ROCKER, SAMUEL (Feb. 1864-18 March 1936) founded and served as editor in chief of Die YIDDISHE VELT (the Jewish World). He also contributed to other papers and was a correspondent for the Jewish Daily News of New York. Rocker was born in Galicia (Austria) to Ephraim Fishel and Faigela Rocker. He studied for the rabbinate at Talmudic College in Lisko, Hungary, before coming to the United States in 1891. He first settled in Bridgeport, CT, then came to Cleveland where he began the city's first Yiddish weekly, the Jewish Star, from a small print shop. He next printed the Jewish Banner, part Yiddish and part English. In 1908 he founded the Yiddishe Tegliche Presse (Jewish Daily Press), the Midwest's only such paper. In 1913 Rocker consolidated the Jewish World and the Jewish Daily Press, creating the new Jewish World. According to one speech in his honor, Rocker mediated between Orthodox and Reform Judaism and advocated Zionism in his publications. Rocker, a director of the Council Educational Alliance, participated in the founding and/or expansion of institutions such as MT. SINAI MEDICAL CENTER, the HEBREW FREE LOAN ASSOCIATION, and CLEVELAND HEBREW SCHOOLS.
After a previous marriage, Rocker married Hannah Friedman in 1890. They lived in CLEVELAND HEIGHTS with their children, Henry A., Phillip, Leo, Myrtle (Mrs. Stephen G.) Newman, Rose (Mrs. Morris) Rapport, and Mollie (Mrs. David) Schonberg. Rocker is buried in the ANSHE EMETH Cemetery in WARRENSVILLE HEIGHTS.