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Board of Delegates of American Israelites Records
The Records of the Board of Delegates of American Israelites (1859-1878) documents the life cycle of the Board of Delegates, a Jewish civil rights organization located in New York City. The Board served in a two-fold function: acting as a central organization for American Jews and working on behalf of Jews abroad. To the latter end, the Delegates collaborated with the Committee of Deputies of British Jews and the French Alliance Israélite Universelle to provide for the relief and aid, civil, and religious rights of Jews throughout the Americas, Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East, particularly Romania, Ottoman Palestine including Jerusalem, and Morocco.
In the U.S., the Delegates were partially responsible for the appointment of the first Jewish Military Chaplain and surveyed member synagogues concerning the history and size of their congregation, the first organization to systematically record this type of information in the States. The Delegates merged with the Union of American Hebrew Congregations (UAHC) in 1878 and dissolved in 1925. Correspondents include Adolph Crémieux, Sir Moses Montefiore, Benjamin Franklin Peixotto, Isaacs S. Myer, the Rev. Dr. Arnold Fischel, and Maj. General Benjamin Butler. Documents include correspondence, minutes, committee reports, memorials, announcements, surveys, some printed material including clippings, and a 1932 Rabbinical thesis on the Delegates by Allan Tarshish.