Concurrent Resolution Recognizing the 350th Anniversary of American Jewish
Passed by United States Congress
Ohio Congressional Members introduced historic legislation
CINCINNATI, OH:---To celebrate and honor the September 2004-September 2005
commemoration of the 350th anniversary of American Jewish history, U.S. Senators
George V. Voinovich (R-OH) and Mike DeWine (R-OH) along with U.S. Congressmen
Steve Chabot (R-1st-OH) and Rob Portman (R-2nd-OH) sponsored a Congressional
resolution to formally recognize the milestone anniversary. House Concurrent
Resolution 106 was passed by Congress on October 15, 2003.
The Resolution acknowledges the 350th anniversary of American Jewish History;
recognizes The Commission for Commemorating 350 Years of American Jewish History;
supports the designation of an American Jewish History Month; and urges all
Americans to share in this commemoration.
The Commission for Commemorating 350 Years of American Jewish History
The Commission for Commemorating 350 Years of American Jewish History was established
to develop historical commemorative events and programs that will be presented
throughout the nation during the anniversary year. Distinguished partners of
the Commission for Commemorating 350 Years of American Jewish History include
Library of Congress, the National Archives and Records Administration, the
American Jewish Historical Society and The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the
American Jewish Archives.
The 2004-2005 celebration will mark the first time that the Jewish community
has marked this event in partnership with the Library of Congress and the National
Archives-two preeminent research institutions of the American people. The Commission
-which is planning several national projects to illuminate prominent themes
in American Jewish history-will produce an exhibit to open in September, 2004
at the Library of Congress. The core of the exhibit is then scheduled to travel
to three additional American cities through 2005-Cincinnati, New York and Los
Angeles. The exhibit will feature some of the most compelling documents and
artifacts from the four Commission partner institutions spanning 350 years of
American Jewish history. Additionally, the Commission has launched an online
exhibit featuring many rare documents vital to telling the story of America's
Jewish community. (www.350th.org)
House Concurrent Resolution 106
The Resolution was introduced at the request of Dr. Gary P. Zola, Commission
Chair and Executive Director of The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American
Jewish Archives-located on the Cincinnati campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish
Institute of Religion. (The American Jewish Archives in Cincinnati and the American
Jewish Historical Society in New York are the only two research institutions
in the world dedicated exclusively to the preservation of archival materials
relating to the entire scope of American Jewish history.)
Speaking in support of the Resolution on October 15, 2003 from the floor of
the House of Representatives, Congressman Henry Waxman (D-Calif) said that "Jewish
immigration to America throughout the last 350 years brought with it legions
of notable researchers, lawyers, statesmen, inventors, artists, authors, musicians,
doctors, entrepreneurs, spiritual leaders, and Members of Congress. This resolution
honors the life, culture, and contributions of the 6.5 million Jews who live
in America and those who came before them."
Mr. Chabot, also speaking in support of the Resolution, commented that "House
Concurrent Resolution 106 recognizes the many contributions of the American
Jewish community to this great Nation's civic, social, economic, and cultural
life. The Resolution also notes that American Jews have fought valiantly for
the United States in every one of our Nation's military struggles, from the
American Revolution to Operation Enduring Freedom."
"I, of course, have seen firsthand in my hometown of Cincinnati the strong
and powerful positive influence of the Jewish community and Cincinnati also
happens to be home to a number of our country's most important Jewish institutions,"
noted Mr. Portman from the House floor. "These include the American Jewish
Archives, which has dedicated itself to assembling an extensive collection of
documents to chronicle American Jewish history, and the Hebrew Union College,
Jewish Institute of Religion, established in 1875, a pillar to the American
Reform Jewish movement."
"The Jewish community has deep roots in Ohio and this Resolution celebrates
these roots as we approach the 350th anniversary of Jewish presence in America,"
Senator Voinovich said.
"I'm excited to be a part of this resolution," added Senator DeWine.
"There is a rich history behind the Jewish culture -- one that has been
a large part of the United States and helped us become the nation we are today."