Out Of Hadassah Archive: Engaging History
Jack Benny and Henrietta Szold
Did Jack Benny ever meet Henrietta Szold? Not likely, although this photograph seems to suggest that they did meet.
For many years, this huge photograph greeted visitors to the nursing school as they entered through the front door.
The Hadassah Archives has no information (that we have been able to find) about Mr. Benny’s visit to Hadassah Hospital at Ein Kerem. Other photographs from the same day show him planting a tree, signing a guest book at the nursing school with the dean, Yehudit Steiner Freud, and standing in the Abbell Synagogue admiring the windows (below). The date would have to be between the installation of the windows in 1962 and Mr. Benny’s death in 1974.
Other American visitors to Hadassah-Ein Kerem have included Ellen Burstyn, photographed by Amir Gavriely in front of the Chagall windows with Yarden Levinson (at right), Israel’s representative in a contest for “The most beautiful girl in the world.”
The unforgettable Harry Golden is pictured with National Hadassah President Frieda Lewis while he simultaneously signs a patient’s cast and smokes a cigar. Please note that the patient is also smoking. According to Wikipedia, Harry Golden published the Carolina Israelite from 1942 to 1968, covered the trial of Adolf Eichmann in Israel for Life magazine, and wrote For 2¢ Plain.
One day, perhaps, this series of photographs will turn up and be correctly identified.
According to Malka Hillel Shulewitz, of the hospital’s information services department, “Mr. Frost arrived in the company of Professor Lawrence Thompson, professor of English and American Literature at Princeton University, and Professor Daniel Fineman, assistant head of the English Department of the Hebrew University. The workings of the Medical Center and something of the surrounding scene were explained to him by Dr. Karpas and Dr. Nebenzahl. Frost was taken up to the sixth floor where he got an excellent view of the Hills of Judea.” Looking out at the land, Frost was reported to have said, “It is like Vermont. A place of stones. And flowers. All those little orchids. We have them too.”