"The Rest of Us": The Rise of America's Eastern European Jews

by Stephen Birmingham

Book, 1984



Call number

763 BIR



Boston : Little, Brown, c1984.


They immigrated to America from Germany in the nineteenth century with names like Loeb, Sachs, Seligman, Lehman, Guggenheim, and Goldman. From tenements on the Lower East Side to Park Avenue mansions, this handful of Jewish families turned small businesses into imposing enterprises and amassed spectacular fortunes. But despite possessing breathtaking wealth that rivaled the Astors and Rockefellers, they were barred by the gentile establishment from the lofty realm of "the 400," a register of New York's most elite, because of their religion and humble backgrounds. In response, they created their own elite "100," a privileged society as opulent and exclusive as the one that had refused them entry. Our Crowd is the fascinating story of this rarefied society. Based on letters, documents, diary entries, and intimate personal remembrances of family lore by members of these most illustrious clans, it is an engrossing portrait of upper-class Jewish life over two centuries; a riveting story of the bankers, brokers, financiers, philanthropists, and business tycoons who started with nothing and turned their family names into American institutions.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member etxgardener
I read this book when it first came out, and now, 54 years later, it was interesting to listen to the audio version of this book and realize that most of the great banking institutions set up by this close knit group of German Jews residing in New York City are no more, and how these proud
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people’s way of life is now as extinct as the dodo bird.
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Original publication date



0316096474 / 9780316096478

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