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Archive - Alexander Kohut Memorial Foundation Records

Identifier: ARC-7

Scope and Contents Note

The collection consists of correspondence of the Alexander Kohut Memorial Foundation (chronological, 1931–1953), financial and publication records, correspondence of Rebekah Kohut to the foundation, and the Will of Rebecca Kohut.


  • Creation: 1931-1953



Materials are available by appointment only. To make an appointment and request materials in advance, contact


There are no restrictions to accessing this collection, however, written permission is required to print or publish.

Historical Note

Alexander Kohut was born April 22, 1842 into a family with a long lineage of Rabbis. He received his rabbinical diploma in 1867 and was elected chief rabbi of Pecs, Hungary in 1872. He began to compile the Dictionary of the Talmud in 1873. The eight volumes of his encyclopedic Talmudic dictionary, the Aruch Completum, were published between 1878 and 1892, and were the result of twenty-five years of scholarship. In 1885 Kohut was elected rabbi of Congregation Ahavath Chesed in New York. He was associated with the Rev. Sabato Morais in the founding of the Jewish Theological Seminary, and was a member of the advisory board, as well as a professor in Talmudic methodology. He died on May 25, 1894.

The Alexander Kohut Memorial Foundation was founded in 1915 by George Alexander Kohut, in memory of his father Alexander Kohut. The foundation’s purpose was to “stimulate, encourage, and carry on research in Jewish literature and related fields of learning…to encourage scholars to undertake Semitic and Jewish research.” The foundation was incorporated into New York State on June 17, 1926. The assets of the foundation were then transferred to the American Academy for Jewish Research on February 28, 1968.

Alexander Kohut. Accessed July 7, 2015.
Alexander Kohut Memorial Foundation Records Accession Sheet
Shalom Spiegel (Alexander Kohut Memorial Foundation Records) Accession Sheet


0.42 Linear Feet (in one document box.)

Language of Materials


Collection Arrangement

The collection is arranged into 3 series:

I. Correspondence

II. Financial and Publication Records

III. Rebekah Kohut Records

Location Note

Materials are available (by appointment only) at The Special Collections Reading Room, The Library of the Jewish Theological Seminary, 3080 Broadway, New York, NY 10027. Email

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The Alexander Kohut Memorial Fund was administered from the office of Alexander Marx and so the records were originally included in the Alexander Marx Papers, but then separated at an unknown time. The records were removed from the library office to the archives in December, 1978.

Related Archival Materials Note

ARC.71 Alexander and George Alexander Kohut Papers

ARC.80 - Alexander Marx Papers

ARC.107 - Shalom Spiegel Papers (former secretary of the Foundation)

Processing Information Note

The collection was initially surveyed by Judith E. Endelman on December 26, 1978 and later by Daniel Soyer in October, 1986. At a later time it was put into acid-free folders and an acid-free box.

Guide to the Alexander Kohut Memorial Foundation Records
Judith E. Endelman; Daniel Soyer
December 26, 1978; October, 1986
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Language of description note
Funding for the retrospective conversion of the original finding aid documents to produce this guide using Archivists’ Toolkit was made possible by a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC).

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections, The Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary Repository

3080 Broadway
New York N.Y. 10027 USA