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The Diary of Asher Levy- First Jewish Citizen of New York
04:00pm to 05:30pm - June 8, 2021
Daniela Weil In conversation with historian Noah L. Gelfand, Ph.D. about
First Jewish Citizen of New York
Daniela Weil will discuss her recent work of historical fiction, which introduces young readers to the real-life figure of Asser Levy, the first permanent Jewish resident of Manhattan. Levy fled persecution in Recife, Brazil, arriving in New Amsterdam in 1654, where he helped lead the fight for religious and civil rights that first gave shape to the character of modern-day New York. This dramatic story will interest educators and students, and also parents and grandparents.


The Diary of Asser Levy (recorded June 9, 2021) from New Amsterdam History Center on Vimeo.

This event was held on: Tuesday, June 8, 2021
6 to 7:30 PM (EST)
A live Q & A followed

SPECIAL OFFER: Admission and Signed copy of book $27
General Admission: $12
NAHC Contributors, Educators & Students: Free Admission*
(*May purchase signed copy of book for $15.)

A Zoom link and password will be emailed to registered participants the day before the program.
Daniela Weil was born in Brazil. She graduated from Brandeis University with a degree in Biology. In addition to writing books, Daniela Weil has worked as a scientific illustrator and has written several science and history articles for children’s magazines. In 2014, she began research on a familiar story from her home country: that Jews from Brazil had “founded” the Jewish community in New York in the 1600’s. Five years of research on several continents documented the story of the ship that carried the first group of Jewish refugees from Brazil to Manhattan, where they initiated the legal fight for religious rights.
Noah L. Gelfand, Doctoral Lecturer at Hunter College, teaches courses on early United States History and Native American History. He earned his Ph.D. from New York University. Among his awards are a Quinn Foundation fellowship from the McNeil Center for Early American Studies and a Touro National Heritage Trust fellowship from the John Carter Brown Library. He is currently working on a book about the Jewish Atlantic world in the early modern era.


  • 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm :
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