This Day in History – 26 Nisan/May 4

In 5703/1943, 13,000 Jews of Amsterdam were deported to Sobibor and Auschwitz. The deportation continued until 30 Av of that year.



2517/1244 B.C.E., Yehoshua bin Nun

5495/1735, Harav Efraim Navon, zt”l, mechaber of Machaneh Efraim

5664/1904, Harav Moshe Betzalel Luria of Suvalk, zt”l

5684/1924, Harav Yosef Levenstein, zt”l, Rav of Slutzk


5698/1938, Harav Yehoshua Heshel Rabinowitz of Manestritsh, zy”a

Harav Yehoshua Heshel Rabinowitz was born in Zinkov on 24 Adar 5620/1860. His father, Harav Yitzchak Yoel of Kontikozva, was a scion of the Linitz dynasty.

Reb Yehoshua Heshel married his cousin, the daughter of his uncle Harav Pinchas Rabinowitz of Sokolovka, and settled near his father-in-law. However, in 5640/1880 he returned to his father’s town.

After the petirah of Reb Yitzchak Yoel on 25 Tammuz 5645/1885, his sons Reb Yehoshua Heshel and Reb Pinchas were appointed Rebbes.

In 5646/1886, Reb Yehoshua Heshel left Kontikozva and settled in Manestritsh, Ukraine, and he is known after this city.

He suffered much persecution, especially from the government.

Many Chassidim flocked to his court. He also traveled across the country visiting and giving chizuk to his Chassidim.

In 5659/1899, Reb Yehoshua Heshel published the first section of Divrei Yehoshua. The sefer was adorned with haskamos of many of the Gedolim of the generation. The second cheilek was published in 5667/1907.

In 5670/1910, Reb Yehoshua Heshel moved from Manestritsh to Uman.

During World War I, Reb Yehoshua Heshel suffered terribly. Rioters entered his house and threatened to kill him, but he was saved by way of a bribe of tens of thousands of rubles. His Rebbetzin and his son Rav Gedalyah Aharon were killed in an uprising in 5679/1919.

In Elul 5683/1923, Reb Yehoshua Heshel left Uman; after a long, weary journey via Kiev, Moscow, Riga and London, he arrived on the shores of America on 24 Teves 5684/1924. He settled in New York, where he established a beis medrash.

Reb Yehoshua Heshel was niftar in New York on 26 Nisan 5698/1938, at the age of 78.

Zechuso yagen aleinu.


In 1776, Rhode Island declared its freedom from England, two months before the Declaration of Independence was adopted.

In 1916, Germany, responding to an ultimatum from President Woodrow Wilson, agreed to limit its submarine warfare. (However, Germany resumed unrestricted submarine warfare the following year.)

In 1961, the first group of “Freedom Riders” left Washington, D.C. to challenge racial segregation on interstate buses and in bus terminals.