Cape Town, South Africa



The Life Story of Isaac Ochberg (1879 - 1937)

Authored by Bertha I Epstein

Edition: 2nd edition First printed 1974

'This Was A Man' is the life story of Isaac Ochberg (1878-1937) and was first published in 1974 by his daughter Bertha I Epstein. This is a 2014 reprint of the book slightly edited with an addendum added.

The rescue of 200 children, orphans of the Ukrainian pogroms (later know as Ochberg Orphans), is, without a doubt, one of the most glorious chapters in the life of Isaac Ochberg.

In 1921 Isaac (know as Daddy Ochberg to the children) brought these children out to South Africa, saving them from the horrors of 'The Pale of Settlement', and half were settled in Oranjia, The Cape Jewish Orphanage and half in Arcadia, The South African Jewish Orphanage in Johannesburg.

The book not only tells us of the rescue of these children, but also about Isaac's extraordinary business ventures and the many great works done by him, a once in a lifetime successful businessman and philanthropist.

"He never refused to support a worthy cause; on the contrary, his creed was that since he had been enabled to achieve success in his own enterprises, he had a moral duty to help those less fortunate."

Amongst his many bequests are two that stand out: The largest donation to the Jewish National Fund used to acquire a massive tract of land on which now stand two kibbutzim, Dalia and Galed, and a donation to the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

The book also follows up on the Ochberg Orphans:

In 1971 a Golden Jubilee Reunion of these children took place in Cape Town and in 2011 some 250 of the estimated 4,000 descendants of the children gathered in Israel at a two day ceremony at Kibbutz Dalia and Galed. This culminated in the dedication of the Ochberg Memorial Site overlooking an area that had been originally named the 'Isaac Ochberg Tract.'

This memorial site has now become a regular tourist attraction in Israel and a documentary, Ochberg's Orphans, and book, 'The Ochberg Orphans and the horrors from whence they came', now tell us more about Isaac Ochberg and The Ochberg Orphans.

Bennie Penzik, son of two Ochberg Orphans, formed the Isaac Ochberg Heritage Committee in Israel that raises awareness of Isaac Ochberg and his great deeds.

Bennie Penzik and David Solly Sandler (the compiler of the Ochberg Orphan book) jointly wrote the addendum of this book which tells us about resent happenings to keep alive the name of Isaac Ochberg.

Publication Date: Jan 25 2014 ISBN/EAN13: 0987106368 / 9780987106360

Page Count: 108
Binding Type: US Trade Paper Trim Size:6" x 9" Language: English Color: Black and White Related Categories: History / Jewish

Link to buy the book

For more information contact David Solly Sandler on 

About the author, David Solly Sandler, the compiler of the book mentioned above.

David was born in Johannesburg South Africa in 1952 and all his forebears originated in Lithuania. He spent most of his childhood, 1954-1969, in Arcadia (The South African Jewish Orphanage) from age three until 17, when he finished school. He served in the South African Defence Force and did Articles and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1976.

In 1979 he married and has two daughters Sarah and Esther both born in Australia . At the age of 28, in 1981, he left Johannesburg and has lived in Perth, Western Australia, ever since.

Since retiring in early 2007 he has compiled the following books.

100 Years of Arc Memories - published 2006
-This Arcadia Centenary book contains the memories of over 120 children of The South African Jewish Orphanage.

More Arc Memories - published 2008
- A follow-up of the Centenary book with the memories of more than 100 more children.

The Ochberg Orphans and the horrors from whence they came - published 2011
- The rescue in 1921 of 181 Jewish Orphans by Isaac Ochberg, the representative of the South African Jewish Community, from the horrors of the Pale of Settlement.

The Pinsker Orphans - published 2013
-The life and times of the children from the three Pinsk Jewish Orphanages in the 1920s.

This Was a Man -
- The life story of Isaac Ochberg