A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

History: Hebrews in the Matawan Journal (1887, 1894)

The Matawan Journal referred to the Jewish community as Hebrews back in the 19th century. Below are a few articles mentioning affairs involving Jews in 1887 and 1894.

The religion section of the 16 Apr 1887 edition of The Matawan Journal included this rare reference to the Jewish faith. This item doesn't mention the local community, its synagogue(s) or leadership, but it is notable because it appeared in the religion section of the paper, where the activities of local Christian churches were nearly exclusively covered. Some editions of the paper actually quoted Christian scripture and explained Christian holidays, even "Christian Passover."

The Hebrews have this week been celebrating the feast of the Passover, which began with Friday of last week and closed this Friday evening at 6 o'clock. It commemorates the miraculous deliverance of the Israelites from Egyptian slavery.

The 8 Dec 1894 edition of The Matawan Journal (pg 1 col 3) included this article about court proceedings in Freehold.

Jacob Cohen and Samuel Goldstein, two Hebrews of Egypt, were fined $50 each last week by Judge Conover at Freehold. Both men had been indicted for fighting and on the trial they tried to shield each other, which the Court would not stand.

The 1 Dec 1894 edition of The Matawan Journal (pg 4, col 3) contained this report of a bias crime that happened in Manasquan.

If a Hebrew, Don't Go to Manasquan

On Sunday last a meeting of the Hebrew Benevolent Association was held at the residence of the president,H. Friedlander. The Association is composed of Hebrews from nearly all over the county and this meeting was quite well attended. One gentleman from Belmar drove over, and after placing his conveyance under the shed at Newbury's livery stable he proceeded to the place of meeting. On his way he was accosted by a young man who caught him by the beard and forced him about the streets with a crowd running and hooting at his heels. He fled to the house in fear. A few moments later he returned to the shed where he had left his horse and found that someone had it and was driving it about town. When the conveyance was returned to the shed it was found that the blanket had either been lost or stolen. This occurred about 5 o'clock in the afternoon.

This kind of conduct is not becoming to a young man and should be severely punished. There certainly was some one to see it and any one witnessing such a performance should report it to the authorities and also to the parties concerned. A reward of $5 is offered to the person giving information leading to the arrest and conviction of the guilty parties.


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