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Eastern European Jews and Blacks

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Essay title: Eastern European Jews and Blacks

Eastern European Jews came to New York for a few reasons. One reason was due to the treatment that they received back in Eastern Europe. “In 1891 thousands of privileged Jews were expelled without warning from Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Kiev. Thousands more were deprived of their livelihoods as innkeepers and restaurateurs in 1897 when the liquor traffic became a government monopoly. Finally, coercion culminated in violence. The ‘spontaneous’ outbreaks of 1881, the massacre at Kishinev in 1903, the pogroms that followed, and the revolution of 1905 obliterated hope.” (pg. 24 The Promised City: New York’s Jews) Laws had created to prohibit Jews from doing many things simply because they were Jews. “In the 1880’s tyranny was codified in the May Laws, which prohibited Jews from owning or renting land in outside towns and cities and discouraged them from living in villages.” The Jews left their Eastern European home to escape the harsh treatment that they received and the unreasonable laws created against them.

Due to the laws that were created against Jews, many were left poverty stricken. “The crisis in the Lives of Jews was accentuated rather than disguised by the hum and bustle of trader, artisan, factory worker, and day laborer…Two- and three-room huts stuffed to bursting with ‘lean, cadaverous caricatures of humanity,” housed from seven to thirty people.” (Pg.30

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