Our Collections

The OJA’s records span all segments of Ontario’s Jewish community. We have records from businesses, families, labour unions, organizations, and synagogues. These records date from the community’s earliest days to its present. What’s more, they come from all over Ontario and in every format you can think of. If you were to lay out all of our boxes, they would stretch from the foot of Yonge Street to Dundas Square!

Below you can find highlights from our newest acquisitions as well as collections that have recently been processed and added to our website search.

Do you have records to donate to the OJA? Click here to learn how.

Acquisition of the Month

Torah mantle (blue)In December, the OJA acquired two Torah mantles that previously belonged to Congregation Beth Haminyan, located in Toronto. According to the Jewish Museum London, "Torah mantles are cloth covers used to decorate and protect Torah scrolls. The Torah is the most sacred and important object in Judaism, so protecting it from damage is very important." The blue Torah mantle shown here is inscribed in the name of Shayndel ("Jennie") and Yitzchak ("Isaac") Underman. The other, white Torah mantle (not shown) is inscribed by the Ennushevsky family of the Welland Shul. The donation of the Sefer Torah (Torah scroll) was facilitated by Dr. Julius Ennis, formerly Ennushevsky. Although the OJA does not usually acquire Judaica (archives, unlike museums, do not usually collect specific objects), it was pleased to do so in this instance in order to preserve a part of the city's religious history.