Dr. Isadore M. Cass (1916-1996), a well-known pathologist and practicing mohel--Jewish ritual circumcisor--for the Toronto Jewish community, was born and educated in Toronto, attending the University of Toronto's medical school. After serving with the army during the Second World War, Dr. Cass returned to Toronto to private practice. He began studying pathology in 1953, and performed research at the Ontario Cancer Institute, Connaught Labs and the Ontario Department of Health throughout his career. He was chief of pathology at Ajax and Pickering hospitals for twenty-three years, until his retirement in 1986.
In 1945, Dr. Cass began doing ritual circumcisions and was the first medical doctor in Toronto to do so. He performed over 40,000 circumcisions throughout Canada and the eastern United States and trained many physicians to perform them as well.
Dr. Cass was a member of the following organizations: New York Academy of Sciences; the Academy of Medicine, Toronto; the Israel Medical Association; General Wingate Branch of the Royal Canadian Legion; and many other associations and societies.
Dr. Cass studied Torah under Rabbi Jacob Gordon and was a Torah reader at Goel Tzedec Synagogue and later, Beth Tzedec. He also studied and taught Torah throughout his life, chairing the Canadian Jewish Congress' Tanach study group for many years, and leading weekly Gemara classes at Beth Tzedec. He belonged to Shaarei Shomayim and Beth Lida synagogues, as well as Lubavitch. In 1987, Dr. and Mrs. Cass were honoured as "Couple of the Year" by Machanaim, The Network of Educational Institutions in Kiryat Gat, Israel, for their great contributions to this charity over the years.
Dr. Cass was married to Miriam Cass and they had four daughters: Sharon, Hylah, Judy, and Elaine. He had four brothers: the late Rabbi Samuel Cass, Harry, Al, and Elie (who was a Reform mohel), and two sisters: Miriam Cass and Zelda Fink. He also had seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Dr. Cass died on January 24, 1996 of cancer.
Scope and Content
The fonds consists of records relating to the personal and professional life of Dr. Isadore Cass. These records include appointment books documenting circumcisions he performed, correspondence, writings, Tanach study group notes, a Machanaim invitation and programme, prayer books, certificates, memorial cards, and photographs.
Cass, Isadore M., 1916-1996
Partially closed. Researchers must receive permission from the OJA Director prior to accessing some of the records.
The prayer book is in poor condition and some of the early daytimers are in fair condition.
See also the Ontario Jewish Archives' reference news clipping file under "Cass, Dr. Isadore".
Accession consists of materials assembled by Stanley Emerson and donated to the Ontario Jewish Archives. Included are: one hardbound book commemorating the Toronto Hebrew Free School's liquidation of its capital debt on May 8, 1947; one spiral-bound book assembled on the occassion of Shomrai Shaboth Congregation's twentieth anniversary testimonial dinner honouring Rabbi Gedalia Felder to be held on Sunday, June 18, 1972; one Associated Hebrew Schools of Toronto programme for its annual dinner to be held on Thursday, June 22, 1978; one programme for a Machanaim Testimonial Dinner honouring Dr. Isadore Cass on Wednesday, May 2, 1979; one Associated Hebrew Schools graduation programme for Wednesday, June 27, 1979; one newspaper clipping from the Thursday, June 6, 1985 edition of the Canadian Jewish News relating to Rabbi Gedalia Felder, former spiritual leader of Shomrai Shaboth-Chevra Mishnayoth Congregation; one newspaper clipping from the Thursday, June 13, 1985 edition of the Canadian Jewish News relating to Harold Dessen, former president of Associated Hebrew Schools; and one paperbound book assembled on the occassion of a Sol Edell tribute dinner commoemorating the fiftieth yahrzeit (death anniversary) of HaRav Yosef Weinreb and the establishment of the Saol Edell Family Endowment Fund to be held on Saturday, October 31, 1992.
Morley Torgov (b. 1927) is a Canadian novelist and short story writer and former commercial lawyer.
Torgov was born in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario to Allan (b. Russia, 8 July 1895-1964?) and Janey (née Colish) Torgov (b. England, 1901-d. Sault Ste. Marie, July 1926). Allan Torgov owned and operated a clothing store in Sault Ste. Marie named Allan's. Morley married Anna Pearl (née Cohen) in 1948 and had two children, Sarah Jane Steinberg and Alexander Torgov (b. 1959-d. 2009), and four grandchildren.
Torgov was educated at the University of Toronto, receiving his bachelor of laws degree from Osgoode Hall and was called to the bar in 1954. He became a partner in the law firm Olsch, Torgov, Cohen and specialized in commercial law. While practicing law in Toronto during the 1960s, he turned to writing. Torgov's first book, A Good Place to Come From (1974), a comic memoir of growing up Jewish in Sault Ste. Marie, was made into a CBC miniseries and won the Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour. Torgov continued to write other books including the Outside Chance of Maximillian Glick (1982), which won him his second Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour. The CBC produced a television series based on this work and the book was published in several languages. This success was followed by St. Farb's Day (1990), which won the Toronto Book Award and the National Jewish Book Award for fiction. Other published works include the Abramsky Variations (1977), the War to End All Wars (1998), Stickler and Me (2002), Murder in A-major (2008), and the Mastersinger from Minsk (2012).
Torgov's writings also include several screenplays for television and film and numerous essays and articles for the Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star, the Montreal Gazette, the Canadian Lawyer and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. Torgov has been honored by the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, naming their annual award the TORGI after Torgov, the first recipient of that award in 1984. In 2005, he received the Order of Mariposa, a lifetime recognition award from the Leacock Society. In 2010, he received the Order of Canada as an acknowledgement of his contributions to Canadian society.
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of material related to the life and work of Morley Torgov. Included are literary drafts and working papers, reviews, speeches, presentations, public addresses, memorabilia, sketches and drawings, photographs, correspondence, newspaper and magazine articles, and Torgov's original file folders with jottings of ideas and references for future use.
SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE: The scope and content for most of the file level descriptions are taken verbatim from the original description provided by Mr. Torgov at the time of donation and therefore is written in the first person.
Torgov, Morley, 1927-
Researchers should consult the Morley Torgov fonds at the Sault Ste. Marie Public Library for other records.
Records were arranged at the file level by the creator. This original arrangement has been maintained by the archivist.