Beth Ahabah Museum and Archives
||1109 West Franklin Street
Richmond, VA 23220
||Jim Schuyler, Director
|Hours of Service:
|Sunday through Thursday
||10:00 a.m.--3:00 p.m.
|And by appointment
|Open to the public:
There are limited reference and photocopy services.
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- Reference Policy:
- Telephone and mail reference questions are accepted from both
the general public and other institutions.
- Borrowing Privileges:
- Not a lending institution with the exception of loans to other
institutions for exhibits.
- Background Note:
- Founded in 1841, Beth Ahabah is the oldest Jewish congregation
in Virginia. The "mother" congregation to Beth Ahabah was the
Beth Shalom congregation founded in 1789. The two congregations
were merged in 1898. All holdings at Beth Ahabah are essentially
Jewish in nature but relate primarily to the Richmond Jewish experience.
- Books and monographs:
- Approximately 100 books relating to the Jewish religion with
publication dates from the 1780s to the present. The collection
includes books on Jewish religion, culture, art, and history.
Collections relating to history deal particularly with history
of the Jewish community in Richmond and Virginia. Highlights include
prayer books and hymnals as well as several early texts relating
to the formation of Reform Judaism in America.
- Periodicals and newspapers:
- One journal subscription: American Jewish Historical
Society, 1950-1990. This journal covers the history, culture,
and religion of Jews in America.
- Archives, manuscripts, correspondence, and oral histories:
- Congregational records for Beth Shalom and Beth Ahabah congregations;
records of Jewish communal and fraternal organizations in Richmond;
genealogies of families, most with Beth Ahabah connections; public
and private records, and manuscripts relating to Jewish families
and people in Richmond, 1745 to present. These include scrapbooks,
collections of religious articles, memorabilia, speeches, newspaper
clippings, and awards. There are also 20 oral histories and a
small World War II collection. There is a card file by subject,
individuals, and institutions for this collection.
- Paintings, photographs, slides, and prints:
- The collection has portraits of religious leaders, photographs
of temple architecture and stained glass.
- Databases, CD-ROMS, and other machine-readable sources:
- The Museum and Archives Trust has begun to accession information
in computer-readable form.
- Other holdings not listed above:
- The Beth Ahabah Museum and Archives Trust has a collection
of 300 Jewish religious objects. Some of these were used in synagogue
ceremonies. Others relate to Jewish home life.
Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945); Judaism; Judaism--Religious articles;
Judaism--Sacred books; Religious art; Religious biography; Worship;
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