Western Jewish Americana

Annual Report of Israel's Missionary Society of San Francisco, California, 1912

Israel's Missionary Society of San Francisco, founded circa 1910, was a women' s organization consisting of local Christian women interested in performing missionary work in the local Jewish population. The organization was founded by Jeanette Gedalius, who is described in the 1910 Annual Report of the American Bible Society as a "converted, consecrated Jewish worker" (175). Gedalius was born in Prussia, converted to Christianity at an early age, and immigrated to the United States.

Judeans records and photographs, 1908-1949

The Judeans was a Jewish young men's club founded in Oakland, California in 1908.

Collection consists of records, ephemera, and photographs of the Judeans dating from 1908 to 1949. Among the records are member rosters, articles of incorporation, and a few pieces of correspondence. Ephemera consists of a program for The Judeans First Grand Picnic and Ball in 1909 (at East Shore Park) and a program for The Judeans First Grand Entertainment and Dance at Armory Hall in 1908. The photographs are mostly group portraits and photos and date from circa 1910 through 1949.

Phillips (Fred) family papers and photographs, circa 1900-1970.

Fred Phillips was born in 1882 into the Wartelsky family, which immigrated to the United States from Russia around the turn of the century. Fred Phillips, who in 1904 went by the name Phillip Bottelsky, seems to have lived first with his father in Chicago. In 1905, Phillip Bottelsky enlisted in the United States Army (and served in Company G of the 26th Infantry). In 1906, he officially changed his name to Fred Phillips. By the 1910s, Phillips had relocated to San Francisco, where he lived with his wife, Ida (Benioff), and worked as a furrier with the Hudson Bay Fur Company.

Hashomer Hatzair records, 1938-1942

Hashomer Hatzair, initially founded in 1913 in Austria, is the oldest Zionist youth movement still in existence. Marxist-Zionist in its early history, the organization was inspired by the works and ideas of Baden-Powell and Ber Borohchov. After World War I, the movement spread to many nations as a scouting movement. The San Francisco chapter was organized in 1938 and remained in existence for ten years.

Grossman (Alice) papers, 1950-1979

Alice Grossman was born in 1909 to Louis and Ida Grossman. She had three sisters, Dora, Molly, and Anna. During World War II, Alice served in the U.S. Women's Armed Forces and after the war she found work as a secretary with the Israeli Embassy in Washington, D.C., where she remained for 30 years. She and her sisters Dora and Molly moved to San Francisco, where sister Anna was already living, in the 1970s. All the Grossman sisters were active members of the Balboa Group of the San Francisco Chapter of Hadassah and Congregation Ner Tamid.

Louis and Emma Blumenthal papers, 1911-1959

Louis H. and Emma (nee Loewy) Blumenthal played central roles in Jewish communal life in San Francisco during the middle of the twentieth century. Louis Blumenthal (1893-1959) served as executive director of the YMHA from 1924 until 1933 and then as co-founder (with Lloyd W. Dinkelspiel) and executive director of San Francisco's Jewish Community Center from 1933 until his death in 1959. Emma (Loewy) Blumenthal spent 39 years as associate director of the JCC. Before coming to San Francisco in 1924, Louis was executive director of the Portland, Oregon Jewish Center.


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