ST. LOUIS (Jul. 27)
A budget of $40,500 for the coming year’s activities of the Progressive Order of the West was adopted yesterday at the 27th biennial convention of the Order at the Jefferson Hotel here. The convention opened in the presence of three hundred delegates and alternates from all parts of the United States. The sessions will continue until Tuesday.
The contest for Grand Master is now on in full swing. With the retirement of Grand Master Joseph Schiller, who served four years, A. D. Bearman of Memphis, Louis Jaffie of Chicago and J. D. Barnett of Chicago are the leading candidates for the office of Grand Master.
A feature of the morning session was the rendition of reports by Grand Master Schiller of Chicago, who presided at the sessions, and Grand Secretary Morris Shapiro, both of whose reports were adopted.
Max Schulman, Zionist leader of Chicago, urged the calling of a national conference by all fraternal bodies to wage war on the alien registration bill, and to discuss national Jewish issues. He also made a strong appeal to the Order to support the upbuilding of a Jewish National Home in Palestine and the Palestine drive, now going on in this country.
Morris Rothenberg, national chairman of the American Palestine Campaign, who was to be the principal speaker at the convention, sent a message that was warmly received. In urging the convention to support the Jewish Agency drive, Mr. Rothenberg declared that in spite of all obstacles placed in the path of the Palestine upbuilding work, Jews must be “steadfast in their purpose and give the pioneers who have shown such unconquerable spirit that loyal support in their labors which they so richly deserve.”
City Registrar Jack Gross extended greetings to the convention on behalf of Mayor Miller. Rabbi C. H. Epstein, Leon Gellman, Dr. Alex. S. Wolf, Prof. Gustave Klausner and Mendel N. Fisher also greeted the convention. A dinner was given in honor of the delegates on Sunday night.
The convention voted to carry on an intensive membership in the future and a large sum was included in the budget for the Order’s propaganda work. William H. Goldman of St. Louis reported on behalf of the credential committee. Louis Jaffie of Chicago was named chairman of the resolutions committee; Emil Friedman of Chicago, chairman of the nominations committee and A. D. Bearman of Memphis, chairman of the budget committee.
Nearly one thousand guests attended the opening session of the convention yesterday. The Progressive Order of the West is now one of the largest Jewish fraternal organizations in the United States, having a membership of more than 10,000.
In his report to the convention Grand Master Joseph Schiller recommended the inauguration of a certificate plan of $2,000, in order to give the members of the Order the benefit of additional insurance at a small cost. To overcome the criticism of various insurance commissioners as to the high mortality of the Order, he recommended stricter medical examinations and urged that a higher rate of compensation be paid to the medical examiners.
Grand Secretary Morris Shapiro in his message to the convention recommended that in the future conventions should be held once every three years as the cost of each convention in the past has averaged nearly $10,000.