The 1st Mate and I have a favorite soap: Dr. Bronner's All-One liquid and bar soap. We buy it at Trader Joe's when we're in Errorzona, the US of A(nxiety). We've been using it for years (I discovered in the 60s) and, this morning, as I unwrapped a new bar of soap, decided to Google Dr. Bronner and see what there is about him online.
He migrated to the United States in 1929, dropping "Heil" from his name. As his father was Jewish, he pleaded with his parents to emigrate with him for fear of the then-ascendant Nazis, but they refused. His last contact with his parents was in the form of a postcard saying, "You were right. —Your loving father."
Bronner was the subject of a documentary film,"Dr. Bronner's Magic Soapbox." From the producers website:
"Dr. Emanuel Bronner was a master soapmaker, self-proclaimed rabbi, and, allegedly, Albert Einstein’s nephew.
In 1947, after escaping from a mental institution, he invented the formula for “Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap,” a peppermint-infused, all-natural, multi-purpose liquid that can be found today in every American health food store. On each bottle of his soap, he printed an ever-evolving set of teachings he called “The Moral ABC,” designed, in his words, “TO UNITE ALL MANKIND FREE!”
A human story about a socially responsible company, “Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soapbox” documents the complicated family legacy behind the counterculture’s favorite cleaning product — Bronner’s son, 68-year-old Ralph, endured over 15 orphanages and foster homes as a child, but despite difficult memories, is his father’s most ardent fan…"
From YouTube, the trailer for the documentary...
The film is available for rent on iTunes...