Category Archives: general history

DRBR 24: In which Newspapers are Handwritten

This caught my eye because it’s just weird to print a newspaper by lithography from a handwritten original. So I went a-searching, and discovered that this was the first Yiddish-language newspaper produced in America. Now the lithography makes much more sense; to produce a Yiddish newspaper you need a newspaper press and a set of […]

DRBR 21: In which the Cardinals are Supplied

Drawer 9 has a lot of pretty things like this: They’re mostly in Italian or Latin, and they have the most lovely illuminated borders, with coats of arms of cardinals. What they are are testimonials. When you supplied things such as furniture to cardinals’ households in seventeenth-century Rome, they might give you a testimonial, which […]

DRBR 20: In which we are Confirmed in Sweden

I thought this picture looked familiar when I saw it in the drawer. It’s the inside of the Great Synagogue at Stockholm, which still has organ at its Shabbat services, and is most particular about employing a non-Jewish organist to play. So what is this? An old-school Reform confirmation certificate, from 1939. (Click image at […]

DRBR 18: In which more Nuptials feature

This is from the wedding of Julius Lorsch and Rebecka Cahn, special call number DR6-R36. A Hochzeits-Hagada, dated 1911, Fulda. I like the little photos stapled to the top here. Julius has a very traditional German Yekkish k├Ąppchen, and Rebecka looks like she has those over-the-ears buns that were in style in the 1920s. Julius […]

DRBR 14: In which we Muse upon Transience

Today’s picture is of someone’s bar mitzvah invitation, from the early 1980s. Note how the invitation is printed with blue stripes and trimmed with fringe trim exactly like the scarfy tallitot beloved of Reform shuls. Can’t decide if this is sort of cool or dreadfully cheesy. The point of bringing you this, though, is that […]

DRBR 13: In which an Important Appeal is responded to

DR6-L16 contains two items: a flyer and a wedding invitation. IMPORTANT EMERGENCY APPEAL FOR HACHNOSAS KALOH Dear Brothers and Sisters: I beg you with great respect. I am a refugee in this country. I have fled from the Iron Curtain (Budapest), where I had my own Beth Hamedrash. Now, I have to marry off my […]