Jews in the News, 1901

This is the year in which the building of the first synagogue got underway!  They newspaper coverage for this is in a separate series of posts:

This post contains articles about:


  • 1/31:  Amity Conclave No. 98 Improved Order of Heptasophs installed Morris Fogel as a Sentinel.
  • 2/12:  The annual Hebrew ball was held, bringing together Jews and non-Jews in support of the congregation’s effort to build a synagogue.
  • 4/8:  “At a hearing before George W. Giles Saturday evening in the case of John Vasker, who was charged by Adolph Hepps with adultery, quite a complicated state of affairs was brought to light…A few days ago…a mean came to Mr. Hepps and stated that Vasker had a wife living in the old country.  Hepps then went before Justice Giles and made the information charging adultery…”  Read the article in the slideshow below to discover that John Vasker isn’t the only person in the case with more than one spouse!
  • 6/12:  In the arrangements for the annual businessmen’s picnic, for the first time members of the Jewish community were involved in the planning.  Joseph Lasdusky was named the ticket receiver, and the general committee included Samuel Markowitz and Adolph Hepps.
  • 9/12:  Twice in a year! Last year, this little boy was knocked out when a stone was thrown at him!

Struck with a Brick

Jacob Marauz (sic), of Heisel Street, Had His Forehead Cut.

A boys’ quarrel resulted quite disastrously for Jacob Maranz, the little son of Samuel Maranz, the Heisel street hotel proprietor yesterday afternoon, after the boy had came home from school. It appears that he was dismissed from school before the pupils in the Hungarian school at the corner of Third avenue and Dickson street and went down there to play with some other children. While they were going along the street the Hungarian school was dismissed and young Maranz got into an altercation with some of the boys of the school. The end of the matter came when one of the boys picked up a brick which was lying on the pavement and threw it at young Maranz. The brick struck the boy on the forehead and inflicted as an ugly gash. He was rendered semi-unconscious by the blow and was taken by his companions to the office of Dr. Kimmel Rauch on Dickson street, where several stitches were put in the incision. The boy was afterward removed to his home.

The injury was a very bad one and young Maranz suffered a great deal of pain last night. It is thought there will be several suits entered against the boys who were engaged in the quarrel with young Maranz.

  • 10/5: One thing that unites boys of all backgrounds — prowess in sports!  This game was played during Chol HaMo’ed Sukkot.
10/5/1901: L. Segelman was on the winning football team!

10/5/1901: L. Segelman and S. Segelman were on the winning football team!

  • 10/22:  “Misses Ada and Sue Bullock, Miss Rose Skirboll and Miss Russell Purman, who made up a gay party that took in the Pan-American Exposition arrived home this morning.”
  • 11/27:  The committee for the upcoming business men’s banquet included Morris Half.


  • 4/11:  “The commencement exercises of the Pharmacy department of the Western University of Pennsylvania, will be held in Carnegie Music hall, Allegheny.  Attorney James F. Burke will made (sic) the address to the class.  Edward McCague, Fred Jones and Emil Lebovitz are the Homesteaders who graduate this year.”
  • 5/23:  Homestead High School graduated its largest class yet – 18 members including 4 boys and 14 girls, one of whom was Minnie Segelman!
  • 6/4:  Homestead High School selected its teachers for the coming year, and one was Rose Skirboll, recent graduate of teaching college!
  • 6/15:  Seven of the 1901 high school graduates passed the (entrance?) examinations at the California State Normal School, one of whom was Minnie Segelman.
  • 9/28:  “Will Osborne and Morris Moskowitz leave tomorrow for Atlanta, Ga., where they will attend the Eclectic Medical College.”

Business updates:

  • 4/4:  “Philip Cohen (sic), the merchant tailor, has moved his large stock of new spring dress goods to 349 Eight avenue, and will carry on his well established business on a more extensive scale, he being the leader in styles and fashions in tailor-made suits in the town, and is making a specialty of new spring suits. He also carries a full line of gent’s furnishings and ready-made clothing.”  4/20 was the day he opened in the new location, with a couple articles elaborating on the news.
4/10/1901: Ad related to the relocation of Skirboll's Shoe House

4/10/1901: Ad related to the relocation of Skirboll‘s Shoe House

  • 4/10:  Skirboll‘s Shoe House “are compelled to vacate the store room occupied by us during the last eight years by May first, and not wishing to move our stock into our new store, 521 Eighth Ave., Shield’s Block, we will sacrifice out entire stock of Men’s, Women’s and Children’s Shoes at auction.”
  • 4/23:  “Wolk, the Eighth avenue shoe dealer, has placed a repairing department in addition to his shoe store A first class shoemaker has been engaged.”
  • 5/10:  “Grinberg Bros., of Eighth avenue, are about to close out their stock of wall paper. They will quit dealing in it.”
  • 5/23:  “Wanted.—A lady to keep books. Inuire of H. Markowitz, 606 (506?) Sixth avenue.”
  • 8/22: “Morris Grinberg left last evening for the east where he has gone to purchase a new stock of goods.”
  • 8/24: “Grand Special Sale Beginning to-day. I. Fox, the up-to-date dry goods dealer, inaugurates a special five day sale of ladies’ gents’ and children’s merchandise. Without exception the prices being quoted are the lowest offered in Homestead this season. Those person who fail to take advantage of the bargains quoted elsewhere in this paper will miss a rare money-saving opportunity indeed.”
  • 12/23:  Half Bros. leased three store rooms in the Homestead Realty Company’s building.

Liquor Licenses:

I don’t know about you, but this is the year I’ve been waiting for!

5/8/1901: Ad new for liquor wholesaler Israel Rosenbloom!

5/8/1901: Ad for new liquor wholesaler Israel Rosenbloom! He was out of business by November, though I’m not sure when or why.

  • 2/23:  The list of license applicants came out, and it included my great-grandfather, Bernhard Hepps, No. 404 Dickson street for the first time, as well as perennial applicant Henry Moskowitz, No. 611 Eighth avenue, and Max Klein, the already-licensed proprietor of the Eureka Hotel at Nos. 106 and 108 Fifth.
  • 3/16:  Wholesale applicants included Israel Rosenbloom, No. 616 Heisel street, and Herman Markowitz, No. 206 Sixth avenue.  Overall there was an increase in applicants, “the increase being due to the general prosperity prevailing” (3/17).
  • 4/1:  A whopping sixty-one licenses were granted in Homestead.  Only six applicants were refused.  All of our retail and wholesale applicants were accepted, including my great-grandfather on his first try!  Strangely, unlikely all the other years where they analyzed the results in some detail, I could find no commentary on why so many licenses had been granted and what the town thought of that.
  • The paper seemed to be as excited as I was about my great-grandfather’s and all the other new saloons about to open on 5/1.  The day before they prepared everyone, “Tomorrow will see the opening of several new saloons in Homestead, as it is the date set for those who were granted license at the recent session of court to begin selling.”  The day of, they struck an unusually poetic tone:  “Nature has awakened, the trees are abloom, tulips and other posies are their prettiest and there are refreshing signs of the “Gladdest day of all the glad year.”  One of them is, “Bar Now Open For Business,” for the 1901 liquor license is available for us today and by the grace of Judges Stow and Brown, many new saloons are in business in Homestead.”  Even on the second day they weren’t finished with it:  “This morning the new saloonists started on their second day.  Every one of them reports trade as being brisk yesterday.  There was probably more liquor drank in Homestead than every before in one day.”
  • 7/16:  “If you are not using it now, you should try Winter Bros.’ beer in cases or eys. There’s no purer made. Israel Rosenbloom, 616 Heisel Street. … If you have occasion to use a strictly pure whiskey, brady, wine, gin or cordial, come to us and we will guarantee you the right article at the right price. Israel Rosenbloom, 616 Heisel Street.”

Real estate and landlording:

  • 1/19:  “The P.V. & C. Railroad company is now in full possession of all the property between Amity and West streets, on the North side of Sixth venue, with the exception of the Klein property…It was the intention of the railroad company to purchase the Klein property at the corner of Amity street also, but Mr. Klein asked too much money for it and the company decided that they could get along without it…Max Klein, whom it is understood refused a good figure for his property from the railroad company, sold out to his brother, Jacob Klein last week for $9,600, which is much less than the offer received from the railroad people.”
  • 2/5:  “To Let.—Twelve room house, corner Fifth avenue and City Farm lane.  Inquire of Morris Frankle.”
  • 5/24:  “One of the latest deals in Eighth avenue property as that of his morning when Lawrence Oeffner, the Eighth avenue real estate and insurance man sold to I.S. Grossman, a lot 22×110 on Eighth avenue near the Dickson street corner. The price paid for the lot was $7,500 cash, which was considered a fair figure. The property is one of the best sites along the prominent thoroughfare and Mr. Grossman was indeed lucky in securing it for the figure paid. It is not at present known what Mr. Grossman will do with the property, as he could not be seen this morning. It is thought, however, he will erect a business block which will be one of the finest in town.”
  • 5/25:  “This morning I.S. Grossman, of Eighth ave, was seen by a News-Messenger man in regard to the purchase of the property on Eight avenue near Dickson street yesterday. He denied buying the property and said that although he had been talking of it the deal had not yet been brought to a close.”
  • 6/28:  A discussion of increasing real estate property values noted that a property I.S. Grossman purchased in 1898 was now “beyond approach which shows that this probably the greatest increase of any Homestead property.”

Business Fires:

  • 2/5:  “…The store of N. Eskovitz, in the Healy building, on Dickson street between Third and Fourth avenue was discovered to be on fire…When Mr. Eskovitz, the proprietor of the store opened the place his morning he had two lamps burning in the rear of the store room.  He lighted the fire and then went up stairs to get something to eat.  While he and his wife were sitting at the table, they smelled smoke and Mr. Eskovitz rushed down stairs and found the rear of the store all ablaze…The store room was gutted and all of the goods were damaged.  The sock of Mr. Eskovitz is almost a complete loss.  Many pieces of furniture were also ruined.  The amount of the loss is about $3,500.  There was about $2,000 of insurance on the stock and furnishings…”  (Full article will all the sad details in the slideshow below.)
  • 2/26:  “A bad fire occurred on Heisel street at an early hour this morning when damage to the extent of about $3,000 was done to the store room of  Morris Frankle, at the corner of Heisel street and the P.V. & C. railroad, the Hotel Connelly, which adjoins it.  The blaze was one of the worst that the town had experienced for some time…The loss to the stock and building of Mr. Frankle is estimated at $2,000 and to the Hotel Connelly $1,000.  The buildings were both insured.” (Full article in the slideshow below.)
  • 2/7:  “Morris Frankle places his loss, caused by the fire early Tuesday morning at between $3,500 and $4,00.  He carried a stock valued at between $12,000 and $13,000, all of which was more or less damaged by water, but the fire never reached the store-room, being confined to the attic of the house in which Mr. Frankle’s store is located and Connelly’s hotel.  Several Hungarian families occupy the rooms over Mr. Frankle’s store and their household effects were also considerably damaged by water, but the damage done to the building was slight.  The fire is thought to have either been caused by a defective flue or a spark from a passing train.  Mr. Frankle carried $9,500 worth of insurance.”
  • 3/4:  “The department store of Grinberg Bros., at McKees Rocks, was badly damaged by fire last evening. It is a branch of their Homestead store. Nearly all the goods in the front of the building were damaged. The fire is supposed to have caught from a cigar which was thrown from a second story window on the awning in front of the store. The damage will amount to about $300.”
3/11/1901: Ad for Morris Frankel's fire sale

3/11/1901: Ad for Morris Frankel‘s fire sale

  • 3/8:  “Morris Frankel, whose store on Heisel street was damaged by fire last week, has arranged for a great fire sale, and will offer his entire stock of clothing and gents’ furnishings, valued at $13,00, at greatly reduced prices.  None of the goods were damaged by the fire and some were only slightly damaged by water, and are as good as new, but all will be offered at less than cost prices.  Those who call early will get bargains, the likes of which were never offered in Homestead before.  Don’t forget the place, Morris Frankel’s Heisel street and P.V. & C. railroad.”
  • 4/19:  “The grocery store of I. Samuels on Third avenue, near McClure street, was the scene of a fire last night and had it not been for prompt work on the part of Volunteer fire company No. 4 there might have been a serious blaze as the store is situation among a lot of frame buildings and had it not been gotten under control in good shape, would have resulted seriously.  One of the people who are employed about this store, noticed a blaze in it about 10 o’clock and went to investigate.  It was found that the ceiling had caught fire from a lamp and was fast spreading.  An alarm was turned in and No. 4 fire company responded and put the blaze out.  The damage will be about $100 to building and goods.”

Merchant Woes Which Were Not Fires:

  • 4/23: “Jacob Jew was the name of a visiting merchant who came to town yesterday afternoon and began selling goods without a license. He was banned by chief Nole and at the hearing last evening was fined $1 and costs by Burgess Miller.”
  • 4/25: Due to a very complicated series of events which I cannot possible summarize (see the article in the slideshow below) and which are entirely not Mike Viess‘ fault, his landlady brought sheriffs to try to evict him when only his sons were home. During the process, he was robbed and his wife beat up the intruders. In the end, he is still in the building and the paper agrees “there is no way by which he can be forced to give up the premises until the time for which he has paid the rent is up.”
  • 4/26: The newspaper corrected the record and straightened out the circumstances, which required Viess to leave the premises by 5/1.
  • 8/2:  “The charge of larceny preferred by M. D. Weiss, against George Fedor, made before Justice J. B. Jones, was withdrawn last evening when the case was called for hearing. Fedor paid for the goods taken and the costs of the suit.”
  • 8/13: “Louis Beck of Duquesne..charge of cruelty to animals…fine the man $10 and costs.” (Unclear if this is our Louis Beck, who was already in Homestead by this time, though he did up in Duquesne by 1910.)
  • 8/30:  Samuel Markle, “a former well known Homestead man” who was “proprietor of the Philadelphia Bargain Store” was swindled by his clerk at his current meat market in East Pittsburg.  Story below.
  • 9/20:  “Yesterday morning the Munhall garbage ordinance was again violated. I. S. Grossman and Joe Bott were burning rubbish on the Carnegie property along Eighth avenue and Officer Cosgrove came along and placed them under arrest. They went to Justice Giles’ office nearby an were given a hearing, at which they paid a fine of $1 and costs.”  An in the middle of the Days of Awe, no less!
  • 9/24:  “Steve Sovak made a few purchases at the store of P. Cohn, Eighth avenue some time ago, promising to make certain payments, which he has failed to do. Cohn went before Jusice Jones and made information aginst Sovak. Constable Shinton arrested Sovak and a hearing was set for this morning. At the hearing Sovak paid for the goods and the costs of the case and Justice Jones discharged him.”
  • On 11/8 the newspaper reported that a box of shoes had been placed in front of the Sample Shoe Company’s store at the corner of Eighth and McClure, and when Abe Wolk, the proprietor, went to get them, one of the boxes containing a dozen pairs of shoes was missing.  On 11/15 the paper reported that the little boy who took it returned it.  He thought it was empty and had thrown it in his backyard for kindling.  Wolk let the matter drop.  (Both articles in the slideshow below.)
  • On 11/25 a different (?) Wolk shoe store at 313 Eighth avenue was also robbed, though the stolen shoes were of two different sizes.  (Article in the slideshow below.)
  • 11/22:  “William Rosenthal, of Duquesne, was given a hearing last evening before Justice George W. Giles on a charge of fraud preferred by Samuel Markowitz, of this place.  In the information it was alleged that the defendant purchased some goods of the plaintiff and gave a check in payment for them.  Markowitz claimed that when he presented the check at the First National bank of Duquesne, he was refused payment for Rosenthal had no money in the bank.  After the evidence had been offered Justice Giles held Rosenthal for court on $300 ($360?) bail.  The man furnished the necessary bond.
  • 12/14:  Distressing headline!  “Train Crashed into Wagon.  Another Grade Crossing Accident Last Evening.  P.V. & C. Engine Struck a Wagon Belonging to Max Markowitz–Driver Escaped by Jumping–Flour Was Scattered All Over the Street–Twelfth in Twelve Months.”  Read all about it in the slideshow below.
  • 12/13:  “Jacob Rosenstein was in town yesterday selling mantles without a license. He was placed under arrest by Liet. Serr and given a hearing before Burgess J. Clyde Miller. The man was assessed $1 and costs and paid it.”


  • 2/5:  “A little child of Samuel Maranz, of Eighth avenue, is very ill.”
  • 3/13:  “Morris, son of Morris Frankle, of Heisel street, is on the sick list.” They must mean Charles Frankle is sick.  Bad year for Frankel — first his fire, now this!
  • 7/1:  I had known for some time before finding this article that Klein died young, which is tragic given how well things were going for him just a few years prior when he acquired a liquor license, took over a hotel, and got married within a short period.  And yet, “Max Klein, aged 27 years, a well known hotel keeper, committed suicide yesterday morning by drinking carbolic acid.  He had been in bad health for some time and was despondent.  His business and domestic relations gave no reasons for him seeking to end his life.”
7/1/1901: The details of Max Klein's passing

7/1/1901: The details of Max Klein‘s passing

According to Dr. Google fatal complications were likely with erysipelas in 30% of cases before antibiotics.

  • 7/5:  It would take 76 years for the the pun in the headline of this article to become hilarious.  The injuries related were not so hilarious, however.

The Dark Side of the Fourth.

Many Accidents Occurred During the Celebration.

Long List of Those Injured – The Majority of the Mishaps Due to Small Pistols and Canon Crackers – The list of the Wounded Ones…

Sam Fogle, little boy who resides on Heisel street. Was firing off a cannon cracker and held it too long in his hand. The injury was a serious one.

  • 9/8:  “A little daughter of I.S. Grossman, the well known citizen of Dickson street, had her hands severely burned last evening. The child was at the supper table and in some way spilled hot coffee on her hands. The burns were very severe. The child was taken to the office of Dr. Kimmel Rauch on Dickson street, where her injuries were dressed.”
  • 12/23:  “Morris Half, of Half Bros. Furniture dealers, is able to be back in the store again, after being absent for over a week, suffering from the grip.”


What is it with Jewish weddings getting such extravagant news coverage suddenly?!

  • 1/1:  These people aren’t Homesteaders, but this story is delightful:  “Abraham Freedland and Ida Oranold of this city, slipped across the river to Homestead yesterday and were married, to the great surprise of their parents and friends.  They were escorted home by fully 25 Homestead acquaintances.–McKeesport Times.”
  • 1/16:  The wedding of Cecilia Elliott, niece of Joseph Lasdusky, to Max Weisberg, a “well-known young businessman of Braddock” receive tremendous coverage, far disproportionate to other so-called society weddings I’ve seen in the paper thus far.  It was “an elaborate affair in Steenson’s Hall attended by over 200 guests.”  (The full article, with details of how formally everyone was dressed is in the slideshow below.)
  • 2/7:  “One of the  most largely attended and interesting events in Hebrew society circles in this vicinity took place Tuesday afternoon and evening at Turner hall, Duquesne, the building having been beautifully decorated for the occasion.  The occasion was the wedding of Harry Hoar and Mis Rosie Mendel.  The ceremony took place at 5:10 o’clock and was performed in accordance with the Hebrew ritual by Rabbi S. Rosenberg, of the Duquesne Hebrew congregation.  The following were present from Homestead:  Mr. and Mrs. Morris Frankel, Mr. and Mrs. S. Markowitz, Mr. and Mrs. Philip Cohn, and Louis Eslick.”
  • 2/18:  “Invitation are out for another big Hebrew wedding which is to take place in the Fifth avenue Opera house on Wednesday evening of this week.  The contracting parties are Miss Rosie Moskowitz, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Moskowith (sic), of the Second ward and Herman L. Swartz of Pittsburg.  The wedding ceremonies will be carried out on a large scale and will rival that held in Steenson’s hall a few weeks ago.  All the leading Hebrews of Homestead, along with some well-known citizens have received invitations and the attendance promises to be large.  The ceremony takes place at 5 o’clock and will be followed by an elaborate wedding feast and dancing.”  The 2/21 paper reported on the elaborate wedding with more than 250 guests in attendance, including many Homesteaders:  “The attendants upon the bride were Mr. and Mrs. Morris Frankle, of this place and on the groom, Mr. and Mrs. H. Markowitz, of Rankin.  The balance of the bridal party was made up of Miss Esther Moskowitz, sister of the bride, and Miss Bella Hauft (ed: Haupt), as brides maids, Edward Weise, of Duquesne and Morris Moskowitz, groomsmen.  Misses Stella Cohn, Fannie Hauft (ed: Haupt), Flora Eskowitz and Mollie Moskowitz, flower girls and Louie Moskowitz, master of ceremonies…At the close of the ceremony, Master Charles Frankle made a neat little speech of congratulations to the young couple.”  (The full write-up of the wedding, including how Rabbi Levendorf conducted the ceremony, is in the slideshow below.)
  • 2/25:  The paper reported that the bridal party of “Miss Rose Fried, of East Pittsburg, until recently of New York City and Samuel Hollander, of Braddock” would include many Homesteaders:  “…the bridesmaids will be Miss Marie Feld and Miss Annie Blattner (ed:  sister of Esther Blattner who married Ignatz Fox last year), of Braddock, and Miss Laura Glick, of Homestead.  The groomsmen are Israel Rosenbloom, Solomon Blattner and Jesse Bachman, of Braddock…” On 2/27, the day after the wedding, the paper described the wedding.  (Both articles are in the slideshow below, detailing the full bridal party and more details about the happy couple, the wedding, and their plans.)
  • 3/4:  “Mr. and Mrs. Simon Davis and son, Master Ralph, of Pittsburg, Mr. and Mrs. Serwein, and Mr. and Mrs. Philip Davis, of McKeesport, spent last evening as the guests of Mr. and Mrs. Morris Grinberg of Eighth avenue.”  (This is the evening before the fire in McKees Rocks mentioned above.)
  • 9/11:  “An engagement which will be of interest to Homestead and Pittsburg people was announced this week.  It is that of Sol Wolk, the well known Eighth avenue shoe dealer, and Miss Fannie Levy, of Pittsburg.  The date for the wedding has not yet been set, but it will take place in Braun’s auditorium, East End.  The groom elect is one of the leading business men of town and has been located here for years.  He has a large circle of friends and is quite popular.  Mr. Wolk’s affianced is a well known young lady of the East End, who is very popular among a large circle of friends.  After the marriage Mr. and Mrs. Wolk will go to housekeeping in Homestead.”

Travels and Babies:

  • 2/18:  “Mr. and Mrs. Morris Frankle, of Heisel street, spent yesterday with friends in Duquesne.”
  • 3/2:  “Samuel Maranz, the Eighth avenue barber, has just returned from a trip to Philadelphia. Mr. Maranz was visiting an uncle who is a very wealthy man. He had not heard where his relative was until two or three days before he made the trip. Some twenty years ago Mr. Maranz’s uncle came to this country and all trace was lost of him.”
  • 4/1:  “Morris Moss, of Dickson street, called on friends in Hazelwood last evening.”
  • 4/10:  “Miss Celia Kline was the guest of friends in Braddock Monday evening. Miss Kline has about recovered from a fall she received three weeks go when she sprained her ankle very badly.”
  • 5/1:  “Mr. and Mrs. Frankle will leave tonight for the East and will spend a few days visiting the points of interest in Washington and Philadelphia, after which they will journey to Wilkesbarre, where they will be joined by their son Charles.  From Wilkesbarre they will go to New York, from which place, Mrs. Frankle and son will sail May 14th for Europe, where they will spend four months in sight seeing and visiting friends.  Before returning home after seeing his wife and son off, Mr. Frankle will purchase an entire line of stock to replace that destroyed by fire a short time ago.”
  • 5/8:  “I.J. Goldston and wife of Eighth avenue, are happy over the arrival of a handsome baby girl at their home.”
  • 5/23:  “Abe Blattner, a well known young business man of Braddock, was here yesterday afternoon calling on friends.”  He is the brother-in-law of Ignatz Fox.
  • 7/12:  ”Misses Millie and Rose Skirball left yesterday for Ligonier, where they will spend the next month recuperating.”
  • 7/15:  “Sol. Wolk, the Eighth avenue shoe man, left yesterday for his vacation. He will first visit in the east and afterward take in the Pan-American at Bufaflo.”
  • 7/19:  “Jess Wolk, the Eighth avenue shoe man, was in Greensburg yesterday, calling on friends.”
  • 7/23:  “Joseph Skirboll, of Eighth avenue, returned last evening from a ten days’ stay at the Buffalo Exposition…Mr. and Mrs. Lasdusky and children, of Eighth avenue, are spending a few days with friends at Greensburg and Scottsdale.”
  • 7/29:  “Emil Lebovitz, of Eighth avenue left this morning for Buffalo and Troy, N.Y.”
  • 8/2:  “Philip Cohn, the well known Eighth avenue merchant tailor, accompanied by his daughter, Miss Hettie, arrived yesterday from an extended visit to the northwest. They first visited Cleveland and Detroit, then went to Muskegon, where Mr. Cohn has a brother residing, where they over a week. From there they visited all the points of interest on the Great Lakes, returning home by way of Chicago. Mr. Cohn reports his trip a most delightful one. ”
  • 8/19:  “Mrs. Morris Frankle and son, Charles, of Heisel street, have returned home after a most pleasant tour of Europe.  They are in the best of health and the trip seems to have done both a world of good.  They came to New York Saturday on the steamer ‘Lhan’ from Bremen and were there met by Mr. Frankle, who accompanied them home.  While away Mrs. Frankle and son visited Berlin, Buda Pesth, Vienna, Marianbad, Carlsbad, Francisbad, and Boddfeldt.  The trip occupied three and one half months.”
  • 8/20:  “Leo Half, a member of the firm of Half Bros., of Eighth avenue, came home yesterday from Atlantic City, where he spent a most enjoyable vacation.”
  • 9/10:  “Mr. and Mrs. I. Fox, of Dickson street, are the proud parents of a handsome baby girl which arrived at their home yesterday.”
  • 9/20:  Mr. and Mrs. A. Skirboll, of Ninth avenue, have returned from a trip to the Grand Army Encampment held at Cleveland, and the Pan-American Exposition at Buffalo, and other points of interest in the east.”  (The Pan-American Exposition was where McKinley was assassinated on September 6.  As RH was 9/14-15 and YK 9/23, either they tried to squeeze their trip in between the holidays, or maybe they were away on RH?)
  • 10/29:  “Mrs. Morris Grinberg, of Eighth avenue, was tendered a surprise Sunday, by a number of her friends who came from Pittsburg, Allegheny, East End, and other places. A most enjoyable afternoon was spent, one of the features being an elaborate dinner.”
  • 11/7:  “Israel Rosenbloom, of Braddock, who was formerly in the wholesale liquor business on Heisel street, was here last evening calling on friends.”
  • 12/1:  “Israel Rosenbloom, of Braddock, was here this morning calling on business friends.”
  • 12/4:  “Mrs. Dora Cohn, of New York, arrived in Homestead yesterday and will spend the winter with her son, Philip Cohn, the Eighth Avenue merchant tailor.”

Holidays and Community:

The amount of coverage of the Jewish holidays is at an all-time high this year!

  • 3/19, 4/1, and 4/4:  Three separate articles cover many aspects of Passover, from how matzah is made, to how the house is prepared and the seder conducted.  (Articles in the slideshow below.)
  • 6/13, 7/26:  Articles were published about building the new synagogue!
  • 7/26:  Work started on the synagogue yesterday!  Shame about the weather — the evening was the hottest night in five years.
  • 7/29: “A movement for a state organization of Hebrews in the interest of a plan to secure an amendment of the Blue Laws has been started and is receiving the support of some Hebrews of Homestead.  They want the legal right to work on Sabbath, and a committee has been appointed in every county in the state to work to that end.”  Their goal was to permit people who do not work on Saturday to work on Sunday, but not be permitted to display their goods on the sidewalks or do anything else which would disturb the quiet.  The current enforcement of the law meant that “the Jews do not dare even to gather in small number in their stores and talk about their business affairs.  The continuance of this oppressive enforcement of the law will almost certainly cause some persons whose consciences will not permit them to work on Saturday, to become public charges.”  They did not succeed in changing the 1794 law, and most Jews continued to work on the Sabbath because they had no choice.  (Full article in slideshow below.)
  • 8/18:  On this day the cornerstone of the Ammon street synagogue was laid.  Articles here!
  • 8/30:  The synagogue’s new rabbi was announced!
  • From 8/31-10/5 the paper published six articles explaining Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur, and (sort of) Sukkot to their readers.  They’re all in the slideshow below.  The interesting part is that they say that the community rented Steenson’s Hall, since they don’t yet have a place of their own, and they will be lead by their new rabbi.
  • 9/9:  An I.O.B.B Lodge, #516, was established in Braddock.  Fifty members joined.  Today we know this organization as the B’nai B’rith.
  • 10/10:  “Hersko Berkovics, a Hebrew of Homestead, has renounced the faith of his fathers and united himself with the Greek Catholic Church at Duquesne” for “his sweetheart.”  The ceremony was performed on Simchat Torah (not that he cared).  “The building was packed to the doors.  A number of Berovics people argued with him until the time for him to present himself before the priest, vainly endeavoring to dissuade him from his purpose.”  (Full article in the slideshow below.  Try as I might, I cannot make out that this man ever got married, or even took out a license.  The name seemed odd, but it appears a lot in Hungarian Jewish records.)
  • 12/1, 12/4:  The seats at the new shul were sold, and for some reason the newspaper reported on this in some detail!
  • 12/7:  A brief article about Chanukah was published (also in the slideshow).
  • 12/10:  For some reason the paper reported that “at Russian high schools and universities Jews are not allowed to attend in greater numbers than from 5 to 10 percent of the whole number of students.”


Ads appeared in the paper this year for the following Jewish merchants:

  • Half Bros.
  • Segelman
  • Philip Cohn
  • Lasdusky
  • Morris Frankel
  • Kaufmann
  • Schoenfield’s
  • Grinberg Bros.
  • Skirball
  • I. Fox
  • Israel Rosenbloom
  • Wolk

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