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Robert Morgenthau and
Howard Rubenstein

Robert Morgenthau and
George Klein

Robert Morgenthau and
Ben Brafman

Hon. Hugh Carey and fiancée
Margaret Ahnert

To Build For The Future
Remember The Past

Story and Photos by Tim Boxer

HROUGHOUT his crime-busting career – nine years as a U.S. district attorney and now in his 28th year as Manhattan’s district attorney – you can imagine the kinds of names those whom he put away have called Robert Morgenthau.

At the seventh annual dinner of the Museum of Jewish Heritage, held at the Waldorf-Astoria, Temple Emanu-El’s Rabbi Ronald Sobel called him “one of the 36 righteous souls of his generation” for his efforts in founding the museum.

In the fall a new wing will open at the museum, which will bear Morgenthau’s name, according to dinner chairman Stephen E. Kaufman and museum director Dr. David G. Marwell.

When Mayor Ed Koch in 1982 got Morgenthau and real estate mogul George Klein to serve on a museum commission, they were surprised by the reluctance of some people to the building of a Holocaust museum.

As Morgenthau recalled, “People told us, why do you want to remember the past – concentrate on the future. But how can you build for the future if you don’t remember the past?”

The museum finally opened in 1997 as “our new home on the harbor.” The new Morgenthau Wing will have an exhibit of American Jews who fought in World War Two.

“We will not fail their memories,” Morgenthau said.

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