About the project
The documentary will tell the story of the forgotten Jewish freedom fighters of 1848 who became Heroes of the American Civil War. These Jewish immigrants mainly from Hungary (and others from Germany, Austria) fought overwhelmingly in the Union army during the Civil War. Not only on the battlefield but they also contributed to human values and took their part in the building of today's America.
This is an untold part of the Jewish history that emphasis on the Jewish contribution to the Union's victory and highlights the role of the Jews in the fight against slavery. Not many know that Jewish 48'ers were one of the reasons of the North's victory and names such as Joseph Pulitzer, Frederick Knefler and August Bondi who fought alongside John Brown in Kansas will appear in this movie.
Jewish documentaries which unveil heroic moments of our history and can make a change are needed at a time when antisemitism is on the rise and when Jews are accused of being the cause of slavery.
Brevet Brigadier General Knefler was born in Hungary who was barely 15 years old when he fought through the Revolution of 1848. He later became one of the highest ranking Jewish officers of the Union army. He is also known as one of the founding fathers of the First Jewish Congregation in Indianapolis.
Stahel was an experienced officer who served as a lieutenant during the Hungarian Revolution and gained fame as a cavalry commander too. He is a Medal of Honor recipient who showed extra ordinary gallantry at the Battle of Piedmont where he was wounded in action. "Led his division into action until he was severely wounded."
Frederick George Utassy and his brothers served in the 39th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment. The brothers were distinguished veterans of the Hungarian Revolution. Colonel Utassy was the founder and commander of the Garibaldi Guards also known as the 39th New York Volunteer Infantry regiment till 1863.
39th IAJGS Conference, Cleveland, 2019
Our heroes will be one of the featured topics of the 39th IAJGS Conference on Jewish Genealogy which will be held in Cleveland this summer. The story of the Jewish freedom fighters of 1848 who turned American heroes during the Civil War will be heard during the Hungarian luncheon. The purpose of our documentary is purely education as we do owe our ancestors to remember them. The film will unveil forgotten periods of many famous Jews who shaped the building of America such as David Einhorn (German-born), Michael Heilprin (Polish-born), August Bondi (Austrian-born),Frederick Knefler (Hungarian-born) and many others.
All these Jewish heroes were connected or influenced by the Revolutions of 1848, most importantly by the Hungarian Revolution in which the Jews also fought for the emancipation. 13 years later the vast majority of the 1848'ers joined the Union army and took their parts in the fight against slavery.
We have been working from Hungarian and other European achives in which we have done dozens of new discoveries that have never been told before. And we will share all our surprises with you, in Cleveland.
See you in July of 2019.
Jewish Documentaries challenge antisemitism by unearthing unknown topics about Jewish history. We believe education is the right response to ignorance, racism and antisemitism. Project Director Peter Rosenbluth's recent action is the proven example we are in the right direction.
Peter Rosenbluth's statement following the meeting
"Today I met Labour Councillor Damien Enticott as anti-Semitic content appeared on his Facebook last week. I explained him that "Talmud Jews" and "Jews drink blood" phrases were used by the Nazi propaganda machine and it cost the lives of 6 million Jews. A few days later he stated he is not anti-Semitic just anti-Zionist. This afternoon we went through the Jewish history and he was very open minded.... I told him Zionism is not a conspiracy theory but in short, an idea that Jews deserve a national homeland. I gave him a book about British Jewish history as seen in the picture. Mr. Enticott took the responsibility and admitted he was wrong. On the other hand, I am very pleased he was willing to learn about the Jewish culture. As we live in the same country we need to communicate more, and education can change anti-Semitism."
Our documentary featured in the Jewish Virtual Library. Click here to read the article
As a descendant of a Jewish lieutenant who fought in the Revolution of 1848 and as a grandson of Holocaust survivors I intend to preserve and promote the Jewish heritage and culture from which everyone can learn. In this film people will discover forgotten and heroic parts of the Jewish history they have never heard of. I strongly believe our documentary is important in the 21st century and that education is the best way to push back antisemitism and racism. I am confident that together we can make a change.
We are independent film makers who do this project from passion. We have got fiscal sponsorship with the Independent Documentary Association (IDA) a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Let's make this film together with you. Please donate to our honourable project and share it with your community. Your donation is 100% tax deductible.
IDA film ID: #4538
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If you are interested in colourized civil war photos have a look at "Colourized Past" on Facebook who donated to the film one of his artistic works.
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