Lives in the Yiddish Theatre


Yisro'el Yitskhak Tsipershteyn


Born in 1875 in Beretshin, near Slonim, Poland.

In his younger years, T. was a badkhan, and also played Yiddish theatre for which he also wrote songs and couplets. Noakh Prilutski, in his book, "Yidishe folks-lider" (pp. 49-50), published T.'s "Three New Songs." In Chicago, in 1932, there was published T.'s "Dem rebin's khadoshim," a commercial propaganda song for a clothing business of Harry Handler, who had financially helped to discuss his ideas.

Meyer Zolotarov writes:

"From is childhood, he had a desire to make various play contraptions. Later his desire made him interesting in engineering, the construction of various machines, and the result also led to the invention of many machines, including the large "bow" airship, which is already almost all patented and some of which will soon be built.

Leading the conversation with the inventor, I found new things about him. I found that he possesses and extraordinary great ability to everything. He plays violin. He never studied any notes, but he plays every motif which he heard once being played, starting from "ragtime," and ended with opera. He also was an actor and had to give up the stage because his wife had forced him to. Y. Tsipershteyn also possessed  the ability to write. he wrote articles for many newspapers, but especially he excelled at writing couplets. His couples were More songs are being sung

in many theatres. Tsipershteyn also possessed a beautiful tenor voice, and with his singing he helped our various charitable events."

Zolotarov writes precisely about the entire construction of the related air ship, which at first was patented on 29 May 1917. The air ship was thus built, that it could go on water (in any case it could... drop down), like an ordinary ship. The inventor had quite a lot of difficulties, but in the end it was made for the cost of five-thousand dollars, a model, and the patent was issued. Among other inventions, Ts. also had a small machine which one could put in a flask of milk and, with the assistance of electricity or even without it, and became pure in the span in five minutes, as well he had a new invention in the automobile industry.

Dr. A. Margolis characterizes him this way:

"A bicycle in the air" ...The apparatus was already invented and documented by a Chicago Jew, and on 12 August 1925 the device was already invented and documented by a Chicago Jew, and the invention was patented by the federal patent office in Washington on the name of Mister Israel Tsiperstein. He is a remarkable person, the inventor ... As to a profession you could sum it up, he was a vest maker. He is quite an educated man, has not even attended a school, but Tsiperstein, the 'autodidact,' has an exceptional ability and energetic, young 'old man' ... Tsiperstein has never learned music or played the violin by himself and had with his wonderful hearing alone welcomed the 'note language.' The inventor has never seen any elementary drawing school, and alone began making images, impressive representations and paysages, with an instinct for rhythm and proportion. ... When in wartime he had created a model of "Triangle Airplane," which had gained much notice by the specialist, but just like very beginning inventor, Tsiperstein has worked further in his shop as a bicycle maker. ...Finally he finished making the device."

According to Zalmen Zylbercweig:

"In the beginning of the thirties, during my visit to Chicago, I met up with Ts. He already appeared like an old man, a hunchback, a darling, as a retired old actor, he checked into my memory. He gave me precise descriptions of his invention for which he had placed a great deal of hope, so far that by himself he had pledged himself to contribute $1,000 in cash for the 'Theatre Lexicon,' as soon as he will sell his invention. Like any other unrecognized inventor, he had spoken a lot about his inventions, but especially about the so-called 'Bicycle Airplane,' which had, it seems, llowed to start traveling on the ground like this bicycle, it began to lift up into the air from the same place, and flying and may be in an emergency, dropping off at sea and out there as a ship, understanding that he complained that many of his inventions have already been completed by him or in part, but regarding this invention that he finally patented, he was sure that it would become a real part of aviation, and that he would therefore become very rich.

Years past and he didn't hear about his invention, points out also that here the invention suffered a great disappointment, but it did not shed light, that Ts. was of the 'shell' type, and he would receive a proper education in the field to which he was attracted, he would have accomplished something."

On 6 August 1950 Ts. passed away in Chicago.

Sh.E. from Shachna Kaplan and Zalmen Zylbercweig

M.E. from Benjamin Katz.

  • Noakh Prilutski -- "Yidishe folks-lider," pp. 49-50.

  • Meir Zolotarov -- A groyse yidisher gaon, "Teglekhe yidishe prese," Chicago, 9, 11, 12 September 1921.

  • Dr. A. Margolin -- Yidisher vesten-makher in shikago erfinder fun nayer fli-mashin, "Kanader adler, " Montreal, 10 Feb. 1925.







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Adapted from the original Yiddish text found within the  "Lexicon of the Yiddish Theatre" by Zalmen Zylbercweig, Volume 6, page 4927.

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