Skip to main content

Banov family papers

Identifier: Mss 1025

Collection Overview

Writings, correspondence, clippings, financial, organizational, and other materials documenting the personal and professional interests of the Banov family of Charleston, South Carolina. Materials associated with Dr. Leon Banov Jr. relate to his presidency of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim from 1965 to 1967, his participation in its cemetery committee, published writings, and the N. Edgar Miles M.D. scholarship fund. Materials associated with Rita Landesman Banov relate to her presidency of Charleston's Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim from 1981 to 1983, her participation in national, regional, and local Jewish organizations including the National Council of Jewish Women, the Southeast Federation of Temple Sisterhoods, the Hebrew Orphan Society, the Ladies Benevolent Society, and the Jewish Community Center, as well as her teaching materials for the Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim religious school. Materials associated with Alan Banov relate to his participation as corresponding secretary and senior board member of the South East Federation of Temple Youth. There are also financial materials, correspondence, and promotional materials related to the Clarotype Company Inc. Also included are materials associated with Dr. Leon Banov Jr. and Rita Landesman Banov's activities as congregants of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim. A large portion of this series consists of material related to the 1974 Reform Judaism sesquicentennial anniversary organized by the couple. History, administrative, publications, events, and clippings relate to the operation, membership, and activities of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim synagogue.


  • Creation: 1889-2005


Language of Material

Materials in English

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Copyright Notice

The nature of the College of Charleston's archival holdings means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. Special Collections claims only physical ownership of most archival materials.

The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

Biographical Note

Dr. Leon Banov Jr. (1914-2007) was born December 19, 1914, in Charleston, South Carolina to Minnie Monash Banov (1889-1985) and Dr. Leon Banov (1888-1971), Charleston County's Public Health Director. Dr. Banov Jr. graduated from the College of Charleston in 1937 with a B.S. degree in history, and from the Medical University of South Carolina with a M.D. in 1941. After internships, assistantships, and residencies in Baltimore, Washington, and Cleveland, Banov returned to Charleston where he practiced proctology for the next 55 years. He also served as Clinical Professor Emeritus of Surgery at the Medical University of South Carolina, was on the surgical staff of the Saint Francis Xavier Hospital, the Charleston Memorial Hospital, Roper Hospital, and Baker Hospital. In addition he was president of the Waring Library Society, the Piedmont Proctological Society, the Charleston County Medical Society, and the Coastal Medical Society. He was also a member of the Rotary Club of Charleston and was a founding director of the Bank of South Carolina, serving on its board for many years. He wrote more than 60 articles on the history of proctology and surgery. In 1973 he was selected to be on the first Food and Drug Administrative Panel regarding hemorrhoidal drugs, and in 1978 testified to the National Commission of Digestive Diseases. He was a member Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim and from 1965 to 1967 served as its president.

Rita Landesman Banov (1920-2002) was born December 7, 1920, in Newark, New Jersey, to Blanche Maybaum Landesman (1896-1991) and Henry Landesman (1890-1955). She was a graduate of Goucher College, Baltimore, Maryland, with a pre-med major. She participated on the boards of Family Services, the USO travelers' aid group, the Community Chest, the Charleston Chapter of the American Cancer Society, the Charleston Museum, and Porter-Gaud Academy. As a member of the Ladies Benevolent Society, she served as secretary, junior superintendent and superintendent; for her contributions she was made an honorary life member. She served as president of the National Council of Jewish Women and the Southeast Federation of Temple Sisterhoods. She was the first woman elected to membership in the historic Hebrew Orphan Society as well as the first woman elected president of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim. In addition she taught in the congregation's religious school, was an advisor to the Temple Youth Group, and served as board member, secretary, vice president, and president of the Temple Sisterhood. She also served on the evaluation committees for both the Jewish Community Center and the Charleston Jewish Federation and headed the latter's Jewish Community Relations Committee. The couple had two children: Alan Banov and Jane Banov Bergen.

In 1974 the couple organized a weekend celebration of the 150th anniversary of Reform Judaism in America and of the efforts of Isaac Harby in his role in the founding of The Reformed Society of Israelites. Held at Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim, the program featured religious services, receptions, and lectures by Rabbi Malcolm H. Stern and Rabbi Sanford Shapiro. Many of Isaac Harby's descendants took part in the events. The couple also worked, as secretary and treasurer, for the Clarotype Company Inc. Founded in 1920 by Leon Banov Sr. and George Mood, the company sold Clar-o-type, a cleansing compound for typewriters, and Flip-it finger moistener.


3.0 linear feet (7 document boxes, 1 oversize folder)


Writings, correspondence, clippings, financial, organizational, and other materials documenting the personal and professional interests of the Banov family of Charleston, South Carolina. Materials relate to Dr. Leon Banov Jr., proctologist and president of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim from 1965 to 1967, Rita Landesman Banov, community service volunteer and president of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim from 1981 to 1983, and their son, Alan Banov. Materials also relate to the 150th anniversary celebration of Reform Judaism in America organized by the couple and held at Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim, the birthplace of Reform Judaism in the United States.

Collection Arrangement

  1. Banov family, 1913-2003
  2. Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim, 1941-2005

Acquisitions Information

Materials donated in 1995, 2004, and 2008 by Dr. Leon Banov Jr., Rita Landesman Banov, and Jane Banov Bergen.

Related Material

Related materials in Special Collections include the Edna Ginsberg Banov papers (Mss 1039) and oral history interviews with Edna Ginsberg Banov (Mss 1035-045, Mss 1035-046, and Mss 1035-048), Abel Banov (Mss 1035-060), and Leon Banov Jr. (Mss 1035-240).

Processing Information

Processed by Joshua Minor, June 2012.

Inventory of the Banov Family Papers, 1889-2005
Processed by: Joshua Minor; machine-readable finding aid created by: Joshua Minor
Description rules
Language of description
Script of description
Funding from the Council on Library and Information Resources supported the processing of this collection and encoding of the finding aid.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Repository

Special Collections
College of Charleston Libraries
66 George Street
Charleston South Carolina 29424
(843) 953-8016
(843) 953-6319 (Fax)