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B. Altman and Co.

Benjamin Altman, the founder of the B. Altman and Co. department store, was born in New York on this date in 1840, five years after his parents emigrated from Bavaria and opened a small dry goods store. Altman opened his own store in 1865 and grew it into a department store chain with a flagship store on Fifth […]

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May 25: The Realism of Rosa Bonheur

  Realist painter Rosa Bonheur, one of the best-known women artists of the 19th century, was born in Bordeaux on this date in 1822, to a Jewish family who belonged to the socialist-Christian sect known as Saint-Simonianism. The sect encouraged the education of women, and Rosa took her place alongside her father and brothers as […]

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February 25: From Her Walls to the Met

Muriel Kallis Steinberg Newman, a painter who contributed several dozen works of Abstract Expressionist art by the likes of Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Robert Motherwell, Mark Rothko, and Franz Kline to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and 170 works to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, was born in Chicago on this […]

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September 7: A Jew in the Cloisters

James Joseph Rorimer, curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the founder of the Cloisters in New York, was born in Cleveland on this date in 1905. Rorimer graduated from Harvard in 1927 with a degree in fine arts and was immediately hired by the Met, where he worked for his entire life. As […]

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