Unknown Photo of Rebbe Maharash’s Son Discovered

A recently discovered black and white photo is said to be of Reb Schneur Zalman Aron Schneersohn, known as the ‘Raza’, eldest son of the Rebbe Maharash and brother of the Rebbe Rashab.

By Anash.org reporter

A recently discovered black and white photo is said to be of Reb Schneur Zalman Aron Schneersohn, known as the ‘Raza’, eldest son of the Rebbe Maharash and older brother of the Rebbe Rashab.

The photo was discovered by shliach to Kostroma, Russia Rabbi Nissan Ruppo amongst the possession of descendants of the Rebbe Maharash’s daughter Rebbetzin Devorah Leah Ginsburg and her husband Reb Moshe Aryeh Leib Ginsburg.

The picture bears a striking resemblence to the widely-known picture of the Raza (see below), leading many to conclude that it is an authentic picture.

Sharp-eyed observers also noticed the similarities between the above photo and the known photo of Reb Moshe Aryeh Leib Ginsburg (see below), and it seems they were likely taken around the same time and in the same location.

Three years ago, a photo was discovered bearing the inscription “Rabbi Shalom DovBer Schnnersohn, 1908.” That discovery created great excitment and debate among Chabad Chassidim and lovers of Jewish history.

Experts noted similarities between that photo and the known photo of the Rebbe Rashab taken 13 years later, shortly before his passing. Others disputed the claim suggesting it might be a close relative. That photo still remains unverified, and its authenticity still remains in question.

The Raza was born on the 19 of Tammuz, 5618/1858, he was named after the Alter Rebbe, as well as his zeide Reb Aron Aleksandrov of Shklov, father of Rebbetzin Rivka and son-in-law of the Mitteler Rebbe.

The Tzemach Tzedek had the custom, that at the bris of his grandsons, he would give them an acronym for their names. He was nicknamed Raza by the Tzemach Tzedek and subsequently so-referred to by Chassidim.

After the passing of the Rebbe Maharash, the Raza declined to accept the leadership of chassidim, choosing rather to engage in business and help others. The Rebbe Rashab refused to accept the nesius of chassidim as long as his older brother lived in Lubavitch, which happened in 5654/1894, when Raza left to the neighboring big city of Vitebsk.

What do you think? is this the Raza? Let us know in the comments, please.

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  1. Looks very alike.

    Is the Raza”a and Reb Moshe Aryeh Leib standing on the same porch? The door and walk in the background looks very similar…

  2. The chair RMLG is sitting is on (Tallis/Tefillin) the side of RAZA. The door is the same as well. They both lived in Vitebsk and presumably were photographed at the same time. For what reason is unknown.

  3. No doubt it’s the same place, Reb Moshe Aryeh Leib is sitting on the same chair that the raza is next to in the picture…
    And the Raza is wearing the same style hat in both pictures…

  4. Interesting picture I see that his mustache is thicker than the younger picture I guess he was older.
    A regular jacket that buttons left over right not right over left you can see from the buttons.

  5. Another thing to notice is that there is a Russian Newspaper (looks like Andizhanskaia pravda, but does that make sense?) on the chair near the Raza, which fits with what we know about him that he would read newspapers in several languages etc.

  6. Andizhanskaya Pravda was founded in july 1916, and it was first called by this name in 1954. It isn’t in this picture, an it would be appreciated if a higher quality scan were released.

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