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Felix M. Warburg in Message Declares Relief Work Abroad Must Continue

May 15, 1929
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Felix M. Warburg, Chairman of the Joint Distribution Committee, who was in Cairo, Egypt, when the United Jewish Campaign conference went into session, sent the following message which was read and warmly applauded.

“This is one of the few national conference relating to the relief of our people in Eastern Europe which I shall not be able to attend personally, but I can assure you tat I am with you in the spirit of your deliberations and conclusions and I shall be back to help in the work when it resumes, if, as I hope, your conference shall decide that the work be continued. Though I can not be at this National Conference myself, I am happy that the other men who have for so many years carried and shared with me the burdens, the troubles and the worries of the Joint Distribution Committee are with you:

“Louis Marshall, our guide, philosopher and inspiring leader, whose counsel we seek on every activity and problem of importance; whose life of Jewish service has found one channel of wonderful expression in the work of rehabilitating the shattered Jewry of Eastern Europe:

“Herbert Lehman, who, as the Vice-Chairman of the Joint Distribution Committee and as the Chairman of the Reconstruction Committee, has put into the activities of rebuilding the lives of countless thousands abroad the same energy and devotion which he gave to his large business and civic interests and which he is now devoting, as Lieutenant-Governor of New York State, to the affairs of his commonwealth.

“James N. Rosenberg, brilliant lawyer and organizer, who gave a year of his life as a volunteer to direct our activities abroad in 1922, in the vexed days of early reconstruction, and who now, as Vice-Chairman of the Joint Distribution Committee and as President of the New Society for Jewish Farm Settlements in Russia, has given of his time and of his heart unceasingly to the problems of overseas Jewry:

“Paul Baerwald, our Treasurer for the last ten years, who has scrupulously watched our finances here and abroad with a jealous eye; who has given a most painstaking, thorough and conscientious supervision of each dollar appropriated and remitted; who is in daily, almost hourly, touch with the office of the Joint Distribution Committee; who, I really believe, gives more time to the Joint Distribution Committee than to his own large business interests:

“Cyrus Adler, beloved and amiable scholar and the mainspring of our cultural and religious activities, who has presided with genial and lovable impartiality over the committee which has had in charge the support of the religious, educational institutions abroad, is not with you, I have had the pleasure of his company abroad, but I know he is adequately represented:

“May I also refer to Bernard Flexner, thorough and conservative organizer, efficient administrator of the funds of the Palestine Economic Corporation, through which constructive assistance has been rendered to our people in Palestine; Chairman of our Medical Committee in the Joint Distribution Committee and one of the representatives of the Joint Distribution Committee on the American Joint Reconstruction Foundation, which renders credit assistance in eleven countries of Europe:

“David M. Bressler, Chairman of the Committee on Refugees, active in the Emergency Refugee Committee, who gives his time to every duty and problem of the Joint Distribution Committee and the raising of the funds needed; a devoted colleague and helper: “And if I were to commence to go into detail about the service, the helpfulness that has been rendered by each of the members of our Executive Committee and of our sub-committees, it would take a long time to give the whole recital: Dr. Solomon Lowenstein, Chairman of the Committee on Child Care, which has done such wonderful work in Palestine and in Europe: Lewis Strauss and Jimmic Becker, two young men who have won their spurs in our labors with rare distinction; our beloved colleague. Cyrus Sulzberger. Messrs. Wiernik, Fischel Engelman and Teitelbaum; Messrs Gillis and Zuckerman and Vladeck Jonah Goldstein as a member of our Executive Committee and of our fundraising leadership; Harriet Lowenstein Goldstein our Comptroller since the inception of our work.

“A more recent member who has rendered excellent service-Dr. Henry

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Moskowitz. Alexander Kahn, whose name appears on virtually every standing and special committee. And those two dynamos of action. Jacob Loeb and David Brown, not in their capacity as money-raisers, but as members of the distributing committee.

“And that leads me to speak of that other great department of our activities, which has loyally and magnificently organized the machinery of fund-raising and has enlisted the enthusiastic cooperation of the leaders of the country, developed with such self-sacrifice and whole-hearted devotion and such wonderful skill by the Chairman of the Campaign, David A. Brown.

“I need not tell you how those of us who handle the distribution of the funds which have come with such generosity through your efforts are aware of the responsibility with which we are charged. That sense of responsibility is never absent from us. We live with it; lunch and dine with it; and often I think we sleep with it; and sometimes stay awake at night with it. It is with us in our weekly, daily and often our hourly deliberations and discussions on the problems of the Joint Distribution Committee. It is because we feel this so keenly that we have in the past deemed it incumbent upon ourselves to keep the whole country in close touch with the activities so that we might render an account of the work, a record of our stewardship. And this is so, not only because we have felt it necessary to render such a report, but so that you in every part of the United States and Canada could re-kindle and periodically renew your interest in these necessary and constructive activities; and so that we could keep you informed of the problems, the methods and the manner of our carrying on the work you have entrusted to us; so that you might know how our representatives abroad, Dr. Kahn and Dr. Rosen, have carried on the many sided departments of our help in Eastern and Central Europe and in Russia.

“We want you to know that while the collection of the money to which you gave your time is a splendid and wonderful piece of work, the responsibility of careful distribution of the funds occupies a very large part of the energies and has for fifteen years taken the time and best abilities of the men who have carried on the distribution; and as we go along in our work, we feel that we should get from the country an endorsement for the approval of the work that has been done, an encouragement for renewal and continuance of the efforts in directing the reconstruction and relief abroad.

“It has thus come about that meetings have been called from time to time at a place convenient to the leaders of the country and to these meetings the leaders of the Joint Distribution Committee have come. I recall that at the last meeting in Chicago of the Constructive Relief Conference, in the Fall of 1927, every single officer of the Joint Distribution Committee was present in Chicago; and now we have again called a meeting and we approach it with the same earnestness with which we attend to our work in behalf of the Joint Distribution Committee in New York. This meeting, moreover, has a special significance because it has as one of its purposes the thought of the conclusion of the nation-wide campaign which was started in the Fall of 1925, as a result of which a total of over $14,400,000 has been collected. Much of this money was collected at a time when business throughout the country was not so good, and in more recent times we have found that collections have been very much better by reason of a high level of prosperity throughout the country. It is our hope that the main object of this conference can be accomplished; that there should be turned in finally to the New York treasury the payment of as much as is possible of the outstanding pledges throughout the various states, so that the 1925 campaign may be ended. And having met in counsel and deliberation, it is most desirable also that this Conference should hear the messages and statements and reports of those who are most competent and advised that in their judgments there will still be a further necessity for providing regular contributions for European reconstructive help for a number of years to come although we hope and believe that the amounts required will not be so large by any matter of means in the future as they have been in the past.

“It is because of this that the distribution of the funds collected from so many thousands of people is being handled with such close care and attention and study by the men mentioned above, by our colleagues of our Executive Committee who meet more or less formally in Committees, in luncheon conferences at stated sessions, and who rarely pass a day without consulting three or four times a day by telephone on problems that have arisen. And it is this group of men who are in constant touch with the progress of collections which, as you know, are being handled by Mr. David A. Brown through the United Jewish Campaign with headquarters in New York and with local and state offices throughout the United States and Canada. And you know as well as I that the money-raising Campaign Committee is constantly on the job without relaxing its activities a single day of the year; and in that connection let me express a word of thanks to the men and women in the office of the Joint Distribution Committee and the United Jewish Campaign, who have worked constantly on these problems and have given of the best thoughts and energy within them. I think you all know that a fine piece of work has been done in the collection department by Mr. Marcy I. Berer; and in all phases of our activities by our Secretary. Mr. Joseph C. Hyman, who served during the early period of our reconstructive activities as Assistant to the Chairman of the Reconstruction Committee, Herbert H. Lehman, and since that time as Secretary of the Joint Distribution Committee, the United Jewish Campaign and the recently organized Committee for land settlement work in Russia, known as the American Society for Jewish Farm Settlements in Russia. It was in connection with the work of this Society that Mr. Hyman went to Russia during the latter part of last year and at that time he also had the opportunity to see Dr. Kahn and to discuss with our Director for Europe the activities of the Joint Distribution Committee there. We all feel deeply grateful for his help and cooperation.

“I turn to you, my friends from every part of America, and express to you my personal appreciation. I wish I could mention you all by name, each leader in every state and city. Without you we could not carry forward at all. Far away as I am when this messages reaches you, I wish it to take the place of a cordial hand clasp, to thank you again and again for your efforts in behalf of those who still need our help. It has been a great partnership, full of many difficulties, but despite that, an inspiring task. We dare not and we will not lay down our arms until that task is done.

“At this Conference we feel that if you agree that the work of rebuilding and of helping our brethren in Eastern Europe and in Russia is to continue, that this Conference shall give the Joint Distribution Committee a new mandate for the continuance of the program and shall give us due encouragement to go out again into the country and collect the new funds required. In what amounts these funds are to be raised, at what time and how, – these problems I hope you will refer to our Executive Committee which can be promptly convened when Dr. Adler and I return to the States, and which will consider the program that must be carried on abroad in detail and the amount of help that is required.

“I know that every locality has its own problems. We know that every community has its own burdens. We think that we in New York have always had more than our share (and undoubtedly every large community in the country feels the same way), what with the needs of Federations throughout the country, hospitals, Jewish centers, synagogues, temples and what not; but I have the feeling that there is plenty of money in the country. I have the confidence that once you believe there is suffering and need, you will do as you have always done and give and work to relieve the distress; and I don’t think it will be difficult to convince you that we would not be putting our own money and our own labors in the efforts of the Joint Distribution Committee unless we felt the urgent necessity for it. What we have done, we have been glad to do; but some of us are getting older and would like the burden to be somewhat lifted from our shoulders. We are willing to carry on, to continue; but we cannot do it without your help; we cannot do it without the continuance of your confidence and your good-will. We believe we have carried our your mandate. Shall we continue?” Mr. Warburg asked in his message.


With the adoption of an extensive program of training Jewish youths and a decision to establish the A. Z. A., junior B’nai B’rith chapters in cities where there are B’nai B’rith lodges, the 77th annual convention of District No. 1. Independent Order B’nai B’rith was concluded here yesterday. Each of the sixty-three lodges in New York, New England and eastern Canada has pledged itself to support this plan.

Maurice P. Davidson, chairman of the wider scope committee, reported the launching of a campaign to raise $72,000 to help finance the work. Addressing the delegates before his retirement as president of the district, Assemblyman Maurice Bloch declared that service of humanity at large as well as to the Jewish people the world over is the purpose of the Independent Order B’nai B’rith. He described the Order as “a medium through which blessings may be brought to all mankind and a relentless opponent to bigotry and race prejudice, even when other than Jews are victims of these twin evils.”

The following delegates were elected to the convention of the Constitution Grand Lodge to be held in Cincinnati, April, 1930: Joseph Rosenzweig, Judge Albert Cohn, Louis Fabricant, Joshua Kantrowitz, Hon. Maurice Bloch, of New York; Joseph H. Ullman, New Haven; Judge A. K. Cohen and Leo J. Lyons, Boston; David Ruslander. Buffalo; Judge Julius Illch, Albany; Archibald M. Hillman, Worcester; Horace R. Cohen, Montreal; Nathan H. Friedman, Taunton, Mass.; and Louis Singer of Toronto, Canada.

The Women’s Auxiliaries Council, convening at the same time, elected Miriam Schneider of Boston, president; Mrs. Harry L. Smith, New York, 1st vice-president; Mrs. Eva Mailman. Springfield, 2nd vice-president; Mrs. David Ruslander, Buffalo, 3rd vice-president, Mrs. Augusta Katz, Boston, secretary; and Mrs. Betty Pasnik, Norwich, treasurer.

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