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Religion Collections in Libraries and Archives:
A Guide to Resources in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia

Table of Contents - Preface/Acknowledgements - Abbreviations
Lists of Entries: District of Columbia - Maryland - Virginia

Jewish Museum of Maryland

Address: 15 Lloyd Street
Baltimore, MD 21202
Telephone Number: (410) 732-6400
Fax Number: (410) 732-6451
Contact Persons: Jennifer Vess, Acting Archivist
Rachel Kassman, Photo Archivist
Dr. Deb Weiner, Family History Coordinator

Access Policies

Hours of Service:
Library: Tuesday -- Thursday 10:00 a.m. -- 4:00 p.m.
Museum: Tuesday -- Thursday, Sunday Noon -- 4:00 p.m.
Open to the public: By appointment only (Library)
Photocopying: Yes
Interlibrary loan: No

The archives, Anne Adalman Goodwin Library, and Robert L. Weinberg Family History Center are open to the public by appointment only. Some collections contain sensitive material and photocopying is allowed at the discretion of the Archivist. Archival material may be photocopied provided the material will not be damaged in the process. Staff will photocopy the requested materials. Cost is fifteen cents per page. There is a $5 per day research fee for those who are not members of the Museum.

Reference Policy:
Requests by telephone, mail, or email that can be researched within a reasonable amount of time are typically answered within one week by a member of the Archives staff. More extensive requests or requests made in writing are handled through the Jewish Museum of Maryland’s Research-By-Mail service. Contact the Family History Coordinator or the Archivist for more information about procedures and fees associated with the Research-By-Mail service.

Research requests from school children are handled gratis unless the research requires extensive photocopying or involved answers.

Researchers interested in purchasing museum quality reproductions of photographs or documents should contact the Photo Administrator.

Borrowing Privileges:
Not a lending institution.

Currently, the Jewish Museum of Maryland does not belong to any networks or consortia, nor any online bibliographic utility.

Background Note:
The Jewish Museum of Maryland was founded in 1960 as the Jewish Historical Society of Maryland, Inc. The Museum was initially organized to preserve and restore the Lloyd Street Synagogue, which was built in 1845 and is the third oldest extant synagogue in the United States. Once the synagogue's future was secure as an historic building, the Museum focused on collecting materials related to the history of the Jewish community in Baltimore and in Maryland and on establishing a library that reflected this focus. By the early 1980s, the Museum had outgrown its quarters in the basement of an apartment building on Clarks Lane in Baltimore and decided to build the existing museum, library, and office complex in the Jonestown section of East Baltimore, as well as acquiring and restoring another 19th-century building, the B'nai Israel Synagogue. The Jewish Historical Society of Maryland opened its three-building complex in October 1987. In December 1992, the Society received accreditation from the American Association of Museums. The society changed its name in April 1997 to the Jewish Museum of Maryland.
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Description of Collections

Books and monographs:
The Library of the Jewish Museum of Maryland contains approximately 2,500 book titles, which take up approximately 200 linear feet. Titles relate to general works on Jewish history, works by or about Maryland Jews and Jewish institutions, over 100 Yizkor (memorial) books, and Jewish genealogy books. Also, a rare book collection of approximately 300 works related to Maryland Jewry, which includes editions written by rabbis in the mid-nineteenth century, histories of the Baltimore Jewish community, histories of some Baltimore synagogues, Jewish social registers at the turn of the century, and books which are out of print and unique to the Jewish community at large as well as in Maryland.

Periodicals and newspapers:
The Museum subscribes to a variety of periodicals and newspapers, and the archives contain several partial and complete collections of defunct periodicals and newspapers. Active subscriptions include four quarterly magazines, newsletters from Jewish genealogy societies nationwide and worldwide, a current local Jewish newspaper, a local Russian Jewish weekly, and a local Jewish family monthly magazine. See also the microform section listed below for additional periodicals/newspapers. The collection includes:
  • American Jewish Archives (1960-present; quarterly)
  • American Jewish Historic Quarterly (1963-present; quarterly)
  • AVOTAYNU (1985-present; quarterly)
  • Baltimore Jewish Times (1919-present; weekly newspaper)
  • History News (Jan.1980-present; bi-monthly magazine)
  • Maryland Historical Magazine (1973-present and a few scattered between 1960-1973; quarterly)
  • Museum News (1988-present; bi-monthly magazine)
  • Vestnik (August 1992-present; Russian Jewish bi-weekly magazine)
  • Western States Jewish Historical Quarterly (Oct.1968-present)
  • Where,What,When: Baltimore's Jewish Family Magazine (Feb.1991-present; monthly).

    Other periodical collections include:

  • American Jewish Year Book (1899-1985, with a few gaps)
  • Baltimore Beacon, 1947-1978 (bound issues, local weekly newspaper, now defunct)
  • Jewish Frontier, A Labor Zionist Journal (Dec. 1970-Mar. 1979, with several gaps; monthly)
  • Journal of Jewish Art (1978-1985)
  • Leo Baeck Institute Year Book (1957-1990)
  • National Jewish Monthly (Aug. 1979-Dec. 1983, with several gaps)
  • Sinai (Feb.1856-Jan. 1864, in German, in four bound volumes; newspaper edited by David Einhorn, Rabbi at Har Sinai Congregation).
  • Suburban News (1947; forerunner of Baltimore Beacon)

    The archives contain synagogue bulletins/newsletters, which are complete through the dates listed:

  • Adat Chaim (May 1994-present)
  • Anshe Emunah-Aitz Chaim (1963)
  • Baltimore Hebrew Congregation (1962-present)
  • Beth El (1962-present)
  • Beth Jacob (1961-present)
  • Beth Tfiloh (1963-present)
  • Bolton Hill (1989-present)
  • Chizuk Amuno (1961-present)
  • Har Sinai (1961-1968 and 1993-present)
  • Shaarei Zion (1961-1966)
  • Temple Emanuel(1963-1966 and 1968)
  • Temple Oheb Shalom (1961-present)
  • Beth Shalom in Frederick (recent ed.)

In addition, the archives contain individual bulletins from these and other synagogues from earlier time periods.

Archives, manuscripts, correspondence, and oral histories:
Archival collections measure approximately 750 linear feet. Major manuscript collections related to individuals include:
Friedenwald Family Papers (personal and medical papers, 1860-1935)
Henrietta Szold (diaries, correspondence, personal papers, and scrapbooks, 1875-1940)
Benjamin Levin (correspondence, 1895-1970)
Saul Bernstein Papers
Joseph J. Schwartz Papers
Lee L. Dopkin
Benjamin Katzner
Max Heppner (Holocaust survivor from Holland)
Henry Stein (advocate of the Yiddish language)
Senator Rosalie Abrams (Maryland Dept. of Aging; papers, videos, and tapes)
Mansbach Family
Reuben Kramer (sculptor)
Beser Family (Jacob, Rose Lutzky, Nicholas, and Sylvia, 1900-1945)
Aaron and Lillie Straus (Camp Louise and Camp Airy)
Isadore Jachman (World War II serviceman posthumously awarded Medal of Honor)
Stephen Laufer Papers
Dr. Jacob Hollander Papers
Helen J. Kraus Family Papers
Louis J. Fox Papers
Milton Altfeld Papers
Samuel S. Strouse Papers
Jacob Fisher Collection
Samuel H. Wachter Collection
Dr. Herman Seidel Papers
Naiman Family Papers
Lucille Liberles Collection
Philip B. Perlman Papers
Leonard Weinberg Scrapbooks
Henry L. Cohen
Zurndorfer Family Papers
Dr. Louis L. Kaplan (Dean at Baltimore Hebrew College)
Max Rubin (poetry)
Lena Barber (midwife records, 1892-1928)
Rosa Fineberg (midwife records, 1895-1919)
Kate Coplan, Enoch Pratt Free Library
Jack Levin
Rose Zetzer
Lyn P. Meyerhoff, philanthropist & political activist
Lester Levy Family Papers
Rose Beser
Florence Rogers

The collections of records and personal papers of rabbis include:
Maurice Fluegel, Rabbi at Baltimore Hebrew Congregation (1881-1884)
Rev. Dr. Henry Hochheimer, Rabbi at Eden Street Synagogue (marriage records from 1850-1900)
Morris Leiberman, Rabbi at Baltimore Hebrew Congregation
Rabbi William Rosenau Papers, Rabbi at Temple Oheb Shalom (1892-1940)
Abraham Shusterman, Rabbi at Har Sinai
Gedaliah Silverstone, Rabbi of Washington, D.C.
Benjamin Szold, Rabbi at Temple Oheb Shalom (1859-1892)

The archives contain synagogue records and other related materials of the following congregations (all located in Baltimore unless otherwise noted):
Adas B'nai Israel
Adath B'nai Israel (1920-1938)
Anshe Beth Jacob
Baltimore Hebrew Congregation
Beth Hamedrosh Hagodol
Beth Jacob
Beth Jacob (Cumberland, MD)
Beth Isaac Adath Israel Congregation
Beth Israel/Mikro Kodesh (merged congregation)
Beth Sholom (Frederick, MD; 1920-1988)
B'nai Israel
Chizuk Amuno Congregation
Downtown Hebrew Congregation
Fells Point Hebrew Friendship Congregation
Har-Brook Hebrew Congregation (1952-1968) Har Sinai
Har Zion
Knesseth Israel Anshe Kolk Wolyn
Liberty JewishCenter
Lubawitz Nusach Ari
Mikro Kodesh
Ohr Knesseth Israel Anshe Sphard
Petach Tikvah
Rodfe Tzedek Sisterhood
Shaarei Tfiloh
Shomrei Hisuit Adas (1910)
ShomreiMishmeres Hakodesh
Temple B'nai Sholom
Temple Oheb Shalom
Tifereth Israel
Winands Road Synogogue

There are also Pinkas (register) books from the following synagogues:
Ahavas Achim (1924)
Aitz Chaim
Anshei Kalik V'Anshei Volin (1906-1950)
Anshei Kalik V'Anshei Volin Ladies' Auxiliary (1929)
Knesseth Israel Anshe Sphard (1928)
Lubawitz Nusach Ari
Mishkan Israel (1919-1923)
Ohel Yaacov
Shaarei Zion (1919-1925)
Shomrei Hadath

The Chevra Kadisha (Burial Society) books include: Anshe Sphard (1918); Anshe Kalik V'Anshei Volin (1940); B'nai Israel (1898); Rodfe Tzedek (1911); Chevra T'hillim Book of B'nai Israel Congregation.

Business records of Jewish establishments in the J.M.M. collection include:
Askin Brothers Company
Baltimore Bargain House (Jacob Epstein)
S. Halle & Sons, Inc. (1917-1938)
Simon Harris Company
Isaac Benesh Company
Isaac Hamburger & Sons Hochschild Kohn Company
Hutzler Bros.
Louis Marcus Company
Moses Morris Company
Max Rubin (Strong-Wear Pants, etc.)
Wiesenfeld (account books)

Organizational records include:
American Jewish Congress
American Jewish Relief Committee
American Jewish War Relief
Associated Jewish Charities (minute books, 1921-1965)
Baltimore Council of Jewish Women
Baltimore Hebrew College
Baltimore Jewish Council (1950s-1960s)
Baltimore Talmud Torah
Beacon Chapter of the Eastern Star
B'nai Abraham & Yehuda Laib Family Society
B'nai Brith - Jedidiah Lodge
B'nai Brith - Menorah Lodge
Board of Jewish Education
Hadassah - Baltimore Chapter
Hebrew Benevolent Society (1877-1901)
Hebrew Free Loan Association
Hebrew Friendly Inn
Hebrew Immigrant Aid Service (Records of immigration, 1911-1955; records of indemnification, 1946-present; search/inquiry recods, 1948-present)
Hebrew Institute of Baltimore
Hebrew Orphan Asylum (1878-1922)
Independent Order of B'rith Shalom
Jack Lewis Funeral Home Records (1924-1939, 1955-1965)
Jewish Armed Services Committee
Jewish Big Brothers League
Jewish Children's Society
Jewish Court of Arbitration
Jewish Educational Alliance
Jewish Family Service
Jewish Layman's Institute
Labor Zionist Organization of America, League Chapter
Levindale Hebrew Home & Infirmary
Louis Baer Foundation
Lutzker Verein
Mlynover Verein/Maryland Free Loan Society
National Council of Jewish Women, Baltimore Section
Workmen's Circle (Arbeiter Ring)
Yiddish Culture Society and Center

Other substantial archival collections include: Baltimore Art Center; Baltimore Talmud Torah (yearbooks); J. Charlow & Son Tailors (colored plates); Hippodrome Theater (1933-1950); Samson Margolis (calligrapher); Ner Israel Rabbinical College (anniversary booklets); Palestine Jewish Legion (1917-1919); J. Schoeneman Co. (posters); Yiddish Theater (over 200 handwritten plays); Rubin Guskin (Actors Guild and Yiddish Theater).

Among the Museum's cemetery records are:
Etting Cemetery (1799)
Hebrew Friendship (Oheb Israel Congregation)
Knesseth Israel Anshe Kolk Congregation
Tzemech Zedek Congregation
Workmen's Circle
Swinicher Woliner Benevolent Society
Petach Tikvah Congregation
United Hebrew Benevolent Society at East Avenue and Pulaski Avene (1934-1885)
Agudas Achim Anshe Sfard Congregation
Avhas Shalom
Beth Hamedrosh Hagodol Congregation
Progressive Radomer Russ Verein Lodge
Riga Kurlander Verein Lodge
Shaarei Zion Congregation
Beth Israel Cemetery, Salsbury, MD
Eastview Cemetery, Cumberland, MD

There is also a newly compiled list of Jewish War Veterans burial sites with dates.

The Oral History Collection contains over 600 audio tapes at present. Histories covered include those of holocaust survivors, immigrants, and other members of the Maryland Jewish community. Some of these oral histories have been transcribed, some have summaries; all are cataloged and cross-indexed by subject matter.

A full-time archivist oversees the library as well as the archives, manuscript, and oral history collections. The Family History Coordinator facilitates all genealogy and family history research requests. The Photo Administrator handles photo research requests and photo reproductions.

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The Museum's library contains microfilm reels of Baltimore City Directories (1752-1935); Federal census records for Baltimore (1900, 1910, 1920); newspapers, including the Jewish Comment (1895-1918), Jewish Chronicle (1875), Jewish Exponent (1887-1888), and Sinai (1856-1860); personal, Zionist, and medical correspondence of the Friedenwald family (1860-1940); Henrietta Szold correspondence; and scrapbooks of Jacob Epstein. The microfiche collection includes indices of gazetteers of Eastern Europe and Palestine, Jewish Genealogical Consolidated Surnames, and selected records from the U.S. Department of State related to Jewish citizens in Europe and Jerusalem. Also, AVOTAYNU'S "People Finder" is on microfiche, as is the index to the Russian Consular Records.

The Jewish Historical Society of Maryland Collection contains Baltimore city atlases for 1876, 1897, 1906, 1910, and Baltimore county atlases for 1877 and 1915. Other maps include the Geological Survey Map of Baltimore (ca. 1950); Topographical Map w/Baltimore Quadrant (1904); East Baltimore City Map (1863, 1873, 1876, 1896); geological survey and topographical maps of Baltimore (1966, 1974); photocopies of maps of Modern Palestine (ca. 1900), Shtetl maps (1848, 1892), Gemilath Chessed Kassas in Poland (1921-1939).

Videos and Sound Recordings:
The Museum has 35 16mm films in its collection. Most of these films are related to The Associated Jewish Charities and its constituent agencies such as Sinai Hospital, Board of Jewish Education, Mt. Pleasant Sanatorium, Camp Woodlands, Camp Milldale, and Levindale Home for the Aged and Infirm. Other films include: Isaac Davidson School activities and Seder (1949); B'nai Israel Congregation's 75th anniversary (1948); and a film for the Jewish Theological Seminary "Man...Word...Time" (1974); B'nai Abraham and Yehuda Leib Family Society (1939-1959, 1971; 11 films); Camp Wohelo (1970, 1971); Guardian Club 50th anniversary celebration at the Belvedere Hotel. Video tapes in the collection include: Shaivitz Furniture T.V. ads (3); United States Naval Academy "Days of Remembrance" (1989); Bais Yaacov School of Girls "Golden Memories" (n.d.).

Vertical files:
The vertical files in the Library are contained in three five-drawer standard metal lateral file cabinets and in one three-drawer lateral file wooden cabinet. The files number well over 1,000 entries and are divided into three categories: Biography, Subject (organizations, institutions, subject matter, etc.), and Synagogues. Material in these vertical files includes newspaper clippings, printed material (booklets, programs, historical information), copies of brief monographs by local Jewish historians - primarily on Maryland Jewry with a strong emphasis on the Baltimore Jewish community. Also, included in these files is general information on Jewish communities worldwide, current and historical.

Paintings, photographs, slides, and prints:
Photographs in the Museum's collection number approximately 100,000. Some of these photographs are large family collections of snapshots and formal portraits, some are collections related to Jewish businesses such as Hutzler Brothers department store, some are portraits of individuals, family groups, school classes, or synagogue confirmation classes, Bar Mitzvahs, and Bas Mitzvahs. The collection ranges from the mid-1800s to present. Cataloging is in progress and digitization is ongoing.

Databases, CD-ROMS, and other machine-readable resources:
The Jewish Museum of Maryland uses the Past Perfect museum database to catalog all archives, photos, and objects in the Museum collection. The database is available on-line at Cataloging and digitization efforts are in progress.

Other holdings not listed above:
The Museum maintains a collection of sheet music of approximately 3 linear feet, primarily early 20th century, in Yiddish and in English. Many titles reflect popular Yiddish folk songs in the early 20th century.

Subject Headings

Anti-Semitism; B'nai Brith--Maryland--Baltimore; Cabala; Cantors; Education and religion; Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945); Jewish art; Jewish artists; Jewish businesses; Jewish cemeteries; Jewish hospitals; Jewish institutions; Jewish music; Jewish organizations; Jews--Charities; Judaism--Ceremonial objects; Judaism--Liturgical objects; Judaism--Maryland--History; Rabbis; Sex and Judaism; Synagogue records; Synagogues; Talmud; Torah; Women and Judaism; World War II--Jewish participation; Yiddish folk songs; Zionism

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