08 November 2006

History nearly tossed in garbage

History disappears by accident every day.

The Educational Alliance, one of the oldest Jewish settlement houses in New York City, nearly lost some of its heritage that had been stored in a paper bag, forgotten on an auditorium balcony.

Help is on the way, however, according to the New York Times.

It is to rescue records like these, scattered among five agencies that helped Jews settle and adapt in New York City throughout the 20th century, that the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, a partner of the Center for Jewish History in Manhattan, is undertaking a three-year archival project. The effort, granted $225,000 from the Milstein family and the Howard P. Milstein Foundation, was scheduled to be announced today.

The work, called the Milstein Jewish Communal Archive Project, is planned as a model for preserving the archives of such Jewish agencies nationwide and making the records available to scholars, students and genealogists. It will eventually include a Web site, digitized documents, conferences and fellowships.

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