Unknown Artist

The subject of this portrait was the first Jew to graduate from Yale University.

Sigmund Waterman (1819-1899) was born in Bruck near Erlangen, in Bavaria, Germany. He studied in the University of Erlangen before emigrating in 1840 to America, where he settled in New Haven.

A composition of many figures before a background of classical architecture.

The design shows clasped hands of a woman and man, crown, and extensive inscription. The bridegroom is Aaron Jacob, son of David; the bride is Edel, daughter of Joel Hirsch.

Biblical scenes, figures of Moses and Aaron, and a view of the Western Wall express a longing to return to Zion

The Mizrah is a classic ritual object that typically expresses a longing for the Promised Land.

The Wedding Ring has a wide band of heavily textured silver with a twisted rope design. Individual letters in Hebrew spell “Mazel tov” (Congratulations).

This pewter Levitical pitcher was used to wash the hands of the kohen (priest) in preparation for the priestly benediction of the congregation

This is perhaps the only ritual object remaining from a synagogue built in 1887 in Gemünden-am-Main in Unterfranken, Bavaria, Germany, where an organized congregation was established in the 1870s.

This silver comb was used in the preparation of a corpse for burial

The inscriptions on this comb identify it as belonging to the Burial Society of Mattersdorf (today Mattersburg), one of the so-called seven communities of the Burgenland (West Hungary).

This wooden chest was created to commemorate a revered scholar.

Elijah ben Solomon, also known as the Gaon of Vilna, and by the acronym G”RA, was a Lithuanian Talmudist, Kabbalist, grammarian and mathematician.

This monumental Hanukkah lamp was created for synagogue use, modeled after a biblical menorah of pure gold. It was used at the White House Hanukkah celebration in 2003.

This nine-branched

This kimono was acquired in Japan by a Jewish family saved by Chiune Sugihara, the Japanese Consul in Lithuania, who issued transit visas to Jews fleeing Nazi-occupied Poland.

As Nazi persecution of Jews intensified, many sought to flee Germany for refuge in foreign countries.