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              Albert Einstein (1879-1955)    
     The greatest physicist of the 20th Century. His ideas revolutionized our entire understanding of the universe. Einstein changed the course of science as much as did Copernicus, Newton and Darwin. His fundamental contribution was the theory of relativity. This has many facets, but for most people the theory means that the faster you travel (approaching the speed of light), the more time slows down. He also was responsible for the formulation E=MC2, which describes the relationship between mass and energy. A little mass can give off a lot of energy. Among other things, this formula accounts for the tremendous explosive force given off by an atomic bomb.
     Einstein was born in Germany, spending his boyhood in Munich. His teachers thought him stupid, because Einstein did not observe the petty rules of school. The boy liked to daydream and soar into the realms of his thought-experiments. The budding genius, at the age of 14, taught himself integral calculus and analytic geometry. In 1894, Einstein’s family moved to Italy. Young Albert was sent to Switzerland to study. He liked it there and later became a Swiss citizen. He earned a Ph.D. in physics from the University of Zurich. His first job was as an inspector in the Swiss patent office. This paid the bills and gave him time to figure out the nature of the universe -- or as Einstein liked to put it, to figure out how God’s mind works.
     After his theories gained prominence, Einstein was appointed professor of theoretical physics at the University of Zurich and at the University of Prague. In 1913, he was appointed director of the Kaiser Wilhelm Physical Institute in Berlin. In 1921, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for his research of the photoelectric effect.
     Einstein, who was Jewish, fled anti-Semitic persecution in Germany just as Hitler came to power. On his arrival to the United States in 1933, Einstein had a job waiting for him. He was granted a lifetime professorship by the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton. He was naturalized in 1940 as a U.S. citizen -- his third citizenship.

Mischa Elman (1891-1967)
     Concert and recording violinist. His violin teacher in Russia persuaded the Czar to suspend the rule barring Jews from the Imperial Conservatory of St. Petersburg. For more than 50 years he made concert tours in the United States and other countries. Elman was born in Stalnoje, Russia. He became a U.S. citizen in 1928.




   "I know that what is impenetrable to us really exists, manifesting itself to us as the highest wisdom and the most radiant beauty, which our dull faculties can comprehend only in their most primitive forms -- this knowledge, this feeling, is at the center of all true religiousness. In this sense, and in this sense only, I belong to the ranks of the devoutly religious men."
      Albert Einstein