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FROM THIS EPISODE

America provided refuge from ancient European prejudice and persecution. The First Jews tells the little-known early history of Jews in Colonial America, from New Amsterdam to Charleston, South Carolina. John Lithgow reads letters from Peter Stuyvesant to The Dutch West India Company asking permission to expel these Jews, calling them "blasphemers of the name of Christ." Permission was refused. Thus began a 350-year struggle for survival and acceptance. The story concludes with the American Revolution, the adoption of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and their crucial role in the success in the new country for American Jews and all who followed.  Produced and hosted by Larry Josephson.

Part 1 of 5, the series runs December 3-7 from 2-3pm and is organized around themes, historical periods and individuals that illustrate important aspects of this American Jewish history. The full series will be available as a subscriber premium, in a fully packaged 8-CD set including additional feature programs and interview content.



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