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7 records – page 1 of 1.
Name
Irving Milchberg
Material Format
moving images
Interview Date
July 26, 2007
Source
Oral Histories
Name
Irving Milchberg
Number
AC 333
Subject
Immigrants--Canada
Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)
Holocaust survivors
Refugees--Canada
Interview Date
July 26, 2007
Quantity
1 mini DV ; 1 archival DVD ; 1 reference DVD
Interviewer
Sharon Gubbay Helfer
Total Running Time
1 hr
Notes
Part of Ontario Small Jewish Communities Project.
Use Restrictions
Copyright is held by the Ontario Jewish Archives. Please contact the Archives to obtain permission prior to use.
Biography
Irving Milchberg, the Holocaust survivor known from Joseph Ziemian's book "The Cigarette Sellers of Three Crosses Square," used to sell cigarettes to Nazis in Warsaw as an orphan Jewish kid during WWII. Milchberg, leader of a group of orphaned Jewish children hiding their identities, used to gather at Three Crosses Square, the center of the German occupation of Warsaw, to sell cigarettes. They wandering around under the very noses of policemen, gendarmes, Gestapo men and ordinary spies. Before joining the cigarette sellers, Milchberg twice escaped from the Nazis. The first time he scaled a fence and fled the Umschlagplatz, where Jews were put aboard trains to the Treblinka death camp. The second time, he managed to break the bars of the train taking him to Treblinka and scramble out. His father, mother and three sisters were all murdered by the Nazis. In 1945, Milchberg made his way to Czechoslovakia, then Austria, then to a camp for displaced people in occupied Germany, where he learned watchmaking, his lifelong occupation. In 1947 he moved to Canada, ending up in Niagara Falls, where he opened his own jewelry and watch business. In 1953 he met his wife, Renee, who had survived the war. They had two children and three grandchildren. Milchberg died in January 2014 at the age of 86 years.
Material Format
moving images
Geographic Access
Niagara Falls, Ont.
Original Format
Mini DV
Copy Format
DVD
Source
Oral Histories
Address
216 Beverley Street
Source
Landmarks

The Apter Synagogue was formed by a group of people who came to Toronto from the area of Opatow (Apt) in Poland around the turn of the century. They first established a small synagogue on Centre Avenue near Dundas Street in the Ward. In 1918, in anticipation of more Apter immigrants coming to Toronto after the First World War, the synagogue was sold and a larger one purchased on Beverley Street. Both the synagogue members and the Apter Friendly Society met there.
Address
216 Beverley Street
Time Period
1918-unknown
Scope Note
The Apter Synagogue was formed by a group of people who came to Toronto from the area of Opatow (Apt) in Poland around the turn of the century. They first established a small synagogue on Centre Avenue near Dundas Street in the Ward. In 1918, in anticipation of more Apter immigrants coming to Toronto after the First World War, the synagogue was sold and a larger one purchased on Beverley Street. Both the synagogue members and the Apter Friendly Society met there.
History
In later years, a bitter controversy between the synagogue and society erupted and the building was sold.
Category
Political
Religious
Private Clubs
Source
Landmarks
Accession Number
1977-8-11
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
1977-8-11
Material Format
textual record
Physical Description
1 folder of textual records
Date
1940-1966
Scope and Content
Accession consists of material from B'nai Jacob Congregation in Niagara Falls, Ontario. These include bank cheques, utility and hardware bills, insurance policy statements from the 1940s, general correspondence, as well as a report on the dedication of the rebuilt synagogue.
Subjects
Synagogues
Communities
Name Access
B'nai Jacob Congregation (Niagara Falls, Ont.)
Places
Niagara Falls, Ont.
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
1977-8-12
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
1977-8-12
Material Format
graphic material
textual record
Physical Description
28 photographs : col (20 negatives) ; 9 x 13 cm and 35 mm
1 folder of textual records
Date
1955-[ca. 1970]
Scope and Content
Accession consists of records related to the B'nai Jacob Congregation Sisterhood of Niagara Falls, Ontario. Included are general and executive meeting minutes as well as photographs of a Shavuot event at the synagogue. Beverly Blackstien is identified in one of the photographs.
Subjects
Synagogues
Women
Name Access
B'nai Jacob Congregation (Niagara Falls, Ont.)
Places
Niagara Falls, Ont.
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2007-6-32
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2007-6-32
Material Format
graphic material (electronic)
Physical Description
2 b&w photographs (copies)
Date
[193?]
Scope and Content
Accession consists of two scanned photographs of work scene in front of the Myer Salit Scrap Metal yard, Niagara Falls.
Custodial History
The records were transferred to the OJA as part of the Ontario Small Jewish Communities initiative.
Administrative History
The donor, Larry Cohen, was born 1931. His grandfather, Myer Salit, was born in Brest Litovski, Poland. At the age of twenty-three he booked passage to America on the S.S. Norge. On June 28, 1904 the ship struck a reef off the coast of Scotland and sank. Mr. Salit survived, along with approximately 160 other passengers, and made his way to New York and then St. Catharines, where his brother-in-law, Harry Rubin, was a scrap metal dealer. In 1905 he moved to Niagara Falls and set up his own scrap metal business. He was the first Jewish resident of that community.
Over time, the business prospered and grew. After the Second World War, his son-in-law Irvin Feldman and grandson Larry Cohen joined the business. The company began to diversify, selling new and used steel products to local industry. Myer Salit passed away in 1958 and left the business in the hands of Irvin and Larry. By the 1960s, the company branched out and became a reinforcing steel (rebar) fabricator and changed its name to Salit Steel.
During the 1980s the family sold off the scrap metal division of the company. Mr. Feldman retired and the responsibility for managing the firm was shared by Larry Cohen and Steven Cohen, Myer's great-grandson. The company has continued to expand and diversify and currently serves the needs of Southern Ontario.
Use Conditions
Copyright is in the public domain and permission for use is not required. Please credit the Ontario Jewish Archives as the source of the photograph.
Descriptive Notes
Related Material Note: See AC 302 for an oral history for Larry Cohen.
Subjects
Occupations
Communities
Name Access
Salit, Myer
Places
Niagara Falls, Ont.
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2007-6-31
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2007-6-31
Material Format
textual record (electronic)
Physical Description
1 document (4 jpgs) : col.
Date
[19--]
Scope and Content
Accession consists of scanned copy of the constitution of the B'nai Jacob Congregation of Niagara Falls, 4 pages in four separate files.
Subjects
Synagogues
Communities
Name Access
B'nai Jacob Congregation (Niagara Falls, Ont.)
Places
Niagara Falls, Ont.
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2008-11-12
Source
Archival Accessions
Accession Number
2008-11-12
Material Format
textual record
graphic material
technical drawing
Physical Description
56 cm textual records
172 photographs
2 technical drawings
Date
[194?]-1998
Scope and Content
Accession consists of minutes of meetings, ledgers, correspondence, notes and photographs documenting the former B'nai Jacob Congregation in Niagara Falls. The material includes records of the Rose Dunkelman chapter of Hadassah (1940s-1950s), Sisterhood (1970s), the merged Hadassah-Sisterhood (1977-1986), Lundy's Lane Cemetery and the Niagara Falls Jewish Federation (1943-1966). The records include a file with lists of Torah Fund donations, the constitutions of Sisterhood and of B'nai Jacob, many copied newspaper clippings about the Greenspans and Barbara Frum, and a copy of the 1953 CJC Community Self-Survey. There are also two copies of the 1977 Sisterhood New Year's community directory and textual and graphic material on the Holocaust Memorial at the cemetery. Records also include a photocopied chapter from a young adult book telling the story of Niagara Falls resident Irving Milchberg and how as an adolescent he survived World War II in Nazi-occupied Warsaw after escaping from the ghetto.
Accession includes 172 photographs; 96 are colour prints from the 1998 Holocaust Memorial dedication ceremony in the cemetery and the rest are special events and shul members in the 1960s and 1970s. In addition there is a collage of 12 photographs picturing music classes and performances. Finally, two oversized landscape technical drawings also relate to the proposed Holocaust Memorial.
Photo Caption 001-007: Festival of Holidays at B’nai Jacob Congregation, Niagara Falls, 1980.
Administrative History
B'nai Jacob Synagogue was a conservative shul founded in 1918. It amalgamated with the Reform congregation in St. Catharines and became B'nai Tikvah in 1998, and is still located in the original shul building in Niagara Falls.
Use Conditions
Copyright is held by the Ontario Jewish Archives. Please contact the Archives to obtain permission prior to use.
Subjects
Communities
Synagogues
Name Access
B'nai Jacob Congregation (Niagara Falls, Ont.)
Places
Niagara Falls, Ont.
Source
Archival Accessions
7 records – page 1 of 1.

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