cousin that had a store in the city, a little dry goods store and…I used to take care of that little store…. it was easier for her to have somebody to look after the store while she was…in the house, she didn’t have to run back and forth….

I bought a great big farm with a hundred and seventy acres [on Old Annapolis Road].  And…course I had people working for us…. That was a different farm altogether.  That was a gentlemen’s farm…. And the men used to work on the farm.  The women used to do the picking….. And…we farmed in nineteen-twenty, twenty-one, twenty-two.  I think three years we farmed it…. I had a grocery store before I bought the farm.  I had a grocery store on Monroe Street.  That was during the war.  And the troops came out, and I had the flu, I was very sick.  A lot of people died.  When I came out I just wanted to get out…and that’s how this farm was advertised.  And we went and looked at it and we got together and we bought it.  We didn’t have enough money, we had to borrow money, get mortgages on the farm…. we used to send loads of stuff in.  To Marsh Market and they used to sell it…. Now when I bought the farm there was also a lot of cows.  I’d also run the dairy then…we used to sell the milk [to]…Snesil Dairy…. And then we used to raise a lot of vegetables, like we used to have mules and big wagons, we used to send them in to the wholesale market….

Then, we left the farm, and I went, went back to the grocery business.  And my partner was a baker and he went back to the bakery business…. I held onto the farm for about forty years…. I owned it.  And I, I had this farmer that used to farm it….”

~Excerpted from Oral History 161, Benjamin Bober July 29, 1982

Continue to Side Bar: Gordon Salganik: “People in Washington didn’t know what to do with a brisket”

 

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