❧ “By Dawn’s Early Light: : An exhibition of more than 140 books, maps, prints, manuscripts, and paintings documenting Jewish contributions to American culture from the nation’s founding to the Civil War, opening on March 16 at the Center for Jewish History. On display are many items from the Library’s Leonard L. Milberg ‘53 Collection of Jewish-American Writers as well as loans from the Library Company of Philadelphia, the American Jewish Historical Society, and Mr. Milberg’s personal collection.
“For Jews, initially a tiny minority in the early Republic, freedom was both liberating and confounding. As individuals they were free to participate as full citizens in the hurly-burly of the new nation’s political and social life. But as members of a group that sought to remain distinctive, freedom was daunting. In response to the challenges of liberty, Jews adopted and adapted American cultural idioms to express themselves in new ways, as Americans and as Jews. In the process, they invented American Jewish culture.” (Exhibition handout, p.1)
This exhibition was made possible through the generosity of Leonard L. Milberg with additional support from the Center for Jewish History.