Hello to all who've just rejoined us. Again, my apologies for any
I just wanted to share a small discovery. My wife is reading a
memoir called "Stuffed" by Patricia Volk, whose family ran a
restaurant in Manhattan for many years. In a chapter describing her
grandfather, Jacob Volk, the following passage appears:
"[on his wedding day]mindful of the Orthodox tradition, he did not
forget the poorest of the poor, making donations to the Daughters of
Jacob, the Rabbi Jacob Joseph School, Machsikei Talmud Torah, Hebrew
Day Nursery, Keidaner Association Charity Fund, Tepheret Israel, the
Bronx Hospital and the New York Federation of Charities."
I'm not the first one to catch the connection between the Volk
memoir and Keidan. A couple of years back, Ada Green noticed the
following in an article in The Jewish Week in New York:
[Patricia Volk's] paternal great grandfather Sussman Volk introduced
pastrami to America and his son Jake, her grandfather, who founded a
demolition business, was eulogized in The New Yorker by E.B. White
as "the greatest wrecker of all time."
Ada went on to say:
Since Sussman VOLK is not a common name, I assume that the Sussman
VOLK and his son Jacob who are buried in Chevra Bnai Israel Anshe
Keidan in Brooklyn's Washington Cemetery are Patricia VOLK's ggf and
gf, respectively. Sussman VOLK, whose Hebrew name was Zusman ben
Yosef, died Feb. 12, 1909, age 57.
So, was pastrami introduced to America by a Keidaner? Who knows, but
I'm going to visit Katz's delicatessen on the Lower East Side in a
couple of weeks, and think about this as I bite into a lean one on
Cheers to all.