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J. D. B. News Letter

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Though according to the latest American Jewish Year Book, the Jewish population of South Carolina has increased over 42% in the last decade, they still constitute only about one-third of one per cent of the total inhabitants of the State. Nevertheless the Jews play a not unimportant part in its cultural and civic activities, and are proportionately well represented in its municipal and state administrations. We find them as professors at the University of South Carolina in the Capitol City, at the South Carolina Medical College, and at the College of Charleston. They have contributed a member to the Board of Trustees of the State University, August Kohn of Columbia; and one to the State Board of Education J. N. Nathans of Charleston; two to the State legislature. Senator Davis D. Moise, of Sumter, and Representative Sam Rittenberg of Charleston; a State Commander of the American Legion, George Levy of Sumter, as well as a State Treasurer for the S. C. Federation of Women’s Club, Mrs. Ferdinand Levy, and a county Superintendent of Music, Clifton L. Moise.

L. A. Wittkowski, of Camden, is attorney for Kershaw county, and J. Nathans is at the head of the Charleston Bar Association, while David D. Wittcover, of Darlington, has been reelected for the fifth term as chairman of the State Agricultural and Mechanical Society, and Morris Fass, of Dillon, continues as President of the Coastal Agricultural Development and Industrial Association. Recently, Milton A. Pearlstine was elected President of the Alumni of the Citadel, a state military institute, and Dr. Jacob S. Raisin, of the K. K. Beth Elohim Congregation, was selected to deliver the invocation at the opening of the S. C. Teachers’ Association which convened in Charleston on November 7-9.

In Jewish circles the last year witnessed an awakening which augurs well for good results in the future. While there are only two Orthodox and two Reform rabbis in the entire State, there is practically no Jewish community in which there is no religious school where Judaism is taught-Besides Charleston, Sumter and Columbia, which have organized congregations of long standing, there are a few smaller communities which have more or less imposing places of worship, such as the beautiful synagogue at Spartanburg, and those in Beaufort, Bishopville, Camden, and several cities are planning to build during the coming season.

Among the outstanding events of this year in Jewish South Carolina were the dedication of the new synagogue in Greenville, and the celebration of the seventy-fifth anniversary of (Continued on Page 8)

The Brith Shalom Congregation of Charleston, it is claimed, is the oldest Orthodox congregation in the United States. It started as an offshoot of the venerable K. K. Beth Elohim, after the latter introduced the Reform ritual, and was the first to adopt the Ashkenaz Minhag in a community which was the citadel of Sefardism and became the “cradle of Reform Judaism.”

A signal honor was recently conferred on a Charleston Jew by the I.O.B.B. when Attorney Joseph Fromberg was elected to the presidency of District Grand Lodge No. 5. Mr. Fromberg is the second member of the local Dan Lodge to be thus honored, the late Montague Triest having served in the same capacity in 1910. It was largely due to his energetic efforts that the mass meeting in behalf of the unfortunate Jews of Palestine proved a marked success, and that the drive for the Emergency Relief, Fund went over the top.

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