Norfolk, Virginia: A Jewish History of the 20th Century


Norfolk, Virginia: A Jewish History of the 20th Century (JewishHistoryUSA, 249 pages) is a history of the Jewish community of Norfolk, Virginia, focusing especially on the first half of the 20th century. Written by the historian/author Irwin M. Berent, this is the only comprehensive history of Jewish Norfolk. Also includes numerous photos and an index of more than 2000 names. (more)


Relive Jewish History in Norfolk with
Norfolk, Virginia: A Jewish History
of the 20th Century
. . .

. . . when the chief Rebbe settled disputes between Orthodox businessmen on Church Street, and the dynamic orator of the “German”-Jewish congregation spoke Front cover.out on the anti-Semitism of Henry Ford and the K.K.K.!

. . . when Lithuanian immigrants spoke Yiddish and read Yiddish newspapers and lived atop their stores, while the descendants of earlier German-Jewish immigrants attended non-Hebrew services that for many years had no Bar Mitzvah, and the process of uniting the two largely separate groups was but a distant dream!

. . . when a Jewish “mayor” controlled local elections, and Jews dominated City Council seats in heavily Jewish wards!

. . . when a Jewish hospital competed with a Protestant hospital!

. . . when an entire strip of Kosher meat markets served the community, and a Jewish-owned grocery was on almost every corner, including segregated Black sections!

Front cover.. . . when blue laws required some Orthodox businesses to open on Sundays and close on Saturdays!

. . . when communities came together for the relief of pogrom victims and contributed to Hoover’s post-World War One war relief!

. . . when the local newspaper editor (Jewish) won a Pulitzer for helping to bring an end to lynching in the South!

. . . when supporting Zionism and advocating for a “Jewish” Community Center were still divisive issues among the Jewish community!

. . . and much much more!!!


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