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Meet our summer Archives Assistant!

by Molly Lohner


Hi everyone! My name is Molly Lohner and I will be your Archives Assistant this summer. I was born and raised in Montreal and I just graduated from McGill with a Bachelor of Arts in History and a minor in Philosophy. This summer I am also working as a tour guide leading the Museum of Jewish Montreal’s Beyond the Bagel food tour, which explores historic and modern Jewish food businesses in the Mile End. As a Montreal Jew, I have always been curious about what life was like for this community in decades past. I feel so lucky to get to investigate this history as part of both of my jobs this summer. 


What will I be doing?

As Archives Assistant, my role is to help the Archivist, Hannah, with various archiving tasks. So far, I have been writing blog posts and going through a box of papers from Rabbi Abramowitz. I am also excited to start helping to curate material for the museum.


What have I found so far?

Rabbi Dr. Herman Abramowitz was the Rabbi of the congregation from 1902 to 1947. He was recruited shortly after he graduated with a doctorate and a rabbinical ordination from the Jewish Theological Seminary, the rabbinical school associated with the Conservative movement. 


I was surprised to find how much material in his box was related to the education programs that took place at the Shaar. He seems to have been very passionate about the Jewish value of educating one’s children and dedicated much of his time to overseeing the afternoon Hebrew school and Sunday religious school. 


I have also been fascinated by the material related to the Rabbi’s chaplaincy work. He was a chaplain for the Jewish Canadian members of the British forces during the First World War; during the Second World War, he chaired the committee that appointed Jewish chaplains for the Canadian forces.

Monday, June 17, 2024 11 Sivan 5784