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refuge under the equitable protection of the laws of the Batavian republic. The writer of this has learnt that a correspondence is yet in existence which took place between the Israelites and the Dutch authorities of New Amsterdam; but he has never seen it, wherefore he is unable to say any thing with precision farther than he has stated above. This much, however, he believes certain, that the number of our people did not increase rapidly, since we are not friendly to making proselytes, and owing to the great difficulties emigrants of our persuasion must be exposed to in new communities on account of the duties of our religion. Be this as it may, but one synagogue was needed in New York, till about 1827, when a second one was established in the central part of the city. Since that period four other congregations have been organized, and all the places of Worship, though so rapidly multiplied, are frequently over-full, so as to require temporary meeting places. The number of Jews in the city of New York, is said to be about 10,000, and rapidly increasing by emigration from Europe, owing to the oppressive laws enforced against us in many countries as stated in a preceding part of this article. There are two congregations in Albany, and one or more in the country, of which, however, I have too vague information to say any thing with certainty.
A few years before the American revolution a congregation assembled in Newport, Rhode Island; but with the falling off of the business of that place, after the conclusion of the peace of 1783, the Jewish population left it by degrees, some going to New York, some to Richmond, and others to different other towns. There are a syna. gogue and burying ground, both said to be in good order,-a legacy having been left by the son of the former minister, Touro, to keep them from falling into decay.
In Pennsylvania Israelites were settled long before the revolution in various places. But, I believe, that no regular congregation was organized till about 1780, when the occupation of New York by the British induced many from that place to come hither with their mi. nister, Gershom Mendes Seixas; and a synagogue was erected upon the site of the present building, and consecrated about the fall of 1781. There are now three congregations in Philadelphia, numbering about from 1500 to 1800 souls; one congregation is at Easton, one in Hanover, and considerable settlements in Franklin county, Bucks, and elsewhere, which will no doubt be organized as congregations before long.
In Maryland the Jews were, until lately, excluded from a participation of equal rights; but soon after the repeal of their disabilities, many Europeans joined the former few settlers, and there is now a considerable congregation of about 1500 souls in Baltimore, where
there is a synagogue. There are also a few families in Frederick, Hagerstown, &c.
In Virginia the Jews settled about 1780, or even earlier; but their number is small in that state; and there are but two congregations in the whole state, and both at Richmond. Others dwell at Petersburg, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Wheeling, but they amount in the whole state to scarcely more than 600.
In North Carolina, where the constitution excludes us from the rights of citizens, there are but a few families.
But in South Carolina we are much more numerous, and Israelites are found in all parts of the state; still there is but one regular congregation, at Charleston, where there is a handsome synagogue; the congregation was organized in 1750.
In Georgia there is a synagogue in Savannah. The first Jews came over soon after General Oglethorpe, in 1733; but they have never been very numerous; though it appears from present indications that many European emigrants, and persons from the north will, it is likely, soon seek a home in that state.
In the southern and western states the arrival of Israelites is but recent; still there is a congregation at Mobile ; another, numbering about 125 families, in New Orleans; another at Louisville; two at Cincinnati; one or two in Cleveland, and one at St. Louis. There are probably others, but they have not become generally known. A small congregation also has recently been formed at New Haven, in Connecticut, probably the only one in the New England States, unless Boston be an exception.
We have no ecclesiastical authorities in America, other than the congregations themselves. Each congregation makes its own rules for its government, and elects its own minister, who is appointed without any ordination, induction in office being made through his election, which is made for a term of years or during good behaviour, as it may meet the wish of the majority. As yet we have no colleges or public schools of any kind, with the exception of one in New York, under the direction of the Rev. Samuel M. Isaacs, one in Baltimore, and another in Cincinnati, and Sunday schools for religious instruction in New York, Philadelphia, Richmond, Charleston, Columbia, S. C., Savannah, and Cincinnati. There can be no doubt that something will be done for education, as soon as we become more numerous. The American Jews have but one religious periodical, and this is printed in Philadelphia ; it is called “The Occident and American Jewish Advocate,” and appears monthly.
In all our congregations where the necessity demands it, there are
ample provisions made for the support of the poor, and we endeavour to prevent, if possible, any Israelite from being sent to the poor house, or to sink into crime for want of the means of subsistence.
Upon the whole, we have increased in every respect within the last five years; and we invoke the blessing of Heaven that He may prosper our undertakings, and give us the means to grow in grace and piety, that we may be able to show the world the true effects of the law of God upon the life of a sincere Israelite, which must render him acceptable to his neighbours of every creed, and a worthy servant in the mansion of his heavenly Father.
EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH.*
BY S. S. SCHMUCKER, D.D.,
The name of Martin Luther, now familiar to almost every schoolboy, forms one of the most prominent waymarks in the history both of the world and the church. It has immortalized his age among the generations gone by; and one can hardly hear it pronounced without being at the same moment transported back to the scenes and events of that ecclesiastical revolution which shook Europe to its very centre, and from the cell of a monastery opened upon the world that dawning of science and truth which shall shine on, with unwaning brightness, to its perfect day.
But while all recognise the name of the Reformer, and its connexion with the past and present condition of Christendom in the general: few, comparatively, are well acquainted with the history of his peculiar opinions and those of the past and present generations of his followers. In reviving our own and our readers' acquaintance with our Lutheran brethren, we introduce to the friends of the Redeemer of lost men, an ancient, honoured, and most efficient branch of that church which he ransomed with blood, and which he employs in carrying forward the triumphs of his grace over sin and the powers of darkness.
“The Lutheran Church is indebted for her name to the derision of the Catholics. The distinguished Papal theologian, Dr. Eckius, the opponent of Luther and Carlstadt, in the celebrated disputation at Leipsic, in the year 1519, wishing to show his contempt for Luther and his cause, and not dreaming whereunto this matter of the Reformation would grow, first stigmatized the friends of the reformer as Lutherans, with the same feelings with which we speak of the Owenites and Fanny Wright men of our day. The term being regarded as a happy conceit, was soon spread among the enemies of the cause; and its friends, though opposed to it in principle, responded to the name, because they were not ashamed of their leader. But the name officially adopted by the Lutheran reformers was that of the Evangelical Church, that is, the gospel church, in antithesis to the legal ritual of the Old Testament, the very name recently adopted by the united Lutheran and Reforined Church in Prussia. Luther himself, like the great apostle of the gentiles, protested most decidedly against the use of his name as the Shibbolet of a sect, and it is to be regretted that his advice was disregarded."*
* The following sketch of the Lutheran Church is compiled almost entirely from several publications of the Rev. Dr. S. S. Schmucker, Professor of Theology in the Theological Seminary, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, from an excellent article in the American Quarterly Register, by the Rev. Mr. Harris of Boston, which is derived principally from the same source, and from the Lutheran Almanac of 1843.
+ Quarterly Register, of 1843, p. 378.
“The Lutheran Church in this country has, in common with that of the German Reformed, also been distinctively termed the German church. This designation must not be understood as implying the limitation of the worship of either of these churches to the German language. It is known to the intelligent reader, that in different countries the services of the Lutheran Church are conducted in the Swedish, the Norwegian, the Danish, the Icelandic, the Russian and the French, as well as in the English and German languages. Yet it is true, that as Germany was the cradle of the Reformation, she was also the primitive seat of that church, which grew out of the Reformation in the land of Luther. Germany is still the most extensive seat of Lutheranism. No other foreign country is therefore fraught with such interesting and hallowed associations to the great mass of American Lutherans as Germany, the mother of the Reformation, the cradle of Lutheranism, the land where our fathers proclaimed the gospel of salvation, where Spener sowed the seed of truth, where Arndt preached and wrote and lived his · True Christianity,' where Franke wrought his works of love, and where believing Luther poured - his prayer of faith into the lap of God! But it is not only to Lutheran minds that Germany is encircled with interesting associations. Although the populace are too little acquainted with the fact, yet what intelligent scholar does not know that the Germans constitute one of the most distinguished branches of the human family, and that at different periods throughout the two thousand years of their national history, they have excelled in all that is truly noble and praiseworthy in heathen virtue,
Schmucker's Portraiture of Lutheranism, pp. 8, 9.