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Dorothy and Ralph LeVine Papers

 Collection
Identifier: P-1011

Scope and Content Note

The collection documents the personal and professional lives of the Dorothy and Ralph LeVine, owners of Airflow Mattress Company in Brooklyn, New York. The LeVines are most prominently represented in the collection, with Joseph Schwartz and other family members represented to a lesser extent. The collection is divided into three series. Series I contains papers related to the LeVines’ personal lives. Series II contains materials generated by Airflow Mattress. Series III contains photographs of the LeVines and their family and friends.

Dates

  • 1912-2015
  • Majority of material found within 1920 - 1969

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

Dorothy and Ralph LeVine owned and operated Airflow Mattress Company on Bergen Street in Brooklyn, New York during the mid-20th century. The business that eventually became Airflow was started in 1899 by Dorothy’s paternal grandfather, Abraham Schwartz.1 Abraham eventually passed the business (at that time called Schwartz Mattress Company) to his son Joseph, who later handed it down to his daughter, Dorothy.2

Dorothy worked alongside her father and was involved with the business from at least 1941 (and probably earlier).3 She became partners with her father Joseph in 1950,4 and he officially “sold” her the business in 1958 for the sum of ten dollars.5

Dorothy and Ralph married in 1939 and lived in Brooklyn. Their social life revolved around friends, with whom they enjoyed going out to restaurants and vacationing at summer cottages in Succasunna, NJ.6 The LeVines had a daughter, Adrienne, and the family kept pedigreed dogs as pets.

Dorothy and Ralph closed Airflow and retired in 1976.7

References

  1. Letter from Adrienne Deutsch to Susan Malbin, October 31, 2015; Dorothy and Ralph LeVine Papers; P-1011; Box 1; Folder 1; American Jewish Historical Society, New York, NY, and Boston, MA.
  2. Bill of Sale, January 28, 1958; Dorothy and Ralph LeVine Papers; P-1011; Box 1; Folder 9; American Jewish Historical Society, New York, NY, and Boston, MA.
  3. Contract of Sale – Premises, November 27, 1941; Dorothy and Ralph LeVine Papers; P-1011; Box 1; Folder 9; American Jewish Historical Society, New York, NY, and Boston, MA.
  4. Partnership Agreement, September 1, 1950; Dorothy and Ralph LeVine Papers; P-1011; Box 1; Folder 9; American Jewish Historical Society, New York, NY, and Boston, MA.
  5. Bill of Sale – Joseph Schwartz to Dorothy S. LeVine, January 28, 1958; Dorothy and Ralph LeVine Papers; P-1011; Box 1; Folder 9; American Jewish Historical Society, New York, NY, and Boston, MA.
  6. Snapshot Album, Part 2 of 3, 1942-1950; Dorothy and Ralph LeVine Papers; P-1011; Box 2; Folder 5; American Jewish Historical Society, New York, NY, and Boston, MA.
  7. Family Historical Note, 2015; Dorothy and Ralph LeVine Papers; P-1011; Box 1; Folder 1; American Jewish Historical Society, New York, NY, and Boston, MA.

Extent

1 Linear Feet (two manuscript boxes and one OS folder)

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

The collection documents the personal and professional lives of the Dorothy and Ralph LeVine, owners of Airflow Mattress Company in Brooklyn, New York. The materials highlight their mattress and furniture business as well as their personal and social lives as residents of Brooklyn. The collection contains business records, legal documents, administrative records, financial records, trademarks, business cards, fliers, correspondence, stationary, blueprints, photographs, pedigree dog certificates, a diploma, a menu, a yahrzeit calendar, real estate records, an event program, and printing dies.

Physical Location

Located in AJHS New York, NY

Acquisition Information

Donated in 2015 by Adrienne Deutsch, daughter of Dorothy and Ralph LeVine.

Separated Material

Oversized photographs are housed separately from the main collection due to their size.

Processing Information

Materials were refoldered and rehoused in acid-free folders and boxes. Rusty paper clips were removed and replaced when needed. Photographs were re-housed in new archival sleeves.

The folders containing personal and professional documents were roughly organized before processing. Much of the collection's original filing system has been maintained throughout processing. Those documents that were unfiled (loose) have been incorporated with similar subject items. Folder titles were devised by the archivist to enhance access.

The donor affixed Post-It notes to many items in the collection, mostly the backs of photographs, identifying dates, places, or people depicted (usually Dorothy and Ralph). These notes, where available, were transcribed in pencil onto the backs of the items, and the Post-Its discarded.

Four rolled photographs were sent for conservation treatment (humidification) at the Center for Jewish History's Werner J. and Gisella Levi Cahnman Preservation Laboratory.
Title
Guide to the Dorothy and Ralph LeVine Papers, 1912-2015 P-1011
Status
Completed
Author
Processed by Rachel Lintz
Date
© 2012
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
Description is in English.

Revision Statements

  • November 2020: RJohnstone: 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