Jews of the Wild West
Wednesday, June 7, 2023 at 8 p.m. on KPBS 2 / Not available in the PBS App
Western Jewish pioneers, those of the silver screen and real life, are a largely forgotten chapter in U.S. History. And yet, they played a definitive role shaping the expansion of the United States. The wagon trains that moved westward with Jewish families traveled for the same reason as many settlers: opportunity.
Continuous cycles of anti-Jewish oppression, deadly violence and forced poverty in Europe forced over two million Jewish refugees to seek out a better life in America. The antisemitism and tenements found in New York City, however, did not offer the respite many Jews were seeking. By 1912, it is estimated that more than 100,000 Jews had migrated to the Wild West to put down roots.
Today, they epitomize the important legacy of immigration in America. Through on-camera interviews, compelling footage, and historical photographs, "Jews Of The Wild West" tells a positive immigration story and highlights the dynamic contributions Jewish Americans made to shaping the Western United States.
This film is not available to stream with the PBS App. It is available to purchase via Amazon Video.
"Jews of the Wild West" is on Facebook and Instagram
“Jews of the Wild West” is a feature length documentary. The independent not-for-profit film is produced by Electric Yolk Media and directed by award-winning filmmaker Amanda Kinsey. Through on-camera interviews, archival footage and photographs, the film preserves this dynamic chapter of Jewish history and the contributions made to shaping the United States. The film premiered at the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival in February 2022.
The film is funded through individual donors, grants and crowdsourcing. All donations are made through our fiscal sponsor the Colorado Forum Fund and any profits made by the film's distribution will be donated to the Rose Community Foundation.