Joseph Jonas (1792 - 1869) MP

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Birthplace: Exeter, Devon, UK
Death: Died in Mobile, AL, USA
Managed by: rvk
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About Joseph Jonas

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Jonas_(Cincinnati)

Joseph Jonas (1792–1869)[1] was the first Jew to settle in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA. He was an English-born peddler, who arrived from Philadelphia on March 8, 1817. He became a successful watchmaker and silversmith and lived on Broadway between Fifth Street and Harrison. Jonas, like most early Jews, settled in downtown Cincinnati. Jonas wrote letters describing the opportunities that existed in the Ohio River valley. This convinced other Jews to join him including two younger brothers. In 1821, Morris Moses and Jonas, two of Cincinnati's then six Jews, purchased a lot from Nicholas Longworth for $75.00, to found the Old Jewish Cemetery. By 1824 there were enough Jewish residents to fulfill the requirement of ten adult males so that regular religious services could be held, and the first Jewish congregation beyond the Allegheny Mountains was established. This congregation became the Rockdale Temple. Most of the early Jews were British.

http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/judaica/ejud_0002_0011_0_10246.html JONAS, JOSEPH (1792–1869), English-born jeweler who was Ohio's earliest permanent Jewish settler. Jonas arrived at Cincinnati in 1817 and in 1824 became president of the newly founded Bene Israel Congregation, the first in Ohio. He and his brother Abraham both married daughters of Gershom Mendes Seixas. Some years after Rachel Seixas' death, Jonas married Martha Oppenheim. Jonas wrote "The Jews of Ohio" for Isaac Leeser's Occident in 1842. He was a leading freemason and politician and helped organize Cincinnati's Democratic Party. While serving in the Ohio legislature in 1860–61, he advocated compromise with the South. Jonas moved to Alabama in 1867. His brother ABRAHAM (1801–1864) arrived in Cincinnati several years after Joseph. He then moved to Kentucky where he was several times elected to the state legislature, and was also prominent in the Masonic lodge. He later moved to Illinois, where he was active in the Republican party as a supporter and friend of Abraham Lincoln. Abraham's son, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN (1834–1911), moved to New Orleans where he was active in the Democratic party, served in the Louisiana state legislature, and was elected U.S. senator (1879–85).

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

JOSEPH: Jonas, in: Occident, 1 (1843–44), 547–50; 2 (1844–45), 29–31, 143–7, 244–7; D. Philipson, in: AJHSP, 8 (1900), 44–57; B. Koln, American Jewry and the Civil War (1951, paperback 1961), 189. ABRAHAM: E. Hertz, in: American Hebrew (Aug. 8, 1927), 327, 342; A. Harkens, in: AJHSP, 17 (1909), 123ff. BENJAMIN FRANKLIN: D. Philipson, in: AJHSP, 8 (1900), 53; I. Harkens, ibid., 17 (1909), 127; AJBY, 2 (1900/01), 518–9.

1817: Joseph Jonas the first Jew to settle in Cincinnati, Ohio arrived in the Queen City today. He was an English-born peddler who had come from Philadelphia, PA. “He became a successful watchmaker and silversmith and lived on Broadway between Fifth Street and Harrison. Jonas, like most early Jews, settled in downtown Cincinnati. Jonas wrote letters describing the opportunities that existed in the Ohio River valley. This convinced other Jews to join him including two younger brothers. In 1821, when Benjamin Lieb was dying, he begged to be buried as a Jew. He was the first Jew to die in Cincinnati. In response to his request, Joseph Jonas and Morris Moses, two of Cincinnati's six Jews, purchased the lot for Cincinnati's first Jewish cemetery from Nicholas Longworth for $75.00, and then buried Lieb there. This cemetery known as the Old Jewish Community or the Chestnut Street Cemetery is the oldest Jewish cemetery west of the Alleghenies. By 1824 there were enough Jewish residents to fulfill the requirement of ten adult males so that regular religious services could be held, and the first Jewish congregation beyond the Allegheny Mountains was established. This congregation became the Rockdale Temple. Most of the early Jews were British.”

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Joseph Jonas's Timeline

1792
1792
Exeter, Devon, UK
1823
February 10, 1823
Age 31
Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, USA
1838
October 17, 1838
Age 46
City of London, Greater London, UK
1839
September 4, 1839
Age 47
1841
November 8, 1841
Age 49
1843
November 18, 1843
Age 51
1846
February 14, 1846
Age 54
OH, USA
1869
May 5, 1869
Age 77
Mobile, AL, USA
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