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Charleston Jewish Community Relations Committee papers

Identifier: Mss 1020

Collection Overview

Includes correspondence, minutes, typescripts, carbons, newspapers, photocopies of clippings, printed matter. Correspondence (1959-1966) is primarily that of Nat Shulman (1914-2000), as secretary and member of the Community Relations Committee, but also regarding his role as executive director of the Jewish Community Center. Correspondents include other members of the committee, representatives of the National Community Relations Advisory Council and other national groups, local Rabbis, such as Hersh Galinsky, Nachum Rabinovitch, Jordan Taxon, and Burton Padoll, Charleston ministers and citizens, and Joe Mosesman of the Savannah (GA) Jewish Council sharing information re racial conditions in Savannah, censorship of books in Savannah high schools (1961), merchant boycotts, and other topics. Main issues discussed include fighting to change Sunday opening (or "Blue") Laws, triggered by arrest of merchant Aaron Solomon (1917- 1991), and also triggering a threat of a law suit (1962) between a congregant and a Rabbi; attempts to aid integration, such as a call (1961) to form a bi-racial committee with reports on similar committees in other cities; attempts to avoid sit ins and merchant boycotts. Many letters refer to antisemitism in the South (with some antisemitic literature); mentions of such groups as the Ku Klux Klan and the Grass Roots League, with a copy of one of latter's publications; refusal of Charleston private school Ashley Hall to accommodate Jewish boarding students; judicial rulings regarding prayer and religion in the schools. Includes immigration laws; alleged unethical advertising practices of the Southern Jewish Weekly; the "Israel Cohen" hoax (1963), falsely attributing a Communist plot to stir up racial animosities to a fictitious Jewish author; the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom (1963) and related topics. Incomplete (?) typed and carbon minutes (1960-63, 65-67) of monthly and special meetings deal with many of the same topics as the correspondence. Clippings cover such matters as controversies over enforcement and attempts to change Sunday closing laws (ca. 1962, 1966); racial matters of integration and segregation, sit-ins, etc; religion and prayer in the schools and judicial rulings (ca. 1963); communism, antisemitism; and the trial of Adolf Eichmann (1906-1962). Also included are printed matter of the National Community Relations Advisory Council, three copies (1960-65) of the anti-Communist paper, Common Sense, and one copy (c. 1966) of the Ku Klux Klan publication, "The Fiery Cross."


  • Creation: 1958-1967

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

Fostered by the Charleston Jewish Welfare Fund and the Charleston Jewish Community Center, the Community Relations Committee began holding regular meetings in 1960 with Nat Shulman (1914-2000) as Secretary. He, along with other members and subsequent officers including Thomas J. Tobias (1906-1970), Bernard J. Olasov and others met to work on issues affecting the relationship of Charleston Jews and the larger community. With advice from the National Community Relations Advisory Council, local rabbis, and community officials, the committee worked on such issues as Sunday closing ("Blue") laws, segregation and integration issues, housing and schooling discrimination, antisemitism, religion in the schools, and other issues.


1.25 linear feet

Language of Materials


Acquisitions Information

Materials donated by Michael F. Abidor for the Jewish Community Center and the Charleston Jewish Welfare Fund.

Inventory of the Charleston Jewish Community Relations Committee Papers, 1958-1967
Processed by: Special Collections staff; finding aid created by: Special Collections staff
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Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Repository

Special Collections
College of Charleston Libraries
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Charleston South Carolina 29424
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