Photo Credit: Jewish Press

A collection acquired this week contained a scarce and important publication, “The Pictorial Review of the Vaad Hazzalah,” published in 1948 in Germany.

Published as a testament and record of the organization’s activities, it contains numerous photographs and descriptions of the monumental activities of the Vaad Hatzalah. Founded in the United States in 1939 by Rabbi Eliezer Silver, R. Ahron Kotler, R. Yechiel Michel Gordon, R. Mordechai Schulman and others, the original focus of the organization was to assist and support the displaced yeshivas and rabbis in Europe during WWII. As the war progressed and the enormity of the tragedy unfolding was becoming apparent, the organization broadened its efforts, attempting to save whatever Jews it could possibly assist, and promote awareness of the horrors being committed by the Nazis.


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As the war neared its end, the Vaad Hatzalah started focusing on assisting the Jews that survived the atrocities and were stuck in the Displaced Persons Camps in Germany. This volume documents some of the varied activities that the Vaad Hatzalah was involved in though photos and reproductions of letters of support. Some of the activities shown are the foundation of Orphanage homes, the formation of yeshivas in the D. P. Camps, the supplying of Jewish ritual objects and the assistance in immigration of the survivors.


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Israel Mizrahi is the owner of Mizrahi Bookstore in Brooklyn, NY, and He can be reached at