chapter  Chapter 2
18 Pages

A New Woman

ByElisabeth Israels Perry

This chapter presents a case study of Belle Lindner and Charles Henry. In March 1903, the Educational Alliance honored its volunteers and staff with a dinner-dance at the Manhattan Hotel. Eighty-five club leaders and teachers and ten staff members attended. Lindner and Henry Israels may have met or become better acquainted on this occasion. The ceremony over, Charles and Belle left for a hotel. Charles’s background differed from Belle’s. His Sephardic ancestors had been expelled from Spain in the late fifteenth century and then settled in Holland. Charles was educated at a private boarding school, the Irving Institute, in Tarrytown, New York. Like his uncle Josef, he showed an early gift for art. Charles and Lindner came from different ethnic and class backgrounds—Belle from shopkeeping Ashkenazim; Charles from merchant, banker, and professional Sephardim. But their shared social and civic commitments and intellectual interests bridged these gaps, which neither considered important in the first place.