Three Electric Guitarists

Three late, great electric guitarists were born on this date: John Geils in 1946, Walter Becker in 1950, and Randy California in 1951. Geils was the leader and only non-Jewish member of the J. Geils Band, which early on was dubbed “The Jewish Rolling Stones,” due to its sound and high-energy live shows. The band members often […]

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The Jewish Chicken Farmers of Petaluma: Why Remember?

Part One by Kenneth Kann   FIRST, ASTONISHMENT. Then outrage. Mine. I was viewing “California Dreaming,” a 2013 exhibit on Bay Area Jewish history at San Francisco’s eminent Contemporary Jewish Museum. The exhibit included the story of an extraordinary Jewish chicken ranching community in Petaluma, thirty-five miles north of San Francisco. This museum exhibit was false: […]

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Barnard’s Founder

Annie Nathan Meyer, the key founder of Barnard College, was born on this day in 1867 into an illustrious colonial Sephardic New York family (Emma Lazarus was among her cousins). Although Meyer was an active opponent of women’s suffrage — which brought her into direct conflict with her activist sister, Maud Nathan — she personally […]

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