Solomon Schechter was a Moldavian-born American rabbi, academic scholar and educator, most famous for his roles as founder and President of the United Synagogue of America, President of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, architect of American Conservative Judaism. He was born in Moldavia to Rabbi Yitzchok Hakohen, a shochet and member of Chabad hasidim, he was named after Shneur Zalman of Liadi. Schechter received his early education from his father, a shochet, he learned to read Hebrew by age 3, by 5 mastered Chumash. He went to a yeshiva in Piatra Neamţ at age 10 and at age thirteen studied with one of the major Talmudic scholars, Rabbi Joseph Saul Nathanson of Lemberg. In his 20s, he went to the Rabbinical College in Vienna, where he studied under the more modern Talmudic scholar Meir Friedmann, before moving on in 1879 to undertake further studies at the Berlin Hochschule für die Wissenschaft des Judentums and at the University of Berlin. In 1882, he was invited to Britain. In 1890, after the death of Solomon Marcus Schiller-Szinessy, he was appointed to the faculty at Cambridge University, serving as a lecturer in Talmudics and reader in Rabbinics.
To this day, the students of the Cambridge University Jewish Society hold an annual Solomon Schechter Memorial Lecture. His greatest academic fame came from his excavation in 1896 of the papers of the Cairo Geniza, an extraordinary collection of over 100,000 pages of rare Hebrew religious manuscripts and medieval Jewish texts that were preserved at an Egyptian synagogue; the find. Jacob Saphir was the first Jewish researcher to recognize the significance of the Cairo Geniza, as well as the first to publicize the existence of the Midrash ha-Gadol. Schechter was alerted to the existence of the Geniza's papers in May 1896 by two Scottish sisters, Mrs. Lewis and Mrs. Gibson, who showed him some leaves from the Geniza that contained the Hebrew text of Sirach, which had for centuries only been known in Greek and Latin translation. Letters, written at Schechter's prompting, by Agnes Smith to The Athenaeum and The Academy revealed the existence of another nine leaves of the same manuscript in the possession of Archibald Sayce at Oxford University.
Schechter found support for another expedition to the Cairo Geniza, arrived there in December 1896 with an introduction from the Chief Rabbi, Hermann Adler, to the Chief Rabbi of Cairo, Aaron Raphael Ben Shim'on. He selected for the Cambridge University Library a trove three times the size of any other collection: this is now part of the Taylor-Schechter Collection; the find was instrumental in Schechter resolving a dispute with David Margoliouth as to the Hebrew language origins of Sirach. Charles Taylor took a great interest in Solomon Schechter's work in Cairo, the genizah fragments presented to the University of Cambridge are known as the Taylor-Schechter Collection, he was joint editor with Schechter of The Wisdom of Ben Sira, 1899. He published separately Cairo Genizah Palimpsests, 1900, he became a Professor of Hebrew at University College London in 1899 and remained until 1902 when he moved to the United States and was replaced by Israel Abrahams. In 1902, traditional Jews reacting against the progress of the American Reform Judaism movement, trying to establish an authoritative "synod" of American rabbis, recruited Schechter to become President of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America.
Schechter served as the second President of the JTSA, from 1902 to 1915, during which time he founded the United Synagogue of America renamed as the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. Schechter emphasized the centrality of Jewish law in Jewish life in a speech in his inaugural address as President of the JTSA in 1902: "Judaism is not a religion which does not oppose itself to anything in particular. Judaism is opposed to any number of things and says distinctly "thou shalt not." It permeates the whole of your life. It demands control over all of your actions, interferes with your menu, it sanctifies the seasons, regulates your history, both in the past and in the future. Above all, it teaches, it insists of the letter. In a word, Judaism is incompatible with the abandonment of the Torah."Schechter, on the other hand, believed in what he termed "Catholic Israel." The basic idea being that Jewish law, Halacha, is formed and evolves based on the behavior of the people. This concept of modifying the law based on national consensus is an untraditional viewpoint.
Schechter was an early advocate of Zionism. He was the chairman of the committee that edited the Jewish Publication Society of America Version of the Hebrew Bible. Schechter's name is synonymous with the findings of the Cairo Geniza, he placed the JTSA on an institutional footing strong enough to endure for over a century. He became identified as the foremost personality of Conservative Judaism and is regarded as its founder. A network of Conservative Jewish day schools is named in his honor, as well as a summer camp in Olympia, Washington. There are several dozen Solomon Schechter Day Schools across the United States and Canada. Schechter, Solomon Studies in Judaism. 3 vols. London: A. & C. Black, 1896-1924 S
1910 United States Census
The Thirteenth United States Census, conducted by the Census Bureau on April 15, 1910, determined the resident population of the United States to be 92,228,496, an increase of 21.0 percent over the 76,212,168 persons enumerated during the 1900 Census. The 1910 Census switched from a portrait page orientation to a landscape orientation; the 1910 census collected the following information: Full documentation for the 1910 census, including census forms and enumerator instructions, is available from the Integrated Public Use Microdata Series. The column titles in the census form are as follows: LOCATION. Street, road, etc. House number. 1. Number of dwelling house in order of visitation. 2. Number of family in order of visitation. 3. NAME of each person whose place of abode on April 15, 1910, was in this family. Enter surname first the given name and middle initial, if any. Include every person living on April 15, 1910. Omit children born since April 15, 1910. RELATION. 4. Relationship of this person to the head of the family.
PERSONAL DESCRIPTION. 5. Sex. 6. Color or race. 7. Age at last birthday. 8. Whether single, widowed, or divorced. 9. Number of years of present marriage. 10. Mother of how many children: Number born. 11. Mother of how many children: Number now living. NATIVITY. Place of birth of each person and parents of each person enumerated. If born in the United States, give the state or territory. If of foreign birth, give the country. 12. Place of birth of this Person. 13. Place of birth of Father of this person. 14. Place of birth of Mother of this person. CITIZENSHIP. 15. Year of immigration to the United States. 16. Whether naturalized or alien. 17. Whether able to speak English. OCCUPATION. 18. Trade or profession of, or particular kind of work done by this person, as spinner, laborer, etc. 19. General nature of industry, business, or establishment in which this person works, as cotton mill, dry goods store, etc. 20. Whether as employer, employee, or work on own account. If an employee— 21. Whether out of work on April 15, 1910.
22. Number of weeks out of work during year 1909. EDUCATION. 23. Whether able to read. 24. Whether able to write. 25. Attended school any time since September 1, 1909. OWNERSHIP OF HOME. 26. Owned or rented. 27. Owned free or mortgaged. 28. Farm or house. 29. Number of farm schedule. 30. Whether a survivor of the Union or Confederate Army or Navy. 31. Whether blind. 32. Whether deaf and dumb. Special Notation In 1912 and 1959, New Mexico, Arizona and Hawaii would become the 47th, 48th, 49th and 50th states admitted to the Union; the 1910 population count for each of these areas was 327,301, 204,354, 64,356 and 191,909 respectively. On this basis, the ranking list above would be modified as follows: First 42 ranked states - positions unchanged New Mexico, Arizona, Hawaii, Wyoming and Alaska; the original census enumeration sheets were microfilmed by the Census Bureau in the 1940s. The microfilmed census is available in rolls from the National Records Administration. Several organizations host images of the microfilmed census online, along which digital indices.
Microdata from the 1910 census are available through the Integrated Public Use Microdata Series. Aggregate data for small areas, together with electronic boundary files, can be downloaded from the National Historical Geographic Information System. 1911 U. S Census Report Contains 1910 Census results Historic US Census data census.gov/population/www/censusdata/PopulationofStatesandCountiesoftheUnitedStates1790-1990.pdf
Hadassah Women's Zionist Organization of America
Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America is an American Jewish volunteer women's organization. Founded in 1912 by Henrietta Szold, it is one of the largest international Jewish organizations, with 330,000 members in the United States. Hadassah fundraises for community programs and health initiatives in Israel, including the Hadassah Medical Center, a leading research hospital in Israel renowned for its inclusion of and treatment for all religions and races in Jerusalem. In the US, the organization advocates on behalf of women's rights, religious autonomy and US-Israel diplomacy. In Israel, Hadassah supports health education and research, women's initiatives and programs for underprivileged youth. In 2012, Hadassah opened the Sarah Wetsman Davidson Hospital Tower, a 500 bed-facility with 20 operating theaters, as well as five below-ground floors for protection from terrorist attacks. In 2014, National President Marcie Natan was named one of The Jerusalem Post's "Top 50 Most Influential Jews."
At a meeting at Temple Emanu-El in New York City on February 24, 1912, Henrietta Szold together with other Zionist women, proposed to the Daughters of Zion study circle that they expand their purpose and embrace proactive work to help meet the health needs of Palestine's people. The goal was to promote the Zionist ideal through education, public health initiatives, the training of nurses in what was the Palestine region of the Ottoman Empire; because the meeting was held around the time of Purim, the women called themselves "The Hadassah chapter of the Daughters of Zion," adopting the Hebrew name of Queen Esther. Henrietta Szold became the first president. Within a year, Hadassah had five growing chapters in New York, Cleveland and Boston, its charter articulates twin goals: to begin public-health initiatives and nurses training in Palestine, to foster Zionist ideals through education in America. In 1913, Hadassah sent two nurses to Rose Kaplan and Rae Landy, they set up a small public health station in Jerusalem to provide maternity care and treat trachoma, a dreaded eye disease rampant in the Middle East.
The core of future Hadassah education programs emerged when Jessie Sampter founded The Hadassah School of Zionism in New York in 1915. The school required chapter leaders to take courses, instituted a correspondence course and inspires other Hadassah chapters to create their own Schools of Zionism. Sampter published "A Course in Zionism," a collection of facts and reading lists financed by prominent American Zionist, Judge Louis Brandeis. By 1916, Hadassah established the Palestine Purchasing and Supplies Department to buy and ship items unavailable in the yishuv, the pre-state Jewish community in Palestine. Although Hadassah's first two nurses were compelled to return to America in 1915, the physicians with whom they had co-operated– Dr. Avraham Ticho and Dr. Helena Kagan – as well as the midwives and probationers were able to carry on their work. Hadassah established the American Zionist Medical Unit in 1918, composed of 45 doctors, nurses and sanitary engineers; the Unit was set up to combat the intolerable health conditions of postwar Palestine and to create permanent health and welfare programs.
From the beginning, it established a principle that it would serve all with equal care, regardless of race, ethnicity or nationality. The AZMU helped to establish six hospitals in Palestine which were turned over to municipal authorities. Led by Alice Seligsberg, the Unit sailed for Palestine in June, bringing needed drugs, medical instruments and supplies and clothing; that year, Hadassah founded a nursing school to train local personnel and create a cadre of nurses. Over the next few years, the Unit, based in the old Rothschild Hospital in Jerusalem, initiated American-style health and welfare programs with intensive campaigns to wipe out malaria, cholera and scalp diseases in many Jewish communities in the yishuv; the Unit organized a sanitation program and founded Hadassah hospitals in Jaffa and Safed, as well as opened the Nurses Training School at the Rothschild Hospital in Jerusalem. The first 22 young women graduated from Hadassah's Nurses' Training School in 1921. In 1924, the Unit's name is changed to Hadassah Medical Organization.
In 1919, Hadassah organized the first School Hygiene Department in Palestine to give routine health examinations to Jerusalem school children. During the Arab riots of 1920, Hadassah nurses cared for the wounded on both sides. Henrietta Szold moved to Jerusalem that year to develop community health and preventive care programs. Back in New York in 1920, Alice Seligsberg formed Junior Hadassah, which provided innovative programs for young women who wanted to participate in Hadassah's Zionist mission. In the same year, Henrietta Szold moved to Palestine to lead the medical work started by the Unit, she remained based in Jerusalem until her death in 1945. In 1921, Hadassah nurse Bertha Landsman created Palestine's first permanent infant welfare station, Tipat Halav, in Jerusalem; the overwhelming success inspired Hadassah to expand the program, delivering fresh milk to needy families by "donkey express." Hadassah opened a hospital in Tel Aviv, the city's first hospital. Under Hadassah's philosophy of "devolution," it initiated and developed a number of facilities and projects and transferred them to the appropriate municipalities.
Hadassah transferred administration of this hospital to the Tel Aviv municipality in 1931. 1923: Hadassah instituted a school lunch program to teach nutrition and serve healthy meals to children and teenagers in Palestine. Pennies are collected by American Hebrew school students to fund this project, devolved to
Find a Grave
Find A Grave is a website that allows the public to search and add to an online database of cemetery records. It is owned by Ancestry.com. It receives and uploads digital photographs of headstones from burial sites, taken by unpaid volunteers at cemeteries. Find A Grave posts the photo on its website; the site was created in 1995 by Salt Lake City resident Jim Tipton to support his hobby of visiting the burial sites of famous celebrities. He added an online forum. Find A Grave was launched as a commercial entity in 1998, first as a trade name and incorporated in 2000; the site expanded to include graves of non-celebrities, in order to allow online visitors to pay respect to their deceased relatives or friends. In 2013, Tipton sold Find A Grave to Ancestry.com, saying that the genealogy company had "been linking and driving traffic to the site for several years. Burial information is a wonderful source for people researching their family history." In a September 30, 2013, press release, Ancestry.com officials said they would "launch a new mobile app, improve customer support, introduce an enhanced edit system for submitting updates to memorials, foreign-language support, other site improvements."As of October 2017, Find A Grave contained over 165 million burial records and 75 million photos.
In March 2017, a beta website for a redesigned Find A Grave was launched at gravestage.com. Public feedback was mixed. Sometime between May 29 and July 10 of that year, the beta website was migrated to new.findagrave.com, a new front end for it was deployed at beta.findagrave.com. In November 2017, the new site became the old site was deprecated. On August 20, 2018, the original Find; the website contains listings of graves from around the world. American cemeteries are organized by state and county, many cemetery records contain Google Maps and photographs of the cemeteries and gravesites. Individual grave records may contain dates and places of birth and death, biographical information and plot information and contributor information. Interment listings are added by individuals, genealogical societies, other institutions such as the International Wargraves Photography Project. Contributors must register as members to submit listings, called memorials, on the site; the submitter may transfer management.
Only the current manager of a listing may edit it, although any member may use the site's features to send correction requests to the listing's manager. Managers may add links to other listings of deceased spouses and siblings for genealogical purposes. Any member may add photographs and notations to individual listings. Members may post requests for photos of a specific grave. Although it does not ask permission from immediate family members before uploading the photos, it will remove and take down photos or a URL for a deceased loved one at the request of an immediate family member. Find A Grave maintains lists of memorials of famous persons by their "claim to fame", such as Medal of Honor recipients, religious figures, educators. Find A Grave exercises editorial control over these listings. Canadian Headstones Interment.net United States National Cemetery System's nationwide gravesite locator Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness Tombstone tourist Official website
Judaism is the religion of the Jewish people. It is an ancient, Abrahamic religion with the Torah as its foundational text, it encompasses the religion and culture of the Jewish people. Judaism is considered by religious Jews to be the expression of the covenant that God established with the Children of Israel. Judaism encompasses a wide body of texts, theological positions, forms of organization; the Torah is part of the larger text known as the Tanakh or the Hebrew Bible, supplemental oral tradition represented by texts such as the Midrash and the Talmud. With between 14.5 and 17.4 million adherents worldwide, Judaism is the tenth largest religion in the world. Within Judaism there are a variety of movements, most of which emerged from Rabbinic Judaism, which holds that God revealed his laws and commandments to Moses on Mount Sinai in the form of both the Written and Oral Torah; this assertion was challenged by various groups such as the Sadducees and Hellenistic Judaism during the Second Temple period.
Modern branches of Judaism such as Humanistic Judaism may be nontheistic. Today, the largest Jewish religious movements are Orthodox Judaism, Conservative Judaism, Reform Judaism. Major sources of difference between these groups are their approaches to Jewish law, the authority of the Rabbinic tradition, the significance of the State of Israel. Orthodox Judaism maintains that the Torah and Jewish law are divine in origin and unalterable, that they should be followed. Conservative and Reform Judaism are more liberal, with Conservative Judaism promoting a more traditionalist interpretation of Judaism's requirements than Reform Judaism. A typical Reform position is that Jewish law should be viewed as a set of general guidelines rather than as a set of restrictions and obligations whose observance is required of all Jews. Special courts enforced Jewish law. Authority on theological and legal matters is not vested in any one person or organization, but in the sacred texts and the rabbis and scholars who interpret them.
The history of Judaism spans more than 3,000 years. Judaism has its roots as an organized religion in the Middle East during the Bronze Age. Judaism is considered one of the oldest monotheistic religions; the Hebrews and Israelites were referred to as "Jews" in books of the Tanakh such as the Book of Esther, with the term Jews replacing the title "Children of Israel". Judaism's texts and values influenced Abrahamic religions, including Christianity and the Baha'i Faith. Many aspects of Judaism have directly or indirectly influenced secular Western ethics and civil law. Hebraism was just as important a factor in the ancient era development of Western civilization as Hellenism, Judaism, as the background of Christianity, has shaped Western ideals and morality since Early Christianity. Jews are an ethnoreligious group including those born Jewish, in addition to converts to Judaism. In 2015, the world Jewish population was estimated at about 14.3 million, or 0.2% of the total world population. About 43% of all Jews reside in Israel and another 43% reside in the United States and Canada, with most of the remainder living in Europe, other minority groups spread throughout Latin America, Asia and Australia.
Unlike other ancient Near Eastern gods, the Hebrew God is portrayed as solitary. Judaism thus begins with ethical monotheism: the belief that God is one and is concerned with the actions of mankind. According to the Tanakh, God promised Abraham to make of his offspring a great nation. Many generations he commanded the nation of Israel to love and worship only one God, he commanded the Jewish people to love one another. These commandments are but two of a large corpus of commandments and laws that constitute this covenant, the substance of Judaism. Thus, although there is an esoteric tradition in Judaism, Rabbinic scholar Max Kadushin has characterized normative Judaism as "normal mysticism", because it involves everyday personal experiences of God through ways or modes that are common to all Jews; this is played out through the observance of the Halakha and given verbal expression in the Birkat Ha-Mizvot, the short blessings that are spoken every time a positive commandment is to be fulfilled.
The ordinary, everyday things and occurrences we have, constitute occasions for the experience of God. Such things as one's daily sustenance, the day itself, are felt as manifestations of God's loving-kindness, calling for the Berakhot. Kedushah, nothing else than the imitation of God, is concerned with daily conduct, with being gracious and merciful, with keeping oneself from defilement by idolatry and the shedding of blood; the Birkat Ha-Mitzwot evokes the consciousness of holiness at a rabbinic rite, but the objects employed in the majority of these rites are non-holy and of general character, while the several holy objects are non-theurgic. And not only do ordinary things and occurrences bring with them the experience of God. Everything that happens to a man evokes that exp
Conservative Judaism is a major Jewish denomination which views Jewish law, or Halakha, as both binding and subject to historical development. It regards the authority of Jewish law and tradition as emanating from the assent of the people and the community through the generations, more than from divine revelation; the Conservative rabbinate therefore employs modern historical-critical research, rather than only traditional methods and sources, lends great weight to its constituency when determining its stance on matters of practice. The movement considers its approach as the authentic and most appropriate continuation of halakhic discourse, maintaining both fealty to received forms and flexibility in their interpretation, it eschews strict theological definitions, lacking a consensus in matters of faith and allowing great pluralism. While regarding itself as the heir of Rabbi Zecharias Frankel's 19th-century Positive-Historical School in Europe, Conservative Judaism institutionalized as a denomination only in the United States during the mid-20th century.
Its largest center today is in North America, where its main congregational arm is the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism and the New York–based Jewish Theological Seminary of America operates as rabbinic seminary. Globally, affiliated communities are united within the umbrella organization Masorti Olami. Conservative Judaism is the third-largest Jewish denomination worldwide, estimated to represent close to 1.1 million people, both over 600,000 registered adult congregants and many non-member identifiers. Conservative Judaism, from its earliest stages, was marked by ambivalence and ambiguity in all matters theological. Rabbi Zecharias Frankel, considered its intellectual progenitor, believed the notion of theology was alien to traditional Judaism, he was accused of obscurity on the subject by his opponents, both Reform and Orthodox. The American movement espoused a similar approach, its leaders avoided the field. Only in 1985 did a course about Conservative theology open in the Jewish Theological Seminary of America.
The hitherto sole major attempt to define a clear credo was made in 1988, with the Statement of Principles Emet ve-Emunah and issued by the Leadership Council of Conservative Judaism. The introduction stated that "lack of definition was useful" in the past but a need to articulate one now arose; the platform provided many statements citing key concepts such as God and Election, but acknowledged that a variety of positions and convictions existed within denominational ranks, eschewing strict delineation of principles and expressing conflicting views. In a 1999 special edition of Conservative Judaism dedicated to the matter, leading rabbis Elliot N. Dorff and Gordon Tucker clarified that "the great diversity" within the movement "makes the creation of a theological vision shared by all neither possible nor desirable". Conservative Judaism upholds the theistic notion of a personal God. Emet ve-Emunah stated that "we affirm our faith in God as the Governor of the universe, his power called the world into being.
Concurrently, the platform noted that His nature was "elusive" and subject to many options of belief. A naturalistic conception of divinity, regarding it as inseparable from the mundane world, once had an important place within the denomination represented by Mordecai Kaplan. After Kaplan's Reconstructionism coalesced into an independent movement, these views were marginalized. A inconclusive position is expressed toward other precepts. Most theologians adhere to the Immortality of the Soul, but while references to the Resurrection of the Dead are maintained, English translations of the prayers obscure the issue. In Emet, it was stated. Relating to the Messianic ideal, the movement rephrased most petitions for the restoration of the Sacrifices into past tense, rejecting a renewal of animal offerings, though not opposing a Return to Zion and a new Temple; the 1988 platform announced that "some" believe in classic eschathology, but dogmatism in this matter was "philosophically unjustified". The notions of Election of Israel and God's covenant with it were retained as well.
Conservative conception of Revelation encompasses an extensive spectrum. Zecharias Frankel himself applied critical-scientific methods to analyze the stages in the development of the Oral Torah, pioneering modern study of the Mishnah, he regarded the Beatified Sages as innovators who added their own, original contribution to the canon, not as expounders and interpreters of a legal system given in its entirety to Moses on Mount Sinai. Yet he vehemently rejected utilizing these disciplines on the Pentateuch, maintaining it was beyond human reach and wholly celestial in origin. Frankel never elucidated his beliefs, the exact correlation between human and divine in his thought is still subject to scholarly debate. A similar negative approach toward Higher Criticism, while accepting an evolutionary understanding of Oral Law, defined Rabbi Alexander Kohut, Solomon Schechter and the early generation of American Conservative Judaism; when JTS faculty began to embrace Biblical criticism in the 1920s, they adapted a theological view consistent with it: an original, verbal revelation did occur at Sinai, but the text itself was composed by authors.
The latter, classified by Dorff as a moderate metamorphosis of the old one, is still espoused by few traditionalist right-wing Conservative rabbis, though it is marginalized among senior leadership. A small but influential segment within the JTS an
Kingdom of Prussia
The Kingdom of Prussia was a German kingdom that constituted the state of Prussia between 1701 and 1918. It was the driving force behind the unification of Germany in 1871 and was the leading state of the German Empire until its dissolution in 1918. Although it took its name from the region called Prussia, it was based in the Margraviate of Brandenburg, where its capital was Berlin; the kings of Prussia were from the House of Hohenzollern. Prussia was a great power from the time it became a kingdom, through its predecessor, Brandenburg-Prussia, which became a military power under Frederick William, known as "The Great Elector". Prussia continued its rise to power under the guidance of Frederick II, more known as Frederick the Great, the third son of Frederick William I. Frederick the Great was instrumental in starting the Seven Years' War, holding his own against Austria, Russia and Sweden and establishing Prussia's role in the German states, as well as establishing the country as a European great power.
After the might of Prussia was revealed it was considered as a major power among the German states. Throughout the next hundred years Prussia went on to win many battles, many wars; because of its power, Prussia continuously tried to unify all the German states under its rule, although whether Austria would be included in such a unified German domain was an ongoing question. After the Napoleonic Wars led to the creation of the German Confederation, the issue of more unifying the many German states caused revolution throughout the German states, with each wanting their own constitution. Attempts at creation of a federation remained unsuccessful and the German Confederation collapsed in 1866 when war ensued between its two most powerful member states and Austria; the North German Confederation, which lasted from 1867 to 1871, created a closer union between the Prussian-aligned states while Austria and most of Southern Germany remained independent. The North German Confederation was seen as more of an alliance of military strength in the aftermath of the Austro-Prussian War but many of its laws were used in the German Empire.
The German Empire lasted from 1871 to 1918 with the successful unification of all the German states under Prussian hegemony, this was due to the defeat of Napoleon III in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870–71. The war united all the German states against a common enemy, with the victory came an overwhelming wave of nationalism which changed the opinions of some of those, against unification. In 1871, Germany unified into a single country, minus Austria and Switzerland, with Prussia the dominant power. Prussia is considered the legal predecessor of the unified German Reich and as such a direct ancestor of today's Federal Republic of Germany; the formal abolition of Prussia, carried out on 25 February 1947 by the fiat of the Allied Control Council referred to an alleged tradition of the kingdom as a bearer of militarism and reaction, made way for the current setup of the German states. However, the Free State of Prussia, which followed the abolition of the Kingdom of Prussia in the aftermath of World War I, was a major democratic force in Weimar Germany until the nationalist coup of 1932 known as the Preußenschlag.
The Kingdom left a significant cultural legacy, today notably promoted by the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, which has become one of the largest cultural organisations in the world. In 1415 a Hohenzollern Burgrave came from the south to the March of Brandenburg and took control of the area as elector. In 1417 the Hohenzollern was made an elector of the Holy Roman Empire. After the Polish wars, the newly established Baltic towns of the German states, including Prussia, suffered many economic setbacks. Many of the Prussian towns could not afford to attend political meetings outside of Prussia; the towns were poverty stricken, with the largest town, having to borrow money from elsewhere to pay for trade. Poverty in these towns was caused by Prussia's neighbours, who had established and developed such a monopoly on trading that these new towns could not compete; these issues led to feuds, trade competition and invasions. However, the fall of these towns gave rise to the nobility, separated the east and the west, allowed the urban middle class of Brandenburg to prosper.
It was clear in 1440 how different Brandenburg was from the other German territories, as it faced two dangers that the other German territories did not, partition from within and the threat of invasion by its neighbours. It prevented partition by enacting the Dispositio Achillea, which instilled the principle of primogeniture to both the Brandenburg and Franconian territories; the second issue was resolved through expansion. Brandenburg was surrounded on every side by neighbours whose boundaries were political. Any neighbour could consume Brandenburg at any moment; the only way to defend herself was to absorb her neighbours. Through negotiations and marriages Brandenburg but expanded her borders, absorbing neighbours and eliminating the threat of attack; the Hohenzollerns were made rulers of the Margraviate of Brandenburg in 1518. In 1529 the Hohenzollerns secured the reversion of the Duchy of Pomerania after a series of conflicts, acquired its eastern part following the Peace of Westphalia. In 1618 the Hohenzollerns inherited the Duchy of Prussia, since 1511 ruled by Hohenzollern Albrecht of Brandenburg Prussia, who in 1525 converted the Teutonic Order ruled state to a Protestant Duchy by accepting fiefdom of the crown of Poland.
It was ruled in a personal union with Brandenburg