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The Autobiography of David Lelewer


Edited and Annotated by Nancy Lelewer

ISBN 978-1492802808




The Autobiography of David Lelewer is the life story of a self-educated, highly literate, financially struggling, first generation German Jewish furrier and hatter who immigrated to America in 1861. He had opinions on everyone and everything and his impressions of this country in the later half of the nineteenthcentury are fascinating.



Screenwriter, The Thomas Crown Affair, Bullet, and They Call Me Mr. Tibbs


David Lelewer was a well- read man, but it was a novel by a forty-year-old woman named Harriet Beecher Stowe that made the greatest impression on him. In 1855 at the age of twelve, six years before he immigrated to the United States, David Lelewer read Uncle Tom's Cabin and was horrified by the thought that a family could be split apart never to see each other again, that men, women, and children could be bought and sold like furniture. Family was sacred to this man who, raised in great poverty, made it his duty to honor his father and mother and to care for his sister and stepbrother. Family, he believed, was the backbone of life. David's great-granddaughter Nancy honors his memory with the publication of this captivating  autobiography.



author and former publisher



The Autobiography of David Lelewer is a history of nineteenth-century America through the eyes of a young immigrant. The struggles and the ups and downs of fortune are brought vividly life in this account. Whether times were good or bad, what shines through this book is a man whose ultimate success in business never made him hard nor blinded him to the humane values of his tradition. This is a heartwarming lift story of a real mensch with wonderful words of wisdom to his children, to whom the book was first addressed.



formerly with the BBC, currently correspondent for CBS and freelance writer


Buy the book here on Amazon


Last modified: 06/10/21