by Jacob Scarr
Jacob Scarr left the Russian Ukraine for America as a fifteen-year-old boy. Life in the Ukraine was difficult for a Jew at the turn of the century. Jews were the scapegoats for the discontent of the country, and the Jewish community lived in constant dread of provoking a pogrom, with its resulting death and destruction. Some could take it, but Jacob, an independent young man, knew he would instinctively fight for his rights and eventually get into serious trouble.
America, where several of his relatives had already established themselves, offered him a freer, more secure atmosphere in which to live and work. A young man of Jacob’s enterprise was bound to succeed.
Listen My Children is Jacob Scarr’s story, told in the intriguing style of a born storyteller. His memories of life in the Ukraine and in early twentieth-century Newark and his descriptions of the realities of the immigrant’s life and of his own struggles to establish himself in a new and strange land are warmly alive.
His story is one of perseverance, success, and sometimes disappointment. It tells of his ultimate realization of several dreams — a satisfying marriage, a reunion with his family, and a new and better life on a farm. This is a story well worth reading, both as social history and as the moving personal account of an exceptionally enterprising young man.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jacob Scarr was born in 1897 in Czarist Russia. His childhood and teenage years were lived against the background of Eastern European culture, customs, and traditions.
Jacob left his family when he was fifteen to come to the United States. He spent his early years in the Newark, New Jersey area, where he worked in a variety of jobs, married, and raised his family.
Many of the stories that make up this book were originally told to Mr. Scarr’s four children: his sons, David and Leonard, both veterinarians; and his daughters, Bernice and Goldie, both teachers. Jacob also had fourteen grandchildren and twenty-five great-grandchildren, who continue to “listen” to Jacob’s stories.
(2006, paperback, 228 pages)
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