A tribute to the Jewish community of New York for its generous participation in the $6,000,000 United Jewish Campaign for the “Overseas Chest” of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee was paid by Louis Marshall, president of the American Jewish Committee and honorary chairman of the New York drive, and Julius Rosenwald, well known American Jewish philanthropist who contributed $1,000,000 to the “Overseas Chest.”
At the final rally of the campaign workers, where it was announced that the quota of $6,000,000 had been oversubscribed by $656,000, Mr. Marshall praised Mr. William Fox, the chairman of the New York drive, and Mr. David M. Bressler, acting chairman, who was actually in charge of the campaign.
“I have lived in New York for thirty-two years and all of this time I have been trying to get into a frame of mind enabling me to voice my approval of this community. At last I have found it,” Mr. Marshall declared.
“The great service Mr. Fox gave this campaign was not in his splendid contribution of $300,000 but in his insistence that you, Mr. Bressler, should lead it. If praises was ever due to any man, you are that man. You laid aside all your personal business, you forgot everything, you forgot yourself. You threw yourself into this work with but one thought, one ambition–and that was to make New York proud of itself. Now, it is proud of you. New York, through you, has learned that by helping our suffering brethren abroad, we were at the same time educating ourselves, making of ourselves better men and women. You have made a marvelous contribution to the history of the Jewish people, first by salvaging the unfortunates overseas, and secondly by making us do something that is good for our souls.
“For a long time I regarded Brooklyn as ‘darkest America.’ But since 1914 it has made wonderful progress and I am sure it will raise its full quota of $1,200,000. I am proud of its leaders–of men like Judge Moscowitz, of Hugh Grant Straus, worthy son of a worthy father.” Praise was extended to Leon Lauterstein, chairman of the Rockaway Division, for rolling up a total of $235,000.
“I hope we will never need another campaign like this. I hope that our brethren overseas will be able by our help and because of improved conditions to help themselves. But there are many works calling to us–especially Jewish education in this country, Jewish cultural development,” Mr. Marshall concluded.
Mr. Rosenwald was the guest of honor at the final rally. Mr. Rosenwald expressed delight over the success of the New York drive. Chicago had its drive at the beginning of the year raising $1,000,000 as that city’s quota of the $25,000,000 overseas chest. In his address Mr. Rosenwald said:
“On this occasion I am going to confess that when you set $6,000,000 we in Chicago did not believe it. You surprised everybody in this country. We took for granted when you set $6,000,000 that you would be mighty glad if you got $4,000,000. I am delighted and everybody in the country will be delighted to know that they have made a mistake. When I was told that this sum had been reached, somebody stated that if we had fallen down in New York it would have injured the whole country. I said, we in Chicago took it for granted you would fall down, so we had our campaign before you did. Fortunately, we were mistaken and we are delighted that we were.
“My hat’s off, not to the people who gave this money, not at all, but to people like David M. Bressler, David A. Brown, and you good men and women and the people who worked with them. These are the people who gave the money. If it had not been for you, if it had not been for the men and women like you, I do not care what kind of an example had been set by a few big givers–you would not have gotten anywhere with this campaign. It is not the big subscribers that make a campaign. It is the work of the people and in addition to that you have done much better than was expected. Not alone have you succeeded in getting money for this campaign but it has been an educational campaign of teaching people their duty, of showing them the way to be of service to other people which is worth more than the money you have raised.
“I bring you greetings and congratulations from Chicago. We will be very careful in the future how we judge New York.”