Pittsburgh Daily Post from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on September 1, 1907 · Page 6
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Pittsburgh Daily Post from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania · Page 6

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Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
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Sunday, September 1, 1907
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Page 6
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G SUNDAY MORNING, THE PITTSBURGH POST. SEPTEMBER 1, 1907. ONE OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL AND COSTLY JEWISH SYNAGOGUES IN THE UNITED STATES, SOON TO BE DEDICATED WITH IMPRESSIVE CEREMONIES FOR MEMBERS OF RODEPH SHALOM CONGREGATION IN PITTSBURl .J, i - i --r -w o.a oren. loir nen com plfetton - -t, ...... . ' - f l f:rhY r - rift 1 - i . 5 prJ ' ill - :l 1-' AX 5 ?i 1 sir m far: tret- wi m 7f 1 WkH at : in 7TT View of uditoTium rom. t-'yj:. mm r mmmm 11, ft II (f If ' m aft e 'View, of? yxcw mm.pl c sect , - 1 as -r . ; -r-Xl. '.i iO '. Wii " -1 i "' r 5-,;. 1 4, Si f n-iif tr t - r ..... ... . : twK5't:T. j. " mj nttiusMS -IS 5 - i. :i - . m WAV ' ' . ' I beotTful AridTUsnc ci eti I And wopkmiaship i . j tfettidp witfi trie f-ic2rt" sunburst""" KncL 2 UTIFUL SYNAGOGUE TO OPEN NEXT FRIDAY. Costly New Home of Congregation of Rodeph Shalom Receiving Last Touches. WONDER IN ARCHITECTURE. Great Dome Causes Thousands to Marvel Memorials and Fine Decorations. .Beautiful in masslveners and deta;l yet suggesting the acme of simplicity and ira-pressiveness stands the beautiful new syn. agoifue of Rodeph Shalom congregation at Fifth and Morewood avenues rc-ady for consecration as one of the handsomest temples for Jewish worship in the country. In design, construction and workmanship. In decorations and in every respect the fine edifice Is one of the prouJ.est creations In modern architecture and building methods, being a composite of excellence in hundrtds of details. Contractors are busying themselves putting the finishing touches to the inter.or for the informal opening wh ch will be held Friday evening. In the meantime tne trustees of the congregation are arranging for the event and th3 subsequent formal dedication, the date for which has not yet been set. The architecture and desipn is as nearly Oriental as is in keeping with the desire of the congregation for a simple ard dignified place of worship. The synagogue Is built mainly of brick and terra cotta while costly material is used for finishing the front of the building. Dome a Wonder. The great dome, one of the largest and most singularly constructed of its kind in the country is the first thing that catches the eye from a distance. As one approaches It becomes greatly magnified until the whole affair presents itse f as cne of the wonders of latter day architecture. The entire dome is of masonry and con. tains not a particle of steel. It is sa:d to be the' fourth largest of this kind in the world. One loses sight of the huge dome with closer approach and the massivene-s of the edifice proper distracts attention from the dome, the principal feature cf the building. Hre one reflects on the beautiful house of worship until the eye is cast along the front or entrance to the building. The difficult workmanship on the front of the building, the marked :e"ail cf the thousands of little pieces of inla'd ti es and othr-r materia -a rup-gest months of tedious and patient abor, great ex pense and above all as daring a bit of decorative work as can be Imagined. One does not have to be a conno'sseur or to understand the techniques of the adept masters In architecture and design, who conceived the whole magnificent affair, to appreciate it. The most subtle-minded on this subject are forced to stop and admire it for a moment at least. Distinctive Features. The dome and other features might suggest the synagogu to be any sort of a public building. There Is something about it, however, that instantly suggests its real purpose, namely, a place wherein the membrrs of Rodeph Shalom congregation shall be able to meet and worship as befits their ta3tes and desires since the old temple in Eighth street was sold. Any failure at comprehension to this end, if such a thing were possible, would be Instantly dispelled by the first square look at the front of the building. Above all its grandeur and beauty, dispelling all thought cf the masslveness of the dome and the building itself, a simple Inscription carved beautifully above the entrance attracts attention. "My house shall be a house of prayer for all people." These beautiful words from the seventh verse, fifty-sixth chapter of Isaiah, sort of festoon or form an almost half circle directly over the entrance. Each letter forming the words of the passage Is inlaid and can never be effaced. Coincident with its meaning and the thought- it conveys the inscription is there to remain s long as the synagogue of the congregation Rodeph Shalom shall stand. Having viewed the outside carefully, taking in the details of every feature, one Is prompted to inspect the interior of such a remarkable building. . Another look at the dome and one yields to this impulse. Massive Doors at Entrance. The six doors entering into the auditorium are arranged in a manner not unlike that of modern theaters. The auditorium Is furnished with oak seats upholstered in green leather. The carpets are green, while the shrine Is beautifully decorated in green and gold. The wainscoting is 20 feet high and there the hand of a master again manifests itself, the whole being delicately and beautifully carved. Four memorial windows from the Wil-let studios adorn the walls of the building. They commemorate the worthy careers of Jacob M. Gusky, Asher Gucken-hclmer, Jacob and Lena Klee and Fannie Hanauer Hamburger. The donors are, respectively: Mrs. Esther M. Gusky, Mrs. Ida Guckenheimer, Philip Hamburger and the Klee family, the Pittsburgh branch of which is Mr. and Mr3. I. Y'. Frank. The Gusky memorial is entitled "Mercy and Judgment," representing a benign figure of a bearded man bearing on one arm a child, while a woman seated on the ground in the garb of poverty expresses her despair. Nearby stands a boy with Ills hands uplifted in supplication. "Ivlosr-s Interceding for His People," is represented on the Guckenheimer memorial. It is a beautiful medallion of Moses kneeling in prayer on a lonely hill, overlooking beautiful meadows and divided by a steep precipice. His hands are clasped in agony. "And Moses returned unto the Lord and said: 'Oh, this people have sinned a great sin. Yet now, if thou wlit, only forgive their sin, and If not, blot me out of Thy book which Thou hast written.' " The theme for the beautiful creation is taken from the accompanying Scripture passage. The Hamburger window, "Charity," represents in its central scene a charitable visitor at the bedside of a sick girl. The figures are nobly contrasted and the composition though . simple tells a beautiful story. Below there are decorative panels the principal ono containing a scroll of the law with a text commemorative of the spirit of the charitable woman so beautifully described in the last chapter of the Book of Proverbs. In the upper third of the window are two angels bearing through clouds the soul of the departed saint. The Klee memorial, "Ruth and Naomi," represents the figures of two women standing In a loving embrace under a tree In an oasis. Ruth clings to her mother-in-law as she gives utterance to this beautiful classic: "Entreat me not to leave thee or to return from following thee, for whither thou goest I will go and where thou lodgest I will lodge; thy people shall be my people ar i thy God mv God." All Original Designs. Two each of these windows are arranged on either side of the synagogue. The Gusky and Klee memorials are on the west side of the structure while on the' Morewood side are the Guckenheimer and Hamburger windows. Between the two on either side are larger affairs of conventional patterns bearing medallions of the coat-of-arms of the twelve tribes of Israel. These windows are all frortj the original designs by William Willet and are the work of the Willet Stained Glass Co. They are made of the costliest imported antique glasses, each tint being selected from the glass itself. On Friday evening at 8:30 o'clock the exorcises in connection- with the informal opening of the synagogue will begin. ! Owing to the approach of the Jewish New Year, which will be observed Sunday, September S, the congregation found it necessary to hold the informal opening in order that the synagogue may be used in observing that event. The formal dedication will not take place until after the New Year, when the organ will have been Installed and other work about the shrine finished. It will also be necessary to complete the details of the transfer from the old temple to the new one. The seats in the new building will be relatively different so far as the owners are concerned and th's is an important matter which must be finished before the formal dedication. Rabbi Levy will be sole celebrant at Friday night's exercises. The complete cost of the new synagogue is 'n round numbers $330,000. Palmer & Hornbostel were the architects, while the contractor is Thomas Riley, of this city. The old temple in Eighth street was sold to the congregation of the Sec ond Presbyterian Church in February, 1903. The board of trustees of the congregation Rodepli Shalom is composed of the following: A. Lippman. president; Judge Josiah Cohen, vice president; Meyer Joseph treasurer; L. J. Aftelder, secretary; Samuel Wertheimcr, Philip Hamburger, Marcus Aaron, Isaac Guckenheimer, Nathaniel Spear, A. J. Sunstein, Isaac W. Frank and Kaskel Solomon. The building committee is composed of Marcus Aaron, chairman; L. J. Affel-der, iiaRC W. Frank, Kaskel Solomon, Nathaniel Spear and A. J. Sunstein. The advisory members of the building committee are Rabbi J. Leonard Levy, Morris Baer and Jacques Weil. Congregation Rodeph Shalom first worshiped in a hall ovfr the Vigilant engine house In Third avenue near Market street, then in the Irish hall in Sixth street and in 1S61 built on Hancock Street, now Eighth street, the first synagogue in Western Pennsylvania. In 1S79 it purchased the West View cemetery. In 1889 the synagogue wag enlarged, but it was subsequently torn down and the old house of worship, now .ths Second Presbyterian Church, was built. The latter edifice was dedicated September 6 and 7, 1901. . Among the earljr readers and teachers of Rodeph Shalom were Sulzbacher and Marcuson. In 1S54 William Armhold took charge of the congregation, remaining until 18C5, when he went to Philadelphia. l)urlng his administration the congregation erected the temple In Eighth street and in conjunction with Josiah Cohen, now judge of common pleas court No. 4, he conducted a school, which was maintained from 1860 to 1S6S. From 1S65 to 1S70 L. Naumberg was reader and teacher, and in his day the reform movement was considerably advanced. The First Rabbi. The first rabbi of the congregation was Lippman Mayer, who came to Pittsburgh from Sclma. Ala., in the spring of 170. He successfully guided the congregation along advanced reform lines until his retirement as rabbi emeritus In 1901. By that time he had seen his congregation grow from a membership of 65 to 150. He was succeeded April 1, IC01, by rabbi J. Leonard Levy, the incumbent, who will be sole celebrant at the informal opening of the handsome new temple on Friday evening, and who will also officiate at the formal dedication which will be held at a later date. Rev. Dr. Levy came here from the reform congregation Keneseth Israel, Philadelphia. In the past six years Rodeph Shalom has grown considerably. Its present number of members and seat holders is nearly 500. It is worthy of record that on the day after the dedication of the old temple in Eighth street in 1901, the congregation contributed a sum of money which not only liquidated a debt of over $100,000, but left a surplus of over 30,-C0. Pittsburgh is notable in American Jewish history on account of the conference held here in 1S?5, and is also one of the best known cities in the country as a generous supporter of ail Jewish movements. There are nearly a score of important auxiliary societies and organizations branching directly from Rodeph Shalom and the several other synagogues here. Farewell to Old Home. Members of the Rodeph Shalom congregation yesterday bade farewell to the old temple of worship in Eighth street, now the Second Presbyterian Church. It was the parting of the ways for the congregation and seldom if ever has a more affecting service been witnessed In this city. Fully 400 persons were present when the services began. Dr. Levy presided and delivered the sermon, which followed a sketch of the congregat.on. He touched on the relationship existing between the congregation of Rodeph Shalom and that of the Second Presbyterian Church, likening his friendship for Rev. S. Edward Young to that which existed between Damon and Pythias. Dr. Levy lormally thanked the Second Church for their kindness in allowing Rodeph Shalom the use of the old temple since it passed into the hands of the present owners. Rev. Young's voice was husky when he began his address of response to the eulogy and kind words of Dr. Levy. Several times he brushed away a tear. Tears filled the eyes of the worshipers as they filed out of the old temple for the last time. EAGLES ARE READY TO GO TO NORFOLK. Will Boost W. J. Brennen for High Honor Nice Trip Planned. Led by a cordon of Pittsburgh's finest police, to the strains of Dannahardt's Second Brigade band, and escorted to the depot by all their brother members, and under the command of Captain John M. Morin and Lieutenants Jos. F. O'Tooie, Edward McLaughlin, Edward Kenna, William LythJ. Pittsburgh Aerie, No. 76, Fraternal Order of Eagles, will leave in a body to-morrow evening at 9 o'clock to attend the eighth annual convention ot the Grand Aerie of Eagles, in Norfolk, Va. Leaving Washington by boat, they will arrive in Norfolk at 7:30 o'clock Tuesday evening, escorted by Maxhni's military band to their headquarters at the Atlantic Hotel. Handsome souvenirs emblematic of Pittsburgh will be given ail those visiting Pittsburgh headquarters. Leaving Norfolk over tne old Dominion line for New York, a beautiful ocean trip of over 19 hours will be had, arriving in New York on Friday afternoon and leaving for Atlantic City on Saturday, spending Sunday there, and will reach home Monday morning, September 9, at 8 o'clock. The committee in charge is John F. O'Tooie. V. J. Long, Hugh Flinn, A. J. Dougherty, and- Charles S. Black. The members will assemble at the new Eagles club home, 431 Third avenue, at 7:S0 o'clock to-morrow evening. The delegates who will represent Pittsburgh aerie at the convention are W. J. Brennen, P. J. Barry, Jos. F. Joyce, S. J. Toole, R. G. Robinson Chas. E. Flinn, and Jno. E. Flannery. At this convention the foundation will be laid for the candidacy of W. J. Brennen for the exalted position of grand worth president in 1908, and will be pushed vigorously by his many friends in the Fraternal Order of Eagles with that object in view. SHEATZ IS COMING. Candidate for Treasurer to Meet Friends and Attend Clam Bake. Republican politicians were somewhat agitated yesterday by the news that John O. Sheatz, candidate for state treasurer, will be in the city next week. He will be the guest of the Allegheny city politicians. Mr. Sheatz will hold a reception at the Fort Pitt Hotel at it o'clock next Thursday. After the reception he will go to Keystone park, on the Pittsburgh & Westwm railroad, to ittend the clam bake of the Allegheny Eiks. No schedule has been ar-rnnu-A.1 for ftikt nleht. but the next day he will attend the meeting of the Trt-1 State fair association. Fined for Striking Daughter. William Hoffman, of Madison street,' was arrested by Humane Society Agent George H. Lightcap. yesterday, charged with cruelty to children. He is alleged to have aoused bis 16-year-old daughter, Mary, by striking her In the face sereral times witA his net. After a promise to do, better h. was fined $20 and costs by Alderman Ixui Alpern. : France anc Canada Fix Treaty. P4.RIS Aug 31. Negotiations between France and Canada on the subject of a new commercial arrangement have resulted in a complete understanding. Tha, agreement will shortly be signed. THE BIG STORE STORE CLOSED orrow (LABOR. DAY) To-M OUR SEPTEMBER FURNITURE AND CARPET SALES START TUESDAY. GREAT MONEY-SAVING CHANCES FOR THOSE WHO HAVE HOMES TO GET IN SHAPE FOR FALL AND WINTER.

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