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History, documented

When the Jewish Historical Society of the Upper Midwest was founded in 1984, one of its missions was to collect materials from local communities.  As the collection grew and priorities shifted, JHSUM began looking for a new home for the archival materials.
In 2012, the substantial archival collection was gifted to the University of Minnesota.  The archival materials JHSUM collected now reside as part of the Nathan and Theresa Berman Upper Midwest Jewish Archives located in Elmer L. Andersen Library. 

The Upper Midwest Jewish Archives consist of:

  • Synagogue records

  • Jewish Social service agency records

  • Family and personal histories

  • Oral histories

  • Photographs and films

  • Scrapbooks

Collections of note include materials related to Jewish homesteading in the Dakotas, Northern Minnesota Iron Range Jewish communities, Minneapolis and St. Paul synagogue records, Jewish women’s organization records, and materials reflecting life on Minneapolis’s North Side Jewish community.

The archive

To learn more about the Upper Midwest Jewish Archives, please visit their website, or contact them at or 612-625-0192.

The archives, located in Elmer L. Andersen Library on the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities campus, are available for anyone to access, currently by appointment only.

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The stories

Check out our collection of mini-documentaries, exploring aspects of our work, the region’s history, and the stories of our experiences in the Upper Midwest over the scope of history.

The resurrected

Check out our collection of digitized VHS recordings covering a large variety of topics, such as North Side stories, biographies, Sweet 16 parties and more.

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Recommended resources

Minnesota Historical Society

Minnesota Genealogical Society

Minnesota Jewish Genealogical Society

IAJGS International Jewish Cemetery Project


Steve Morse

Garon/Kaner/Karon Family Website

JHSUM’s collection does not contain birth, death, marriage, naturalization, or census records. Many of these items can be found at the Minnesota Historical Society or County Departments of Public Health.

Image by Joanna Kosinska

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