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This Week in History: Events in April

"American Jewess" Front Cover, November, 1896

"The American Jewess" begins publication

April 1, 1895

"The American Jewess," the first English-language publication published by and for American Jewish women, appeared.

Lisa Batya Feld on Merle Feld's "A Spiritual Life"

Publication of Merle Feld's "A Spiritual Life: A Jewish Feminist Journey"

April 1, 1999

Merle Feld's "A Spiritual Life: A Jewish Feminist Journey" was published.

Kiwi Fruit

Frieda Caplan founds innovative specialty produce company

April 2, 1962

Frieda Caplan opened her specialty produce company, Frieda's Inc., which has introduced a wide array of exotic produce to the American market.

Naama Shafir

Orthodox basketball star Naama Shafir leads the University of Toledo to victory

April 2, 2011

Naama Shafir, an Orthodox Jewish basketball star, led University of Toledo to victory in the Women’s National Invitation Tournament championship.

Gus Blass Department Store

Death of Adele Bluthenthal Heiman, Communal Leader in Arkansas

April 3, 1979

Adele Bluthenthal Heiman was the first woman president of the Arkansas Jewish Assembly.

Shelley Winters, 1954

Shelley Winters wins Academy Award for her role in "The Diary of Anne Frank"

April 4, 1960

Actress Shelley Winters won her first Academy Award for her performance as Mrs. Van Daan in the film version of "The Diary of Anne Frank."

Rose Pastor Stokes

James Graham Phelps Stokes announces engagement to Rose Pastor

April 5, 1905

The announcement of the engagement of former cigar worker Rose Pastor to prominent Protestant philanthropist James Graham Phelps Stokes caused a media sensation.

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz

President Obama picks Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz to lead Democratic National Committee

April 5, 2011

President Obama chose Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz as chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee.

Little Orphan Annie

First episode of “Little Orphan Annie” radio show airs

April 6, 1931

A brunette Jewish girl from Chicago’s south side was the voice of the boisterous curly red-headed Little Orphan Annie that Americans came to love.

Louise Nevelson and Neith Nevelson

Louise Nevelson stamps issued by U.S. Postal Service

April 6, 2000

The United States Postal Service issued five stamps depicting the work of sculptor Louise Nevelson.

Beverly Sills

Debut of Beverly Sills at the Metropolitan Opera

April 7, 1975

Noted singer Beverly Sills made her long delayed debut at the Metropolitan Opera at the age of 45.

Passage of NY widows' pension bill advocated by Hannah Bachman Einstein

April 7, 1915

New York's Governor Charles S. Whitman signed the state Widowed Mothers Pension Act, largely as a result of the efforts of Hannah Bachman Einstein.

Dancer Nora Kaye performs the role of Hagar in "Pillar of Fire"

April 8, 1942

Nora Kaye's performance as Hagar, in the world premiere of "Pillar of Fire" at the Ballet Theatre, established her as one of the world's prima ballerinas.

First North American synagogue building dedicated with a traditional women's gallery

April 8, 1730

The first North American synagogue building was dedicated on Mill Street in New York City. A 1744 visitor noted that the congregation's women "of whom some were very pritty, stood up in the gallery like a hen coop."

Andrea Dworkin, 1988

Death of anti-violence activist Andrea Dworkin

April 9, 2005

Andrea Dworkin: “I'm a radical feminist, not the fun kind.”

Women's Liberation Daughters: The Next Generation Panel

Jewish veterans of 1960s women’s movement convened at New York University

April 10, 2011

Jewish veterans of 1960s women’s movement gathered in New York City.

Deborah Lipstadt

Historian Deborah Lipstadt is vindicated in libel suit brought by Holocaust denier

April 11, 2000

A British court resolved David Irving's libel case against Deborah Lipstadt in favor of Lipstadt, affirming Lipstadt's portrayal of Irving as an anti-Semitic Holocaust denier.

Launch of Advancing Women Professionals and the Jewish Community (AWP)

April 12, 2001

Launch of Advancing Women Professionals and the Jewish Community, a project dedicated to shattering the glass ceiling for Jewish women communal workers.

Aline Milton Bernstein Saarinen becomes first woman to head overseas U.S. TV news bureau

April 13, 1971

Aline Milton Bernstein Saarinen was named chief of the Paris bureau of the National Broadcasting Company, becoming the first woman to head an overseas bureau in television.

Mary Antin

Review of Mary Antin's "The Promised Land" appears in the "New York Times"

April 14, 1912

A review of Mary Antin's "The Promised Land," an autobiography recounting her life in the Russian Pale of Settlement and as an immigrant in Boston, appeared in the "New York Times."

Garment Factory circa 1910

“The Factory Girl’s Danger” published in The Outlook

April 15, 1911

“No, we've got to keep on working, no matter what the danger.  It's work or starve.  That's all there is to it."

Angela Buchdahl

Angela Buchdahl named one of America’s 50 Most Influential Rabbis

April 16, 2011

"Once people enter my synagogue and hear me chant, the fact that I am Korean begins to melt away.” Rabbi Angela Buchdahl

Selma Waldman

Death of Seattle Artist and Activist Selma Waldman

April 17, 2008
“I am an artist . . . enamored of charcoal (the tool that does not lie) and the act of drawing." - Selma Waldman
Chelsea Handler, 2007

Chelsea Handler is named to Time’s 100 Most Influential People.

April 18, 2012
"A handful of years ago no one in entertainment had heard of her.” Chelsea Handler
Judy Chicago, 2004

Judy Chicago's "The Dinner Party" acquired by the Brooklyn Museum

April 18, 2002

Judy Chicago's monumental sculpture and icon of feminist art, "The Dinner Party," was acquired by the Brooklyn Museum.

Annette Strauss

Annette Greenfield Strauss becomes first elected female mayor of Dallas

April 18, 1987

Annette Greenfield Strauss became the first elected woman mayor of Dallas, Texas.

"Identical Twins, Roselle, New Jersey 1967" by Diane Arbus

Ten works by Diane Arbus are featured in Venice Biennale

April 19, 1972

Ten photographs by the late Diane Arbus were chosen for the Venice Biennale, marking the first time an American photographer was honored at this event.

Telephone Switchboard Operators, circa 1914

Rose Finkelstein leads successful strike

April 20, 1919

Rose Finkelstein leads 8,000 women in successful six-day strike against New England Telephone and Telegraph Company.

Jewish American Heritage Month Logo

May designated Jewish American Heritage Month

April 20, 2006

President G.W. Bush declares May to be Jewish American Heritage Month.

Paula Hyman

Paula Hyman discusses publication of "The Jewish Woman in America"

April 20, 1976

Paula Hyman discussed her new book, "The Jewish Woman in America," the first feminist history of Jewish women, on New York radio station WEVD.

Yiddish theater impresario Dora Wasserman receives Order of Canada

April 21, 1993

Yiddish theatre producer and advocate Dora Wasserman received the Order of Canada.

Clara Lemlich in a Shirtwaist, circa 1910

Wage Earners' League for Woman Suffrage holds first mass rally

April 22, 1912

The Wage Earners' League for Woman Suffrage held its first major rally at New York's Cooper Union.

Maggie Gyllenhaal, March 7, 2010

Maggie Gyllenhaal connected to the most ancient Jewish women by PBS' "Finding Your Roots"

April 22, 2012

Maggie Gyllenhaal connected to the most ancient Jewish women by PBS’ Finding Your Roots

Marisa Silver

Birth of writer Marisa Silver

April 23, 1960
"I write like a collagist might work. I piece together random things and try to find their underlying joins. I don’t assert meaning or purpose. I let all that emerge." - Writer Marisa Silver
Barbara Tuchman

Barbara Tuchman delivers Jefferson Lecture in the Humanities

April 24, 1980

Historian Barbara Tuchman gave the annual Jefferson Lecture in the Humanities, becoming the first woman to receive the federal government's highest honor for intellectual achievement in the humanities.

First meeting of The United Order of True Sisters

April 25, 1846

The United Order of True Sisters, the first independent national women's organization in America, held its first meeting as a female counterpart to the B'nai B'rith.

Lillian Vernon

"New York Times" profiles entrepreneur Lillian Vernon

April 26, 1978

Entrepreneur Lillian Vernon was profiled in the "New York Times" as the "first lady of mail order catalogues."

Helene Deutsch

Helene Deutsch publishes first volume of "The Psychology of Women"

April 27, 1944

Psychoanalyst Helene Deutsch published the first of two volumes of "The Psychology of Women."

Barbra Streisand, 1962

A 22-year-old’s first TV special: "My Name is Barbra"

April 28, 1965

"No major guest stars, not even any minor ones—just me and a bunch of great songs and some wonderful musicians."

Sarah Brandstein Smith, 1945

Death of writer Sarah Brandstein Smith, “Queen of the shundroman"

April 29, 1968
“Sarah B. Smith is the most beloved Jewish newspaperwoman, the first who ever served as a reporter on a Jewish paper, and the one who has triumphantly overcome the misgivings of editors who mistrusted the abilities of a mere woman writer.”

Reform Judaism leader Jane Evans argues for ordination of women rabbis

April 29, 1957

Jane Evans, executive director of the National Federation of Temple Sisterhoods, argued for the need to ordain women rabbis in the Reform movement.

Joan Nathan

Lifetime achievement award for cookbook author Joan Nathan

April 30, 2001

Cookbook author Joan Nathan received the Who's Who of Food and Beverage in America award for lifetime achievement from the James Beard Foundation.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "This Week in History: Events in April." (Viewed on January 16, 2018) <>.


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