NEBRASKA

NEBRASKA, state on the Great Plains located near the geographical center of continental United States. Its population in 2005 was 1,729,000 of whom approximately 7,200 are Jews, a decline of some 10% in three decades. Most live in Omaha, the home of four synagogues, a Jewish community center, and a mikveh; the majority of the other Jews in the state live in Lincoln, the home of the state university and two synagogues. Nebraska was organized as a territory in 1854, and within a year the stream of Jewish settlement had begun. The first Jewish settlers are believed to have been two brothers, Lewis and Henry Wessel, who went to Nebraska City from St. Louis in 1855. The next few decades brought a steady trickle of Jews who were predominantly of Central European origin (Alsace-Lorraine, Germany, Bohemia). Many had settled briefly in cities on the eastern seaboard before moving to the west, where, especially after the Civil War, the Homestead Act and railroad construction attracted new settlement. The early Jews in Nebraska were mainly merchants, such as Aaron Cahn and Meyer Hellman, who established a clothing business in Omaha to supply pioneers striking out on the Oregon Trail, and Carl Ernest Louis Golding, who was an Indian trader in Plattsmouth. One of the most colorful figures in early Jewish life in Nebraska was Julius Meyer, who settled in Omaha in 1866 and became a successful Indian trader. He mastered at least six tribal dialects, was adopted into the Pawnee tribe, and was given the name "curly-headed-white-chief-with-one-tongue." He later became a government interpreter for the Indians and accompanied a party of them to the Paris Exposition. Another early Indian merchant, Harris L. Levi, was less fortunate. In 1869 he joined a surveying party, all of whom were massacred Jewish communities in Nebraska and dates of establishment. Population figures for 2001. Jewish communities in Nebraska and dates of establishment. Population figures for 2001.   by the Indians in retaliation for the slaying of two Indian youths by the surveyors. The most important early Jewish settler was edward rosewater , who went to Omaha in 1863 as manager of the Western Union, and then became active as a journalist, founding the Omaha Evening Bee News (1871). Rosewater was a leading and controversial figure in Republican Party affairs in the state, served as National Republican Committeeman from Nebraska, and was twice defeated for the U.S. Senate. After 1881 Russian Jews began to arrive in large numbers, many of whom were systematically sent out west by the Industrial Removal Aid Society of New York. Some abortive attempts were made to settle the newcomers on the soil, and the Jewish Agricultural Society tried to found a colony in Cherry County in 1908, but by 1916 the experiment was abandoned. With the exception of a handful of ranchers, the Jewish population of Nebraska, by 1970, was almost entirely concentrated in business and the professions. Scattered groups of Jews live in some of the smaller Nebraska towns (Grand Island, Norfolk, Scottsbluff, Beatrice), but only omaha and Lincoln sustain organized community life. Lincoln has two congregations, one Conservative and one Reform, and a Jewish Welfare Federation. The Esther K. Newman Camp, between the two cities, serves the Jewish youth of the state during the summer. Jews have served in a wide variety of public offices in the state since its inception. Many have been mayors of their municipalities, and as early as 1863 Aaron Cahn served in the legislature. henry monsky of Omaha gained national importance in the B'nai B'rith. Ben Greenberg of York was chairman of the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska. Edward Zorinksy was a United States Senator (1976–87) after serving as mayor of Omaha and defeating long-time incumbent Roman Hruska. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: B. Postal and L. Koppman, Jewish Tourists' Guide to the U.S. (1954), 289–92. (Sanford Ragins / Renee Corcoran (2nd ed.)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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  • Nebraska — • One of the United States of America, originally included in the Louisiana Purchase. Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Nebraska     Nebraska      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Nébraska — Nebraska (homonymie) Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Nebraska — es un estado que conforma los Estados Unidos de América. * * * ► Estado del centro NO de E.U.A., limítrofe con Dakota del Sur (N), Iowa (E), Missouri (SE), Kansas (S), Colorado (SO) y Wyoming ( …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Nebraska — Nebraska, 1) (Territory of N.), Gebiet im Nordwesten der Vereinigten Staaten von Nordamerika, grenzt im Osten an die Staaten Minnesota u. Iowa (durch die White Earth u. Missouri Rivers davon getrennt), im Süden an Kansas, im Westen an die… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Nebráska — (abgekürzt Neb.), nordamerik. Unionsstaat (s. Karte »Vereinigte Staaten«), zwischen 40–43° nördl. Br. und 95°21´ 104° westl. L, grenzt an Süddakota, Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, Colorado und Wyoming und hat 200,740 qkm Fläche. Der größere westliche… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Nebraska — état du centre des È. U., dans les Grandes Plaines, limité à l E. par le Missouri; 200 017 km²; 1 578 000 hab.; cap. Lincoln. Grande rég. agricole. Pétrole. Explorée au XVIIIe s. par des Espagnols et des Français, la région, devenue territoire… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Nebraska — U.S. territory organized 1854, admitted as a state 1867, from a native Siouan name for the Platte River, either Omaha ni braska or Oto ni brathge, both lit. water flat. The modern river name is from Fr. rivière platte, which means flat river.… …   Etymology dictionary

  • Nebraska — Nebraska. 1) N. (Platte River), Nebenfluß des Missouri in Nordamerika, entspringt im Felsengebirge (Colorado), mündet südl. von Omaha, 2445 km lg. – 2) Einer der westl. der Ver. Staaten von Amerika, 200.797 qkm, (1900) 1.066.300 E., vom N. und… …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Nebraska — Nebraska, Platte River, Nebenfluß des Missouri, entspringt als North Fork in den Rockymountains, nimmt nach 87 Ml. den South Fork od. Padouca auf u. mündet nach 326 Ml. in den Missouri. Diesen Fluß entlang führt der große Auswanderungsweg nach… …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

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