Passages through the Fire: Jews and the Civil War
March 10 â€“ August 11, 2013
In the midst of the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, this exhibition offers a provocative and revealing perspective on the bloody conflict: The Jewish experience. The Civil War was a crucible for American Jews, laying the groundwork for their integration and Americanization on a large scale. Â It enabled the full participation of Jews in American life â€“ militarily, politically, economically and socially â€“ and set the stage for massive Jewish immigration decades later. In addition to telling this story, the exhibition also spotlights episodes that shook American history, including President Lincolnâ€™s reversal of an order by General Ulysses S. Grant which expelled Jews â€śas a classâ€ť from the massive Tennessee Territory after accusations of disloyalty.
Passages through the Fire includes the largest and most comprehensive collection of materials relating to Jews and the Civil War assembled in the last 50 years. Â The core of the exhibition is the unmatched collection of Robert D. Marcus of Fairfax, VA, generally regarded as the worldâ€™s most significant collection of Civil War Judaica. The exhibition also showcases dozens of magnificent documents and artifacts from museums, libraries and private collections across the United States, and features three exclusively created short films that offer contemporary perspective from leading historians and scholars. [View Press Release]
Co-Presented by the American Jewish Historical Society and Yeshiva University Museum
It's a Thin Line: The Eruv and Jewish Community in New York and Beyond
October 28, 2012 - June 30, 2013
The eruv is one of the most fascinating, though little understood and often controversial concepts in Jewish life. It divides private and public, sacred and secular, the Sabbath from the everyday. As a means for offering separation while integrating into city life, the eruv is also a rich symbol of Jewish life in America. With 130 artifacts spanning over five centuries, this exhibition vividly illustrates how an ancient Biblical precept has been creatively interpreted and applied - especially in and around New York City, where, from the late 19th century to the present, the eruv has been dynamically and dramatically adapted and integrated into modern life. A diverse range of objects includes: early Hebrew printed books, century-old images of New York life, contemporary tools and recent eruv artifacts, and eruv--themed works by contemporary artists.
Shabbat â€“ Inside and Out
November 18, 2012 â€“ June 30, 2013
With the cessation of the workday routine on Shabbat, the Jewish day of rest, relationships and the spirit are revitalized as family shares the precious time of festive meals.Â In synagogue, the day is marked by collective celebration and prayer, and with the ceremonial reading of the Torah.Â The objects on display in this special exhibit in our Mezzanine cases â€“ all from the collection of Yeshiva University Museum - highlight two aspects of the Shabbat holiday: the private/domestic and the communal/ceremonial.Â The beauty and range of styles and material character of the objects reflect the wide geographic range and different social contexts in which Shabbat has been and continues to be celebrated.