Accession consists of clippings, correspondence, invitatations and photographs reflecting the personal life and community contributions of H. Max Swartz. The records include honours, photocopied documents, newsletters, family snapshots and portraits, Swartz's notary public stamp and a small plaque from JIAS in appreciation of Swartz's contribution as president. There are also three scrapbooks containing letters, clippings and photographs.
The records were donated by H. Max Swartz's son Paul.
H. Max Swartz (1900-1989) was born and raised in Toronto, where he worked for decades as a lawyer and was a well-known leader in the community. Swartz studied law at Osgoode Hall and subsequently worked in the law firm of Nathan Phillips for six years and also helped plan Phillips's mayoral campaigns. Swartz was in his early twenties when both his parents died, and he supported his eight younger siblings, an aunt and his grandmother. Eventually he established his own law firm. He was also elected president of the Reading Law Club of the Upper Canada Law Societ (a Jewish law club). Swartz was made a member of the King's Counsel in 1948. He married Seraphine (Serry) Marshack in 1931 and together they had two sons, Paul and Myron.
Swartz's community work started early and never flagged. In 1919, he was one of the founders of the Y.M.-Y.W.H.A. and he served on its Board of Directors as president, chairman and then Honourary Vice President. He was a board member of the United Jewish Welfare Fund and Toronto Jewish Congress, a national executive member of Canadian Jewish Congress, and president of Toronto JIAS (Jewish Immigrant Aid Services) in 1951-1952. In the 1980s, the Jewish Community Centre set up the H. Max Swartz Leadership Development Fund in his honour, and Swartz received a commendation from the mayor of Toronto for his dedication to the preservation of historic buildings, including the Gooderham flatiron building and others in the St. Lawrence Market area of the city. H. Max Swartz died at the age of 88 in 1989.