How the Jews Conquered the Wild West

February 7, 2022, 10:00 am - 11:00 am

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Class Instructor: To Be Determined

Dates: February 7, 14, 21, 28, March 7, 14, 2022

Time: 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM

Course Description:

When we study the period of the American Wild West 1849-1909, we might conclude that it was the third Golden Age of the Jewish People.  (The first was The Golden Age of King Solomon–950c B.C.E. and the second was The Golden Age of Spain-1200-1300 C.E.)

It was a time when Jews adapted to new and strange environments, drawing upon their intelligence, Yiddisheh kop, creativity, hard work ethic, and Jewish values.During this period, Jews found themselves in a totally free, capitalistic society. They flourished as merchants at all levels: peddlers, importers, distributors, wholesalers, and retailers. There were also Jewish cowboys and cattlemen.

The bedrock of our modern thriving market system was created by Jewish merchants in cities, towns, and villages throughout the West. They came with merchandise, in wagons and ships. They brought anything they thought would sell in this vast new territory; they had literally nothing with which to start.  Mostly immigrants from Europe, new opportunities opened up in the Old West without the presence of pervasive anti-Semitism.  Indeed, America was the goldeneh medina.

This course will study Jewish settlement in each of the western states.  Who were the pioneers and what was their legacy? How did they set up Jewish communities, deal with Shabbat, kashrut, synagogue, clergy, and religious education?  Were there any Jewish gunslingers or Indian Chiefs?  You bet there were!
This course is open to everyone regardless of background or personal orientation.

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Phone: 941-244-2042
Email: office@khsarasota.org

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St. Wilfred’s Episcopal Church Campus, Kol HaNeshama Sanctuary
3773 Wilkinson Road, Sarasota, FL 34233

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