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Daily independent Yiddish newspaper. Frimorgn (Morning) was a nationally oriented, democratic newspaper issued in Riga from 17 January 1926 until 15 May 1934. The paper was founded by a group of employees who had left the Riga newspaper Dos folk (The Folk), who used the facilities of the publishing group of the popular Riga Russian-language newspaper Segodnia (Today). The paper initially enjoyed financial support from a number of Jewish public figures.

The journalists Tsevi Gorfinkel and Mark Razumny, among others, were formally registered as Frimorgn’s editors. In practice, however, one of the publishers, Ya‘akov Brahms, was editor in chief until Sha’ul Yitsḥak Stupnitski, a journalist from Poland, took over in February 1926. On 12 July 1926, Frimorgn merged with its competitor, Dos folk, and the editing gradually passed into the hands of the politically active Ya‘akov Ze’ev Latzky-Bertholdi (of the Folkspartey) and Ya‘akov Helman (of Tse‘ire Tsiyon). They advocated the modernization of Jewish social life, national cultural autonomy, and the Zionist movement, while seeking to combat antisemitism and discrimination against minorities. Frimorgn had a wide readership but did not escape charges of elitism.

Having a firm economic base and its own printing plant, Frimorgn strove to become the main Jewish publication for Jews of the Baltic region. Thus from July 1926 some of its material was also published in Di idishe shtime (The Jewish Voice) in Kovno (Kaunas). Frimorgn relied on a network of correspondents in the provinces and abroad and had as writers leading Jewish literary figures and publicists such as Simon Dubnow, Shmuel Niger, Avrom Reyzen, and Yoysef Opatoshu.

In principle, Frimorgn was nonpartisan, but a number of party organs were published under its aegis: among them Der ruf (The Call [Zionist socialist]), Dos yidishe folk (The Jewish People [General Zionists]), Arbayter shtimme (Worker’s Voice [Bund]), and the late-day newspaper, Batog (Afternoon).

In April 1933, Frimorgn called for a boycott of Nazi Germany. The authorities closed down the newspaper after the right-wing, authoritarian coup of Kārlis Ulmanis on 15 May 1934. In 1936, the publishers made an unsuccessful attempt to revive Frimorgn in Kovno.

Suggested Reading

Gershon Movshovitsh (M. Gerts), 25 yor yidishe prese in Letland (Riga, 1933), pp. 54–59; Eliahu Porat, “Di yidishe prese in Letland,” in Di yidishe prese vos iz geven, ed. Dovid Flinker, Mordekhai Tsanin, and Sholem Rozenfeld, pp. 481–487 (Tel Aviv, 1975).



Translated from Russian by I. Michael Aronson