ELIASSOF, HERMAN (1849–1918), U.S. Reform rabbi. Eliassof was born in Russia, ordained in Germany, and immigrated to the United States in 1871. After serving for a year as rabbi of Congregation Rodef Shalom in Ogdensburg, n.y., he became the first rabbi of Temple Beth-El in Chicago, where he was also editor of The Occident, a local religious weekly, as well as the regional correspondent for the *American Israelite, the Anglo-Jewish weekly newspaper published in Cincinnati. For many years he served as principal of the Sabbath school of Kehillath Anshe Maarab and was a teacher in the Zion Congregation religious school. In the early 1890s, Eliassof was head of the Society in Aid of Russian Refugees, which assisted the many Jews who came to Chicago in the wake of the enforcement of the Russian *May Laws. Eliassof was the first scholar to write a history of the Jews of Illinois, which was published in a special issue of The Reform Advocate. He also wrote Hebrew poetry and was a frequent contributor on Jewish subjects to English, German, and Hebrew periodicals.
The Universal Jewish Encyclopedia (1969).
[Bezalel Gordon (2nd ed.)]