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Creating American Reform JudaismLife and Times of Isaac Mayer Wise$
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Sefton D. Temkin

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9781874774457

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781874774457.001.0001

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The Civil War

The Civil War

12. The Civil War
Creating American Reform Judaism

Sefton D. Temkin

Liverpool University Press

This chapter examines Isaac Mayer Wise during the secession crisis and the Civil War. When the possible dissolution of the Union first entered men’s minds, Wise was once again hoping to realize his plan of establishing a college, but the issues which led to secession must have forced themselves on his attention. Cincinnati stood on the border between free and slave states; its environs were the first stage on the ‘Underground Railroad’ by which slaves were taken to Canada for liberation; it was near the scene of attempts, sometimes the cause of riots, to arrest and return slaves under the Fugitive Slave Law. Yet the belief that the fires would cool was widespread, and Wise was by no means alone when he remarked that ‘the two extreme factions will be cooled down before the year ends’. The crisis did not abate, however.

Keywords:   Civil War, secession, Union, Cincinnati, peace, Jewish rights

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