This Day in History – June 10/18 Sivan

In 5704/1944, Harav Shraga Feivel Mendlowitz, zt”l, founded Torah Umesorah, the National Society for Hebrew Day Schools. Though Jewish day schools existed at the time (the first full-time day schools were Etz Chaim, founded in 1888, and Rabbi Jacob Joseph School in 1900), the idea was generally rejected by most American Jews who saw it as a step back to the European shtetl. Rabbi Mendlowitz, however, felt that “afternoon Hebrew schools” were failing to transmit Yiddishkeit in a compelling manner to students who arrived tired in the afternoons and were constantly subjected to assimilationist influences in American culture. He set out to create schools that emphasized Jewish studies without compromising its secular studies program.


Yahrtzeiten

5603/1843, Harav Yissachar Dov, the Saba Kaddisha of Radoshitz, zt”l

5696/1936, Harav Yerucham Levovitz, zt”l, Mashgiach of Yeshivas Mir

5723/1963, Harav Aharon Cohen, zt”l, Rosh Yeshivah of Yeshivas Chevron

5732/1972, Harav Moshe Leib Shapiro, zt”l, mechaber of Taba’os Hachoshen


5704/1944, Harav Yaakov Elimelech Paneth, Rebbe of Dezh, Hy”d

Harav Yaakov Elimelech Paneth was the son of Harav Yechezkel of Dezh, zy”a. He was born in Ober Vishiva on 10 Kislev 5649/1888 and was taught by his father.

An exceptionally bright child, at the age of 14 he received semichah and served as assistant to his father, who was the Rav of a small town in Hungary. At 18 he received his official appointment as Rav.

He married the daughter of Harav Yaakov Shimshon Kanner, a descendant of the Chechov and Sanz dynasties.

In 5686/1926, Rav Yaakov Elimelech became Rav Hatza’ir of Dezh, where his father had been appointed Rav, and he also served as Rosh Yeshivah.

After the& petirah& of his father on 22 Kislev 5690/1929, Rav Yaakov Elimelech was appointed Rebbe of Dezh in his stead. He also served as& Rosh Kollel& of Kollel Ahavas Tzion of Transylvania.

Rav Yaakov Elimelech was renowned for his& tzedakah; he even pawned the family’s jewels to be able to give& tzedakah.

In 5703/1943, when the Nazis reached his region, Rav Yaakov Elimelech traveled to Budapest to try to redeem his sons from forced labor in Ukraine. He was offered a post as Rav there, but he chose to return to his own kehillah and be with them in their time of need.

Together with the members of the kehillah, Rav Yaakov Elimelech was forced into the ghetto. The Yidden were later taken to Auschwitz. Rav Yaakov Elimelech was 55 years old when he and the rest of his kehillah were killed al Kiddush Hashem on 18 Sivan 5704/1944. Hashem yinkom damam.

His sons were Harav Chaim Baruch, Rav in Dezh, who was killed with his wife and six children in the Holocaust; Harav Menachem Mendel, Rav in Anfi, killed with his wife; and Harav Shmuel Yehudah, killed with his wife and two children. Rav Yaakov Elimelech also had two sons and a daughter who were not yet married; they too were murdered al kiddush Hashem. Hashem yinkom damam.

His divrei Torah were published under the name Zichron Yaakov.

Zechuso yagen aleinu.


June 10

In 1692, the first execution resulting from the Salem witch trials in Massachusetts took place as Bridget Bishop was hanged.

In 1963, President John F. Kennedy signed into law the Equal Pay Act of 1963, aimed at eliminating wage disparities based on gender.

In 1967, six days of war in the Mideast involving Israel, Syria, Egypt, Jordan and Iraq ended as Israel and Syria accepted a United Nations-mediated ceasefire.

In 1971, President Richard M. Nixon lifted a two-decades-old trade embargo on China.

In 1977, James Earl Ray, the convicted assassin of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., escaped from Brushy Mountain State Prison in Tennessee with six others; he was recaptured June 13.