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B'nai B'rith leo Baeck London Lodge: Members' life histories


Reference code(s): GB 1556 WL 1288

Held at: Wiener Library

Title: B'nai B'rith leo Baeck London Lodge: Members' life histories

Date(s): 1995-1996

Level of description: collection

Extent: 2 files

Name of creator(s): B'nai B'rith leo Baeck London Lodge


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Leo Baeck Mens' Lodge was established in 1943. It was in this year that a group of 200 refugees from Nazi persecution met up in the First Lodge of England, and established 'Section 1943'. In 1945, this group split off from the First Lodge of England and became a Lodge in its own right. It was named after Rabbi Leo Baeck, a brave leader of German Jews during the Nazi period.

Leo Baeck arrived in London in July 1945 from TheresiŽnstadt. He was welcomed with open arms by his Brothers and agreed to become Honorary Life President of the new Lodge. Leo Baeck was not only an academic, but also a businessman and that is why he chaired the B'nai B'rith Rehabilitation Fund, which was supported by other German-speaking Lodges in New York, Israel, Switzerland, South Africa and Australia.

On 5th May 1946, the President of Leo Baeck Men's Lodge, Brother Schwab, inaugurated the Leo Baeck (London) Women's Lodge, which had more than 200 members.

The two Lodges always worked well together, particularly when it came to helping the needy. Various committees were set up, in particular the 'Charitable Trust', as well as social funds, donations, legacies and large scale investments. The 'Home Help Scheme', a social fund for needy people and the elderly, provides support for sick people and grants for university students.

In May 2006, the two Lodges merged and the Leo Baeck (London) Lodge became a mixed Lodge.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of B'nai B'rith leo Baeck London Lodge, 1995-1996, comprise personal, mostly autobiographical accounts of former German and Austrian Jewish refugees, who subsequently became members of the Leo Baeck London Lodge and a list of authors at 1288/56.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement:


Conditions governing access:


Conditions governing reproduction:

None of the material in this collection may be reproduced without the written consent of the copyright holder.

Physical characteristics:

Finding aids:

Description exists to this archive on the Wiener Library's online catalogue


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information:


Archival history:

These personal histories were produced by specific request of the B'nai B'rith Leo Baeck London Lodge. Len Bow, long-serving member of the lodge, and author of his own memoir was the interviewer for a number of the memoirs in the form of interview transcripts.

Immediate source of acquisition:

Henry Jonas


Existence and location of originals:

Existence and location of copies:

Related material:

Weiner Library holds cassette tape interviews: John Manford and Ludwig Lion

Publication note:



Archivist's note: Entry compiled by Howard Falksohn.

Rules or conventions: Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions: February 2008

German history | European history | National history
Jews | Religious groups
Personal narratives | Nonfiction | Prose | Literary forms and genres | Literature
Refugees | Migrants

Personal names

Corporate names
B'nai B'rith leo Baeck London Lodge