Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Harry Golden

Here's a guy worthy of respect. Harry Golden was born in 1902 in Mikulintsy (Ukraine). His last name was actually Goldhirsch His father, Leib Goldhirsch, left Mikulintsy in 1904 for Winnipeg, Canada. The family came to New York City in 1905. Harry was a stockbroker and in 1929 his brokerage house went bankrupt. He came to Charlotte ( N.C. ) In 1941 and began to write about and speak out against segregation. From 1942 to 1958, Golden published a newspaper containing his views. It was called the Carolina Israelite. He was widely acclaimed as a writer and humorist and won numerous awards, but his opinions evoked constant criticism from people who disagreed with his belief in racial equality. One of his books, "Only in America," became a best seller in 1958. Harry attended the old PS20 on Eldridge and Rivington and an autographed book of his is part of the library's collection. I was reading that book today and learned some fascinating things, e.g. each block had their own gangs e.g. The Rivington Streeters, the Eldridge Streeters, etc. Jewish boys so feared wandering into Irish neighborhoods that it effected their swimming ability. At the turn of the century The Irish ruled the neighborhoods adjoining the East and Hudson River. The book mentioned that Harry lived on Eldridge Street, between Delancey and Rivington. Above is the census of 1910 with the Goldhirsh family at 171 Eldridge Street. Harry was Hyman. I'll check soon to see if that building is still there.

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