18 photographs : b&w and col ; 14 x 22 cm or smaller
1 folder of textual records
Scope and Content
Accession consists of records related to the personal history of Cyril Shenker and family. The records include Cyril's birth certificate, marriage certificate, South African passports for Cyril, his wife Denise and his 3 daughters. Each passport has a Canadian landed immigrant status report attached, dated 1975. Also included are Certificates of Canadian Citizenship for each. In addition, there are family photographs including 4 photos of Cyril as a young child in South Africa and his children and grandchildren in Canada. Finally, accession includes a short personal history written by Cyril about his life.
Cyril Bernard Shenker was born in 1936 in Sea Port Cape Town to Sonia (nee Feldman) and Harry Shenker. He had two older siblings: Doreen and Lionel. Harry ran a kosher deli in Sea Port called Spotless Foods. Cyril moved to Johannesburg in 1954 and found work as an order picker at Stanley Electrical Wholesales. In 1962 he bought company shares and by 1967 he owned a controlling interest in the company. After the company was sold in 1968, Cyril started two additional businesses before leaving South Africa in 1975: SA Lighting (1969-1971) and Viceroy Hardware (1971-1974).
Cyril married Denise Weinberg in 1960. They had three daughters together: Michelle Hilary (b. 1961), Lauren Ruth (b. 1963), and Gayle Anne (b. 1968). Cyril and Denise decided to move the family to Toronto in 1975 since they did not see a future for their daughters in South Africa because of the political situation.
After working initially as a manager at a screw manufacturing plant in Milton, Cyril embarked on a series of additional business ventures in Canada. In 1977 he bought Irwin Hardware Store with two partners. In 1979, he sold his shares in the business and started Allied Agencies (an import and distribution business of household and kitchen wares) with his business partner Eric Gilbert. In 1988, they sold this business and started Port Style Enterprises in 1991 with Jackie Milner and Harvey Rachman. In 2014, Cyril sold his shares and retired.
Copyright is held by the Ontario Jewish Archives. Please contact the Archives to obtain permission prior to use.