This Day In History 1 Cheshvan/November 2

In 2936/826 B.C.E., the building of the first Beis Hamikdash was completed.


5421/1660, Harav Menachem Mendel Krochmel zt”l, mechaber of Tzemach Tzedek (the first)

5551/1790, Harav Dovid Chazzan, zt”l, mechaber of Chikrei Lev

5638/1877, Harav Yissachar Dov Ber, zt”l, the Avodas Yissachar of Velbroz

5750/1989, Harav Yisrael Shapira, zt”l, the Bluzhover Rebbe

5680/1919, Harav Yosef Engel, zt”l, Mechaber of Asvan D’Oraisa

Harav Yosef Engel was born in Tarnow, Galicia, in 5619/1859. His father was Rav Yehudah Engel, the son of Rav Naftali Hertzl, a talmid of the Divrei Chaim of Sanz. On his mother’s side, Rav Yehudah was the grandson of Rav Moshe David Steglitz, the son of the famed Chassid Reb Zechariah, a talmid of the Noam Elimelech.

At age 19 Reb Yosef married the daughter of Reb Moshe Kleiner of Bendin, Poland, a Chassid of the Avnei Nezer. He remained in Bendin until 5665/1905, during the Russo-Japanese War, because the military government confiscated the property in which he had invested all his money, leaving him penniless.

In these difficult circumstances, Reb Yosef moved his family to Cracow, where he accepted a position as Rav.

When the Russian army invaded Galicia during World War I, Reb Yosef decided to flee rather than remain under Communist rule. He became sick on the way and was bedridden over Rosh Hashanah.

When he recovered, his friends offered him an apartment they had rented for him, and a minyan was organized in his home on Shabbos and Yom Tov. He earned a sufficient income from arbitrating disputes and devoted most of his time to learning Torah and writing sefarim.

Reb Yosef Engel authored many sefarim, among them Asvan D’Oraisa, Gilyonei HaShas, Beis Ha’Otzar and Gevuros Shemonim.

On Sukkos 5680/1919, Reb Yosef caught cold sitting in the sukkah and within days it developed into pneumonia. Two weeks later, on 1 Cheshvan 5680/1919, Reb Yosef’s pure soul returned to its Creator. He was buried in the new cemetery of Vienna.

Zechuso yagen aleinu.

Nov. 2

In 1889, North Dakota and South Dakota became the 39th and 40th states.

In 1914, during World War I, Russia declared war on the Ottoman Empire.

In 1976, former Georgia Gov. Jimmy Carter became the first candidate from the Deep South since the Civil War to be elected president, as he defeated incumbent Gerald R. Ford.

In 2000, an American astronaut and two Russian cosmonauts became the first residents of the international space station.