Monday, 14 March 2016


H. HIRSH (1880-December 2, 1931)
            He was born in Katerinoslav (Ekaterinoslav), Ukraine.  In 1904 he moved to the United States.  In 1913 he founded in Toronto, Canada, the first weekly newspaper and later daily newspaper there [in Yiddish], Der idisher zhurnal (The Jewish journal). and served as its editor until the end of 1915.  In 1918 Hirsh was editor of Keneder odler (Canadian eagle) in Montreal, where he introduced new literary talents.  In Montreal he also published fifteen issues of a satirical magazine, Der hamer (The hammer).  He became a resident of New York in 1923, and there he served as editor of the Yiddish-English Orthodox weekly Dos idishe likht (“Light of Israel”)—first issue: January 19, 1923—which was later changed to a daily newspaper, but did not last for long.  He wrote articles, features, epigrams, and translations of the prophets, prayers, and liturgical poetry in verse.  He also wrote serialized newspaper novels and editorials in English, and he contributed as well to Hebrew publications.  He was the author of: the staged play Der politishen (The politician); an anthology of fables entitled Hundert tropn tint, kurtse originele fablen (One hundred drops of ink, short original fables) (Toronto: Kenede, 1915), 100 pp., second edition entitled Fablen (Fables) (Montreal, 1918), 191 pp.; Shir hashirim (Song of Songs), a translation with commentary (Montreal: 1918), 31 pp.  In 1923 six of his pamphlets were published in New York: Toyre un religion (Torah and religion); Faran a g-t af der velt! (There is a G-d in the world!); Odem haelyon (The great Adam); Skhar veoynesh (Reward and punishment); Der id (The Jew); and Meshiekhs tsaytn (messianic times).  On December 2, 1931 he disappeared from his home in Brooklyn, New York.  Two days later his family learned from a letter that he had committed suicide.  The reason was allegedly that a book of his in English had had no success.  He had also apparently made an invention which a firm had purchased but at the last moment reneged on.  He also wrote under the pseudonyms: Bar Tsvi, B. Ts., R. Yudele, Dobl alef, and the like.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 1; Forverts (New York) )December 2, 1931); Y. Rabinovitsh, Yoyvl-bikher keneder odler (Jubilee volumes for Keneder odler) for 1932 and 1957; Rabinovitsh, in Keneder odler (Montreal) (October 30, 1959); Dr. Samuel Rosenblatt, Yossele Rosenblatt: A Biography (New York, 1954), p. 228.

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