This Day in History – 26 Teves/January 7

In 5129/1369, Jews of Sicily were ordered to wear a special badge signifying that they were Jewish.

In 5532/1772, Harav Pinchas Horowitz, the Baal Hafla’ah, was appointed Rav of Frankfurt.



5576/1816, Harav Avraham Chaim of Zlotchov, zt”l, the Orach L’Chaim

5665/1905, Harav Alexander Shmuel of Lvov, zt”l, mechaber of Rosh Hamizbei’ach


5661/1901, Harav Hillel of Radoshitz, zt”l

Harav Hillel of Radoshitz was the son of Harav Yitzchak Finkler, Rav of Radoshitz and son of Harav Eliezer, whom the Yehudi Hakadosh of Peshischa called one of the 36 hidden tzaddikim. He was a direct descendant of Harav Meir Eisenstadt, the Panim Me’iros.

In his youth, Reb Hillel was a close talmid of his grandfather, father and uncle in Radoshitz. His grandfather held him especially close because he was orphaned from his mother. He would travel to Rebbes, among them the Saraf of Moglenitza, Harav Moshe of Lelov, but mainly to the Tiferes Shlomo of Radomsk. He was dearly beloved by the Tiferes Shlomo, who even had a special private shiur with this talmid.

After the petirah of his Rebbe, the Tiferes Shlomo, Reb Hillel began leading a flock of his own. He served as Rav and Rebbe in Radoshitz for many years, during which he led his kehillah with utmost devotion. Reb Hillel was sought after from all corners of the globe, particularly for yeshuos. He was known as a great baal mofes, and other Rebbes would often send their Chassidim to him.

The Rebbe of Radoshitz conducted himself with extreme measures of kedushah and taharah. He would immerse in the mikveh frequently, sometimes many times in one day.

Reb Hillel would say that if one has fear (of Hashem) during his lifetime, he has nothing to fear upon death. But if one lives without fear, then he does have something to fear upon his death.

Reb Hillel was niftar on 26 Teves 5661/1901, and buried in the ohel of his father and grandfather in Radoshitz.

Zechuso yagein aleinu.


Jan. 7

In 1789, America held its first presidential election as voters chose electors who, a month later, selected George Washington to be the nation’s first chief executive.

In 1904, the Marconi International Marine Communication Company of London announced that the telegraphed letters “CQD” would serve as a maritime distress call (it was later replaced with “SOS”).

In 1927, commercial transatlantic telephone service was inaugurated between New York and London.

In 1963, the U.S. Post Office raised the cost of a first-class stamp from 4 to 5 cents.