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Einstein, Hannah Bachman (28 January 1862–28 November 1929), activist in Jewish and social welfare causes, was born in New York City, the daughter of Herman Bachman, an importer from Germany, and Fanny Obermeyer. Hannah Bachman graduated from the New York Chartier Institute and shortly thereafter married William Einstein, a woolens manufacturer, in 1881. The Einsteins had two children. They were members of a prominent German Jewish Reform synagogue, Temple Emanu-El, founded in New York in 1845. Hannah Bachman Einstein became an active participant in the temple’s sisterhood, established in 1890. The temple sisterhood worked to alleviate the poverty of new Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe. It established schools, direct relief programs, and visitations to jails to help children detained as juvenile delinquents. Sisterhood members also visited the homes of needy families. In 1897 Einstein became president of the temple sisterhood, a position she held for twenty-five years....

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Rebecca Gratz. Reproduction of a painting. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-109117).

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Gratz, Rebecca (04 March 1781–27 August 1869), pioneer Jewish charitable worker and religious educator, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the daughter of Michael Gratz, of Silesia, a merchant shipper, and Miriam Simon, of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Gratz grew up in Philadelphia’s wealthy society, and her brothers expanded the family financial interests to the West....

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Nathan, Maud (20 October 1862–15 December 1946), activist in Jewish and community organizations, was born in New York City, the daughter of Robert Weeks Nathan, a businessman, and Anne Augusta Florance. Maud grew up in an orthodox Sephardic Jewish environment. Prominent members of New York City’s Spanish-Portuguese Jewish community, her father’s family proudly dated its arrival to the colonies in 1773. Maud was educated in private schools until, at the age of twelve, her father suffered business reverses and the family moved to Green Bay, Wisconsin, where she completed public high school. In 1880 she married her cousin Frederick Nathan, a stockbroker; they had one child, who died at age eight. The couple settled in New York City....