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Jewish Heritage: The Oral Histories - Cuba Family Archives

MEMOIRIST:                     JUDITH GROSSMAN TAYLOR (1936-  )

INTERVIEWER:                 ANN H. SCHOENBERG

DATES:                             MARCH 10, 2003

                                         AUGUST 5, 2003

LOCATION:                       ATLANTA, GEORGIA

ID#:                                  10716

NUMBER OF PAGES:         99

Transcript (PDF)

BIOGRAPHY:

Judith Grossman Taylor was born in 1936 in Brooklyn, New York.  Her parents were Sid and Sylvia Edison Grossman.  Her family was ardent Zionists and she is related to Robert and Bert Travis, both very active in the Zionist Organization of America.  Her father’s family hailed from the Russia/Lithuania although her mother was born in the United States.  He father owned a fur dyeing business called Central Fury Dye in Manhattan in New York City.  Judith spent her summers on a farm in the country or at camp.  Judith attended Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts at the age of 16.  After college she went to work as a secretary in a public relations firm on Madison Avenue. 

She met her husband, Mark Taylor, on one of her many trips to Atlanta to visit her relatives, the Travises.  They began dating and were married in 1957.  She and Mark have three children: Charles, Kenneth and Elaine who are also active in the Jewish and civic community.  Mark, together with his father Charles, was in real estate development.  The Taylors are art collectors and have donated works of art to the High Museum of Art in Atlanta. 

Judith has been active in Hadassah, Brandeis Women’s Committee, United Way, National Council of Jewish Women, the Bicentennial Commission, HOPE [Help our Public Schools], Criminal Justice Coordinating Council, Child Advocacy Coalition, Leadership Atlanta, League of Women Voters, Atlanta Women’s Foundation, and the William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum.

 

SCOPE OF INTERVIEW:

Judith recalls her family and childhood in Brooklyn, New York including her family’s Zionism, their use of the Yiddish language, attending Zionist summer camps, and her remarkable paternal grandparents, who became proud Americans.  She remembers attending Brandeis University at age 15, which at the time was so new it was not accredited, but it was “a Jewish school” to which her parents “could feel comfortable about sending this young light of their lives away at the tender age of 15.”  Judith recalls how she majored in psychology and took classes from Abraham Maslow.  She enjoyed an active social life.

Judith spoke about her regular trips to Atlanta to visit the Robert and Bert Travis (her aunt and uncle), both ardent Zionists.  During one such trip she met Mark Taylor and recalls the pitfalls of how they eventually began dating and were finally married in 1957.  Judith recalls moving to Atlanta where she was exposed to a very different Jewish and social milieu that she had in New York.  She describes joining Hadassah and getting involved with Hadassah Education Day, when she produced Janice Rothschild’s one act play with two black actors—only to find out later that that just wasn’t done in Atlanta.

Judith spoke of the myriad of activities and organizations she has been involved in over the years in both the Jewish and general community and the many prominent leaders in the Atlanta community including Shirley Franklin and Johnnetta Cole.  She recalls her involvement with Hadassah, Brandeis Women’s Committee, United Way, National Council of Jewish Women, the Bicentennial Commission, HOPE [Help our Public Schools], Leadership Atlanta, League of Women Voters, and the William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum over the years.

Judith describes in detail her in-laws, Esther and Herbert Taylor, and she and Mark’s children (Charles [Chuck], Kenneth and Elaine), their childhood, education, social activities, achievements, Jewish involvement, marriages, children and their accomplishments.

Judith also discusses she and her husband, Mark’s, interest in art collecting and their involvement with the art world including the High Museum of Art.

 

KEYWORDS:

Abram, Bernard

Art collecting

Asher, Barbara Miller

Atlanta, Georgia—Growth

Aleph Zadik Aleph (AZA)

Atlanta Community Foundation

Atlanta Women’s Fundation

Baker and bakeries

Bar mitzvah

Berit milah

Bicentennial Commission

Blumberg, Janice Oettenger Rothschild

Bowling

B’nai B’rith Youth Organization (BBYO)

Brandeis University—Waltham, Massachusetts

Brandeis University—National Women’s Committee

Bris

Brooklyn, New York

Busbee, George (Governor)

Camps, summer

Carter, James Earl (Jimmy) (President)

Central Fur Dye—New York City, New York

Child Advocacy Coalition

Circumcision

Criminal Justice Coordinating Council

Cole, Johnnetta

Congregation Ahavath Achim—Atlanta, Georgia

Congregation Shearith Israel—Atlanta, Georgia

Cornell University—Ithaca, New York

Council for Children

Council for Judaism

Coverdell, Paul (Senator)

Diabetes

Discrimination

Equal Rights Amendment (ERA)

Federal Emergency Management Assistance (FEMA)

Frances Travel—Atlanta, Georgia

Franklin, Shirley

Friedman, Benny

Fur industry and trade

Grossman, Sylvia Edison

Grossman, Sid

Hadassah

Hadassah education day

Halutzim (pioneer)

Harlem (New York City)

Harris, Joe Frank (Governor)

Hebrew language

High Museum of Art—Atlanta, Georgia

Immigration

Israel

Jewish Family Services

Judaism, Reconstructionist

Judaism, Reform

Judaism—Customs and practices

Kahn, Louis

Kashrut

Kosher

Kranz, Phillip (Rabbi)

Leadership Atlanta

Lithuania

Louis Kahn Home—Atlanta, Georgia

Lovett School—Atlanta, Georgia

Maddox, Lester (Governor)

Manhattan (New York City)

Marx, David (Rabbi)

Metropolitan Foundation

National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW)

Ofyn Pripetshik

Organization for Rehabilitation through Training (ORT)

Palestine

Parent-Teacher Association (PTA)

Passover

Planned Parenthood

Plaza Drugs—Atlanta, Georgia

Private schools

Public schools

Public schools, prayer

Racism

Real estate development

Seders

Sisterhoods

Stein, Jules

Sunday school, Jewish

Taylor, Charles (son)

Taylor, Charles (paternal grandfather)

Taylor, Esther Kahn

Taylor, Herbert

Taylor, Kenneth

Taylor, Mark

Taylor Bakery—Atlanta, Georgia

Temple—Atlanta, Georgia

Temple Beth El—Atlanta, Georgia

Temple Sinai—Atlanta, Georgia

Travel agencies

Travis, Bert

Travis, Robert

United Service Organization (USO)

United Way

Williamsburg, New York

Wine

World War, 1914-1918

World War, 1939-1945

Yiddish language

Yiddishkeit

Zionism

Zionist Organization of America (ZOA)

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