Wednesday, 6 Tammuz, 5781
  |  June 16, 2021

Historic Photo Discovered: Is This the Rebbe Rashab?

An unknown black and white photo was discovered with the writing "Rebbe Sholom DovBer Schneersohn, 5668." Chabad historian Rabbi Berel Levine says there are similarities between it and the famous one of the Rebbe Rashab but recommended using another method to verify it. Full Story

Overt Blessings for Covert Operatives

Next Story »

Ukraine President Gives His Ceremony Seats to Holocaust Survivors

Notify of
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
January 23, 2020 10:11 am

It looks like the picture was taken in front of a backdrop

Says "Moscow" on the back
Reply to  Moscow?
January 23, 2020 10:50 am

Maybe they did use a backdrop. But the back of the photo does say “Moscow” (MOCKBA, in Cyrillic letters) and the name of the studio.

Exactly my thougth
Reply to  Moscow?
January 23, 2020 11:07 am

And, just because it was developed in Moscow does not mean it was taken there. highly doubt they had too many picture development places in the smaller cities.

“Rabbi Levine did add, however, about the fur-lined coat worn in the photo: “Although in Iyar (May), they apparently did not need such a coat…”

Again this could have been taken somewhere else and in the winter.

Reply to  Exactly my thougth
January 23, 2020 3:24 pm

It says in Russian that they keep films for future developing and enlargement orders. Maybe he brought film to them to develop. Also they may have overlaid on Moscow backgrounds.

Received via WA
January 23, 2020 11:17 am

מנהל ספריית אגו”ח העולמית, הרב שלום דובער לוין, אומר לראשונה ל-COL: “יש דמיון רב. אין ספק שעל ידי תוכנות מיחשוב אפשר לברר בבירור אם שתי התמונות הן של אותו אדם”. עוד מוסיף הרב לוין לאתר COL: “האדמו”ר היה במוסקבא בשנת תרס”ח רק פעם אחת בחודש אייר (כך על פי הפספורט שלו, ועל פי מכתביו). הוא נסע לשם לשבועיים לגיוס כספים עבור תומכי תמימים. ואולי התמונה היתה עבור אחד מהנגידים התורמים. “אמנם בחודש אייר (מאי) לכאורה לא היו זקוקים למעיל כזה. ובכל אופן בהכרח למסור לבירור אצל מומחים על ידי תוכנת מיחשוב”.  על גב התמונה הלא ידועה עד כה נכתב: “רבי שלום דב בער שניאורסון,… Read more »

January 23, 2020 11:19 am

Eyes are not similar

Not the same person!
January 23, 2020 12:01 pm
January 23, 2020 12:09 pm

this new picture seems to be of someone with light colored eyes vs the the old one which is clearly brown eyes

Hmmm idk
January 23, 2020 12:38 pm

They don’t have the same ears or eyes…

The Rebbe Rashab's First Cousin
January 23, 2020 12:51 pm

The Rebbe Rashab had a first cousin who was a Rebbe himself with the exact same name.
He was the son of the Mahril son of the Tzemach Tzedek.

its most probably him, as they lived in the same time.

Reply to  The Rebbe Rashab's First Cousin
January 23, 2020 2:08 pm


Great observation but...
Reply to  The Rebbe Rashab's First Cousin
January 23, 2020 6:43 pm

The Rebbe Rashab’s cousin would have been 74 years old in 1908. The person in this photo is obviously not 74 years old

January 23, 2020 12:53 pm

As an older resident of CH. from early on in my youth there was always talk (perhaps only in theory) There is another photo. For me personally this is definitely a momentous occasion finding this other photo. If it is actually the Rebbe RaSha”B.

Especially lekovod the upcoming 100th Yortzeit of the Rebbe RaSha”B.

Indeed a momentous occasion.

It's not just a rumour
Reply to  Ch’er
January 23, 2020 4:56 pm

The Friediker Rebbe said that once by Tashlich goyim took a photo of his father from a boat on the river

Reply to  It's not just a rumour
January 24, 2020 3:07 am

There were tall bochurim surrounding the Rebbe Rashab that time, so not this new picture

January 23, 2020 1:25 pm

Its possible that whoever was in possession of this picture AND the
Rebbe’s picture put the Rebbe’s name on the wrong picture. More information is needed to reach any conclusions. The picture does not resemble the Rebbe Rashab.

Reply to  MAYBE
January 23, 2020 3:01 pm

Respectfully I grant your reply accordingly.
However. Remember the Rebbe Rashab was 59 when he passed away. The new alleged photo was 12 years earlier. The Rebbe Rashab wasn’t well in 1920. Please consider it. Illness can make major differences on a persons face,,,, Vi’dal Looking forward to the results in time for the 100th on 2 of Nissan
See and compare the 2 photos we have of the Rebbe’s father which is only a 5 year difference….
of course as Levin says we need to absolutely confirm the 2 photos.

i dont think so
January 23, 2020 1:51 pm

1) the left ear seam different in both pictures.
2) the left side of the beard was fuller and a bit longer. in this new picture it seems that the right side is fuller.

Reply to  i dont think so
January 24, 2020 3:07 am

In those days it could be that for whatever reason the image was flipped length wise, so the right and left side cannot be determined

Artist's recommendation
January 23, 2020 2:13 pm

As someone who has much training and experience in portrait drawing and painting I advise against judging from what is presented here on-line. My recommendation is that the two photographs be examinined by expert portait and fornsic artists and the results compared. A photographic historian’s opionion could also be valuable. Computer software might be somewhat helpul but a trained human eye is superior.
Hatzlacha and yashir koach to Rabbi Levine for your work in preserving and presentintinng our authentic history.

not the same
January 23, 2020 2:40 pm

the rebbetzin said that the rebbe rashab had sharp eyes not seen in this picture

Possible forgery?
January 23, 2020 2:42 pm

It looks like the name “Schneersohn” was added to the photograph at a later date.

Not sure
January 23, 2020 2:58 pm

The eyes look completely different structurally, different kind of eyelids.

New found photo
January 23, 2020 3:41 pm

The eyebrows in the new photo are clearly different from those in the known photo of the Rebbe Rashab

The eyes in the new photo are at best light brown or even hazel while those in the known photo of the Rebbe Rashab are what would be termed “black”.

The beard in the new photo is clearly not the same as the beard in the known photo of the Rebbe Rashab.

The doubt is frustrating.
January 23, 2020 4:43 pm

In the picture we know (that has been manually retouched in many parts), we still can see how the Previous Rebbe looks like his father. In this new picture, we cannot see any ressemblance to the Previous Rebbe.
Also, the Rebbe Rashab was then 27 years old. In the picture he looks much older.
The only main thing that gives us a doubt, is what it written in the back. But it could be for a different reason why the Rebbe Rashab’s name is written there.

Reply to  The doubt is frustrating.
January 23, 2020 8:55 pm

I made a mistake, the Rebbe Rashab was then 47 years old.

January 23, 2020 5:17 pm

It is rumored that there exists a photo of the Rebbe Maharash. If so, does anyone know where it is, and why it was never published?

There is no picture . . .
Reply to  Maharash?
January 23, 2020 8:47 pm

. . . Of the Rebbe Maharash, but a drawing which is a copy made from a picture of The Rebbe Rayatz. Since the artist didn’t succeed to make a good copy, someone must have thought that since the Rebbe Rayatz looked like the Rebbe Maharash, this drawing must be of the Rebbe Maharash.

There actually is a photo of the Maharash
Reply to  There is no picture . . .
June 4, 2020 9:25 am

Heard directly from R’ Mendel Marozov obm when he was visiting in Rostov. He approached the Window sill in the Rebbetzin Shterna Saras room and said here there was a picture of the Rebbe Maharash, was very handsome and much resembled the Frierdiker Rebbe.

Reply to  Maharash?
January 24, 2020 3:09 am

It’s online look it up, theres a newspaper clipping somewhere online in Yiddish showing it

January 23, 2020 6:03 pm

I vote no. Not at all.

Real answer!
January 23, 2020 6:33 pm

I have to share with you that I got touched by this story. Although we don’t know for sure either way, it’s special to see the picture and reflect on how this very one image might be a new picture.. a new world.. a new way.. to see a Jewish leader. All the comments that were very quick and sharp to refuse the comparison and conclude it’s not The Rebbe, We all can’t know for sure, and all the excuses and proofs won’t change the fact that it may be The Rebbe. Unfortunately we don’t have anyone alive who physically… Read more »

אין זאת תמונתו של אדמו"ר הרש"ב כלל וכלל
January 23, 2020 6:34 pm

פשוט שזה לא נראה ככ”ק אדמו”ר הרש”ב כלל וכלל. לאדמו”ר הרש”ב הי’ בן דוד ר’ שלום דובער מרצ’יצה הנקרא דער רעטשיצער, אולי זה הוא. רק שזה בטח לא כ”ק אדמו”ר הרש”ב.

January 23, 2020 7:12 pm

Is the Rebbe Rashab right-handed or left-handed? From the passport photo, with all due respect, He appears left-handed. The photo just presented shows the satchel held in the right hand, while the left shoulder appears higher and slightly forward (possibly due to the hand in pocket).?

Left Handed
Reply to  Question?
January 23, 2020 9:30 pm

1) In Russia in those days,even people who were left handed trained themselves to use their right hands.
2) The picture could have been developed in mirror image

Not in a mirror image.
Reply to  Left Handed
January 24, 2020 7:38 am

The closing of the coat is from right to left, as it is supposed to be.

face swap
January 23, 2020 8:56 pm
look at the shape of his eye brows
January 23, 2020 11:59 pm

on the left eye , it goes from thin to thick, versed thick to thin. Similar differences on the right, one extends while the other picture shows curving. People’s eyebrows do not change.

January 25, 2020 9:23 pm

Both pictures have a bald spot in beard under the mouth.

So true!
Reply to  Beard
January 27, 2020 9:34 am

I went back to look and I saw that! But the eyes and eyebrows dont appear the same.

Rebbe Drive
January 26, 2020 1:10 pm

Rebbe Drive has a 2nd picture of the Rebbe Rashab that clearly looks like the Rebbe Rashab and looks real.



Coat in Moscow, Iyar
January 26, 2020 10:09 pm

Iyar 1908, corresponds (exactly) with May. The average daily temperature in Moscow in early May is 49°F. Mornings are generally even colder… So it’s theoretically possible that the weather in Moscow at that time of year would have demanded warm clothing, and certainly in the earlier part of the day…

Coat in Moscow, Iyar
January 26, 2020 11:13 pm

Iyar 1908, corresponds (exactly) with May. The average daily temperature in Moscow in early May is 49°F. Mornings are generally even colder…
it’s theoretically possible that the weather in Moscow at that time of year would have demanded warm clothing, and certainly in the earlier part of the day…

Iyar 1908
Reply to  Coat in Moscow, Iyar
June 21, 2020 9:56 pm

was averaged at 8.7 C
so some days were 30-36 F
some days were 36-46 F
definitely coat weather

where when by whom
January 31, 2020 4:58 am

was this picture found? It lookes somewhat real despite a few small changes… could it possibly be a painting?
Pls reply if you know answer

Reply to  where when by whom
June 21, 2020 9:54 pm

i have done an in depth investigation including photography investigators i can answer all the questions above, but cannot do so at this time i Evan went to Russian archives on many of the details i have come to the conclusion that it is 87-93 % match and i have a professional agree with me

October 20, 2020 5:49 pm

Id say its definitely him given the dates, both have the same nose that tapers as it goes up, small mouth, same big ears, right eye slightly more open than the left. The only changes are changes you would see with age. Very interesting to see what he looked like when he was so much younger!