Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

War Changed Rosenwasser to Waters, Now ‘poppajake


”Poppa Jake,” known to thousands of fans of ”The Rise of the Goldbergs,” radio feature of WEAF, is reminded of old-War days by the recent happenings his native Vienna.

”I don’t like this idea of war,” he remarked, shortly before his program went on the air. ”The last ware forced me to give up my good name of Julius Rosenwasser to become James R. Waters.” Amplifying his lament, Poppa Jake described conditions in England about the time of his change of name.

”I decided to remove all trace fo my Austrain orgin about the time German planes began bombarding the right-tight-little isle, he narrated. ”Because the hotels were crowed with British soldiers in Hull, we found it necessary to put up at a hoarding house which catered to the theatrical protession. We were a motley not, the Atlantic Jugglers, the Pacific Acrobats, and names and titles of all descriptons.

”As we sat in the parlor taking ship one night, the landlady looked over train schedules, wondering whether the African Songsters or Arctic Quarted wuld show up looking for accommodation, of which there was a decided scareity.

”Suddenly the strens sounded warnigs of an impending air raid the landlady’s little dauhter hurt into the room and sang out ”What’ll we do momma? The zeppelins are comming!”

”As the rest of us rushed toward the cellar we heard the landlady say quite calmly, ”Well, you can tell the zeppelins we haven’t room for them. We’re full up.”

The next day. according to his name from Julius Rosenwasser to James R. Waters, and for the duration of the war he found little dificulty in finding lodging.

Waters, famous for his characterzations of Abe Potash, Mr. Cohen, Reb Akiba and other classics of the Jewish theatre, first appeared on the Jewish stage in his early teens. he has played parts with the Adlers the kargs Thomashevsky and Kessler, and Blank and Abramovitch.

Recommended from JTA