This Day in History – 3 Tammuz/July 1

3 Tammuz

In 2489/1272 B.C.E., Yehoshua prevented the sun from setting for 24 hours or, as some say, 36 or 48 hours (Avodah Zarah 25).

In 5416/1656, Harav Menashe ben Yisrael petitioned the Crown for permission for English Jews to practice Judaism, which was granted by the Council of State.

In 5611/1851, a fire consumed much of the town of Lubavitch, including the Tzemach Tzedek’s home and many valuable manuscripts.

In 5631/1871, Emperor Alexander II of Russia permitted the printing of Jewish books.

In 5687/1927, Harav Yosef Yitzchok, the Rayatz of Lubavitch, charged by the Communists with disseminating Yiddishkeit and incarcerated, had his death sentence commuted to a three-year exile in Siberia. He was released from prison and given a few hours to go home and prepare to leave. After a few days, though, he was freed.

In 5701/1941, 11,000 Jews in Kishinev were killed al kiddush Hashem, Hy”d. Minsk, the capital of Belarus, as well as the Baltic States, were captured by the Nazis.


 

Yahrtzeiten

5742/1982, Harav Shneur Kotler, zt”l, Rosh Yeshivah of Beis Medrash Govoha, Lakewood

5754/1994, Harav Menachem Mendel Schneerson, the Lubavitcher Rebbe, zt”l


 

5700/1940

Harav Shlomo Eiger of Lublin, zt”l

Harav Shlomo was born in 5630/1870. He was the oldest son of Harav Avraham of Lublin, the Shevet Yehudah, who was the son of the first Lubliner Rebbe, Harav Yehudah Leib (Leibeleh) Eiger, zy”a, grandson of Harav Akiva Eiger, zt”l, and a close talmid of Harav Mordechai Yosef Leiner of Izhbitza, zy”a.

Reb Leibeleh established his court in Lublin, where it remained the chief Chassidic group in the town until World War II.

In 5647/1887, at the age of 15, Reb Shlomo married the daughter of the naggid Reb Alter Wallerstein of Krushnik. There he became unofficial leader of the local chassidim and organized the building of a new shtiebel for the hundreds of Lubliner chassidim in town.

When the years of his father-in-law’s support came to an end, Reb Shlomo refused to accept any community assistance; instead, he opened a successful fabric business, to which he devoted only a fragment of his time, utilizing every available opportunity for learning.

After the Shevet Yehudah was niftar, on 22 Teves 5674/1914, his chassidim begged Reb Shlomo to take over but he refused. Instead, Reb Shlomo’s younger brother, Harav Azriel Meir, began leading the chassidim in Lublin.

But many chassidim, especially those in Krushnik, refused to give up, and eventually they succeeded.

Reb Shlomo, a lamdan, was known for his insight; his advice was sound even in mundane matters. In addition, his expertise in medicine, as well as his connections to the best doctors in Lublin and Warsaw, enabled him to give medical advice.

Reb Shlomo refused to accept pidyonos for himself. He donated all the money he received to the impoverished, and he refused to take anything at all from poor people. He did not dress in rabbinical garb.

During WW I, Reb Shlomo relocated to nearby Lublin, and took over his father’s beis medrash.

One of his greatest aversions was the secular Lubliner Tagblatt. He announced that anyone who read it had no place in his beis medrash.

When Harav Meir Shapiro, zt”l, proposed the concept of what later became Yeshivas Chachmei Lublin, Reb Shlomo became one of his chief supporters, helping to establish the yeshivah.

Reb Shlomo also helped Rav Meir to be elected Chief Rabbi of Lublin, a position he took up on 29 Sivan 5690/1930, the day his famous yeshivah opened. During the next four years, Rav Meir constantly went to Reb Shlomo for advice and assistance, especially towards the end of Rav Meir’s life, when the yeshivah’s financial situation became desperate.

After Rav Meir’s sudden petirah in Cheshvan 5694/1933, the yeshivah was left leaderless and with a mountain of debt. At this critical juncture, Reb Shlomo accepted the responsibility for the yeshivah’s debts and traveled around Poland on a fund-raising drive.

Reb Shlomo inherited one of the largest libraries in Poland from his grandfather and great-grandfather. It was said that he never bought a sefer without going through it once or twice and acquainting himself with its contents.

On Elul 17 5699/September 1, 1939, the Germans attacked Lublin and thousands were killed and wounded in the battle.

After the Yamim Nora’im of 5700/1939, Reb Shlomo underwent an operation, but the surgery was unsuccessful and he was niftar on 3 Tammuz 5700/1940. He was buried in Warsaw, with thousands still able to participate in his levayah.

His sons were Harav Yehudah Leib, Harav Akiva, Harav Yehoshua Simchah Yitzchak and Harav Shalom. His sons-in-law were Harav Avraham Noach Abramowitz, Harav Chaim Fishel Silman and Harav Shaul Rapaport of Bilitz. All his descendants were killed during World War II. Hashem yinkom damam.

Zechuso yagen aleinu.


 

July 1

In 1535, Sir Thomas More went on trial in England, charged with high treason for rejecting the Oath of Supremacy. (More was convicted, and executed.)

In 1863, the pivotal, three-day Civil War Battle of Gettysburg, resulting in a Union victory, began in Pennsylvania.

In 1867, Canada became a self-governing dominion of Great Britain as the British North America Act took effect.

In 1944, delegates from 44 countries began meeting at Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, where they agreed to establish the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

In 1946, the United States exploded a 20-kiloton atomic bomb near Bikini Atoll in the Pacific.

In 1963, the U.S. Post Office inaugurated its five-digit ZIP codes.

In 1973, the Drug Enforcement Administration was established.

In 1980, “O Canada” was proclaimed the national anthem of Canada.