Eugene Joel Jacobowitz (1910 - 1981)

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Nicknames: "Buddy", "Bud"
Birthplace: New York, NY, USA
Death: Died in Englewood, NJ, USA
Cause of death: Heart event while riding his bicycle
Managed by: David Wilfred Jacobowitz
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Eugene Joel Jacobowitz

Eugene Jacobowitz SSDI Birth: July 31 1910 Death: Nov 1981 Last residence: Englewood, New Jersey 07631, USA

Residence code: 31

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Eugene (Buddy) Jacobowitz's Timeline

1907
1907
- 1960
Jersey City, NJ, USA

"When Dudu and Popop married, in 1906, they settled in Jersey City, where Popop and his brothers had established a wholesale and retail tobacco business., There was no synagogue in the Bergen section where they lived.

Popop set about correcting that: he became chairman of the building committee. When their babies began arriving, and no Hebrew school for them to attend, Dudu became president of the ladies auxiliary. Her belly big with my brother Bud, and pushing Ruth and Miriam in a baby carriage, Dudu went from Jewish door to Jewish door gathering pledges and money. The synagogue was built, and a few years later, the school. Ruth and Miriam were among its first pupils, and Bud (Eugene) and I in its first graduating class. We took our Hebrew education five afternoons a week, after public school, and we were still pretty good streetball players along with our neighbor kids.

Bud and I, and a cousin also named Norman Jacobowitz (after the same ancestor) took turns reading the weekly portion from the Torah - the five Books of Moses - in the original, at our young peoples' Saturday morning services. These hand-lettered sheepskin scrolls were replicas of the ancient scrolls, with no vowels, no punctuation and no sentence division, and no musical markings to guide us in our chanting. 'Tweren't easy. But it paid off when Bud and I were bar-mitzvahed - two years apart. Each of us read the full weekly portion aloud before the whole congregation, and the weekly portion from the Prophets, Only the Shamus - beadle - the rabbi and a few of the elders knew the original by heart, or could read it, yet you should have heard the rapping from all over the congregation when Bud and I inevitably made a mistake. Those old boys were following us in their completely printed texts, and they weren't going to let us get away with anything. I think this says something about Jews, and about Americans, too; If you hold yourself out as superior, the world will hold you strictly to your own estimate. Jews made the mistake of claiming to be God's chosen people. All the unchosen people have, ever since, never let us make the human errors they do. They vote to eject Israel from the UN for retaliating against Arab terrorism, they condemn the United States for fighting an evil
war in Vietnam, yet the French walked away from Indo-China and the Russians invaded Afghanistan with almost no ripples of any consequence."

Norman B Jacobwitz, Letter to My Grandsons, 1984, Pages 19- 20

Leak Kreinik Jacobowitz, As I Remember, Page 49.
Perhaps at this point I should go back to the beginning of my social life in Jersey City. When Ruth was about six, going to school on Virginia Ave., we began to think about Jewish education. We belonged to a little Synagogue housed in a private house not far from Pop's Bergen Ave. store, too far for small children to go for lessons, and no regular Hebrew school anyway. I had become acquainted with a few of the Jewish people in the neighborhoood: the Richmans who ran the Variety Store on Jackson Ave., the Halperins of the drug store, the Sharrs, photographers, a few on Oak St., and others. We started talking about this, and arranged a meeting. We rounded up thirteen women, all of us with small children ready for a Jewish education, and organized. Without a Synagogue to sponsor us, we called ourselves "The Bergen Auxiliary" -- of whatever Shule would be built in the future. Open your mouth at a gaqthering of this sort and someone is sure to put a "Chair" in your mouth, and you become President, willy-nilly. I occupied that chair for seventeen years, with a two year interval before the last two years, when Hannah Greenside took over. We prospered and grew to be the finest Jewish organization in the Bergen section. At first we rented a hall over a store in the neighborhood, engaged a Hebrew teacher, made a drive for funds, an annual ball with an ad Journal for which we scouted around the city, and ran other little affairs with programs we created oursleves, besides the usual meetings and Board meetings. We grew to about four hundred and fifty members.

The men got busy too, raised funds, in which Pop was very active, and Agudath Sholom Synagogue was built. Classes were held in the Vestry of the Synagogue, and the Auxiliary met there also. We celebrated our third anniversary there, with a skit I wrote, directed and played in, called "The Schatchen" (Matchmaker). That skit, by the way, was plagiarized entirely by the daughter of one of our own members. It was produced on Broadway, in company with other one-act plays, and was given rave notices. I was angry, of courese, and called upl the "author" and asked her how she liked the success of my own play. Of course she denied copying, said she had had that idea long before, etc. It was an undignified thing to fight over, and I let it go; after all, it wasn't such a brilliant idea that someone else couldn't have the brainchild .....

The Auxiliary found itself crowded in the Vestry room, the leaders of the Synagogue objecting to some to some of our programs, and we began saving seriously for a regular Hebrew School. There was a vacant lot in back of the Synagogue, and after due consultation with the elders, we paid a deposit of $100 on this ground, on which eventually The Bergen Hebrew Institute was built. Pop was the Chairman of both building committees; I was the Secretary for the Institute. The Jacobowitz Brothers were on these committees, and contributed generously. Our names are inscribed on the permanent tablets in the building.

April 25, 2013, Charlie Hollander found this in the Jersey City Real Estate Records:
"1915 P 1220 264 Elias Congregation Agudat Shalom 472-4-6 Bergen Ave. Pew*7, Left Balcony, Right 5 ($305)"

1910
July 31, 1910
New York, NY, USA

Leah Kreinik Jacobowitz: " Buddy's birthday was the occasion of a double affair: his Brith and the engagement of Jennie to Adolph Treuhaft. My folks prepared a banquet, the Jacobowitz family were invited, and Father J. performed both ceremonies. Orthodox people still wrote the "Contract" of marriage those days. On the day of Eugene's birth, Ruth and Miriam were in Riverside Park with Cousin "Dan" (Sam, as Ruth called him), amd whjem they came back, Miriam took a look at that big baby (the doctor said he was 13 pounds), tickled hsim and said "Hi-ya Fatty-Fatty", and both girls called him "Buddy."

As I Remember, 1962, page 37.

1914
1914
- 1924
Age 3
Jersey City, NJ, USA

LKJ: " Now the trips to the folks included Norman. He was almost two years old when I knew there would be another addition to the family, and that was the first time I had a rebellion. No, I wasn't going to live in a crowded apartment with five children and two and a half bedrooms!...
Pop lost no time going out house hunting, and almost the first "For Sale" sign he saw was at 89 Oak St., and he lost no time buying it. I might add here that I never went out house or apartment hunting; Pop had a fine sense of values, examined every corner, every closet, and knew just whet we would need, and the Oak St. house was wonderfully right: eight rooms, a small front porch, a back styoop with Pop enlarged later, and a nice big yard. Mother used to say if she had so much ground, she'd have a garden with flowers and
vegetables; I told her I was "growing children." The entrance hall led to stars going up, and further down to the kitchen; on the left the good sized living room, with window seats, cupboards on the bottom; next a library, opening with rolling doors, bay windows and window seats there also; then the dining room looking out to the back yard. Upstairs a bathroom on the right, a small room beyond, and another room alongside, both looking South; in the middle another room, and beyond that, the front master bedroom, bay windowed with the usual boxed-in seats, and an alcove large enough for twin beds and a night table. A lovely home." As I Remember, 1962. Page 39.

"We lived in the Oak St. home about ten years. Pop attended an auction on Harrison Ave., and yes, he bought "150."

1916
February 18, 1916
- February 18, 1916
Age 5
Jersey City, Hudson, NJ, USA

LKJ: "As usual, Anna came to help us get settled, in time for Passover. Life at 89 Oak St. was happy, often exciting; we lived there about ten years until Ruth was eighteen. Toddy was ten months old when we celebrated our tenth anniversary, doing my own catering with the gelp of a "girl", and in the middle of things having to run upstairs to nurse the baby. Ruth made up an anniversary song (starting her career as a talented Hadassah programmer): "Who are we? We are the Jacobowitz Family;
And we in it? Well, I guess:
Jacobowitz, Jacobowitz, yes, yes, yes!"
The foursome were the hit of the party. " As I Remember, 1962, p. 39.

1922
1922
Age 11
Jersey City, NJ, USA

"He grew fast, his Bar Mitzvah made us proud, reading the entire Portion and the Mussaf as well, followed by Kiddush in Shule and a party at home." LKJ p 72

1924
1924
Age 13
Jersey City, NJ, USA

We lived in the Oak St. home about ten years. Pop attended an auction on Harrison Ave., and yes, he bought "150." It was a beautiful, well built house, formerly owned by an architect who had built it for himself, and Pop fell in love with it; at last he found "Mommy's house." The family went over to see it, were immediately charmed by it. To me it seemed oike an aristocratic old dowager who had come on hard times, forsaken, neglected. The radiators were all broken, the beautiful hardwood floors almost unrecognisable. But how were we going to keep up a 14-room hours? Ruth at once offered to contribute $50 a month, the children would all help as, if, and when they could, and it was settled. Pop had no trouble getting a loan from the bank, where his name was A1, and he spent well over a thousand dollars on repairs and decorations. There were real fireplaces, one in the large entrance room which was a library, with hardwood built-in book cases, window seat, and the parquet floor, a wide staircase with a landing part way up, showing a large stained glass window almost covering the wall, which the Western sun turned into rainbow colors. On the right was the living room with (a) rolling door entrance; on the left of that the dining room, also with an entrance from the foyer; it, too, had a colored tile fireplace. On the second floor there were six rooms; the first front one intended for a sitting room, with a brick fireplace, wich became Ruth and Miriam's bedroom; on the left the large master bedroom, with a marble built in basin; next room a bedroom, also with a marble sink; across this room from the hall, a large tiled bathroom with the biggest bathtub I ever saw., Further down the hall, another bedroom facing the rear, and from an ell turning left, two more bedrooms, with a basin at the end of the hall -- smaller rooms evidently intended for servants. Back stairs led to the kitchen downstairs, which was a 20-foot square sunny room, a big pantry, a little hall which led to the dining room on one side, and into a "Butler's Pantry" on the other, This latter room we changed into a breakfast room; it also had a built-in book case. There was a dumbwaiter in the little hall to the second floor, and a large clothes closet which Pop turned into a "powder room." The top floor was a finished apartment, one large room with floor, walls and ceiling (slanted) finished with paneling; a small store room in front, a larger room in the rear, and a nice bathroom. We put a gas range in the store room, and rented the big room to a couple named Brody; they stayed with us a number of years, both were business people and never bothered us. Later on Irving's son Horace found a job in Brooklyn and came to live with us, occupying the rear bedroom. After his engagement to Anne Wernick, a Holyoke girl, she too came to live with us, having gotten a teacher's job in Brooklyn. We put a bed in the little room for Horace and Ann occupied the bedroom, but it wasn't long before they left to be married. LKJ As I Remember, Pages 53-54.

1927
July 4, 1927
Age 16
North Weymouth, MA, USA

"In the summer of 1927 Bud, at 17, got his driver's license. Popop had a 1926 Studebaker Big 6, a seven passenger hardtop with roll-down isinglass windows - the last of the fully open cars but not quite the glass, rollup-window- sedan. Grandpa (Josef Kreinik) wanted to visit his only son, Irving, in Massachusetts. Popop was only too happy to let Bud drive Grandpa there, and I went along. For the ten hours or so it took to drive up the Boston Post Road (no super highways then), Grandpa sat erect and alone in thai huge back seat, saying nary a word. But I had the feeling he was enjoying this trip to his only son, driven by his oldest grandson. I hope Î live long enough for one of you to do the same for me."
.... digression ....
"But back to our visit with Grandpa to Uncle Irving's house. They had a summer place with the mouth filling address of 15 Wittawaumet Road, Wessagusset Beach, North Weymouth, Massachusetts, and their lifestyle was just as multi-syllabic: three daughters, two sons, all about the age range of our family, all as noisy or noisier than we were and with one advantage Bud and I were envious of: Aunt Lily made the best tasting root beer ever, and in scores and scores of bottles that we could drink whenever the fancy struck us - even with our meals, But, alas, tragedy struck. For some reason - probably because of too much yeast in the mix - a whole batch of eagerly awaited brew blew up one night, popping its corks like firecrackers and waking everyone in the house. Tragic as that was for all of us (except possibly Grandpa), the house rocked with laughter the rest of the night.

The next morning, it being the Fourth of July, we kids went traipsing across the countryside toward the many celebrations going on, careful not to trample on the crops growing in the fields, and joined by hundreds of others, including the farmers, doing the same thing. I still remember the marvelous feeling it gave me - all those people celebrating a common joy, walking along together and forgetting their differences , even if only for a brief day."
Norman B Jacobowitz, Letter to My Grandsons, 1984, Pages 47-48

1928
September, 1928
- June, 1929
Age 18
New York, New York

" Bud, after graduating high school, had gone on to Cooper Union Institute of Technology in New York City. Admission was by competitive exam to the tuition-free College. I, too, passed the exam, taking a course in electrical engineering. I completed the first year. There was a rumor that, of the six graduates (out of fifty who had entered as freshmen) that year, five got jobs. The sixth one was rumored to be a Jew. I didn't wait around to find out if the rumor was true. I knew the reputations for discrimination of the only few companies hiring engineers in that
Great Depression. I decided that this was no. place for a nice Jewish
boy named Jacobowitz." Norman B Jacobowitz, Letter to My Grandsons, 1984, p. 40

1929
November 10, 1929
Age 19
NY, USA

Ruth & Lou's Wedding

"Ruth and Louis were married Nov. 10th, 1929. We had met the Brenner family, exchanged courtesy visits, and became good friends, from then on to this day. We belonged to the same organizations, formed a bridge club of our own, and Pop and I were their guests in Belmar the first few years after Ruth and Louis were married." Leah Kreinick Jacobowitz, As I Remember, 1962, p. 56

"Ruth's wedding took place in Brooklyn, in one of those "Mansions" so popular at the time, with about 250 guests. The first grandchild to be married, giving my Father and Mother a full cup of happiness as they watched that tall, beautiful bride walk down the aisle to be married, the crown on her veil made of a piede of my own wedding dress -- a crown which Miriam and Toddy also wore -- and some still remains whic has been used by some of Pop's and my grandchildren." p. 58

P. 70. "Louis wanted a small wedding, but gave in to family pressure, and 250 guests attended, as I have already stated. Here is where Pop has to be mentioned. Ruth had faithfully given him the $50. a month for the upkeep of "150", and even I didn't know that he saved it all, and handed her a check for $500. in lieu of the dowry he wished he could give her. "

1930
February 9, 1930
Age 19
Jersey City, NJ, United States

"In between the two marriages (Ruth-Louie and Mirian-Sol), the one tragic event in our lives occurred: we lost our beloved son, Billy, three days short of his twelfth birthday, the darling of our hearts. He had a highly developed intelligence, a sense of humor, an understanding heart. He was born on the very date of our twelfth anniversary, and would have been Bar Mitzvah on our twenty-fifth. He had already issued personal invitations to friends for that event, notably his dentist, Dr. Fleisig, in New York, where he went for appointments unaccompanied, since two or three years before. He took the wrong train once but nothing daunted he got out at the next station and phoned the Doctor, who gave him directions.

We never got over it, especially Eli, who had been in the habit of telling him bedtime stories Friday night, lying alongside of him until he fell asleep. The time came when Pop fell asleep before Billy did, roused to tell him he had no more stories, so perhaps Billy could tell a story for a change; he was young enough to remember the "other side" where he came from. This teasing didn't please Billy one bit; began describing how the soul animated the body, ending his description with a question: "How do you know the souls of your father and mother aren't hovering around you?" "How do you make that out?" Pop asked, and this is what Billy gave us to remember: "I'll prove it to you: go downstairs, everything is quiet, but turn a button on the radio and you hear voices, music, talking and laughter. Some day our ears will be attuned to the voices of the departed, and we will be able to communicate with them."

I don't want this to be a sad part of the record; we all decided not to evade talking about him, to remember the way he lived, the funny incidents,the mischief, the greatness of his character. In time I consoled myself with the thought that Billy lived out the full span of his years in that short twelve years, some purpose he had to fulfill. He loved old people, was a regular member of the "Shalle Sudos" Club, a group of elderly men who met Sabbath afternoons to study Torah, argue, sing liturgical as well as Hebrew songs, and of course the snack of herring, cookies and schnapps. There was one old man who used to deliver our Sukkoth Esrog every holiday, asked directions for delivering another one in the same neighborhood, so Billy accompanied him and didn't come back for over an hour: he had gone with the old man to every other customer.

I have a time-worn but beautiful hand printed tribute on a decorated cardboard, a bird (in color) pasted in the corner, with Hebrew letters which, translated, read:
"Peace: In remembrance of the little lamb who had no healing; he was like a bird whose voice resounded in song, making sweet the taste of the Sabbath Shalle Sudos. His young spirit blended with the old. May there be no more need for the young to be cut off -- from beginning to end."

A humble housepainter inscribed those words. "
LKJ As I Remember

"[Miriam and Sol's] wedding was shadowed by the untimely passing of our beloved Billy. During his last illness he actually worried about the expense of having a nurse, besides doctors, etc. Pop reassured him that a "big deal" he had on would bring enough money." LKJ Page 71.