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Jewish Heritage: The Oral Histories - Cuba Family Archives

MEMOIRIST:           CLARA LAZAR FELDMAN

INTERVIEWER:        ANITA EIDEX

DATES:                     FEBRUARY 22, 2005

LOCATION:               ATLANTA, GEORGIA

SPONSORED BY:     Taylor Family Fund

CITATION:                Clara Lazar Feldman, February 22, 2005, OHC10193, p. xx from the Herbert and Esther Taylor Oral History Collection, Cuba Family Archives for Southern Jewish History at the Breman Museum, Atlanta, Georgia.

Transcript (PDF)

BIOGRAPHY 

Clara Lazar Feldman was born on September 23, 1928 in Atlanta, Georgia.  She was the daughter of Polish immigrant parents.  Upon arrival in the United States Clara’s parents initially lived in New York.  Later, seeking a better climate due to her father’s poor health, they moved to be with his distant cousin in Atlanta.

Clara’s parents owned a series of stores in Atlanta, including grocery stores, a drug store, a liquor store, and an ice cream store.  While growing up Clara worked with her mother in some of these stores.  Her father passed away when Clara was twelve years old. Two years later Clara’s mother married the Atlanta cousin with whom they had initially lived.

When growing up Clara was active in the Ruthonian Intermediate Club and B’nai B’rith Girls.  Her social life centered around the Alliance, which she frequented for club meetings, basketball, conventions, and socials.  Her family belonged to Congregation Shearith Israel. As a teenager Clara attended, and graduated from Girls’ High. 

Clara married Sidney H. Feldman when she was eighteen years old.  He was the brother of a schoolmate of Clara’s.  After his service in the Navy during World War II the two began dating and were married in 1947 by Rabbi Geffen and Rabbi Friedman of Shearith Israel.  As a young couple they were active members of the Progressive Club where they met many of people who were, or who were to become, the leaders of the Atlanta Jewish community, and the Atlanta community in general. Through these contacts, Sidney became an active community member.

Clara and Sidney had four children, Linda Bressler, Terri Bagen, Lewis Feldman, and Michael Feldman.  At the time of the interview, they had eleven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.   Clara belonged to Hadassah and the Council of Jewish Women.  Through the Council she taught English as a Second Language and was active in the programs to resettle Russian immigrants.  She was active in the Shearith Israel Sisterhood and served for a period as its President. 

Scope of Interview

Clara discusses her family and their immigration to the United States, including their marriage in New York and their subsequent move to Atlanta. She relates that after her father passed away, her mother married a distant cousin of her father’s.  Clara recounts growing up in Atlanta, becoming involved in various Jewish youth organizations, and regularly attending the Alliance. She speaks of her courtship and subsequent marriage to Sidney.  Clara touches on the contacts she and her husband had in Atlanta and their ties to organizations in the Atlanta Jewish community.  Clara elaborates on the importance of family in her daily life and the pride she takes in her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.

 

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