A History of Pittsburgh and its Jewish Community 1840-1915
Description: Pittsburgh was called by various observers Hell with the Lid On and Hell with the Lid Off. It was a city rich in contrasts and rich in its history. And amid the swirling currents that made up the vibrant flow of the city s life, navigated the Jews, an immigrant group that began settling in the region in the 1840s. They might not have rivaled the likes of Carnegie and Frick, but they had their own movers and shakers. Come meet A. Leo Weil who battled municipal corruption and graft, the Kaufmann brothers of department store fame, Barney Dreyfuss who launched the Pittsburgh Pirates, Bertha Rauh, community service volunteer extraordinaire, and a whole host of others who made their contribution to the development of the town.
For Burstin, a transplant to the region, Pittsburgh is a city that fascinates and intrigues. Ten years in the making, she scoured attics and cellars, explored a whole variety of archival collections and books, and drew on personal interviews to weave her account of the city and its Jewish community. She recounts the tale in an entertaining and informative way that all Pittsburghers and those who care about Pittsburgh can relish and enjoy.
Bonus DVD: A Jewish Legacy: Pittsburgh
The video is a panorama of the Pittsburgh Jewish community from its founding in the 1840s up through the present time. Drawing on various Pittsburgh personalities and archival material the film focuses on the founding fathers, the wave of Eastern Europeans who settled on the Hill, war and depression, the Soviet Jewish migration to Pittsburgh in the 1980s up to the present.
By Barbara S. Burstin, PhD
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