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Finding Aids | The Breman Museum

Jewish Research and Education - Cuba Family Archives, Finding Aids

Dates:  ca. 1920-2008

Creator:  Congregation Agudath Achim (Savannah, Ga.)

Summary/Abstract:  This collection contains records created by and relating to Congregation Agudath Achim, a synagogue in Savannah, Georgia, that is affiliated with the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism.

Quantity/Physical Description: 9 linear feet (17 full boxes, 3 half boxes, and one oversize box)

Language(s):  English

Repository:  The Cuba Family Archives for Southern Jewish History, The William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum, 1440 Spring Street NW, Atlanta, Georgia 30309.

Restrictions on Access:  There are no restrictions on accessing material in this collection.

Restrictions on Use:  Copyright restrictions may apply.  Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright.  Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository and the copyright holder.

Preferred Citation:  Box #, Folder #, Mss 351, Congregation Agudath Achim Records, The Cuba Family Archives for Southern Jewish History, The William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum, 1440 Spring Street NW, Atlanta, Georgia 30309.

Acquisition:  Gift of Congregation Agudath Achim, 1997, 2002, 2010; gift of Helene Friedman, 1997.

Custodial History: The Congregation Agudath Achim Records are part of the Savannah Jewish Archives that were transferred from the Georgia Historical Society to the Breman Museum in 2015.

Separated Material:  Oversize Materials, Photographs

Processed by:  K. Anderson, V. Frey, M. Belanger, K. Kole, L. Stoudt, and L. Resnick

Arrangement:  The collection is organized in to six series: 1. General administrative records, 2: Anniversaries, 3: Board of Directors records, 4: Building and property records, 5: Organizations, and 6: Youth.

Biographical/Historical Note:  The State of Georgia granted incorporation as a religious society to “Congregation Agoodath Ahhim” in Savannah, Georgia on December 7, 1903. Organized initially as an Orthodox synagogue, it owned no building of its own but leased space in various halls and buildings. These early locations included Bryan Street between Barnard and Jefferson, West Congress Street and later the Hall of Eagles at Barnard and State streets. The Congregation purchased its first building, capable of holding 100 people, on Montgomery and York streets in 1919. The Congregation engaged its first cantor in 1927.

The first formal religious school for children was established in 1933. On September 22, 1940, the Congregation laid the cornerstone for a new synagogue at the corner of Drayton and East Waldburg streets. The new building was opened for the first time on June 22, 1941. Agoodath Ahhim became the first Conservative congregation in Georgia in 1945 when they joined the United Synagogue of America (now the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism). The name was not officially changed to “Congregation Agudath Achim” until 1950, when the original charter was renewed.

Congregation Agudath Achim is currently located at 9 Lee Boulevard. This property on Lee Boulevard and White Bluff Road on the southern side of Savannah was donated to the Congregation by J. Curtis Lewis in honor of Sam Steinberg. Formal groundbreaking ceremonies at the site were held on November 8, 1970. The Congregation moved to the new building on September 19, 1971. After a special mincha service held in the Drayton Street building, the Torah scrolls were removed from the Ark and taken in a procession to the new building, which was dedicated in 1972. The congregation remains committed to fostering the practice and principles of Conservative Judaism today.

Scope and Content:

The Congregation Agudath Achim records date from circa 1920 to 2008.  The collection consists of correspondence, minutes, programs, newsletters, clippings, financial records, membership records, bar mitzvah and bat mitzvah materials, confirmation class records, and scrapbooks.  Included are records of the following organizations affiliated with the congregation: Agudath Achim Brotherhood, Chevra Kadisha, Minyan Regulars, Agudath Achim Sisterhood and the religious school (the Shalom School). The collection is organized into the following series:

I: General Administrative Records: This series contains awards, agreements, clippings, committee records, correspondence, event materials, financial records, membership records, meeting materials, and files on rabbis and services. See Series 3 for executive committee and Board of Directors records.       

II: Anniversaries, 1922-2003: This series contains clippings, programs, photographic materials, and other records related to 50th, 60th, and 100th anniversary events. Also included are documents providing historical information about the congregation that were compiled for a 100th anniversary exhibit.

III: Board of Directors Records, 1971-2008: This series contains executive committee records, meeting agendas, and meeting minutes.

IV: Building and Property Records, 1922-1998: This series contains records pertaining to lots in Bonaventure Cemetery, easements, deeds, promissory notes, receipts, loan agreements, and property tax materials. Also included are records documenting the 1970s construction of the new synagogue on Lee Boulevard including booklets, clippings, drawings, plans, programs, and correspondence.

V: Organizations, 1946-2000: Consisting of five subseries; Brotherhood, Chevra Kadisha, Jewish Historical Committee, Minyan Regulars, and Sisterhood.

Brotherhood, 1957-1972: This subseries contains organizational guides, constitution, minutes, correspondence, and other documents from Agudath Achim’s men’s organization, affiliated with the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs.

Chevra Kadisha, 1930s-1997: Many of these records for the Hebrew burial organization are in Hebrew and Yiddish.  Also included in this subseries are banquet programs, invitations, instructional pages, and a speech.

Jewish Historical Committee, 1972-1975: This subseries contains records on the committee formed in 1974 in preparation for the bicentennial celebration of the United States in 1976.

Minyan Regulars, 1991: This subseries contains records documenting men who attended services on a regular basis. It consists of an invitation, letter informing of “minyanaire” status, and list of honorees for 1991 along with an undated service program.

Sisterhood, 1946-1997: This subseries contains the records of Agudath Achim’s women's organization, affiliated with the Women’s League for Conservative Judaism. It consists of Board of Director’s records, correspondence, financial records, meeting and event materials, and scrapbooks.

            VI: Youth, 1946-1992: Consisting of four subseries; Religious School, Bar/Bat Mitzvah, Confirmation Classes, and Outside Education.

Religious School, 1986-1988: This subseries contains the school constitution, standards, and correspondence, as well as information concerning teachers and advisors.

Bar/Bat Mitzvahs, 1960-1992: This subseries includes the proposed and adopted Bar Mitzvah school standards, Bar Mitzvah manuals, service information, community Bar Mitzvah schedules, correspondence and press releases related to Bar and Bat Mitzvahs (note: Bat Mitzvah and Bas Mitzvah are both terms for the same ritual).

Confirmation classes, 1946-1956: This subseries consists primarily of rosters and clippings.

Outside education, 1970-1988: This subseries includes folders on the Hebrew Community School, Institute of Jewish Education, and the Savannah Hebrew Day School.

VII: Newsletters, 1949-2011

VIII: Scrapbooks, 1954-1972

Collection Inventory

Series I: General administrative records, 1942-2007

Box

File

Description

Date

1

1

Administrative notebook

1984-1986

 

2

Administrative notebook

1984-1986

 

3

Awards

1949-1988

 

4

Caterer agreement

1982

 

5

Charter renewal

1924

 

6

Clippings

1942-2005

 

7

Clippings from Hayom newsletter

1964

 

8

Committee reports

1984-1996

 

9

Congregation meeting agendas and minutes

1972-1983

 

10

Congregation meeting invitations

1995-1996

 

11

Congregation meetings programs

1995-1998

 

12

Congregation meeting

2007

 

13

Special congregation meeting

2007

 

14

Congregational questionnaires

1988-1991

 

15

Constitution

1985

 

16

Correspondence

1983-1999

 

17

Correspondence (Fred Lehrberger)

1995-1996

 

18

Memos

1987-1988

 

19

Cranman Insurance

1990-1992

 

20

Drawing of unidentified woman

1948

 

21

Education and camp scholarships

1987-1988

 

22

Events

1951-1995

 

23

Cantorial concert featuring Isaac Goodfriend

1984

 

24

Cantorial concert featuring Chaim Najman

1986

 

25

Cantorial concert featuring Isaac Goodfriend

1988

 

26

Facility rental fee schedule

2005-2006

 

27

Financial notebook

1967-1972

Box

File

Description

Date

2

1

Financial ledgers

1974-1978

 

2

Financial records

1983-1993

 

3

Budget

1989-1990

 

4

Budget

1995-1996

 

5

Donations

1952-1981

 

6

Endowment

1995-1996

 

7

Yom Kippur pledges

ca. 1988

 

8

Funeral record forms

1969-1987

 

9

Hayom advertising

1982-1988

 

10

Honorials and Memorials

1970-1985

 

11

History

undated

 

12

Kiddushes

1996-1997

 

13

Letterhead

pre-1970

 

14

Membership applications, A-M

1960s-1980s

 

15

Membership applications, N-Z

1960s-1980s

Box

File

Description

Date

3

1

Membership directory of moves

1969

 

2

Membership dues ledger, A-L

1972-1979

 

3

Membership dues ledger, M-Z

1972-1979

 

4

Membership lists

1973-1985

 

5

New members

1983-1986

 

6

“Mitzvah of Keruv” in Conservative Judaism

1982

 

7

Rabbinical Assembly

1992

 

8

Rabbi engagement agreement

1995

 

9

Rabbis- Gold, Raphael

1982-1990

 

10

Rabbis- Grundfast, Stephen H.

1988-1992

 

11

Rabbis- Potack, Jerry

1991-1992

 

12

Rabbis- Wolkoff, Robert L.

1995-1996

 

13

Savannah fact sheet

undated

Box

File

Description

Date

4

1

Services- holy services assignments

1989-1992

 

2

Services- service schedules

1990-1991

 

3

Services- programs

1993-2001

 

4

Services- miscellaneous

1946, undated

 

5

Speech

1987

 

6

Synagogue reservations

1993-1994

 

7

Synagogue seat purchases

ca. 1970

 

8

United Synagogue of America

1987-1989

 

9

Wedding procedures

undated

Series II: Anniversaries, 1922-2003

 

10

50th Anniversary

1951

 

11

60th Anniversary

1961

 

12

Centennial anniversary- clippings

2003

 

13

Centennial anniversary

2003

 

14

Centennial anniversary- documents and history

1922-1926

 

15

Centennial anniversary- documents and history

1931-1969

 

16

Centennial anniversary- bar mitzvahs

1963-1996

Box

File

Description

Date

5

1

Centennial anniversary- bat mitzvahs

1953-2002

 

2

Centennial anniversary- birthdays and anniversaries

1967-1995

 

3

Centennial anniversary- building on Montgomery Street

undated

 

4

Centennial anniversary- building on Lee Blvd

1969

 

5

Centennial anniversary- building dedication

1972

 

6

Centennial anniversary- confirmations

1946-1954

 

7

Centennial anniversary- sisterhood

1970s

 

8

Centennial anniversary- bazaar

1970s

 

9

Centennial anniversary- special occasions

1946-2002

 

10

Centennial anniversary- youth

1955-1972

Series III: Board of Directors records, 1971-2008

5

11

Executive committee records

1988

 

12

Board information from Rita

2006

 

13

Meeting agendas and minutes

1973-1981

 

14

Meeting agendas and minutes

1987-1997

 

15

Meeting agendas and minutes

2001

 

16

Meeting agendas and minutes

2002

 

17

Meeting agendas and minutes

2003

Box

File

Description

Date

6

1

Board meeting minutes

2004

 

2

Board meeting minutes

2005

 

3

Board meeting minutes

Jan. 3, 2006

 

4

Board meeting minutes

Feb. 7, 2006

 

5

Board meeting minutes

Mar. 7, 2006

 

6

Board meeting minutes

Apr. 4, 2006

 

7

Board meeting minutes

May 2, 2006

 

8

Board meeting minutes

Jun. 6, 2006

 

9

Board meeting minutes

Aug. 21, 2006

 

10

Board meeting minutes

Sep. 12, 2006

 

11

Board meeting minutes

Oct. 3, 2006

 

12

Board meeting minutes

Nov. 7, 2006

 

13

Board meeting minutes

Dec. 5, 2006

Box

File

Description

Date

7

1

Board meeting minutes

Feb. 7, 2007

 

2

Board meeting minutes

Mar. 6, 2007

 

3

Board meeting minutes

Apr. 12, 2007

 

4

Board meeting minutes

May 1, 2007

 

5

Board meeting minutes

Jun. 5, 2007

 

6

Board meeting minutes- special meeting

Jun. 19, 2007

 

7

Board meeting minutes- special meeting

Jun. 29, 2007

 

8

Board meeting minutes

Sep. 4, 2007

 

9

Board meeting minutes

Oct. 2, 2007

 

10

Board meeting minutes

Nov. 6, 2007

 

11

Board meeting minutes

Dec. 3, 2007

 

12

Board meeting minutes

Jan. 8, 2008

 

13

Board meeting minutes

Feb. 19, 2008

 

14

Miscellaneous

1965-1996

 

15

Resolutions

1964-1989

 

16

Rosters

1969-1997

 

17

Treasurer’s reports

1972-1976

Series IV: Building and Property Records, 1922-1998

Box

File

Description

Date

8

1

Property records

1922-1986

 

2

Parsonage- 404 Wheeler Street

1985-1995

 

3

Planning for Lee Boulevard synagogue

1969-1970

 

4

Specifications for the Construction of a New Synagogue for the Congregation Agudath Achim, by Leon J. Myer, architect

1970

 

5

Construction of Lee Blvd. synagogue

1970-1972

 

6

Completion of Lee Blvd. synagogue

1972

 

7

Equipment manuals, drawings, and specifications

1971

 

8

Men’s restroom project

1996-1997

 

9

Handicap restroom project

1997-1998

Series V: Organizations, 1946-2000

8

10

Brotherhood organizational guides

undated

 

11

Brotherhood minutes

1957-1962

 

12

Brotherhood correspondence

1959-1972

 

13

Brotherhood miscellaneous

1962-1972, undated

 

14

Chevra Kadisha minutes, financial reports, and membership

1930s

 

15

Translations of Chevra Kadisha records

1931-1940

Box

File

Description

Date

9

1

Chevra Kadisha minutes, financial reports, and membership

1940s

 

2

Chevra Kadisha minutes, financial reports, and membership

1970-1993

 

3

Chevra Kadisha miscellaneous

1950-ca. 1997

 

4

Jewish Historical Committee correspondence

1972-1975

 

5

Jewish Historical Committee miscellaneous

1973-1974

 

6

Minyan Regulars miscellaneous

1991

 

7

Sisterhood minutes

1947-1949

 

8

Sisterhood minutes

1951-1959

 

9

Sisterhood minutes

1971-1976

 

10

Sisterhood minutes

1977-1978

 

11

Sisterhood minutes

1977-1980

 

12

Sisterhood minutes

1980-1981

 

13

Sisterhood minutes

1981-1982

 

14

Sisterhood minutes

1982-1983

 

15

Sisterhood minutes

1983

 

16

Sisterhood minutes

1985-1986

 

17

Sisterhood minutes

1984-1987

Box

File

Description

Date

10

1

Sisterhood officers lists

1946-1997

 

2

Sisterhood board procedures

1960

 

3

Sisterhood community calendar

1975-1982

 

4

Sisterhood calendar records

1983-1991

 

5

Sisterhood calendar books

1973-1991

 

6

Sisterhood calendar books

1992-1995

 

7

Sisterhood – central directory of the Jewish Community of Savannah

1982

 

8

Sisterhood newspaper articles

1955-1976

 

9

Sisterhood committees list

undated

 

10

Sisterhood constitution and bylaws

1963-1972

 

11

Sisterhood correspondence

1957-1997

 

12

Sisterhood correspondence – Freda Friedman

1975-1977

Box

File

Description

Date

11

1

Sisterhood- Adult education

1976

 

2

Sisterhood- list of children in A.A. religious school

undated

 

3

Sisterhood budget

1947-1952

 

4

Sisterhood budget

1968-1995

 

5

Sisterhood receipts, statements, and payables

1973-1977

 

6

Sisterhood tablecloths

1973-1974

 

7

Sisterhood treasurer’s ledger

1940-1951

 

8

Sisterhood- general meeting minutes

1975-1976

 

9

Sisterhood- gift shop

1977

 

10

Sisterhood- “Grace after Meals” by Mrs. William Fertig

undated

 

11

Sisterhood- inventory

1981

 

12

Sisterhood- JEA artwork

1968

 

13

Sisterhood- Jewish Theological Seminary awards

1974-1996

 

14

Sisterhood- Jewish Theological Seminary Bulletin

1976-1982

 

15

Sisterhood- Jewish Theological Seminary Chancellor’s Report

1979-1982

 

16

Sisterhood- leadership guidelines

undated

 

17

Sisterhood- library

1974-1995

 

18

Sisterhood- membership lists

1974-1977

 

19

Sisterhood- “pledge of fealty”

undated

 

20

Sisterhood- Presidents of Adult Jewish Organizations list

1975-1980

 

21

Sisterhood- program flyers

1970-1997

 

22

Sisterhood- program records

1970-1983

 

23

Sisterhood- committee on services to Jewish residents of nursing homes

1974

 

24

Sisterhood- Statement of Purpose

undated

Box

File

Description

Date

12

1

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1955-1958

 

2

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1961-1965

 

3

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1966-1969

 

4

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1970-1973

 

5

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1974-1976

 

6

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1976-1977

Box

File

Description

Date

13

1

Women’s League 60th Anniversary

1978

 

2

Women’s League biennial – Helene Friedman

1978

 

3

Women’s League biennial – Helene Friedman

1978

 

4

Women’s League biennial – Helene Friedman

1978

 

5

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1978

 

6

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1978

Box

File

Description

Date

14

1

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1979-1980

 

2

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1981-1982

 

3

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1981-1982

 

4

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1982

 

5

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1983-1985

 

6

Sisterhood-Membership programming

1984-1985

Box

File

Description

Date

15

1

Women’s League for Conservative Judaism

1986-1997

 

2

Women’s League – Purim Manual

1976

 

3

They Dared to Dream: A History of the National Women’s League

1967

 

4

Sisterhood- scrapbook

1979

Series VI: Youth, 1946-1992

 

5

AA religious school- organization and creation

1984

 

6

AA religious school- memos and correspondence

1986-1988

 

7

AA religious school- miscellaneous

undated

 

8

Bar/Bat Mitzvahs- standards

undated

 

9

Bar/Bat Mitzvahs- manuals

1990-1992

 

10

Bar/Bat Mitzvahs- schedules

1969-1986

 

11

Bar/Bat Mitzvahs- correspondence

1966-1971

 

12

Bar/Bat Mitzvahs- newspaper announcements (A-E)

1963-1975

 

13

Bar/Bat Mitzvahs- newspaper announcements (F-K)

1963-1975

 

14

Bar/Bat Mitzvahs- newspaper announcements (L-W)

1963-1975

 

15

Bar/Bat Mitzvahs- miscellaneous

1970-1980

 

16

Confirmation classes- miscellaneous

1946-1957

 

17

Hebrew Community School

1970, undated

 

18

Institute of Jewish Education

1981

 

19

Savannah Hebrew Day School

1977-1979

 

20

Jewish education- miscellaneous

1979-1982

 

21

Youth- miscellaneous

1988

Series VII: Newsletters, 1949-2011

Box

File

Description

Date

16

1

Bulletin

1949

 

2

Bulletin

1950

 

3

Chronicle

1959

 

4

Chronicle

1960

 

5

Chronicle

September 1965

 

6

Bulletin

1972-1973

 

7

Bulletin

1974

 

8

Bulletin

1975

 

9

Hayom

1981, 1986

 

10

Hayom

1987

 

11

Bulletin

March 1991

 

12

Hayom

June 1993

 

13

Hayom

1997

 

14

Hayom

1998

 

15

Hayom

1999

 

16

Hayom

2000

Box

File

Description

Date

17

1

Hayom

2000

 

2

Hayom

2001

 

3

Hayom

2002

 

4

Hayom

2003

 

5

Hayom

2004

 

6

Hayom

2005

 

7

Hayom

2006

 

8

Hayom

2007

Box

File

Description

Date

18

1

Hayom

2008

 

2

Hayom

2009-2010

 

3

Hayom

2011

Box

File

Description

Date

19

1

Hayom (bound volume)

1982-1985

 

2

Hayom (bound volume)

1986

VIII: Scrapbooks, 1952-1972

Box

File

Description

Date

20

 

Sisterhood scrapbook

1946-1947

 

 

Sisterhood scrapbook

1947-1949

 

 

Sisterhood scrapbook

1951-1952

 

 

Sisterhood scrapbook

1952-1953

 

 

Sisterhood scrapbook

1953-1954

 

 

Sisterhood scrapbook

1956-1960

 

 

Sisterhood scrapbook

1959-1961

 

 

Sisterhood scrapbook

1962

Box

File

Description

Date

21

1

Sisterhood scrapbook (oversize)

1972

 

2

Sisterhood financial ledger

1951-1962

 

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