Cover

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Title Page, Copyright Page

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Contents

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p. v

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Acknowledgments

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pp. vii-x

This book was born through my connection with the Oregon Jewish Museum (OJM). In late 2007, I was invited to serve on an advisory committee for a planned “core exhibit” on the Oregon Jewish experience. In the course of several meetings over the next two years, the committee worked to define the themes that would anchor such an exhibit. For me, the timing was...

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Introduction

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pp. 1-12

Like many western Jews, I am a transplant from the East. After a childhood in suburban Washington, DC, college in Minnesota, and graduate school in Philadelphia, I moved to Salem, Oregon in 1990. At the time, I had no intention of doing research on Oregon Jews—my dissertation focused on Jewish agricultural...

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CHAPTER 1. Pioneers and Native Sons

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pp. 13-49

On March 26, 1896, Gervais, Oregon, “was enthusiastic over the arrival home of her native son, McKinley Mitchell,” after his nomination to the state legislature as a Republican. “The people en masse met him at the depot and welcomed him with addresses and the firing of anvils,” reported the Daily....

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CHAPTER 2. Go West, Young Mensch: Composition of a Community

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pp. 50-90

In popular memory, the Portland Jewish community of the early to midtwentieth century was divided by ethnicity. On the one hand, Reform Temple Beth Israel was where “all Jews established at that time” affiliated, according to Adelaide Lowenson Selling. In her account, that “established” group was defined as much by national origin as by class: “As far as I can recall there were...

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CHAPTER 3. The Heart of the Community: Neighborhood House

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pp. 91-124

At the turn of the century, South Portland was the heart of the Jewish community, and Neighborhood House was the heart of South Portland. Founded in 1905 by the Portland Section of the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), Neighborhood House offered a broad range of opportunities. For the American...

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CHAPTER 4. A Jewish Vote? Class, Ethnicity, and Politics

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pp. 125-163

In 1916, several grocers, confectioners, and billiard proprietors in Portland were served warrants and arrested for violating the longstanding statewide Sunday closure law. Unless the law was repealed by the voters, Oregonians were warned, those who provided goods and amusement on Sundays would face “wholesale arrests.”1 Moving to prevent such...

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CHAPTER 5. A Western Exception: Zionism and Anti-Zionism

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pp. 164-188

Even as western Jewish historians began to break free of the East Coast dominance of American Jewish history, new generalizations emerged— now based on California, and particularly San Francisco, rather than New York.1 One new refrain regards the significance of Zionism, and of its critics. John Livingston argued in the introduction to Jews in the American West that weakness in the Zionist...

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CHAPTER 6. The Color of Community

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pp. 189-230

The place of Jews in the American ethnic landscape has been much debated. Both societal attitudes toward Jews and Jewish attitudes toward other racial, ethnic, and religious minority groups have varied over time and place. For example, although it became common in the early twentieth century for northern...

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Afterword

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pp. 231-232

As professional and social exclusions dissolved, the baby boom generation came of age, newcomers arrived in Oregon, and attitudes in the state began to shift more generally, the insecurities of the immediate postwar period began to fall away. As the final professional and social barriers to Jews fell, they became far...

Notes

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pp. 233-274

Bibliography

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pp. 275-284

Index

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pp. 285-292