“They came to this country looking for a gold-paved street, but they gained a lot of anti-Semitism,” said her great-grandson Alan Cook.

According to Cook, Rabbits bought a not-so-distant land in Pennsylvania and began to recreate the life he enjoyed in Austria. There, he owned a successful farm and supplemented his income by traveling the circus as a boarder in the winter. .. Even in Pennsylvania, she set up her boarder in the summer and welcomed her friends and friends who were seeking relief from the heat of the city. She cooked and entertained and styled her farm as a mountain vacation.

Ravitz was one of the thousands of Jewish farmers who thrived on this hybrid farm-in-model in the United States in the early 20th century.is more than 1 million Jews By 1924, he had emigrated to the United States and many people had gathered around New York City. Working-class Jews living in cramped row houses were keen to flee to the countryside in the summer, but many hotels explicitly banned Jewish guests. In this way, people like Rabbits, and many others scattered around Catskill, Connecticut, and New Jersey, have a thriving boarding business. Some eventually gave up farming to expand the hotel.

The Jewish Vacation Guide, first published around 1916, put together these addresses, along with an entire network of Jewish-owned or Jewish-friendly places that are safe for Jews to eat, sleep, and visit. rice field. This guide, and other travel advice as published in the Yiddish newspaper, served as an important tool for navigating the potential dangers of early American Jewish travel. It even inspired the “Green Book”, a widely used guide for black travelers.

Anti-Semitism was widespread in America in the 20th century. The Ku Klux Klan membership revived significantly in the 1920s and is estimated to have between 3 and 8 million members nationwide. The KKK overwhelmingly targeted black Americans, but Jews also faced frequent discrimination. “Hebrews and consumers are unacceptable” read advertisements for many hotels in the first quarter of the 20th century. “Gentiles only” appeared in hospitality ads as well as “Christian customers only”. According to a 1957 study conducted by the Anti-Defamation League, virtually every state had hotels and resorts banning Jews.

Jewish vacation guides have connected to a network of places to welcome Jews, not just tolerate them. Dozens of lists advertise Kosher Meal, often made from freshly harvested butter and eggs on the farm. The conditions of some rental rooms were far from luxurious, but they complemented the modest service with hospitality and affordability.

An ad for a farmer promised, “You will be able to relax.” Most of the list was written in Yiddish, given that many Jewish Americans were immigrants or children of Yiddish-speaking immigrants.

Many properties were concentrated in the Catskill Mountains. “This is the origin of Catskill as a Jewish vacation area. It really started as a grassroots thing. The people of the city who wanted to get out of the city during the summer,” YIVO Jewish Research. Eddy Portnoy, the institute’s academic advisor, said. “When Jewish farmers realized that this could be a favorable outlook, they began to rebuild their homes as boarding houses or build additional homes on their property. The vacation guide itself was published by the American Federation of Jewish Peasants.

Many of the guide’s properties were pop with moms, but by 1917 some farmers had begun to transform into resorts. For example, the Grand Mountain House in Sullivan County, New York, advertised as a “country summer home with all the conveniences of a modern city,” including orchestras, casinos, billiards, tennis, baseball, and professionals. chef.

Thanks to our guides, the success of these hotels has skyrocketed in the decades that followed. Catskill has become a vacation hotspot. For example, the Grossinger’s Catskill Resort Hotel has been one of the region’s most successful resorts for decades, starting as a dilapidated barn in the 1910s. It has transformed into a vast 1,200-acre 35-building resort with dance, sports, lakes, and a unique runway. The Grossingers hosted the wedding of Eddie Fisher and Elizabeth Taylor.

The guide included not only a list of hotels, but everything you might need during your vacation. Car repair, drug store, grocery store, tailor, shoe store, Kodak photo studio. Traveling safely was more than just finding a cozy hotel. That meant preparing for many possible contingencies. You don’t want to find yourself with a broken car in the mountains, you just get denied service in the garage.

This type of scenario-denial of service, or violent retaliation-is a serious concern in the United States during the Jim Crow era, as postman Victor Hugo Green writes a similar guide for blacks. I urged you. In his introduction to the Green Book for Black Drivers, Green praised the Jewish guide who served as a template for his book, while the Jewish Press was “long print information about restricted areas.” Said had had. The Green Book, first published in 1936, lists hotels, restaurants, mechanics, hairdressers, and nightclubs as well.

Travel generally poses a much higher risk to blacks than to Jews. As the cover of the book warns, “Carry your green book with you … you may need it …” Black drivers are excluded from the “white only” space , Police harassment, physical violence and even lynching endangered. Eli Rosenblatt, an assistant professor of religious studies at Northwestern University, said: “Jews, mostly from Europe at the time, used the space exclusively for whites.”

Both guides will eventually be discontinued. In 1967, three years after the Civil Rights Act was passed, the Green Book stopped publishing. It is not clear when the publication of Jewish vacation guides was stopped, but for Jewish travelers, the expansion of Catskill into a popular destination in the middle of the century allowed them to quickly choose a hotel. rice field.

When both blacks and Jewish-Americans faced frequent discrimination in accommodation, they sometimes opened their doors to each other. In the early 1950s, the Grossinger’s invited Jackie Robinson, the first black man to play baseball in Major League Baseball, in the summer. The Grossingers began as an unruly farm that provided relief from the stress and anti-Semitism of the city and grew into an oasis. The Grossinger family extended the sense of “heimish” that Portnoy described as homely coziness to men who are fighting constant discrimination and harassment.

“She is suspicious [Jennie Grossinger] Robinson’s wife Rachel writes in her memoirs. There were few hotels for their family.Comparable to Big G.. “