This Day In History 22 Shevat/February 7

Shaar blatt of sefer Toras Emes.

In 5701/1941, the Nazis raided the Jewish community of Amsterdam and detained 429 young Jews for deportation.


5619/1859, Harav Menachem Mendel Morgenstern, zy”a, the Kotzker Rebbe

5660/1900, Harav Yehudah Leibish Landau, Rav of Sadigura, zt”l, mechaber of Yad Yehudah

5661/1901, Harav Yitzchak Chiyus of Brod, zt”l

5753/1993, Harav Yehudah Zev Segal, zt”l, the Manchester Rosh Yeshivah

5648/1888, Harav Yehudah Leib Eiger of Lublin, Zy”a, the Toras Emes

Harav Yehudah Leib Eiger was born in Posen in 5576/1816. His father, Harav Shlomo, zt”l, son of Harav Akiva Eiger, zt”l, was Rav of the city. Young Leibel grew up on the knee of his illustrious grandfather.

When the family moved to Warsaw, Rav Leibel learned in the yeshivah of the Chiddushei Harim (later Rebbe of Ger), where many top lomdim gathered.

In 5595/1835, Rav Leibel married the daughter of the nagid Reb Ezriel Gratenstein, and settled in his wife’s home town of Lublin, at that time a metropolis of Chassidus, and Reb Leibel found his place among the Chassidim.

Reb Leibel’s friends suggested that he join them on a nesiah to their Rebbe, the Kotzker Rebbe, zy”a, in Tomashov.

With his wife’s consent, and despite fierce opposition from his family, he went. His father and grandfather sent messengers to convince him to leave, but Rav Leibel felt he had found his place, and resolved to stay. With time, resistance weakened — all saw his intent was l’shem Shamayim.

Under the watchful eye of the Rebbe, Rav Leibel became a devoted Chassid. The Rebbe appointed as his madrich in Chassidus Harav Mordechai Yosef of Izhbitza, zy”a. Reb Leibel soon became one of the foremost Chassidim.

When Reb Mordechai Yosef left Kotzk and founded his own court in Izhbitza, Rav Leibel joined him and became his right hand.

After the petirah of Reb Mordechai Yosef on 7 Teves 5614/1854, Reb Leibel discussed his future with Harav Tzadok Hakohen, zy”a, a leading Chassid in Izhbitza. Reb Tzadok returned to him with a kvittel, thus appointing him as new Rebbe.

Rav Leibel held court in Lublin. However, he didn’t deliver divrei Torah as long as the Kotkzer Rebbe was alive. He kept many of the Kotzker ways, like lengthy preparations before davening.

On 22 Shevat 5648/1888, the yahrtzeit of the Kotzker Rebbe, Reb Leibel was niftar at the age of 72 and buried in Lublin. He was succeeded by his son Harav Avraham, zy”a.

Reb Leibel’s manuscripts, printed after his petirah, were Toras Emes and Imrei Emes.

Zechuso yagen aleinu.

Feb. 7

In 1795, the 11th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, dealing with states’ sovereign immunity, was ratified.

In 1817, America’s first public gas street lamp was lighted in Baltimore at the corner of Market and Lemon streets (now East Baltimore and Holliday streets).

In 1936, President Franklin D. Roosevelt authorized a flag for the office of the vice president.

In 1943, the government abruptly announced that wartime rationing of shoes made of leather would go into effect in two days, limiting consumers to buying three pairs per person per year. (Rationing of shoes and other items was lifted in October 1945.)

In 1962, President John F. Kennedy imposed a full trade embargo on Cuba.