Skip to main content

Hebrew Infant Asylum of the City of New York records

 Collection
Identifier: I-166

Scope and Content Note

This collection contains primarily bound volume reports of the Hebrew Infant Asylum (and its later iteration as the Home for Hebrew Infants). Including in these volumes are the printed annual reports (1898-1917), the "monthly city billing" (1904-1906), reports of the admitting physicians (1895-1908) and other general printed material. This collection also includes Board of Directors minutes (1905-1907) and admission and discharge records (1895-1908).

A read-only Excel spreadsheet containing more than 500 transcribed Physician’s Reports regarding children's illnesses and their admission into the Hebrew Infant Asylum can be found here.

Dates

  • 1895-1934

Creator

Language of Materials

The collection is in English.

Access Restrictions

The collection is open to all researchers by permission of the Director of Library and Archives of the American Jewish Historical Society, except items that are restricted due to their fragility.

Use Restrictions

Information concerning the literary rights may be obtained from the Director of Library and Archives of the American Jewish Historical Society. Users must apply in writing for permission to quote, reproduce or otherwise publish manuscript materials found in this collection. For more information contact:

American Jewish Historical Society, Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York, NY, 10011

email: reference@ajhs.org

Historical Note<extptr actuate="onload" altrender="Admitting Physician's Report of the Hebrew Infant Asylum of the City of New York, 1899" href="http://digital.cjh.org/webclient/DeliveryManager?pid=4063619" show="embed" title="Admitting Physician's Report of the Hebrew Infant Asylum of the City of New York, 1899"/>

"To receive and take charge of infants in cases where parent or parents are dead or unable or incompetent to afford to the infant the nursing and attention which they merit, and to care for their religious, physical and moral training." -Hebrew Infant Asylum Society, 1892.1

The origins of the Hebrew Infant Asylum can be traced back to Mrs. Solomon [Esther Hellman] Wallenstein, a member of the Hebrew Sheltering Guardian Society. She and other concerned New Yorkers recognized a a lack of proper housing for the city's abandoned Jewish children that fell below the age range of orphanage admittance. In 1892 she engaged the help of the United Hebrew Charities of the City of New York and created an informal committee to tackle this problem. Two weeks later, the committee coalesced into the Hebrew Infant Asylum Society, with Wallenstein as President. The Society mailed circulars to men and women in existing charitable organizations, collected second-hand clothing for infants to distribute among the poor, and placed several infants with families at the Society's expense. On April 17, 1895 a charter was obtained, membership dues were established, and 149th/Mott Ave was secured as a suitable location for a proper home for sheltering the city's Jewish infants.

Wallenstein ran the Hebrew Infant Asylum for the next eight years, until her death at the age of 57 on July 8, 1903.

The Asylum has changed locations several times around New York throughout its existence, including 161st street and Eagle Avenue.

By 1942, the Asylum had merged with the Jewish Child Care Association, an organization with a mission to provide "quality services to children and their families, and the universal mandate within the Jewish tradition of tikkun olam— the responsibility of every person to make the world a better place." Along with the Hebrew Infant Asylum, the Hebrew Orphan Asylum, the Hebrew Sheltering Guardian Society, the Fellowship House and the Jewish Children’s Clearing Bureau all became part of the Jewish Child Care Association (now known formally as just the JCCA), which continues to be responsible for the care of thousands of children in as many foster homes.

Footnotes

  1. 1Hebrew Infant Asylum; The Dedication of this New Institution to Take Place This Afternoon; Noble Women Were Its Founders; After Struggling for Several Years a Charter is Finally Obtained—Some of Those Who Called It into Existence. (1895, May 26). Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/

Extent

3.70 Linear Feet (4 manuscript boxes + 1 OS1 box)

Abstract

Contains various bound records from the administrative activities of the Hebrew Infant Asylum including annual reports, board meeting minutes, reports of the admitting physicians, and the admission and discharge records of children.

Physical Location

Located in AJHS New York, NY

Related Material

Hebrew Orphan Asylum Records, I-42

Brooklyn Hebrew Orphan Asylum Records, I-230

Hebrew Sheltering Guardian Society Records, I-43

Jewish Child Care Association of New York Records, I-235

New York Association for Jewish Children Records, I-236



A read-only Excel spreadsheet containing more than 500 transcribed Physician’s Reports regarding children's illnesses and their admission into the Hebrew Infant Asylum can be found here.
Title
Guide to the Hebrew Infant Asylum of the City of New York records, 1895-1934 I-166
Status
In Progress
Author
Finding aid created by marc2ead_ajhs.xsl
Date
© 2009
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Revision Statements

  • 2016-09-26: PDF box list converted to dsc. Finding aid encoding revised by Janine Veazue.
  • 2016-03-01.: Changed "Orphanages" to "Jewish orphanages" in Subjects by Tanya Elder.

Repository Details

Part of the American Jewish Historical Society Repository

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