Hanukkah commemorates the victory of the Maccabees, a band of Jewish freedom fighters in the year 165 B.C., and a miracle: One day’s supply of consecrated oil lasted for eight days, hence the menorah’s eight lights. Take a look at how South Florida has celebrated the Jewish Festival of Lights throughout the years.
1963, Miami Herald Staff: Hanukkah Lights. The first day of Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of Lights, begins today. The eight day festive holiday is celebrated with gifts, games, parties, and plays. Above, Steven Maland and Micahel Balogb, students at Beth David Religious School, act out the story of the ancient miracle of the flask of oil.
The legend goes that when the Hasmoneans overcame the Syrians and repaired the Temple they found there only one jug of oil bearing the seal of the high priest. It contained oil for only one day, but a miracle happened and the oil burned for eight days. And so the eight-day joyous festival of Hanukah with declared to be celebrate with songs of praise and thanksgiving. 12/9/1965, Eamon Kennedy/Miami Herald Staff: L to R at the table are Mrs. Orion Nesseler, Mrs. Jack J. Falk. Festive tables laden with candles, gifts and traditional foods will decorate Greater Miami homes Sunday as the South Florida Jewish community begin the observance of Chanukah, Festival of the Lights. The traditional way of decorating a Chanukah table was demonstrated bt Mrs. Jack J. Falk, right, at the recent Metropolitan Miami Flower Show. She's shown here explaining the significance of the Menorah (candelabrum to hold eight candles) to Mrs. Orion Nesseler. "One candle will be lit at sundown at the start of Chanukah, and one more progressively each night until all eight are lit, signifying the traditional eight days of the Festival," Mrs. Falk notes. "The Menorah is set in a decor of white mums and topped with six-sided Dredels or toy spinners, for the children to play with during this time of joy and festivity. The chocolate "money" and presents at each plate spell-out the gift-giving side of the festival." The food? Perhaps such traditional holiday fare as potato latkes with sour cream or apple sauce, served with wine. 11/30/1983, Bob East/Miami Herald Staff: Sarah Blank's kids are happy with Menorah (lit by daddy earlier) as it sands in special place near doorway - 10 girls, Chaya, Shterna, Miriam Leah, Nechama Dina, Brocha, Baila, Tat-Sheva, Shayna Esther, Adel, Fayga Rachel.
More from Flashback Miami