The Buffalo region has been home to a wide range of individuals associated with local Jewish communities and Jewish networks from the 1820s through to the contemporary period as immigrants, citizens, residents and locals.
Buffalo Jews have a rich history of forming both formal and informal institutions for religious, educational, political and social needs. From synagogues to organizations, and from coordinating agencies to groups and clubs, Jewish Buffalonians have seen a changing range of institutions supported by group endeavors and community philanthropy.
In living memory, the East Side and North Buffalo stand out as physically connected and interwoven religious and commercial centers of Jewish living. In contrast to these specific areas are the mini hubs identified with Jewish living and connected to a more dispersed idea of neighborhood. Separately, suburbia with its significant geographic spread, has redefined how a series of Jewish spaces come together with a mix of hubs, focal points and networks.
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Special exhibitions, through a focus on particular individuals and subjects, delves into the personal stories that have animated Jewish lives. Each digital exploration reflects on the interplay between place, identities and changing times and the way in which American, Jewish and Buffalo historical experiences are deeply interwoven.
Materials that document Jewish Buffalo in all its diversity are found in books, articles, archives and museums, many of which are available locally or online. This section highlights some of these sources and will be updated regularly.
Adler, Selig, and Thomas F. Connelly. From Ararat to Suburbia: The History of the Jewish Community of Buffalo. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society, 1960.
Banham, Reyner, Charles Beveridge, and Henry Russell Hitchcock, Buffalo Architecture: A Guide. Boston: MIT Press, 1981. Introductions by Reyner Banham, Charles Beverage, Henry Russell Hitchcock. Text by Francis Kowski, Mark Goldman, Austin Fox, John D. Randall, Jack Quinan, Teresa Lasher.
Berghash, Robert, ed. A Photographic Journey, Fifty Years, The History of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Buffalo, Inc., 1945-1995. Buffalo, NY: Community Center of Greater Buffalo, 1995.
Besag, Frank P. Anatomy of a Riot: Buffalo ’67. Buffalo: University Press, 1967.
Bisco, Jim. A Greater Look at Greater Buffalo. Windsor Publications, 1986.
Engelman, Uriah Z. “New Trends in Jewish Education in Buffalo.” Jewish Education 16 (Sept 1944): 39-42
Engelman, Uriah Z., A Study of the Size of Families in the Jewish Population of Buffalo (Buffalo: University of Buffalo Studies, XVI, No.1, November, 1938).
Falk, Gerhardt. American Judaism in Transition: the Secularization of a Religious Community. Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1995.
Falk, Samson, “A History of the Israelites in Buffalo,” Publications of the Buffalo Historical Society, I, 289- 304 (1879).
Ference, Ian. Buffalo State Hospital: A History of the Institution in Light and Shadow, A Photographic Journey, A Historical Insight by the Museum of Disability History. Buffalo, NY: Museum of Disability History, 2016.
Fiddler-Woite, Julianna, and Mary Beth Paulin Scumaci, Peter C. Scumaci. Western New York and the Gilded Age. Charleston, SC: History Press, 2010.
Fiddler-Woite, Julianna. Synderville: History of a Village, Portrait of a Family. J. Fiddler-Woite, 1998.
Fiedler, Leslie A. Being busted. New York: Stein and Day, 1969
Fischman, Jane Vogel. “Buffalo’s Jewish Enterprise.” Western New York Heritage, Winter, 2005.
Fleischmann, Ilene R. The Rosa Coplon Home Story, 1910-1985, Buffalo, NY: Partner’s Press, 1985.
Fleischmann, Bianca, My Autobiography. [n.p.], privately printed, 1953.
Frisch, Michael H., and Charles Keil. Hayes Hall Blues. Alma mater. [sound recording], no date.
Frisch, Michael H., and Milton Rogovin. Portraits in Steel. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1993.
Gerber, David. The Making of an American Pluralism: Buffalo, New York, 1825-1860. Champaign, IL: University of Illinois Press, 1989.
Gerber, David A., “Cutting Out Shylock: Elite Anti-Semitism and the Quest for Moral Order in the Mid-Nineteenth Century Marketplace.” Journal of American History 69 (December 1982): 615-37.
Goldberg, Arthur I. (comp.). In Honor of Dr. Joseph L. Fink on his Twenty-fifth Anniversary as Rabbi of Temple Beth Zion. Buffalo: Temple Beth Zion, October 22, 1949.
Goldman, Mark. Albright: The Life and Times of John J. Albright. Buffalo: Buffalo Heritage Press. 2017
Goldman, Mark. City on the Edge: Buffalo, New York, 1900-Present. Amherst, NY: Prometheus, 2007.
Goldman, Mark. City on the Lake: The Challenge of Change in Buffalo, New York. Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books, 1990.
Goldman, Mark. High Hopes: The Rise and Decline of Buffalo, New York. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1983.
Graebner, William. Coming of Age in Buffalo: Youth and Authority in the Postwar Era. Philadelphia, PA: Temple University Press, 1990.
Greenberg, Heschel. Light from the Future: Essays on the Weekly Torah Portion through the Eyes of the Future. Buffalo, NY: Jewish Discovery Center, 2014.
Greiner, W.R., & Headrick, T.E. Location, Location, Location: A Special History of the University of/at Buffalo. Buffalo, NY: Center Working Papers/University at Buffalo, 2007.
Gredel, Stephen. Adventures in History Series: People of Our City and County. Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society, 1971.
Hirsch, Dick. The Bubble Didn’t Burst: The Story of Nathan Benderson, Buffalo: Stonecroft Publishing, 1995.
Hirsch, Dick. ed. “A History of Jewish Family Service in Buffalo 1847-1986.” Buffalo, NY: Jewish Family Service of Greater Buffalo and Erie County, 1986.
Huntington, Wendy Attea. Herd About Buffalo? A Public Art Project to Benefit Roswell Park Cancer Institute and the Burchfield Penney Art Center. Buffalo, NY: Roswell Park Alliance Foundation, 2000.
Hyzy, Christopher. B…is For Buffalo: An Aerial Alphabet. Buffalo, NY: Buffalo Heritage Press, 2016.
Iggers, George G. and Wilma Iggers, Two Lives in Uncertain Times: Facing the Challenges of the 20th Century as Scholars and Citizens, Washington, D.C.: German Historical Institute, 2006
Jacobs, Jane. The Death and Life of Great American Cities. New York: Random House, 2002.
Kellman, Rich, Blue Tattoo Dina’s Story, Joe’s Song. Directed by Rich Kellman. 2014. Marty Kerker/Rich Kellman Production, 2014. DVD.
Klein, Aaron. “A History of Jewish Education in Buffalo.” Jewish Education 14 (Apr.-June 1942): 28-32, 35.
Klein, Gerda, All But My Life. New York: Hill and Wang, 1957.
Klein, Gerda Weissman and Kurt Klein. The Hours After: Letters of Love and Longing in Wars Aftermath. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2000.
Klein, Gerda Weissman. A Boring Evening Home: A Collection of Stories and Memories. Washington, D.C.: Leading Authorities Press, 2004.
Klein, Isaac. Guide to Jewish Religious Practice. New York: The Jewish Theological Seminary of America, 1979.
Klein, Isaac. The Code of Maimonides (Mishneh Torah): Book 7, The Book of Agriculture. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1979.
Klein, Isaac. The Anguish and the Ecstasy of a Jewish Chaplain. Burlington, VT: Vantage Press, 1974.
Klein, Isaac. The Ten Commandments in a Changing World. Jerusalem: Citadel Press, 1963.
Klinkenborg, Verlyn, The Last Fine Time. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1990.
Kotzin, Chana Revell. Images of America: Jewish Community of Greater Buffalo. Pleasant, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2013.
Kotzin, Daniel. “Developing Jewish Identity across Borders: The Epistolary Relationship between Rabbi Isaac Klein and American Jewish Servicemen during World War II, in In, Out and Beyond: Studies on Border Confrontations, Resolutions and Encounters, eds. Antonio Medina-Rivera and Lee Wilberschied, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2011, pp. 15-28
Kowsky, Francis R. “Temple Beth Zion,” National Register of Historic Places, 2017.
Kowsky, Francis R. and Andy Olenick. The Best Planned City in the World: Olmsted, Vaux, and the Buffalo Park System (Designing the American Park). University of Massachusetts Press, 2013.
Kraus, Neil. Race, Neighborhoods, and Community Power: Buffalo Politics 1934-1997. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2000.
Kunz, George. Buffalo Memories: Gone But Not Forgotten. Buffalo, NY: Canisius College Press, 2002.
Leary, Thomas E. , and Elizabeth C. Sholes. Buffalo’s Waterfront. Arcadia Publishing, 1997.
Leary, Thomas E. , and Elizabeth C. Sholes. From Fire to Rust. Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society, 1987.
Lee, Patti Meyer and Gary Lee. Don’t Bother Knockin’ this Town’s a Rockin’: A History of Traditional Rhythm and Blues and Early Rock n Roll in Buffalo, New York. Buffalo, NY: Buffalo Sounds Press, 2001.
Lee, Raya, Edward Yadzinsky, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra. The BPO Celebrates the first 75 years. Buffalo, NY: Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Buffalo Heritage Unlimited, 2010.
Levine, Linda R., and Maria Scrivani. Beautiful Buffalo: Preserving the City. Buffalo, NY: Canisius College Press, 2003.
Light, Murray B. From Butler to Buffett: The Story Behind the Buffalo News. Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books, 2004.
McLaughlin, Virginia Yans. Family and Community: Italian Immigrants in Buffalo, 1880-1930. Champaign, IL: University of Illinois Press, 1982.
Mingus, Nancy Blumenstalk. Buffalo, Good Neighbors, Great Architecture. New York: Making of America, 2003.
Mittleman, Ferne E., Hyman Shuman, and Chaika Aliotz. Shuman. The Shuman Story: The Life and times of Peretz Shuman and Chaika Aliotz Shuman. Amherst, NY: Welcome Magazine, 2000.
Murphy, Dan. The 101 Greatest Moments in Buffalo History. Buffalo, NY: Western New York Wears, 2007.
Murphy, Dan. Nickel City Drafts: A Drinking History of Buffalo, New York. Buffalo, NY: Western New York Wears, 2010.
Nagle, Roy W. Romance of Buffalo. Buffalo, NY: The Manufacturers and Traders Trust Company, 1939.
Napora, James. “Houses of Worship: A Guide to the Religious Architecture of Buffalo, New York.” Master’s thesis, State University of New York at Buffalo, 1995.
Newberg, Rich, and Dan Summerville, and David Vandivort, and WIVB (Television Station, Buffalo, NY). Survivors of the Holocaust. VHS. Buffalo, NY: Buffalo Broadcasting Co., 1983.
Packer, Renee Levine. This Life of Sounds: Evenings for New Music in Buffalo. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010.
Pederson, Gilbert J., “The Buffalo Law School, 75 years, A History, 1887-1962,” University of Buffalo Law School Alumni Association, 1962.
Percy, John, W. Pioneer suburb: a comprehensive history of Kenmore, New York, 1890-1974 with background on the Town of Tonawanda from 1603-1903. Kenmore, 1974.
Percy, John, W. The Town of Tonawanda. Dover, NH: Arcadia Press, 1997.
Percy, John and Graham Millar. Kenmore, NY. Dover, NH: Arcadia Press, 1998.
Pine, Ellen Kann, One Life in Two Worlds: A forty year segment of my life. [no city]: Self-published, lulu.com, 2009.
Plesur, Milton, and Selig Adler. An American Historian: Essays to Honor Selig Adler. Buffalo, NY: State University of New York at Buffalo, 1980.
Plesur, Milton. “The Bureau of Jewish Education of Greater Buffalo, 1929-1979,” Jewish Education, 47 (Summer 1975): 41-45.
Plesur, Milton. Jewish Life in Twentieth-Century America: Challenge and Accommodation. Chicago: Nelson-Hall, 1982.
Pollak, George. “The Buffalo Population Study.” Jewish Education 46 (Summer 1978): 16-22.
Porrath, Samuel. Life Beyond the Final Curtain. Jersey City, NJ: Ktav Publishing Inc., 1985.
Radder, Joseph H. Remembering Old Buffalo: The Glory Years in Western New York. Buffalo, NY: Western New York Wares, 2008.
Reisem, Richard O. with Seth Colby and Bette A. Rupp. A Field Guide to Forest Lawn Cemetery. Buffalo, NY: Forest Lawn Heritage Foundation, 1998.
Resnik, Reuben. “Religious Education in Buffalo and Erie County.” Religious Education, 56 (Sept.-Oct. 1961): 348-50.
Rizzo, Michael F. Nine Nine Eight: The Glory Days of Buffalo Shopping. Buffalo, NY: Self-published, Lulu.com, 2007.
Rizzo, Michael F. Through the Mayor’s Eyes, Buffalo New York 1832-2005. Buffalo, NY: Self-Published, Lulu.com, 2009.
Rizzo, Michael F. Buffalo’s Legacy of Power and Might. Buffalo, NY: Self-Published, 2011.
Rogovin, Milton. Lower West Side, Buffalo, New York. Buffalo: Albright-Knox Art Gallery, 1975.
Rogovin, Milton, and JoAnn Wypijewski. Triptychs: Buffalo’s Lower West Side Revisited. New York: W.W. Norton, 1994.
Sarna, Jonathan D. Jacksonian Jew: The Two Worlds of Mordecai Noah, Holmes & Meier Pub, 1981.
Schaus, Robert, and James Arnone. University At Buffalo Law School: 100 Years 1887-1987. Buffalo, NY: University of Buffalo Law Alumni Association, 1987.
Schneekloth, Lynda, Robert Shipley, and Thomas Yots. Olmsted in Buffalo and Niagara. Buffalo, NY: Urban Design Project, School of Architecture and Planning, State University of New York, Western New York Wares, Buffalo, 2011.
Scrivani, Maria. Brighter Buffalo: Renewing a City, History and Architecture. Buffalo, NY: Western New York Wares, Buffalo, NY, 2009.
Seller, Maxine., S. “The Education of Immigrant Children in Buffalo, New York 1890–1916,” New York History, Vol. 57, No. 2 (April 1976), pp. 183-199
Seller, Maxine S. Ethnic communities and Education in Buffalo, New York: Politics, Power, and Group Identity 1838-1978, with the assistance of Charles Reitz. Buffalo: State University of New York at Buffalo, 1979.
Semel, Nava, translated by Jessica Cohen. Isra Isle: A Novel. Mandel Vilar, Simsbury, CT, 2016.
Silsby, Robert W. Settlement to Suburb, A History of the Town of Tonawanda 1607-1986, Tonawanda, 1997.
Siggelkow, Richard A. Dissent and disruption: a university under siege. Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books, 1991.
Sobol, Julie Macfie, and Ken Sobol. Lake Erie: A Pictorial History. Boston, MA: Boston Mills Press Book, 2004.
Staple, Joan Lorch. Chance and Choice: My First Thirty Years. [no city]: Self-Published, lulu.com, 2007.
Staple, Joan Lorch. Change and Challenge: My Life After Thirty. [no city]: Self-Published, lulu.com, 2009.
Stave, Bruce M. “A Conversation with Michael H. Frisch.” Journal of Urban History; 17.2, 1991.
Stephenson, Shane E. Buffalo’s East Side Industry. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Press, 2016).
Sweeney, Daniel J. (comp.). History of Buffalo and Erie County, 1914-1919. Buffalo: The Committee of One Hundred, 1920.
Temple Beth El’s First Century: Centennial Souvenir Book. Buffalo: Temple Beth El, 1947.
Van Ness, Cynthia. Quotable Buffalo: The Most Marvelous and Maddening Things Ever Said about the Queen City. Buffalo, NY: Petite Printing, Western New York Wares, 2011.
Vogel, Charity. The Angola Horror: The 1867 Train Wreck that shocked the nation and transformed American Railroads. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2013.
Vogel, Michael, N. America’s Crossroads: Buffalo’s Canal Street/ Dante Place: the Making of a City. The Heritage Press, Western New York Heritage Institute, 1993. levations: Key Buildings of the Twentieth Century. London: Laurence King Publishing, 2004.
Williams, Lillian Serece. Strangers in the Land of Paradise. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1999.
Wolcott, Victoria W. “Recreation and Race in the Postwar City: Buffalo’s 1956 Crystal Beach Riot.” The Journal of American History 93, no. 1 (2006): 63-90.