Thursday 2 November 2017


            His proper family name was Meyerovitsh, and he came from Russia.  He studied in St. Petersburg, from whence he was compelled to flee due to revolutionary activities.  Around 1881 he arrived in New York.  In June 1882 he was the initiator and founder of Jewish Propaganda Association whose goal was to support and “elevate the spiritual and moral level of Jewish immigrants in America”; this was the same association that, on July 7, 1882, arranged the historic (first) conference in Yiddish in New York.  He later moved to France, studied medicine there, and was a highly successful doctor in Paris.  With B. Goldgar, he co-authored Der amerikaner, praktishes lehrbukh un in eyner kurtsen tsayt di englishe shprakhe ohne hilfe eynes lehrers reden, lezen und shrayben tsu erlernen (The American, practical textbook and in a short time [you will] learn to speak, read, and write the English language without help from a teacher) (New York: Yudishe gazetten, 1882), 192 pp., second edition (1891).  As Moyshe Shtarkman noted: “This book should be considered (after Naḥum-Tsvi Sobel’s Shir hazahav likoved yisroel hazaken [The song of gold in honor of ancient Israel]) as the second Yiddish book in America.”

Sources: Abraham Kahan, Bleter fun mayn lebn (Pages from my life), vol. 2 (New York, 1926), pp. 139-40; Moyshe Shtarkman, in Yorbukh fun amopteyl fun yivo (Annual from the American branch of YIVO), vol. 2 (New York, 1939), pp. 182-90; Shtarkman, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (New York) (November 14, 1954); Geshikhte fun der tsienistisher arbeter-bavegung fun tsofn-amerike (History of the Zionist labor movement in North America), vol. 2 (New York, 1945), see index; Y. Sh. Herts, Di yidishe sotsyalistishe bavegung in amerike (The Jewish socialist movement in America) (New York, 1954), pp. 21, 22.
Benyomen Elis

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