Date: July 6, 1988
Table of Contents:
A Note on Folder Headings
Individual folders are identified in the following way on the left side of each folder: Name of Collection, box #/folder#, as in Ben Zion Bokser Papers, 4/22. Please use this format in citations and when referring to files for any other reason.
Congregation Ansche Chesed was officially founded in 1876. It was first located at 86th Street and 3rd Avenue. After a period on East 112th Street, the congregation moved into its newly constructed synagogue at Seventh Avenue and 114th Street in 1908. In 1927 the congregation moved to its present location at West End Avenue and 100th Street, to a building designed for it by architect Edward Shire, who also designed the congregation's Seventh Avenue building.
Scope and Content Note
Congregation Ansche Chesed's records, 1876-1989, consist of correspondence, financial records, membership records, minutes of the board of directors, publications and other printed materials, cemetery records, subject files, scrapbooks, and tapes.
The correspondence and financial records represent the most substantial portions of the collection. Of particular note in the collection are: records relating to the construction and furnishing of both the 1907-1908 and 1927-1928 synagogues; lists, 1945-1946, of World War II servicemen; programs of services marking the end of World War II; a minute book, 1876-1889, dating from Ansche Chesed's official founding; a copy of an 1899 constitution of the temple; a map of the Riverside Cemetery of New Rochelle Park, New Jersey, 1918; and a 1906 siddur.
- I. Correspondence, 1915-1974
- II. Financial Records, 1894-1979
- III. Membership Records, 1893-1984
- IV. Board of Directors' Records, 1876-1973
- V. Publications and Printed Material, 1917-1989
- VI. Cemetery Records, 1900-1979
- VII. Subject Files, 1888-1989
- VIII. Scrapbooks, 1928-1968
- IX. Tapes, 1963-1966; n.d.
I. CORRESPONDENCE, 1915-1974
The correspondence is principally with congregants, and consists of mailings concerning synagogue operations, special events, services, payment of dues, the sale of High Holiday seats, and other routine matters. Many condolence letters and letters of congratulations are included. Some correspondence with tradesmen is also included.
II. FINANCIAL RECORDS, 1894-1979
Boxes 4-5;Volumes 1-23; Packages 1-4
Included are account books, bond books, building fund ledgers, and checkbooks. Also included is much loose material, consisting of: correspondence, canceled checks, invoices, account sheets, and a wide variety of other items. Of particular note are two bound letter books (boxes 3 and 4) containing correspondence from 1907-1909 which relate to the building and furnishing of the new synagogue.
III. MEMBERSHIP RECORDS, 1893-1984
Boxes 6-7; Volumes 24-32; Packages 5-8
Included are volumes and loose materials consisting of membership lists, records of the sale of High Holiday seats and the payment of dues, and lists of bond holders. Of particular note are lists of World War II servicemen, 1945-1946 (Box 6).
IV. BOARD OF DIRECTORS RECORDS, 1876-1973
Boxes 8-9; Volumes 33-34; Packages 9-12
Included are minutes, reports, and committee records of Ansche Chesed's board of directors. The reports are typically copies of the minutes which were later distributed to board members and/or congregants. The committee records are sparse, largely containing correspondence and minutes of meetings. Of particular note is a minute book with a date range of 1876-1889 (Box 19, oversized).
V. PUBLICATIONS AND PRINTED MATERIAL, 1917-1989
The material in this series is divided into five categories: Books of Remembrance, bulletins, affiliated societies journals, promotional and instructional materials, and programs of special services. Of particular note is a copy of an 1899 temple constitution (Box 9), a program of a service for the laying of the cornerstone in 1908 (Box 10), and a program of a service for the dedication of the synagogue in 1928 (Box 9).
VI. CEMETERY RECORDS, 1900-1974
This is a small series. Especially prominent among its contents is correspondence regarding the purchase of plots in the Riverside Cemetery (New Rochelle Park, NJ) and the Washington Cemetery (Brooklyn, NY). Included is a map of Riverside Cemetery dated 1918 (Box 10).
VII. SUBJECT FILES, 1888-1989
Boxes 10-17; 19
This is the largest series in the collection. The subject files, which are organized by year, contain correspondence, financial material, photographs, data about services and synagogue activites, and a range of other items. Of particular note are photographs and other materials documenting the 1907-1908 synagogue dedication (Box 10), material regarding the 1927-1928 synagogue dedication (Box 10), and copies of the "V-J Day" Thanksgiving services, 1945 (Box 13).
VIII. SCRAPBOOKS, 1928-1968
Included are six scrapbooks and some loose pages which have been packaged. In general the scrapbooks contain bulletins, invitations, clippings, program brochures, holiday tickets, special services, souvenir journals, and club memorabilia. Package 19 is devoted exclusively to Sisterhood memorabilia, 1966-1968. Of particular note, Package 16 contains several copies of programs of services marking the end of World War II. Package 14 contains memorabilia related to the building and dedication of the West End Avenue synagogue. The general condition of the books in this series is fair to good, however many pages are soiled and brittle, and many items are affixed to the pages of their books with glue.
IX. TAPES, 1963-1966, n.d.
This series contains ten reel-to-reel tapes. Included are: a sermon by Rabbi Joshua Goldberg; three tapes of lectures given by Dr. Fritz Rothschild entitled "Can we recover our tradition...;" two tapes of Kol Nidre Appeals; the final sermon of Rabbi Fishman, and a lecture given by Rabbi Wolfe Kelman for the E.A. Cohen Institute, entitled "Paradox and Dialogue...;" and two tapes the contents of which are unknown. The condition of the tapes is good.