I saw a segment on CBS Sunday Morning earlier this year about the National Museum of American Jewish History, which opened in November 2010. I was unfamiliar with the facility, but I assumed it was somewhere in New York; I assumed incorrectly.
It is in fact located in Philadelphia, not far from Independence Hall. This was deliberate, a reflection of, initially, a “tiny minority [who] sought, defended, and tested freedom—in political affairs, in relations with Christian neighbors, and in their own understanding of what it meant to be Jewish.” Then “the migration of millions of immigrants who came to the United States beginning in the late 19th century and who profoundly reshaped the American Jewish community and the nation as a whole.”
“On the Museum’s first floor, the Only in America® Gallery/Hall of Fame illustrates the choices, challenges, and opportunities eighteen Jewish Americans encountered on their path to remarkable achievement.”
The first eighteen individuals to be featured in the Only in America® Gallery/Hall of Fame are:
Menachem Mendel Schneerson
Isaac Bashevis Singer
Isaac Mayer Wise
How many of the 18 can you identify? I knew 12.
And for no particular reason, here are:
America from West Side Story
There’s No Business Like Show Business, sung by Ethel Merman
A pivotal scene from Close Encounters of the Third Kind
Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor
36 thoughts on “J for Jewish History Museum”
Well, I only knew 9 of them on the list. In fact, I hadn’t heard of the museum, so thanks for the info.
I’m afraid I could only manage seven, but then my knowledge of American Jewry isn’t what it might be.
My grandfather was a train driver and he recalled many Jewish passengers on their way from eastern Europe to board ships at Liverpool for the US.
lovely museum introduction, used to visit museums a lot.
I haven’t visited that museum yet and it sounds like a very interesting place.
I’ve never been to one….thanks for sharing!
I only recognized 8 of the individuals.
I missed Sandy Koufax, so that makes 9.
I can identify a couple of names but didn’t know they were Jewish!!
I got 15. But I am a nice Jewish girl and had all of them ‘on the tip of my tongue’ but couldn’t if pressed give you anything more than vague recognition. I find the list very interesting and eclectic. A ‘shmorgasboard’ if you will of Jews who truly did shape politics, arts, philosophy, Jewish identity and culture.
Neat post. Thanks.
I only knew 9 myself. There were several where the name was familiar but I couldn’t place them.
I like that there is a museum honoring a vital segment of our society.
An interesting buliding…I knew 10.
I love to visit this place. For sure I have so much to learn here.
I only managed 8 – and Sandy Koufax only because he plays an important role in Stephen king’s Needful Things. Some of the other names are familiar, though. I’m going to read about them now.
I knew 9. My husband is Jewish, so he might know more. What an interesting place it must be. Thanks, Roger!
Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie’s Guide to Adventurous Travel
I only managed 8 so maybe a visit to the museum would teach me a lot. Looks nice lit up.
I think that would be a fascinating museum to visit!
I knew 10, but the others sounded familiar. What a fascinating place that must be! Wish I could visit…
Oh dear – I knew none. ;(
I like the building’s wonderful style and actually recognized 15 of these names. Excellent post, as always!
Looks like a nice place. I know only 4 of them.
An interesting and educational post as always, Roger. Knew only 11 of the names. Naturally clicked on the link to West Side Story. Love, love, love Jerome Robbins’ choreography. Rita Moreno now lives in Berkeley and often performs at the Berkeley Repertory Theater. She’s currently doing an autobiographical one-woman show.
That’s one big museum, museum here in our place is way too small.
I knew 9 of them. I thought at first this was a museum of the ancient history of the Jews. I would love to visit one of those. The British Museum has a lot of that and I find it absolutely fascinating. Don’t know when I’ll ever get there again. There is no question that the Jewish people are exceptionally talented in so many areas!
Oh, my….Ethel Merman will be belting out her songs in my head long after my head hits the pillow tonight, I’m afraid!
Such a lovely museum!
The inside (bottom right) looks very special ! I only know 5. Einstein, Spielberg, Streisand Golda Meir and Estée Lauder !
I only knew 6 so I am bottom of the class!
As always Roger – great post.
Denise ABC Team
not many, but I know the famous ones.
Thank God for the Jews. Where would we be without them today?
I saw this same show but I have never been to the museum. I would like to go. I knew 7.
Great choice! [I counted 13] including I.B. Singer, a favorite writer. Thanks for highlighting this museum–I will visit next time I visit Erica in Philly.
I knew eight. I hope Itzhak Perlman features, too. I’ll never forget seeing him play at the Royal Albert Hall.
A great post, Rog, for J-day — as always I come away knowing more than when I arrived!
ABC Wednesday Team
I enjoyed the tour…I love museums…I knew 13 on the list.
Great choice for J day!
I can only identify four of them! Shame on me!
Thanks for sharing, Owen:o)
Have a nice and happy Sunday****
Sorry Roger! Love the other name too;o)
Nice capture of a great museum. Thanks for visiting.