S. Karpen Bros. Furniture

Selected Works


Portraits of Our Past: Jews of the German Countryside

For more information, the Berlitz story, and research/​resource materials, visit PortraitsOfOurPast.com.

“Emily C. Rose’s Portrait of Our Past is a meticulously painted canvas of life in the 18th and 19th centuries for southwestern Germany’s rural Jews. A student of European history, Ms. Rose began her research in 1994 out of curiosity about her own family’s beginnings. She does an impressive and scholarly job of assembling original sources using remarkably preserved records from both German and Jewish archives of small towns and villages. She expands a narrowly focused family history into an interesting record of a resourceful and resilient people who make lives, create families and build communities in spite of constant discriminatory practices, malice and capriciousness of the churches and the ruling princes.”
--Jewish Book Council, Program National
Jewish Book Awards 2001-2002

“May be unique in highlighting the experiences of rural Jews in 18th- and 19th-century Germany...This absorbing study weaves her discoveries about her...ancestors' experiences with the larger history...Enhanced by dozens of...illustrations."
--Publishers Weekly

Joseph David Berlizheimer, 1761-1855
“Author Emily Rose grew up looking at two large oil portraits hanging above the fireplace mantel in her grandfather's home in New York City. Her Jewish ancestors had immigrated to America from Germany in 1857, and no one in the immediate family had any knowledge about the portraits that previously had hung for over a century in the home of distant relatives in a small south German village.

The paintings led Rose on a five-year journey to discover her heritage and the world of rural Germany. In the course of her research she uncovered a rich trove of documents, images, facts, and stories that paint a vivid picture of daily life in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

Although recent books describe life in the shtetls in eastern Europe as well as in major cities of central Europe, never before has a book chronicled the experience of Jews living in the German countryside during this period.Includes over seventy-five black and white illustrations, a guide for researchers, maps, bibliography and index.” --jacket flap, Portraits of Our Past: Jews of the German Countryside

Gustel Kaz Berlizheimer, 1779-1861