Access and Provenance

Biographical Sketch

Scope and Content Note

Box and Folder Listing



A Finding Aid to the

Freiberg Family Papers

Manuscript Collection No. 716

1900-2003. 0.8 Linear ft.



The FREIBERG FAMILY PAPERS were donated to the American Jewish Archives by Dr. Richard Freiberg in 2004. Property rights are assigned to the American Jewish Archives. Literary rights to materials are held by the individual author or his/her heirs. Questions concerning rights should be addressed to the Director of the American Jewish Archives.

The FREIBERG FAMILY PAPERS are open to all users and available in the reading room of the American Jewish Archives


Albert Freiberg (1868-1940)
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, on August 17, 1868 to Joseph and Amalia Freiberg, Albert Henry Freiberg became one of the preeminent Orthopedic Surgeons of his time. He obtained his M.D. in 1890 from the Medical College of Ohio (now the University of Cincinnati Medical School). He studied in Wurzburg, Strassburg, Berlin, Paris, Vienna and London during his graduate years and began his practice in Cincinnati in 1894. He served as a professor of orthopedic surgery at the University of Cincinnati from 1902-1939 and was an emeritus professor until his death. He was the first head of the school’s orthopedic department as well as director of the orthopedic surgery services at the Cincinnati General, Jewish and Children’s hospitals in Cincinnati. He published extensively in medical journals. During World War I he was a member of the advisory council on orthopedic surgery at Walter Reed Hospital in Washington, D.C. and obtained the rank of Major in the U.S. Army Medical corps.

Dr. Albert Freiberg served as Chairman of the Professional Advisory Committee on Crippled Children, Department of Public Welfare of Ohio, and Chairman of the Executive Orthopedic Council of the Georgia Warm Springs Foundation, which was established by Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the late 1920’s. He was a fellow of the America College of Surgeons, the American Orthopedic Association (which he served as president of in 1910), and the American Medical Association. He also served on the Board of Governors of Hebrew Union College from 1926-1940. Albert Freiberg married Jeannette Freiberg on December 1, 1897 daughter of Julius Freiberg. They had two children, Joseph Albert and Albert Maurice Freiberg. Dr. Albert Freiberg died in Cincinnati on July 14, 1940.

Joseph Freiberg (1898-1973)
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, on October 3, 1898 to Albert and Jeanette Freiberg, Joseph Henry Freiberg followed in his father’s footsteps and became a leading orthopedic surgeon. Joseph Freiberg received his A.B. from Harvard in 1920, his M.S. in Biochemistry from the University of Cincinnati in 1922 and his M.D. from the University of Cincinnati in 1923. He interned at Cincinnati General Hospital from 1923-1924 and served as assistant surgical resident of Cincinnati General Hospital from 1924-1925. He did graduate orthopedic training at Boston Children’s and Massachusetts General Hospitals from 1925-1927 and at the British and Continental Orthopedic Clinics in 1927. He joined his fathers practice in Cincinnati in 1928. He succeeded his father in directing the orthopedic services of the hospitals affiliated with the College of Medicine of Cincinnati. He was director of Orthopedic Service at Cincinnati General, Children’s, and Jewish Hospitals as well as a consulting orthopedic surgeon at Drake Memorial Hospital, Dunham Hospital, and the Veterans Administration Hospital in Cincinnati.

Dr. Joseph Freiberg was a fellow of the American College of Surgeon in 1933 and was certified by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgeons in 1936 and served as its President from 1961-1962. He was a member of the American Medical Association, the Ohio State Medical Association, the Cincinnati Academy of Medicine, and the World Medical Association. Dr. Joseph Freiberg was on the Surgery faculty at the University College of Medicine. He was the Director of the Brace Shop, an organization that helped supply braces to underprivileged children. Among his numerous awards was the Jewel of Office of the President, which was presented by Queen Elizabeth and the Queen Mother to the Presidents of other World Orthopaedic Societies in June of 1952. In 1928 Dr. Joseph Freiberg married Louise Rothenberg who passed away in 1961. They had two children, a daughter Elinor and a son Richard. Joseph Albert Freiberg passed away on May 1, 1973.

Richard Freiberg (1932- )
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio on February 2, 1932, to Joseph and Louise Freiberg, Richard Freiberg would continue his father and grandfather’s tradition and become a leading orthopedic surgeon. He received his Bachelor’s of Science from Harvard College in 1953 and attended Harvard Medical School from 1953-1957 earning his AOA. He interned at Cincinnati General Hospital from 1957-1958 and served as a General Surgery Resident at Cincinnati General from 1958-1959. Dr. Richard Freiberg was an orthopedic resident at the University of Illinois from 1958-1962 when he traveled to Boston, London and Wigan, England, and Paris to observe surgery techniques. Dr. Freiberg returned to Cincinnati and began a practice now known as the Freiberg Orthopaedic Group. He also began teaching at the Arthritis Clinic at the University of Cincinnati. He was the consulting orthopaedic surgeon for the Shriner’s burn unit and ran the Orthopaedic Service the Veteran’s hospital for approximately ten years. After his father’s death in 1973, Dr. Richard Freiberg was forced to cut back his teaching activities in order to take over much of his father’s orthopaedic practice.

Dr. Freiberg served on the Board of Trustees of the Arthritis Foundation and the Jewish Hospital. He has been widely published in peer-reviewed publications. In 1996, Dr. Freiberg left the Freiberg Orthopaedic Group to become Director of Orthopaedic Surgery at Cincinnati Veterans Administration Medical Center where he also teaches Orthopaedic Surgery. He is also currently a Clinical Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the Cincinnati College of Medicine. Richard married Betsy Ann Landau in 1957. The couple had three sons, one of which is now an Orthopaedic Surgeon. Betsy Freiberg passed away in 1993. Dr. Freiberg is currently married to Adrianne Wilson.


The FREIBERG FAMILY PAPERS (1900-2003) consist of the papers of Richard Freiberg (1932- ), his father, Joseph Freiberg (1898-1973), and his grandfather, Albert Freiberg (1868-1940). All were leading orthopedic surgeons in Cincinnati, Ohio, and actively involved in many orthopedic societies. The collection consists of correspondence, publications and writings, photographs, and genealogical materials. Of considerable historic value are a number of letters between Franklin Roosevelt and Albert Freiberg regarding the establishment of the Warm Springs Foundation and the early treatment of polio patients at the Warm Springs. The collection is divided into 6 series as follows:

· B. CORRESPONDENCE. (1927-1995).
· E. MISCELLANEOUS. (1920-1971).

SERIES A. WARM SPRINGS/ROOSEVELT FILES, (1927-1939) contains correspondence between Franklin Roosevelt, Albert Freiberg and other doctors regarding the trial period of the Warm Springs Foundation and the establishment of a permanent foundation and sanitarium at Warm Springs, Georgia. Albert Freiberg served on the Executive Board of the foundation and advised Franklin Roosevelt on the establishment of this well known facility. The correspondence includes reports on patient conditions during the trial period (1927) and reports from Franklin Roosevelt concerning future plans and budgets for the foundation. This series also contains later correspondence between Eleanor Roosevelt, Albert Freiberg, and Judge Marx concerning an Ohio man needing medical attention.

SERIES B. CORRESPONDENCE, (1927-1995) contains correspondence of Albert, Joseph, and Richard Freiberg mostly concerning orthopedic affairs and professional organizations that they were affiliated with.

SERIES C. WRITINGS AND PUBLICATIONS, (1900-1976) contains the writings, published and unpublished, of Albert, Joseph, and Richard Freiberg. The writings are mostly related to their orthopedic practice however there are two unpublished stories written by Albert Freiberg called Madame and Bosom’s Fiddle.

SERIES D. GENEALOGY AND FAMILY HISTORY, (1918-2003) contains family charts, recollections of family members, biographical information, certificates, and memoriam’s of the Freiberg family. The recollections of family members by Robert Charles Rothenberg and Albert Freiberg are particularly helpful and interesting.

SERIES E. MISCELLANEOUS, (1920-1971) is arranged alphabetically and contains various orthopedic pamphlets and information as well as a cashbook from 1928-1938, a paper on Tolstoy, miscellaneous medical writings and the naturalization certificate of Julius Freiberg from 1887.

SERIES F. PHOTOGRAPHS contain group shots of medical staff, organizations, family portraits, and other miscellaneous pictures. There are few family photographs, most of the pictures are of groups that family members were involved in.


Box	Folder	Contents

Scope Notes: Files are arranged alphabetically, then chronologically within folders.  

1	1	Warm Springs. Brochure.  n.d.  
	2	Warm Springs. Budget.  1927-1930.
	3	Warm Springs. Correspondence.  1926.
	4	Warm Springs. Correspondence.  1927.
	5	Warm Springs. Correspondence.  1928.
	6	Warm Springs. Correspondence.  n.d.  
	7	Eleanor Roosevelt. Correspondence.  1939.
	8	Franklin Roosevelt. Governor Inauguration. 1930.

Scope Notes:  Files are arranged alphabetically, then chronologically within folders.

1	9	Correspondence.  Albert Freiberg.  1927.
	10	Correspondence.  Joseph Freiberg.  1939-1973.
	11	Correspondence.  Richard Freiberg. 1969-1995.

Scope Notes:  Files are arranged alphabetically.

1	12      Articles.  Albert Freiberg.  1900-1940.
	13	Articles.  Joseph Freiberg.  1929-1962.
	14	Articles.  Richard Freiberg.  1976, n.d.  

2	1       Bibliography.  Albert Freiberg.  n.d.  
	2	Bibliography.  Joseph Freiberg.  n.d.  
	3	Cincinnati Journal of Medicine.  Early Cincinnati Orthopedic Surgeons and Yesterday; The Jewish Hospital.  Vol. 51, 52 No. 6.  1970, 1971.
	4	Conversation in Nuremberg.  Albert Freiberg.  1929.
	5	Early Cincinnati Orthopedic Surgeons.  n.d.    
	6	Harvard Medical School.  Surgical Techniques in the management of Rheumatoid Arthritis.  1969.     
	7	Jewish Hospital of Cincinnati.  History and Recollection of Early Days. 1870-1975.  
	8	Moses Miamonides, The Physician.  Albert Freiberg.  April 30, 1935. 
	9	Physical Therapy, Physicians and Physical Therapists.  December 8, 1937.
	10	Stories.  “Madame”, “Boscom’s Fiddle.”  Albert Freiberg.  n.d.  
	11	Treatment of Infantile Paralysis.  Albert Freiberg.  1938.

Scope Notes:  Files are arranged alphabetically.

2	12	“About the Freibergs; Something’s about them put down 
	          from time to time.” Albert Freiberg.  1932, 1937.    
	13	“As I remember it: My Scribble.”  Robert Charles 
		   Rothenberg.  n.d.   
	14	Biographical Information on Joseph Freiberg.  n.d.  
	15	Certificates.  Alfred Freiberg.  1918.
	16	Certificates.  Joseph Freiberg.  1952-1965.
	17	Certificates.  Richard Freiberg.  1993.
	18	Freiberg, Albert.  Account of Dinner Given in his honor.  December 6, 1939.
	19	Freiberg, Albert.  From the National Cyclopedia of American Biography.  n.d. 
	20	Genealogy.  n.d. 
	21	Jewish Hospital Medical and Dental Staff Bulletin.  Joseph Freiberg retirement.  February, 1973.  
	22	Memoriam’s to Joseph Freiberg.  1973.
	23	Newspaper Articles.  1960-2003.
	24	Passport.  Joseph Freiberg.  1927.
	25	Tribute to Albert Freiberg.  May 19, 1962.

Scope Notes: Files are arranged alphabetically.

3	1       Cashbook.  February 1928-November 1938.
	2	Commercial Club of Cincinnati.  October 20, 1923.
	3	Life of Tolstoy.  n.d.
	4	Medical Alumnal Bulletin.  1963.
	5	Medical Charts.  1926.
	6	Miscellaneous.  n.d.  
	7	Miscellaneous.  Medical Writings.  n.d. 
	8	Ohio State Chapter of the American Physical Therapy Association Honoring Joseph Freiberg. n.d.   
	9	Orthopaedic Associations of the English Speaking World Meeting.  1952.
	10	Orthopaedic Forum Club.  1930-1975.
	11	“An Orthopaedic Nonsense Anthology.”  June 7-10, 1920.
	12	Programs.  Clinical Orthopaedic Society.  1937, 1971.
	13	Strictly Unofficial History of the Beau Brummels.  Historian Jerry Rice.  n.d. 

3	14	5x7 Portraits and photographs.  
	15	8x10 Portraits and photographs.    

4	1       Freiberg, Julius. Naturalization Certificate.  1887	
	2       Oversized photographs.