This Day in History – 7 Cheshvan/October 31

5639/1878, Jews began to prepare the ground at Petach Tikva for a new settlement.

5702/1941, 10,000 Jews of the Kovno ghetto were taken out for execution. The Nazis murdered them all during that day and the next. Hy”d.

In 5704/1943, Jewish children below the age of 12 were taken from Shavl, Lithuania, and executed. Hy”d.



5562/1801, Harav Shimon Deutsch of Dobormil, zt”l, mechaber of Nachalas Shimon

5608/1847, Harav Yehudah Tzvi of Rozdol, zt”l, mechaber of Daas Kedoshim

5666/1905, Harav Yehoshua Schwartzberg, zt”l, Rav of Zarik and author of Divrei Yehoshua

5666/1905, Harav Yerachmiel Tzvi of Biala-Shedlitz, zt”l

5675/1914, Harav Dovid of Sevorn, zt”l

5690/1929, Harav Yosef Yehudah Leib Bloch, zt”l, Rosh Yeshivas Telshe

5693/1932, Harav Yehudah Meir Shapira of Lublin, zt”l

5734/1973, Harav Yisrael Weltz, zt”l, Rav of Budapest and author of Teshuvos Divrei Yisrael


5626/1865, Harav Nosson Dovid Rabinowitz of Shidlovtza, zt”l

Born in 5574/1814, Harav Nosson Dovid of Shidlovtza was zocheh to have his grandfather, Harav Yitzchak Yaakov of Peshischa, the Yehudi Hakadosh, zy”a, as sandak at his bris.

Reb Nosson Dovid tried to keep the lofty madreigos heattained private. He worked for some time as an engraver, following the example of his father, Reb Yerachmiel Tzvi, who worked as a watchmaker for 14 years before becoming a Rebbe.

When his father was niftar on 8 Iyar 5594/1834, Reb Nosson Dovid was just 20 years old. He initially refused to succeed his father. Eventually, the Gedolei Hador, aware of his greatness,persuaded Reb Nosson Dovid to acquiesce, but he did so with one condition: he would not accept pidyonos from the Chassidim. Later, though, the Yehudi Hakadosh appeared to him in a dream and directed him to do so.

Even after he became Rebbe, despite having a following of thousands of Chassidim, Reb Nosson Dovid continued to travel to other leading Rebbes of the generation such as Tiferes Shlomo and the Saba Kaddisha of Radoshitz.

Many tzaddikim attested to the special powers Reb Nosson Dovid had, especially that of tikkun neshamos.

On Erev Shabbos Parashas Lech Lecha, 7 Cheshvan, 5626/1865, Reb Nosson Dovid was niftar, and was buried in Shidlovtza.

He left four sons. His successor as Rebbe in Shidlovtza was Harav Tzemach Baruch. The others were Harav Pinchas of Kintik, Harav Shraga Yair of Bialabrezik, and Harav Yitzchak Yaakov of Biala. His son-in-law was Harav Efraim of Kuzmir, son of Harav Yechezkel of Kuzmir.

Zechuso yagen aleinu.


Oct. 31

In 1864, Nevada became the 36th state as President Abraham Lincoln signed a proclamation. (In order to achieve statehood, Nevada had sent its draft constitution to Washington, where it was misplaced; in order to get the proclamation signed before Election Day, James Nye, the territorial governor, sent another copy by telegraph at a cost of $3,416.77 for 16,543 words; allowing for inflation, today that would be about $50,000.)

In 1941, the Navy destroyer USS Reuben James was torpedoed by a German U-boat off Iceland with the loss of some 100 lives, even though the United States had not yet entered World War II.

In 1941, Work was completed on the Mount Rushmore National Memorial in South Dakota, begun in 1927.

In 1959, a U.S. Marine reservist showed up at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow to declare he was renouncing his American citizenship so he could live in the Soviet Union. His name: Lee Harvey Oswald.

In 1961, the body of Josef Stalin was removed from Lenin’s Tomb as part of the Soviet Union’s “de-Stalinization” drive.

In 1964, Theodore C. Freeman, 34, became the first member of NASA’s astronaut corps to die when his T-38 jet crashed while approaching Ellington Air Force Base in Houston.

In 1968, President Lyndon B. Johnson ordered a halt to all U.S. bombing of North Vietnam, saying he hoped for fruitful peace negotiations.

In 1984, Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated by two Sikh security guards.