Moses Rischin (born 1925) is an American Jewish historian, author, lecturer, editor, and emeritus professor of history at San Francisco State University.[1][2] He coined the phrase new Mormon history in a 1969 article of the same name.[3] Rischin is from New York City.[citation needed] His undergraduate studies were at Brooklyn College.[4]Harvard University awarded him a PhD in 1957.[5] In addition to his professorship, he sits on the board for the Journal of American Ethnic History and on the council of the American Jewish History Society.[6][7] There is an annual lecture given in his honor at the Western Jewish History Center, where he is director.[8][9] There is a collection of historical essays published in Rischin's honor,[10] and a supporting character, Meyer Meyer in the 87th Precinct series, may have been partly modeled after him.[11]

Rischin is considered an authority on American ethnic and immigration history[12][13] and a pioneer in the field of American Jewish history.[14] Historian Selma Berrol, however, has challenged the minimal treatment Rischin has given to the tensions between earlier German Jews and later Russian Jews in America.[15]

During the Monica Lewinsky scandal, Rischin was a signatory of "Historians in Defense of the Constitution" wherein 400 historians criticized efforts to impeach President Bill Clinton.[16][17]


Articles and essays

  • "The New Mormon History", The American West 6, March 1969, 49.
  • "The Jewish Experience in America: A View from the West"
  • Foreword to California Jews (2003) Brandeis University Press