TABLE OF CONTENTS
Box and Folder Listing
|Name:||Ardmore, Oklahoma - Temple Emeth Records.|
|Abstract:||Temple Emeth was the oldest congregation in Oklahoma, prior to its dissolution in 2004. The Ardmore, Oklahoma - Temple Emeth Records include materials relating to the purchase of property, membership, board meetings, congregational meetings, Mt. Zion cemetery, the congregation’s history, and the sale of the synagogue.|
|Quantity:||0.8 linear feet; 2 Hollinger boxes.|
|Identification:||Manuscript Collection No. 751.|
Jewish people could be counted among the early settlers of Oklahoma, which up until the 1890's was referred to as the Indian Territory. The first to organize themselves into a known Jewish community were the people of Ardmore, Oklahoma. At first few in number, the completion of the Santa Fe Railroad signalled the beginning of robust growth, both in the Jewish community and the community at large. With this substantial growth came the need for a religious meeting place.
At first the kehillah met in Main Street meeting halls. As the community outgrew these facilities, churches and local colleges filled the gap. Knowledgeable laymen led the services. As the community solidified, its natural leaders began to step forward. They organized a Sunday School, a Jewish Ladies Aid Society, and a choir. The first confirmation service was led by Rabbi George Fox of Ft. Worth, Texas.
In 1912, the congregation acquired a home of its own. The old First Christian Church on A Street N.W. was purchased, and the congregation decided to call itself Temple Emeth. The first student rabbi to lead High Holy Day services was Ira Sanders, in 1914. The A Street building was supplanted in 1952, when Rosh Hashanah was celebrated at the new building on Stanley Blvd. The High Holy Days were observed and the new building dedicated with the help of Rabbi Milton Rosenbaum.
Some time later, the congregation entered a period of decline. Parents and grandparents passed away, children moved on. While the congregation continued to meet every Friday night into the mid-1990's, the day finally arrived when the doors to Oklahomas oldest synagogue were closed. Sale of the property was concluded in 2004.
The Ardmore, Oklahoma - Temple Emeth Records consist of board meeting minutes, congregational meeting minutes, correspondence, membership lists, papers having to do with Mt. Zion Cemetery, a temple history, property description, and sale of property and disposition of Torah and other asset records.
Records are arranged in a single series. The folders are in alphabetical order; their contents are in chronological order.
The records are open to all users and are available in the reading room of the American Jewish Archives.
SC-468, Temple Beth Emeth, Adrmore, Oklahoma - History of the Congregation, 1898-1948, by Nathan Kahanowitz.
Footnotes and bibliographic references should refer to the Ardmore, Oklahoma - Temple Emeth Records and the American Jewish Archives.
The Ardmore, Oklahoma - Temple Emeth Records were donated by Walter Neustadt of Dallas, Texas in 2004-2005.
Series A: Temple Emeth Records. 1950-2004.
|1||1||Board Meeting Minutes. 1973-1974.|
|2||Board Meeting Minutes. 1971-1972.|
|3||Board Meeting Minutes. 1968-1970.|
|4||Board Meeting Minutes. 1965-1967.|
|5||Century of Progress in Childcare. 1955.|
|6||Certificates. 1966, 1978.|
|7||Congregational Meeting Minutes. 1995, 1996.|
|12||Correspondence, Ardmore Jewish Federation. 1976-1978.|
|13||Membership lists. 1958-2002.|
|14||Mt. Zion Cemetery. 2004.|
|15||Photographs. No ID.|
|17||Property, Initial purchase. 1950.|
|18||Sermon. By Rabbi Charles P. Sherman. 1973.|
|19||Synagogue, Sale of. 2002-2004.|
|20||Temple History. By Rose Kahn Solomon.|
|21||Torahs, Disposition of and other assets. 2002-2004.|