Brothers Edward Jonas (Union Soldier) and Charles H. Jonas (Confederate Soldier). Collection of Wendy Wells, and Collection of the American Jewish Historical Society.
“Nowhere in American—certainly not the antebellum North—had Jews been accorded such an opportunity to be complete equals as in the old South.” (Rosen, The Jewish Confederates) Jews accepted southern mores and customs, and white Christian southerners accepted Jews. Slavery played an unacknowledged role in the acceptance of Jews in the South. The Jews were perceived as white and, therefore, gained higher social and political status in the South than in the North. Prior to the Civil War, the northern states were not as hospitable to Jews as the South. In fact, when the South seceded, the Boston Evening Transcript, a publication edited by abolitionists, blamed secession on southern Jews.