ca. 150 photographs : b&w and col ; 21 x 27 cm or smaller
1 photograph : negative print on transparency
1 folder of textual records
Scope and Content
Accession consists of photographs documenting the family life of Henry and Bella Rosenbaum. Included are photos from Poland, Italy, Israel and Canada. In addition, there is a scrapbook of photos prepared by their daughter Brenda on Henry and Bella's thirtieth wedding anniversary in 1976. In addition, there is a more comprehensive biography written by Henry and Bella's son-in-law Eric Bornstein. Individuals identified in photographs include,
Henry "Hanoch" Rosenbaum (1925-2015) was born in Radom Poland. He was the seventh of eight
children born to Rachel Rosenbaum (née Katz) and Moshe Rosenbaum. Henry learned the fate of his
parents, two siblings and their families, after the war. All were innocent victims murdered during the
Holocaust. Most of Radom's Jews were murdered in Treblinka following the August 1942 liquidation of
Henry Rosenbaum met his Bella Rotbard (1925-2012) in Italy in the aftermath of the Second World War.
Although Bella was also from Radom, she did not know the Rosenbaum family. Bella's parents, her
sixteen-year-old sister and four-year-old brother along with most of her parents' extended families were
murdered in the Holocaust.
While in Italy, the Joint Distribution Committee funded 'mock' Kibbutzim, preparing holocaust survivors
for immigration to Palestine and Kibbutz life. Bella, a one-time member of the secular Jewish youth
movement Hashomer Hatzair in Poland, believed that she was destined to be a kibbutznik. Henry would
Bella and Henry were part of the illegal immigration to Palestine in 1946 and spent their first few days in
Atlit, a British Mandate detainee camp. Soon Bella settled on kibbutz, but soon after married Henry. In
1946, Bella and Henry married in their apartment in Ramat Gan. At the time, Henry was
serving in the IDF’s motor pool. Finding the weather exasperating her migraine symptoms, Bella,
Henry and their toddler daughter Brenda (b. 1949) immigrated to Toronto in 1952.
With the assistance of a relative, Henry gained employment in a print shop sweeping floors. Shortly
thereafter he advanced to machine operator and in 1961 he opened his own print shop. Bella found
employment in the garment industry sewing collars onto shirts and earning her wages by piece work.
Bella stopped working when their son Murray (b. 1961) was born. Henry served as editor for the
quarterly Yiddish and English journal the Voice of Radom and was an active life-long member of the
Copyright is held by the Ontario Jewish Archives. Please contact the Archives to obtain permission prior to use.