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Norman Salit (1896-1960) Papers

 Collection
Identifier: P-35

Scope and Content Note

The Papers of Norman Salit consist primarily of materials relating to Salit's activities with the Synagogue Council of America, the Rabbinical Assembly of America, the Wartime Emergency Commission for Conservative Judaism, the Boy Scouts of America, the Jewish Education Committee, the American Child Guidance Foundation, Religion in American Life, the Valley Forge Foundation, the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, and the National Community Relations Advisory Council. The materials include correspondence, reports, addresses, minutes, and memoranda. There are also items documenting a legal case related to the Gideon Society's providing Bibles to the Detroit public school system, reports of a 1953 tour of Germany that was concerned with the status and future of German Jewry, and material relating to the ceremony held at the issuing of the postage stamp "In G-d We Trust" in 1954. There are also school composition books, manuscripts and printed essays, sermons and speeches in Hebrew and English, material relating to Salit's legal work and Zionist activities, and some letters from Mordecai Kaplan.

Dates

  • undated, 1916-1965
  • undated, 1916-1965

Creator

Language of Materials

The collection is in English with some Hebrew.

Access Restrictions

The collection is open to all researchers, except items that may be restricted due to their fragility, or privacy.

Use Restrictions

No permission is required to quote, reproduce or otherwise publish manuscript materials found in this collection, as long as the usage is scholarly, educational, and non-commercial. For inquiries about other usage, please contact the Director of Collections and Engagement at mmeyers@ajhs.org.

For reference questions, please email: inquiries@cjh.org

Biographical Note

U.S. lawyer, rabbi, and communal leader Norman Salit was born on June 8, 1896 in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Michael and Rachel Ethel (Altschul) Salit. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from City College in 1916, his law degree from New York University in 1919, rabbinic ordination from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in 1920, and a Master of Arts from Columbia University in 1922. He later received a Master of Hebrew Letters from the Jewish Theological Seminary in 1949, an honorary Doctor of Letters in 1956, also from the Jewish Theological Seminary, and a Doctor of Humane Letters from Philathea College in Canada in 1957. Salit served as the rabbi at Temple Adath Israel in the Bronx from 1919-1924 and at the same time was admitted to the New York State Bar in 1920. He was admitted to the bars of the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Treasury Department in 1938. He served as the rabbi of Congregation Shaaray Tefila in Far Rockaway, Queens, from 1924-1929, when he decided to focus more closely on his legal career. He headed the Queens County Bar Association Committee on Legislation and Law Reform from 1933-1937, and was involved with numerous other legal, religious, and aid organizations. During World War II he was the executive director of the Wartime Emergency Commission for Conservative Judaism, which aided congregations whose rabbis had entered military service. Salit was an active member of many Jewish and Zionist organizations, including serving as the president of the Synagogue Council of America from 1953-1955, the board of overseers of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, a past president of the Long Island Council of the American Jewish Congress, the executive council of the New York Board of Rabbis from 1951-1958, counsel for the Rabbinical Assembly of America, and was on the executive committee of the Zionist Organization of America, among many others.

Salit married Ruth Levy on July 1, 1928. Together, they had two daughters, Naomi and Miriam. Norman Salit died on July 21, 1960 in New York City.

Extent

7 Manuscript Boxes

3.75 Linear Feet

7 Manuscript Boxes

3.75 Linear Feet

Abstract

This collection contains material relating to Norman Salit's activities with various organizations, including the Synagogue Council of America, the Rabbinical Assembly of America, the Wartime Emergency Commission for Conservative Judaism, the Boy Scouts of America, the Jewish Education Committee, the American Child Guidance Foundation, Religion in American Life, the Valley Forge Foundation, the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, and the National Community Relations Advisory Council. There are also speeches, writings, sermons, items related to Sharit's legal work and Zionist activities, as well as some letters from Mordecai Kaplan.

Physical Location

Located in AJHS New York, NY

Related Material

The American Jewish Historical Society Library has a copy of The Worlds of Norman Salit; Sermons, Papers, Addresses, edited by Abraham Burstein, which contains sermons, essays, reports, comments on the weekly Torah portion, and miscellaneous material written by Salit. The YIVO Archives holds the Records of the Jewish Education Committee, RG 592 and the American Jewish Historical Society Archives holds the Records of Board of Jewish Education (New York, NY), I-307, Samuel J. Citron Papers, P-930, Society for the Advancement of Judaism Records, I-70, and several other collections relating to American rabbis, Jewish education, and the legal profession.
Title
Guide to the Norman Salit (1896-1960) Papers, undated, 1916-1965 P-35
Status
Completed
Author
Finding aid created by marc2ead_ajhs.xsl
Date
© 2009
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Revision Statements

  • 2016-09-29: PDF box list converted to dsc. Finding aid encoding revised. Biographical Note and Related Materials added. Rachel S. Harrison
  • March, June 2020: EHyman-post-ASpace migration cleanup

Repository Details

Part of the American Jewish Historical Society Repository

Contact:
15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States