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Manuscript Library

Welcome to the Booth Library manuscript index. 

The manuscript index contains links to finding aids for the collections of the Booth Library.  Each finding aid has a description of that collection along with a listing of the items within that collection.  The Booth Library staff and volunteers are updating the index daily in order to make your research experience more productive.

The Manuscript Index is arranged alphabetically by collection name.  To access a finding aid, please click on its name.

To search the Manuscript Index for a specific research topic, please enter the term into the Search Library Box below. 

Please keep in mind that many collections have not been inventoried while others are currently in progress.  If you have any questions regarding the Finding Aids or the Index, please contact the archivist at

Collection TitleCL 37 Temple B’Nai IsraelCreatorBooth Library
Processed ByRachel Dworkin
Date Completed:3/18/2008
Provenance:The items in this collection were donated to the Booth Library by Col. Sanford Barcus, the archivist of Temple B'Nai Israel. 
Terms:Elmira (N.Y.); Judaism-Customs and practices; Judaism-History-Modern period, 1750-; Judaism-Prayer-books and devotions; Reform Judaism; Synagogue bulletins; Synagogue-Membership; Synagogue-Organization and administration

Temple B'Nai Israel- The Reform Congregation of B'Nai Israel was founded in Elmira, NY in 1861, although the first official meeting of the Congregation was not until October 12, 1862.  The Congregation's first temple was built in 1863 on High Street between Water and John Streets.  In 1886, the original wooden structure replaced by a brick building on the same location.  In 1952, however, the Congregation moved to a new location at 900 West Water Street where they remain today. 

During its existence, the Congregation of B'Nai Israel has had 25 different rabbis.  Within the last fifty years they have been; Leonard Devine, 1950-1956; Sanford M. Shapero, 1957-1959; Philmore Berger, 1959-1963; Stephen Goldrich, 1963-1969; David Zielonka, 1969-1973; David Jessel, 1973-1975; Philip Aronson, 1975-1991; David Castiglione, 1992-1996; Miriam Biatch, 1996-present.      

Scope:The Temple B'Nai Israel Collection includes bulletins, programs, flyers, mass mailings, photographs and other assorted documents.  The bulk of the collection consists of a fairly complete run of Temple Bulletins from 1975 to 1996.  The programs for various temple events range in date from 1949 to 1998, with the majority of them dating from the 1990's.  Most of the flyers, photographs, and mass mailings also date from this period.  The collection also includes some of the personal correspondence of the Barcus and Kahn families, specifically as it relates to the Temple or the Jewish community.  Most of the Kahn papers date from the 1950's, while much of the Barcus correspondence dates from the 1990's.     
Extent2 linear feet
Date Span1924-1998

The Temple B'Nai Israel Collection contains photographs, programs, correspondence and bulletins all pertaining to the temple. 

Filter by:
TitleDocumentBox NumberFolder NumberLocation
Brochure for an Israeli tour sponsored by Temple B'Nai Israel, July 10-23, 1996.BookletA1104
Bringing Grace to the Jewish Table, prayer book compiled by S.H. Markowitz, Rabbi Congregation B'Nai Israel. BookletA1201
Sabbath Songs for Congregational Singing. BookletA1202
Passover Haggadah for Congregation B'Nai Israel. (3 copies)BookletA1203
Sabbath Eve Kiddush Service for the Home. (2 copies)BookletA1204
Ten Commandments. (3 copies)DocumentA1205
Ten Commandments, in Hebrew. DocumentA1206
New York Board of Rabbis guide to Hanukkah Services. BookletA1207
Lyrics to religious songs Adonai Oz and Pitchu Li.DocumentA1208
Lyrics to religious song 'Ma Yafeh Hayom.'DocumentA1209
Lyrics to the religious songs 'Pitchu Li' and 'Oseh Shalom.'DocumentA1210
Prayer guide for Chanukah Service, 1994. BookletA1211
World Union for Progressive Judaism guide to Shabbat Evening Worship. BookletA1212
Kiddush for the Sabbath in Hebrew and English. DocumentA1213
Temple B'Nai Israel Centennial Celebration book, 1962.BookB01
"The New Temple B'Nai Israel," detailed renovation plans. BookletB0201
Customs and Religious Practices of Congregation B'Nai Israel by Rabbi Berger. (2 copies)BookletB0202
List of Rabbis at Temple B'Nai Israel, 1862-1991. DocumentB0203
100 Years of Jewish in Elmira by Henry J. Radin. DocumentB0204
Reminiscences of the Early Dats of our Congregation and of the Jewish Settlers in Elmira by Benjamin Levy, October 29, 1937. DocumentB0205
Envelope with Temple B'Nai Israel logo. DocumentB0210
Program for the Congregation B'Nai Israel Sixtieth Anniversary, 1862-1922. BookletB0301
Program for the Congregation B'Nai Israel Seventy-fifth Anniversary, 1862-1937. (2 copies)BookletB0302
Program for the Congregation B'Nai Israel Eighty Anniversary, 1862-1942.DocumentB0303
Program for the Congregation B'Nai Israel Ninety-fifth Anniversary, 1862-1957. (2 copies)BookletB0304
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