The Scheuer family dates back to at least the eighteenth century in Germany to Moise Scheuer (1765-1846) and Esther Ackerman (1770-1847). Their son, Isaac Scheuer (1809-1889), married Hannchen (Johanna) Strauss (1815-1878) in 1843. Isaac and Johanna had six children: Gabriel (1844-1922), Camilla (1845-1916), Edmund (1847-1943), Emma (1853-1916), Ida (1855-1902), and Benno (Benjamin) (1857-1921).
While Gabriel, Emma, and Ida remained in Europe, Camilla, Edmund, and Benno immigrated to Canada in the late nineteenth century. Camilla came to Hamilton, Ontario after her marriage in 1866 to Herman Levy, co-founder of the Levy Brothers jewellery business. Edmund became a partner in the business when he first immigrated to Canada in 1871, and lived with Camilla and Herman. Camilla became the acknowledged leader of Jewish women in Hamilton. She served in organizations such as the Deborah Ladies' Aid Society, which eventually became an auxiliary of Temple Anshe Sholom, Canada's oldest Reform congregation, often referred to as the Hughson Street Temple. Edmund established the first Sabbath School in Ontario at Anshe Sholom in 1872 and served as president from 1873 to 1886.
After he was established in Hamilton, Edmund returned to Europe in 1873 to marry Oda Strauss (1854-1913) at Forbach, Lorraine, and then brought her back to Canada with him. The couple moved to Toronto in 1886, where he established a wholesale jewellery business on Yonge Street called Scheuer's under his company Edmund Scheuer Limited. Scheuer's was one of the oldest jewellery firms in Toronto and the oldest established wholesale diamond importer in Canada. Edmund's brother, Benno, also worked for the business as the accountant and then secretary-treasurer. Benno was married to Gatella Strauss (1859-1903) and they had three children: Eddie Jr. (1884-1967), Rhoda (1886-1963) and Isadore (1887-1969). Eddie Jr. and Isadore also worked for their uncle's business. Eddie Jr. started as a clerk and then became vice-president, while Isadore started out as a travelling salesman and jeweller. When their uncle retired in 1922, Eddie Jr. took over as president and his brother Isadore became vice-president of Scheuer's.
In addition to his jewellery business, Edmund Scheuer also taught and supervised the religious school at Holy Blossom Synagogue. He went on to serve in every official capacity at Holy Blossom, including vice-chairman and treasurer of the building committee for the Bond Street building. He also founded The Jewish Free School at 206 Beverley Street for Jewish girls and wrote his own textbook for the school, the first Jewish religious school book printed in Toronto. In 1892, he founded the first Jewish benevolent society in Toronto and was later president of the Federation of Jewish Philanthropies. In 1927, the Beverley Street building, which housed Federation offices, was dedicated in his honour and named the "Scheuer House".
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of records documenting the Scheuer family in Germany, Hamilton, and Toronto. The fonds is made up primarily of photographs of Scheuer family members and friends. It also includes some textual records, including correspondence, marriage certificates, a Toronto Jewish Free School text book, and Holy Blossom Temple Bulletins. Also included are two brass "Scheuer's" window plates which were likely from Edmund Scheuer's jewellery business of the same name.
Associated Material Note: See the CJC National Archives collection for Edmund Scheuer at: http://www.cjc.ca/template.php?action=archives&Type=1&Language=EN&Rec=253
See OJA vertical file cabinet for "Scheuer, Edmund" and "Levy, Camilla"
See MG3 A1 Holy Blossom
See MG2 G1C - Edumund Scheuer's Zionist Free School
Saarbrücken City Archives - May have records pertaining to Edmund's brother Gabriel Scheuer (1844-1922) who remained in Germany.
The textual records have been arranged in chronological order into five files. The objects have been described as one file. The fifty-eight photographs have been described as two files and thirty-nine items arranged chronologically