Any Jew who lifts his hand against the Union, is as a Jew to be considered equal to a parricide.
-David Einhorn, Sinai, VI, No 7, p. 208, August 1861.
Baltimore’s Rabbi David Einhorn did not believe in the divine authority of the Talmud, or a good many ceremonial laws, or refraining from comment, at the pulpit, on the excitable issues of the times. His religious un-orthodoxy was matched only by his political radicalism, which would, in turn, see him chased from Germany to Baltimore in the revolutionary year of 1848, and from Baltimore to Philadelphia – a step ahead of the rioting mob – in the bellicose year of 1861. Brilliant, combative and outspoken, he was the American rabbinate’s most ardent abolitionist voice.
This photograph was taken in Baltimore, where Einhorn had his first American congregation; that is, until after four days of rioting between Unionists and Confederates there - when Einhorn was forced to flee for his life, never to return.