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Simson Thorman
An early 19th century German immigrant

German, or more accurately central European German-speakers (a German state was not founded until 1871), were the main Jewish immigration in the period 1800 - 1850. Generally young persons fleeing economic hardship and government restrictions, they soon became an integral part of the developing Midwest.

An outstanding example is Simson Thorman, our city's first permanent Jewish settler more, who became a prominent member of the Jewish and larger communities. Some of his descendants have played active and often leadership roles in Cleveland's economic, civic and cultural life.

A second wave of Jews arrived after the failed German revolution in 1848, many of them older and better educated than those who had come earlier. An example of this wave, connected to the family "tree" shown below, is Aaron Hahn, rabbi of Tifereth Israel from 1874-1891.  He was born in 1847 in Czechoslovakia and had earned a Ph. D. at the University of Leipzig.


Simpson and wife




Lizzie Thorman Hays
(photo courtesy Nancy Loeb Jacobs)
1841 - born in Cleveland
Daughter of Simpson Thorman
1861-married Kaufman Hays
A founder of the Jewish Orphan Asylum, and maintained a long interest in it.
Member of Council of Jewish Women.
Four daughters: Frances (m. Moses Gries),
Belle (m. Martin Marks), Rolinda and Nettie
Died - 1907
Kaufman Hays, 1835-1916  ECH
(photo courtesy Nancy Loeb Jacobs)
1835 - born in Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany
1852 - came to Cleveland.
1860 - joined S Thorman in business
1861- married Lizzie Thorman
1867-71 president Tifereth Israel
Merchant and banker
1886 - cofounded Euclid Ave National Bank
1886 - Cleveland City Council
1916 - died. Buried in Mayfield Cemetery
Rolinda Hays Joseph, 1864-1935
(photo courtesy Bill Joseph)
1864 - born in Cleveland
Daughter of Lizzie Thorman & Kaufman Hays 1886- married Siegmund Joseph.
A member of the board of the old Cleveland General Hospital, now Huron Road Hospital. President of the Council of Jewish Women
First president of The Temple Womenís Association.
Children: Ralph, Edith and Doris.
Siegmund Joseph, 1859-1952
(photo 1914, courtesy Bill Joseph)
1859 - born in New York City
1872 - brought to Cleveland by his father
Moritz Joseph
Joined the firm of Koch, Goldsmith, Joseph & Co., which became the Joseph & Feiss Co.
1886- married Rolinda Hays
VP of Joseph & Feiss Co.
A member of the citizenís group which brought symphony orchestras here before the city had its own orchestra. Active in the Musical Arts Association and the Friends of the Orchestra. Patron of many students seeking a musical education.
Ralph S. Joseph, 1888-1958
(photo courtesy Bill Joseph),
1888- born in Cleveland to Siegmund and Rolinda Joseph.
Graduate of Adelbert College, Western Reserve University, Phi Beta Kappa.
1911 - married Ray Hahn
Director and Vice President of the Joseph & Feiss Co., clothing manufacturers.
A collector of rare books, patron of music and an accomplished pianist.
Ray Hahn Joseph, 1888-1937
(photo ca.1905, courtesy Bill Joseph)
1888- born in Cleveland to Aaron Hahn (rabbi of Tifereth Israel) and Theresa Hahn.
1911 - married Ralph Joseph.
Children: Karl, Martha and Mary.
For 15 years she was treasurer of the womenís committee of the Cleveland Orchestra. She also was chairman of the music committee of the Womenís City Club for years.

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