2009.11.10 06:21:45
Albert W. Cohen

Many years have passed since I last lived in the "Tannery City." The first home of my recollection was on Foster St. and then to Stevens St. Even at this date, I still think back to those times with some reverence.

I still recall swinging on the gate of the Synagogue to the annoyance of the elders, playing with Louie Edelstein, Irving Babner, Meyer Erlich, Dona Feingold, and others. We have great childhood memories.

 I remember attending Hebrew School, with no great delight, but preparations had to be made for a Bar Mitzvah with Rabbi Essrog. With all these memories that I share with other former residents of Peabody such as Annette Lampert, now of Florida, I still find some memories absent.

During the time of residing in Peabody, there were many clergymen who passed through town. One was a Rabbi Goldstein, who was the Sundic for my son's Bris. And yet, with all these memories that I have regarding the clergy of Peabody, I find no mention of one, who was not only a Hazan, but also a Mohel, and a Schochet, for our community. He not only served as a Canto, and a Mohel, but oversaw the health of the community as a Schochet.

...Reverend Abraham L. Smith lived there, and was associated with the kosher butchers such as Mr. Sheinheit, Mr. Goldstein, and Mr. Ainbinder. During the holidays, he purchased the "Chometz" and said the prayers at the cemeteries. He gave counsel, when asked, to Mr. M. Irving Herbster, Esq. and David Kirstein, president of the Congregation Sons of Israel.

...My parents came to Peabody from Poland, but they were not public figures. I enlisted in the Navy during WWII from Peabody and remember when the Post Office was on the corner of Main St. and Foster St. I remember that when I came home to Peabody for only two days before going overseas, I said good-bye to my parents, Michael and Annie Cohen, and also that the last person, not a family member, that I bid farewell to was Harold Kirstein who was killed in the Battle of the Bulge while I was in the Pacific on a minesweeper in the Aleutian Islands.

...Reverend Abraham L. Smith became my father in law, and is for whom my son is named.