Chicago Tribune spotlights Admiral resident’s ‘Jewish valentines’ collection

Feb. 17, 2020—The mystery of the Jewish valentines began in the mid-1970s for Bindy Bitterman and her husband, Richard. That’s when they found one of the curious cards while on an antiquing tour of New England. It was a “hybrid of a familiar Jewish New Year’s card and a card designed for a day of romance named after a Christian saint.”

In her Valentine’s Day article in the Chicago Tribune, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Mary Schmich described the card as “three-dimensional, the kind now called a pop-up card, and at its front was the scene of a boy with a Torah in what looked like the depiction of a bar mitzvah. The card said, ‘Happy New Year’ in English and Hebrew.”

After her husband died in 2012, Bindy continued to run Eureka!, an antiques shop in Evanston, for several more years. Eventually, she decided it was time to move to The Admiral at the Lake. When clearing out her house in preparation for the move, Bindy asked a friend who was helping her what to do with her collection of Jewish valentines. Her friend suggested that she write a book, which she has done. The 38-page booklet is titled: “The Mystery of the Jewish New Year Valentines.”