Rare pictures from a Jewish Postcard collection
By Stephanie Comfort
This is not really a story. When asked what I do I often reply " I collect dead Jews" - their photos, their market places, their shtetls and towns, their Synagogues, their festive occasions, their lives in black and white and their deaths in the Holocaust. I try to recall a particular face whenever I say Kaddish as all members of most of the families were murdered at the same time and ask others who look at my postcards and photos at my Exhibitions to do the same. My Rabbi at one occasion told me that I am "ransoming the captives"
.especially when most of my postcards come from Eastern Europe or Nazi family albums. A good many of the cards in my collection are from the late 1880's and what are called Cabinet Cards taken in photography Studios. I was born with the "collecting gene".
Included in my 9,900 postcards are the Jews of Israel, North Africa, the Baltic's, Africa, South American, North American, Europe, the middle East and in every nook and cranny where Jews have lived. I also have hundreds on the Holocaust, Pogroms and Anti-Semitism.
I hope that you enjoy the postcards that I am sharing with you here:
#1. Jews a Father and Son of Kaifeng, China. How and when Jews first arrived in China is a mystery yet to be solved but probably they were traders on the Silk Road.
#2. Jews somewhere in Poland waiting at a train station in 1918.
#3. A Jewish School in Buchara. What is unusual is that there are boys and girls together.
#4. A Jewish Grandmother and Grandfather somewhere in Eastern Europe 1915.
#5. The Salonica Jewish Fire Department. Previous to the end of WW2 Salonica/Thessalonkki was in the Ottoman Empire and after WW2 it was given to Greece. May 11, 1911. The Fire Chief was Selomo Barzion.
#6. Jewish woman reading the Bible in Yiddish for women wearing glasses. Somewhere in Eastern Europe.
#7. Jewish Girls in Erfoud, Morocco the girl on the left with the tattoos is being prepared for marriage.
Visit Stephanie's website at www.jewishpostcardcollection.com
from the October-November 2009 Edition of the Jewish Magazine