A recent post suggested that synagogue records such as board of directors
minutes be used as a source. Synagogue records are very helpful and I would
suggest that movement archives are a great place to look for them.
While a student at the Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati I worked at the
American Jewish Archives (AJA). The AJA has a vast collection of congregational
minutes, charters, bulletins and other documents. Over the years rabbis have
submitted all sorts of documents including sermons, conversion records, marriage
records, eulogies and so forth. Over the years I have also sent newspaper
clippings, ad books, and directories. Many rabbis at retirement have sent
their personal papers as well.
The archives also hold a collection of the newsletter of the Central Conference
of American Rabbis. This publication, though primarily focused on organizational
issues also lists the death of members as well as births and deaths within
The archives also maintains a "near print" file. Some of the items already
mentioned and other items are kept there. Someday if someone is curious they
can even look at my file!
I have not visited other Jewish archives, but I am sure similar information is
Rabbi Matt Friedman