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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

The Making of a Jewish Citizen

By Michael Feldberg


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http://www.jewishworldreview.com | ON APRIL 18, 1705, Queen Anne, "by the grace of G-d, Queen of England, Scotland France and Ireland, Defender of the Faith," issued a patent to "Luis Gomez who, although born across the sea, is hereby made our faithful subject and will ever be our licensed denizen." The patent promised that Gomez's heirs "are and will be licensed subjects, and he and his heirs are to be held reputed, treated and governed as our faithful subjects [as if they were] born within the Kingdom of England, and he and his heirs may hold, possess, use and enjoy all property and acquisitions of whatever kind or nature in whatever places and jurisdictions within our Kingdom of England."

With this proclamation, the Americanization of Luis Moses Gomez, one of the early Jewish settlers of New York, was officially recognized. Luis Moses Gomez was born in Spain in 1660 and lived in France and England before emigrating to New York City in 1703. In 1714, Gomez, now protected by the denization patent, purchased 6,000 acres of land near Newburgh, in Orange County New York and erected a fortress-like house and water mill on Jews Creek, where he and his sons conducted trade with local Indians, sawed lumber and ground grain for their neighbors.

Until his denization, Gomez was legally considered an alien with few rights and many civil disabilities. Perhaps his greatest handicap was his inability to own or bequeath property. To correct this problem, Gomez found it necessary to acquire-or more precisely to purchase-his personal denization patent.

Denization is a term no longer in common usage. Currently, under American law, a resident alien may own property and engage in business, and is, with some exceptions (such as voting in elections) equal to U. S. citizens in the eyes of the law. But eighteenth-century colonial Americans recognized a number of now non-existent legal statuses, each of which reduced the rights of their holders to less than full citizenship: indentured servitude, slavery and, of course, denization. Gomez's patent refers to him as a "licensed subject" of the crown, but not a full citizen.

An alien could acquire the right to own property in the English realm by one of two means: naturalization by a special act of Parliament in London or, more quickly, by the purchase from the crown of a denization patent. Luis Moses Gomez paid 57 pounds for his patent, more than $20,000 in today's currency. In 1715, to assure their right to inherit their father's estate, Gomez's four oldest sons purchased patents from Anne's successor, George I.

Gomez's denization carried specific responsibilities and limitations. His patent required that he pay "the lot and scot (customary taxes) in the same manner as our subjects do." At the same time "said Luis Gomez and his heirs shall pay and contribute the custom duties and subsidies for materials and merchandise, just as immigrants and aliens are always required to do." Under current American law, such double taxation would be considered unconstitutional.

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The patent did provide Gomez and his heirs with some civil liberties accorded true English citizens. It provided that Gomez "may peaceably, freely and fully have, possess, use and enjoy each and all franchises and privileges as any of our loyal citizens born within the kingdom without trouble or annoyance by ministers and Officials of the [Anglican] Faith." Queen Anne would not explicitly grant Gomez the right to Jewish worship but she could allow him the same rights possessed by Puritans, Quakers and Catholics-to observe religious practices without subsidy from the crown and to own property for religious purposes. Thus, in 1729, Gomez used his right to own land to purchase a plot in lower Manhattan that became the first cemetery of Congregation Shearith Israel, the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue.

The denization of Luis Moses Gomez and his four elder sons was an important step in the gradual civil acceptance of Jews in colonial American society. After 1715, Gomez had two more sons, both born in New York and both citizens by birth under English law. Luis Moses Gomez had invested in denization to assure that his sons would be citizens. His dream was accomplished.


On October 11, 1998, the Gomez Foundation for Mill House, unveiled the original denization patent at Mill House, the home of the Gomez family and the oldest extant Jewish homestead in North America. The Foundation still operates the original Gomez Mill House as a museum, With the generous help of the Michael Jesselson family of New York City, the Foundation acquired the document, inscribed in Latin, from the estate of a private collector. Visitors may view the document by visiting the house in Marlboro, NY, an hour north of New York City. Call 914-236-3126 for directions and hours.

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Michael Feldberg is the director of the American Jewish Historical Society. Comment by clicking here.


© 2004, Michael Feldberg