Western Jewish Archives


Arizona Jewish Historical Society Archives
122 E. Culver Street
Phoenix, AZ 85016
Tel: (602) 241-7870
Fax: (602) 264-9773
Email: azjhs@aol.com
Lawrence Bell, Ph.D., Executive Director
Email: lbell@azjhs.org
Jack Fradin, Archivist/Administrator
Email: jaxnice@aol.com
Website: www.azjhs.org
Finding Aid: www.azjhs.org/Online_Exhibits
Collection: More than 200 Linear Ft.

The Arizona Jewish Historical Society was founded in 1981 to preserve the rich history of Jews in Arizona. To that end, the society houses a large archival collection, including more than 50,000 documents, photographs, artifacts, and other memorabilia, as well as hundreds of oral and video history interviews. These materials are available to the public for research and educational purposes. Several large collections are available online via their website and the Arizona Memory Project.

The Bloom Southwest Jewish Archives
University of Arizona Library, Special Collections
University of Arizona Libraries
PO Box 210055
Tucson, AZ 85721-0055 
Tel: (520) 621-6423
Fax: (520) 621-2709
Email: LBRY-askspcoll@email.arizona.edu or prnteyes@email.arizona.edu
Stuart Glogoff
Email: stuartg@email.arizona.edu
Website: www.swja.arizona.edu
Finding Aid: www.swja.arizona.edu/content/university-arizona-library-manuscript-collection-finding-aids

The Bloom Southwest Jewish Archives at the University of Arizona Library is a research collection dedicated to collecting and recording the dramatic history of pioneer Jews in the Desert Southwest, covering Arizona, New Mexico, and West Texas. Founded in 1988, it currently maintains four online educational exhibits on Jewish Pioneers of the Southwest, historic Synagogues of the region and Southern California, the Southwestern U.S. Crypto-Jewish experience, and Oral Histories on Jews from the former Soviet Union. In addition, the Archives includes the following physical collections housed in the UA Library's Department of Special Collections:

Papers of David A. and Leona G. Bloom, ca. 1980 - 1995
4 Boxes, 3 Linear Ft., 4 Scrapbooks, 77 Names and Subjects, 8 Subject Fields.

Capin Family Business Records, 1895-1995
13 Boxes, Approx. 15 Linear Ft., 10 Names and Subjects, 10 Subject Fields.

Papers of Floyd S. Fierman, ca. 1850 - 1995 
7 Boxes, 8.5 Linear Ft., 377 Names and Subjects, 16 Subject Fields.

Arizona Reference Files, ca. 1850 - 1998
9 Boxes, 11 Linear Ft., 1219 Names and Subjects, 11 Subject Fields.

Bloom Southwest Jewish Archives Audiotapes Collection 1980s-1990s
47 Taped Programs (some programs consist of more than one cassette),
Approx. 1.5 Linear Ft., 47 Subjects, 8 Subject Fields.

Bloom Southwest Jewish Archives Photograph Collection, ca. 1850 - ca. 1995
7 Boxes, Approx. 2.8 Linear Ft., 245 Names and Subjects, 13 Subject Fields.

Bloom Southwest Jewish Archives Videocassettes, 1986 - [ongoing]
19 Video Tapes (program number 1 contains three tapes; tape number 17 contains two programs), 17 Total Subjects, 6 Subject Fields.

Fred Rochlin Papers
University of Arizona Library, Special Collections
PO Box 210055
Tucson, AZ 85721-0055
Tel: (520) 621-6423 
Fax: (520) 621-9733 
Erika Castaño, Digital Archivist, Special Collections
Tel: (520) 621-9763
Fax: (520) 621-2709
Email: castanoe@u.library.arizona.edu
Finding Aid:
Collection # MS401, 63.75 Linear Ft.

The Fred Rochlin Papers contain material relating to his research on the southwestern Jewish community. The collection includes photographs, historical books, and early picture postcards, in addition to abundant material relevant to the history of Jewish individuals, families, commercial operations, and communal institutions in Arizona, principally southern Arizona.


Harriet Rochlin Collection of Western Jewish History 
A1713 UCLA Charles E. Young Research Library Department of Special Collections
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575 
Tel: (310) 825-4988 
Fax: (310) 206-1864
Email: speccoll-paging@library.ucla.edu
Finding Aid: www.oac.cdlib.org/findaid/ark:/13030/kt9p3022wh 
Availability: Collection stored off-site at SRLF. Open for research. Advance notice required for access. Contact the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.
Collection #1689, 41 Linear Ft., 82 Boxes, 1 Oversize Box.

The collection consists of biographical information relating to Jewish individuals, families, businesses and organizations in the American Far West. It includes interviews, memoirs, oral histories, a hand-written book of business records, personal correspondence, newspaper and magazine articles, book excerpts, advertisements, professional listings, affidavits, notes, maps, brochures, photographs, and taped interviews. A 268-page inventory serves as a guide and can be found with the finding aid.
Harriet Rochlin started the collection with materials gathered in the 1960s and 1970s to write eleven articles on Jewish life in California, Arizona, and Sonora, Mexico. The collection grew significantly after she and her husband, Fred Rochlin, contracted in 1982 with Houghton Mifflin to write an illustrated social history, Pioneer Jews: A New Life in the Far West. She wrote the text; he created the three illustrated two-page spreads and collected images. Pioneer Jews was reissued in 2014 by The Authors Guild's BackinPrint.com/iUniverse.

Harriet Rochlin Collection of Photographs of Western Jewish Life
A1713 UCLA Charles E. Young Research Library Department of Special Collections
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575 
Tel: (310) 825-4988 

Fax: (310) 206-1864
Email: speccoll-paging@library.ucla.edu
Finding Aid: www.oac.cdlib.org/findaid/ark:/13030/kt1q2nc9vr
Collection #441: 2248 Photographs, 1623 Photocopies in 14 Boxes, 7 Linear Ft., and 36 Exhibition Photographs in 4 Oversize Boxes.

Harriet Rochlin began collecting Western Jewish photographs to illustrate the essays and articles she was writing on Jewish pioneering in the West and northern Mexico. The collection rapidly expanded after 1982 when she and her husband, Fred Rochlin, contracted with Houghton Mifflin to compose an illustrated social history, Pioneer Jews: A New Life in the Far West, a work spanning Jewish life in the Spanish, Mexican, and American Far West from 1571 to 1912. She is currently completing a documentary, social, and pictorial history titled A Mixed Chorus: Jewish Women in the American West 1849 to 1924.

Jewish Historical Society of San Diego Archives
Located in the Irving and Sylvia Snyder Reading Room, #363
and Special Collections & University Archives
Malcolm Love Library, San Diego State University
5500 Campanile Drive
San Diego, CA 92182
Tel: (619) 594-3399
Email: jewishstudiesreadroom@mail.sdsu.edu
Laurel Schwartz, Archivist & Curator
Tel: (619) 232-5888
Email: laurelschwartz@cox.net
Website: www.jewishstudies.sdsu.edu/archives.htm
Search Page: jhssandiego.pastperfect-online.com
Collections: 51.27 Linear Ft.

The JHSSD Archives was founded in 1999 by the Jewish Historical Society of San Diego in partnership with the Jewish Studies Department at San Diego State University and formally opened in 2000. As the repository for the papers of the local Jewish community, the Archives house both personal and communal materials from the mid-19th century to the 21st century, which are available to all researchers. Though the collections are comprised of material about the San Diego area, their substance embraces many disciplines, transcending local Jewish history. The collections, currently over eighty in number, are accessioned, processed, and maintained by the JHSSD and are transferred to the Special Collections and University Archives at SDSU as space demands. In order to browse the collection, go to the website listed above. Additional information on the collections can be accessed through the search page. To view the collections call (619) 232-5888 for an appointment.

The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life at the Bancroft Library
Western Jewish Americana Archives

The Bancroft Library
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, CA 94720-6000
Tel: Administration Office (510) 642-3781
Tel: Reference Desk (510) 642-6481
Fax: (510) 642-7589
Email: (General Inquiries): magnes@library.berkeley.edu
Email: (Research & Collections): magnesresearch@library.berkeley.edu
Website: www.magnes.org/collections/archives/western-jewish-americana
Collection: Approximately 2500 Linear Ft.

In 2010 the Judah L. Magnes Museum and the Western Jewish History Center became part of the Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley. The voluminous collection of Western Jewish Americana is now being processed for renewed public access. Researchers who wish to acquaint themselves with the holdings may browse the website noted above.

The holdings of the Western Jewish Americana Archives are unique, as they combine two fields of research that have often been investigated in separate ways: the history of the American Jewish experience and the history of California and the American West. These 500+ collections document the history of Jewish immigration and Jewish life in the Western United States (especially California) since the Gold Rush.

A description of each collection may be browsed by Creator name. Individuals and family creators are listed by last name (for example: Kahn, Julius or Lilienthal family). Institutional creators are listed by full name (for example: Eureka Benevolent Society or Jewish Council of 1933). Congregational records are listed under the proper name of the Congregation (for example: Emanu-El or Beth Israel). The collection guides (or finding aids) are in varying stages of completion. Some collections have fully realized finding aids and others only simple container lists.

The Orange County Jewish Historical Society Archive
Samueli Jewish Campus
Jewish Federation & Family Services
1 Federation Way, Suite 210
Irvine, CA 92603
Dalia Taft, Archivist
Tel: (949) 435-3484 ext. 167
Fax: (949) 435-3485
Email: History@JFFS.org
Website: www.jewishorangecounty.org/about/who-we-are/historical-society

The archives consist of both personal and community materials relating to the history of the Jewish community of Orange County, dating back to 1858. They are in the process of being organized and digitized. The archives are currently unavailable to the public but may be accessed by contacting the archivist.

Western States Jewish History Archive, 1800-2004
A1713 Charles E. Young Research Library Department of Special Collections
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575 
Tel: (310) 825-4988
Fax: (310) 206-1864
Email: spec-coll@library.ucla.edu
David Hirsch, Jewish Studies Librarian
Tel: (310) 825-2930
Email: dhirsch@library.ucla.edu
Finding Aid: www.oac.cdlib.org/findaid/ark:/13030/kt796nf323
Availability: Collection stored off-site at SRLF. Open for research. Advance notice required for access. Contact the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information
Collection #1739, 93 Linear Ft., 186 Boxes.

The Western States Jewish History Archive contains the compiled research and activities of the Society's two founders, Dr. Norton Stern and Rabbi William Kramer. The bulk of the collection includes research files on individuals, institutions and organizations, and synagogues throughout the western states with an emphasis on California. Some offer original primary source materials, while others are largely comprised of newspaper clippings and research notes. Some files contain internal documents -- meeting minutes, memos, and legal and financial records -- in addition to newsletters, pamphlets and other public materials. Kramer's personal and professional papers are also in the collection.


Rocky Mountain Jewish Historical Society Archives and Ira M. & Peryle Hayutin Beck Memorial Archives of Rocky Mountain Jewish History
University of Denver, Center for Judaic Studies
Penrose Library, Special Collections
2150 E. Evans Ave. 
Denver, CO 80208
Dr. Jeanne Abrams, Curator, RMJHS & Beck Archives
Tel: (303) 871-3016 
Fax: (303) 871-3037
Email: Jeanne.Abrams@du.edu
Website: http://libguides.du.edu/c.php?g=90343&p=582493
Collection: Approximately 2100 Linear Ft.

Together with its Beck Memorial Archives, the Historical Society preserves a variety of materials including manuscripts, private papers, institutional records, oral histories, photographs, newspapers, memorabilia and microfilmed documents which reflect the history of organizations, businesses and the lives of individuals who have contributed to the building of Jewish life in the Rocky Mountains.


Hon. Bernard H. Levinson Hawaii Jewish Archives
Temple Emanu-El
2550 Pali Highway
Honolulu, HI 96817
Richard Field, Executive Director
Larry Seth Steinberg, Archivist
Tel: (808) 595-7521 ext. 215
Fax: (808) 595-6306
Email: executivedirector@shaloha.com
Website: www.shaloha.com
Collection: 40.2 Linear Ft.

Availability: Queries accepted by email, mail or telephone. Visits by appointment.
Bernard H. Levinson was Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Hawaii from 1967-1974. This distinctive collection, possibly the only one of its kind, traces Jewish life in Hawaii. Documents date back to the 1840s; Jewish settlers began to arrive in the 1850s. The collection includes letters, articles, photographs, cassette tapes, and miscellaneous slides.


New Mexico Jewish Historical Society Archives
New Mexico State Records Center and Archives
1205 Camino Carlos Rey
Santa Fe, NM 87507
Felicia Lujan, Director, Archives & Historical Services
Tel: (505) 476-7954
Email: felicia.lujan@state.nm.us
Tel: (505) 476-7948
Fax: (505) 476-7909
Email: archives@state.nm.us
Website: www.nmjhs.org/archives
Hours: 9:00 am -- 4:30 pm, Monday -- Friday
Collection: 35.5 Linear Ft.

The New Mexico Jewish Historical Society's collection includes historical materials that document the Jewish presence in New Mexico. It includes documents, photographs, maps, record books, audio and videotapes that have both Jewish and New Mexican content and significance.


Archives of the Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education
1953 NW Kearney Street
Portland, OR 97209-3925
Anne Levant Prahl, Curator of Collections
Tel: (503) 226-3600 ext. 102
Fax: (503) 226-1800
Email: alprahl@ojmche.org
Alisha Babbstein, Associate Archivist
Email: ababbstein@ojmche.org
Website: www.ojmche.org/educate/collections
Onsite research: by appointment
Collection: 180 Linear Ft.

The Archives of the Jewish Historical Society of Oregon, acquired by the Oregon Jewish Museum in 1995, includes approximately 180 linear feet of personal papers, institutional records, oral history interviews and ephemeral material dating from 1850 to present, representing 500 individuals, families, organizations and businesses. It is the largest collection of the documented and visual history of the Jewish people in Oregon in existence. Materials include documents, manuscripts, records, photographs (around 4500), diaries, albums, prints, various media and other historical source material. Since merging with the Oregon Holocaust Resource Center in 2014, the OJMCHE Archives also contains the center's records, artifacts and oral history interviews of Holocaust survivors and liberators.


Dallas Jewish Historical Society Archives
Dallas Jewish Community Center 
7900 Northaven Road 
Dallas, TX 75230
Alexis Ferguson, Archivist
Tel: (214) 239-7116 
Email: archivist@djhs.org
Website: www.djhs.org
Collection: Approximately 550 Linear Ft.

The Dallas Jewish Historical Society began as the Dallas Jewish Archives in 1970 under the umbrella of the Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas. The organization evolved into the Dallas Jewish Historical Society and is now independent from the Federation. While their offices and state-of-the-art archival vault are in the Jewish Community Center, they operate independently. They house the records of the Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas and of the Jewish Community Center, as well as those of many other Jewish organizations and Jewish-run businesses in Dallas. Their holdings also include an expanding collection of oral histories (over 400 personal interviews with Dallas Jews since 1971), and the personal papers of many of Dallas's outstanding Jewish individuals and families, and span more than a century of Jewish history in Dallas. Historical queries are welcomed.

Texas Jewish Historical Society Archives
Dolph Briscoe Center for American History
University of Texas at Austin
Sid Richardson Hall
2300 Red River Street, Stop D1100
Austin, TX 78712-1426
Stephanie Malmros, Assistant Director of Archives
Tel: (512) 495-4557
Email: smalmros@austin.utexas.edu
Website: www.txjhs.org/archive/texas-jewish-historical-society-archives; see also www.cah.utexas.edu/research/subject_guides/subject_guide_jewish.php
Finding Aid: www.lib.utexas.edu/taro/utcah/00255/cah-00255.html
Collection: 78.25 Linear Ft.

The Texas Jewish Historical Society Records document the mission of the organization to collect, publish, and preserve Jewish history in all areas of Texas and Texas life. The collection is arranged into sixteen series: administration; family history; people by occupation; communities; Texas State Jewish organizations; religion/rabbis and cantors; religious congregations; cemeteries; photographic material; audio, video and film; sheet music; Faye Brachman papers; Howard Lackman files; Rabbi Levi Olan sermons; and Assorted files. The administration series contains the administrative records of the Texas Jewish Historical Society and includes a substantial amount of material from the 1990 TJHS publication, Deep In the Heart: Lives and Legends of Texas Jews, by Ruthe Winegarten and Cathy Schechter. Materials relating to Family History, People by Occupation, Communities, Texas State Jewish Organizations, Religion/Rabbis and Cantors, Religious Congregations can also be found in the project files of the Administration series.


Utah Jewish Archives
University of Utah, Marriott Library Special Collections
295 S. 1500 E. RM Dock
Salt Lake City, UT 84112-0860

Elizabeth Rogers, Curator of Manuscripts 
Tel: (801) 585-3076
Fax: (801) 585-3464
Email: liz.rogers@utah.edu
Website: www.lib.utah.edu/collections/manuscripts.php
Finding Aid: nwda.orbiscascade.org/ark:/80444/xv05032
Collection: 18 Linear Ft.

The Jewish Archives (1831-1990) is largely comprised of records from three Salt Lake City congregations: B'nai Israel, Montefiore, and Kol Ami. Included in the collection are correspondence, meeting minutes, ledgers, financial records, scrapbooks, and historical and biographical materials. Also present is a copy of the 1990 proclamation by Salt Lake City concerning the Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust. Additional materials regarding the Jewish community in Utah include documents from the Mutual Progressive Association from the 1920s and 1930s, scrapbooks representing the activities of Hadassah, and various materials documenting the activities of other Jewish community organizations.


Washington State Jewish Archives 
University of Washington
Allen Library, Special Collections
P.O. Box 352900 
Seattle, WA 98195
Eileen Price, Archivist
Tel: (206) 543-1895
Fax: (206) 543-1931
Email: archivist@wsjhs.org
Website: guides.lib.washington.edu/jewish

The Jewish Archives documents the history of Jewish communities in Washington State, beginning with the earliest settlers in 1853. The Archives consist of organizational records, personal papers, memoirs, correspondence, photographs and over 470 taped and transcribed oral interviews with members of Jewish communities throughout the state. The holdings are preserved in a climate-controlled, closed-access setting in Special Collections in the basement of Allen Library at the University of Washington. UW staff and the WSJHS Archivist jointly administer the materials. The Archivist, Eileen Price, will be available to assist you in your research.