Tag: JEWISH TORONTO

Bases (and basement) loaded for Peter Seidman

Give Peter Seidman a book about baseball that he doesn’t already have and you’re likely to score a bases-loaded home run with the Montreal-born collector of baseball paraphernalia. But chances are you’ll strike out in the attempt, because the 57-year-old teacher and administrator for the Toronto board of education has already amassed more than 4,000…

McCaul Synagogue Golden Anniversary (1938) – Section C

THIS Golden Anniversary book was published in 1938 to mark the first 50 years of the Beth Hamidrash Hagadol Chevra Tehillim of Toronto, which was founded in 1887 and moved into the  McCaul Street Synagogue about 1905. The Congregation published its Golden Jubilee 50th anniversary book in 1938. In the early 1950s it merged with the…

Obit: comedian Frank Shuster (1916-2002)

Frank Shuster, the straight man in the legendary comedy team of Wayne and Shuster, has died in Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital of pneumonia at the age of 85. He and his partner Johnny Wayne, who died in 1990, performed as a comic duo for 56 continuous years since first teaming up together for some comic…

Laundry has spotless reputation

Three-quarters of a century after his grandfather and great-uncle founded Careful Hand Laundry & Dry Cleaners, company president Brian Chelsky celebrated the company’s 75th anniversary last month (2004) with a party for about 75 employees, suppliers, relatives and friends in its main location at 2700 Dufferin St. near Briar Hill. “When you spend $150 and…

A conversation with great aunt Sophie

It is a truism of family tree research that you can visit libraries and archives any time you like, but you must not delay interviewing elderly relatives as they will not be around forever. The greatest regret of many genealogists is that they didn’t ask the right questions of the right people at the right…

Ontario Jewish Archives: treasure trove on Bathurst Street

Ask Dr. Stephen Speisman about the 80-year-old minute books of Toronto’s Kielcer Society and a gleam appears in his eyes. Director of the Ontario Jewish Archives, Speisman has long been seeking early records of landsmanschaft, mutual benefit and like societies in Toronto and other Jewish communities in Ontario. But too often such records get stashed…

A Toronto doc’s memoir

Barnet Berris, born in Toronto in 1921, became the first Jewish doctor appointed to the full-time staff of the University of Toronto’s department of medicine in 1951. In Medicine: My Story (U. of T. Press, 2002), Dr. Berris tells the story of his career. The book elegantly details the changes he observed in medicine during 46…