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Rabbi C. E. Hillel Kauvar Papers

 Collection
Identifier: B221

Rabbi Charles E. Hillel Kauvar was a rabbi for 69 years at the Beth Ha Medrosh Hagodol (The Great House of Learning) Synagogue in Denver, Colorado. He was also a professor of rabbinical literature at the University of Denver for 43 years and helped establish the Center for Judaic Studies at the University. After he retired from teaching, the University of Denver honored him by establishing a Kauvar Chair of Hebraic Studies. Rabbi Kauvar was born in Vilna, Lithuania in 1879 and began as rabbi at the Denver synagogue in 1902 after he graduated from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York. The papers contain copies of his writings and speeches, newspaper articles, photographs, plaques, and "A Sketch of a Colorado Rabbi's Life," written as a University of Denver doctoral dissertation by Michael W. Rubinoff.

Dates

  • 1930-1978

Creator

Language of Materials

The materials are primarily in English, with a few items in Hebrew.

Extent

3 Linear Feet (1 legal document box and oversize materials.)

Scope and Contents

The papers contain copies of Rabbi Charles E. Hillel Kauvar's writings and speeches, newspaper articles, photographs, plaques, and memorials to Rabbi Charles and Belle Kauvar ranging from 1930 to 1971. The papers also include a dissertation by Dr. Michael W. Rubinoff published in the Western States Jewish Historical Quarterly in July, 1978.

Biographical / Historical

Rabbi Charles E. Hillel Kauvar was born in Vilna, Lithuania in 1879 and came to the United States when he was 13. He got a master’s degree from Columbia University and attended the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York. After graduation from the seminary in 1902, he became rabbi at the Beth Ha Medrosh Hagodol (The Great House of Learning) Synagogue in Denver, Colorado. He was a rabbi at the BMH for 69 years. In 1909 the rabbi received his doctoral degree from the Jewish Theological Seminary and also married Belle Gertrude Bluestone in New York. He was also a professor of rabbinical literature at the University of Denver for 43 years and helped create the Center for Judaic Studies at the University. After he retired from teaching, the University of Denver honored him by establishing a Kauvar Chair of Hebraic Studies. Rabbi Kauvar assisted in establishing many of Denver’s Jewish organizations, including the Jewish Consumptives’ Relief Society, the Community Chest (now United Way), General Rose Memorial Hospital, the Allied Jewish Council and founded Denver’s first Hebrew school. Rabbi Kauvar was one of the first English-speaking, Orthodox rabbis in the West and introduced traditional Judaism within a modern American context. Rabbi Charles and Belle Kauvar were both ardent Zionists and aided refugees in Israel after World War II. Rabbi Kauvar died in 1971 and is buried in Israel.

Arrangement

The collection is unarranged.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of the American Jewish Archives in 1976.

Accruals

No further accruals are expected.

Related Materials

Related materials may be found in the Abraham J. Kauvar, M.D. Papers, B007, Rabbi Kauvar papers in the Beck Archives Microfilm and Microforms Collection, B117, the Beth Ha Medrosh Hagodol (BMH) Records, B129, and the Jewish Consumptives' Relief Society Records, B002.

Framed memorials to Rabbi Kauvar and Belle Kauvar are in the permanent exhibit in the Abraham J. Kauvar M.D. reading room in Olin Science Hall at the University of Denver.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and Archives Repository

Contact:
2150 East Evans Avenue
Denver CO 80208
(303) 871-3428