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Omaha Public Stirred over Reading of Bible in Schools As Classic

October 8, 1926
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

(Jewish Daily Bulletin)

A request made by the Council Bluffs, lowa., chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution to have the Bible used in the public schools of that city “for literary and not religious study,” created much discussion among Jews and non-Jews in Omaha and Council Bluffs.

The request, made in a letter to the Bluffs school board read: “We propose to have the reading of the Bible in the public schools, without sectarian comment, at the opening of school in the morning. We have seen the Catholic priest and talked to Rabbi Cohn and both say that it will be agreeable to them and to their people to read, especially from the Psalter.” Many students have never heard of God except as used in profanity, the letter states.

Rabbi Frederick Cohn of Omaha stated “it would not be safe to study the Bible in the public schools and I would strongly oppose such a move, but I was informed that it was not to be the study of the entire Bible, but just certain psalms.” Harry H. Lapidus, president of the Jewish Community center here, said: “There is absolutely no question that we should be opposed to it. The Bible should not be introduced into the public school. Prejudice and bad feeling would spring up among the children.”

The Rev. Peter Gannon, editor of “The True Voice,” the official Catholic paper here, said: “I do not believe the study of the Bible should be permitted in the public schools. It would create friction and should be kept out of the schools. No minister or educator here favored the study of the entire Bible, as planned, but many suggested the study of portions of the Bible if printed as a book of classics.”


A luncheon to start the $5,000,000 campaign of the National Farm School will be held today at the Hotel White An appeal for “businesslike” support of The National Farm School Expansion Project will be made by Adam L. Gimbel, chairman of the Business Men’s Council of the project, which is composed of Abraham Erlanger, Samuel A. Vauclain, president of the Baldwin Locomotive Works; Manny Strauss, Business Consultant, and Ex-Governor Sproul of Pennsylvania.

Among those who are supporting the project are Herman Bernie, business manager of Ben Bernie’s Orchestra; Walter Hart Blumenthal, publisher; Maxwell Copeloff, manufacturer of coats and suits; Harry E. Cowan, furs; Miss June Crofut, dresses; L. F. Dannenbaum, silks; Gaston de Clairville, millinery; Samuel S. Dworkin, drugs; S. M. Edelstein, textiles; S. S. Epstein, underwear; Joseph Frankel, men’s clothing; Dr. H. A. Goldberg; Harry Golden, export and imports; Herbert S. Cohen, woolen goods; Mrs. H. B. L. Goldstein, Samuel H. Grossberg, men’s clothing; H. Gutman, art goods; Miss Cornelia M. Harris, underwear; Louis Kahn, threads and yarns; Maj. William Kennelly, real estate; David H. Knott, hotels and restaurants; J. Norman Levene, underwear.

Marie Trommer, writer on art and Jewish artists, has been awarded the 1926-27 competitive scholarship in painting by the Master Institute of United Arts. The scholarship provides for a year’s tuition at the school.

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