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Cohn (Rabbi Morton J.) Collection
MS-0561  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Scope and Contents
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Conditions Governing Use
  • Source of Acquisition
  • Accruals and Additions
  • Related Materials
  • Preferred Citation
  • Biographical Note

  • Contributing Institution: Special Collections & University Archives
    Title: Rabbi Morton J. Cohn Collection
    Creator: Cohn, Morton J.
    Identifier/Call Number: MS-0561
    Physical Description: 26.76 Linear Feet
    Date (inclusive): 1925-1990
    Language of Material: English .

    Scope and Contents

    The collection consists of materials collected from Cohn's school days until his death. Included are correspondence; over 2000 sermons; plays; personal documents; photographs and materials relating the various congregations he served.  There are scrapbooks and newspaper clippings regarding both Cohn and his wife Sally and current events, index cards, pamphlets, research notes and plaques.

    Conditions Governing Access

    This collection is open for research.

    Conditions Governing Use

    The copyright interests in these materials have not been transferred to San Diego State University. Copyright resides with the creators of materials contained in the collection or their heirs. The nature of historical archival and manuscript collections is such that copyright status may be difficult or even impossible to determine.  Requests for permission to publish must be submitted to the Head of Special Collections, San Diego State University, Library and Information Access. When granted, permission is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical item and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder(s), which must also be obtained in order to publish. Materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials.

    Source of Acquisition

    Jewish Historical Society of San Diego

    Accruals and Additions

    2017-043

    Related Materials

    Adat Ami Synagogue Collection
    Lou Dunst Collection
    Mark Freeman Papers
    Deborah Horwitz and Paul Nierman Collection
    Rose Neumann Collection
    Elena Saad Collection
    Irving Salomon Collection
    Tifereth Israel Synagogue Collection
    Abbe Wolfsheimer-Stutz Collection

    Preferred Citation

    Identification of item, folder title, box number, Rabbi Morton J. Cohn Collection, Special Collections and University Archives, San Diego State University Library.

    Biographical Note

    Rabbi Morton Jacob Cohn was born January 12, 1910 in Detroit, Michigan and was ordained as a reform rabbi in 1934. After serving pulpits in various cities, he enlisted as a Navy Chaplain during World War II with the Southern Pacific Fleet and continued in the Naval Reserve for many years. In 1946 he settled in San Diego where he became rabbi of Congregation Beth Israel and remained there until 1964 when he left to found Temple Emanu-El, whose religious school bears his name.
    Rabbi Cohn was meticulous in preserving anything relating to his career, the San Diego Jewish community, Judaism and currents events involving Jews, making his collection a comprehensive picture of San Diego Jewish life during his almost 50 years here. As rabbi of the largest Jewish congregation in San Diego, he was a formidable leader in the Jewish and secular communities. He was one of three rabbis, (Cohn, Levens, Stern) who lead the San Diego Jewish community from the years after WWII until the 1970's. He was very involved in interfaith activities, gave a weekly radio sermon, created and participated in musical parodies for holidays, rabbinical conventions and special occasions. He maintained a card catalog of life cycle events at which he officiated and a bibliographical file of research materials. Part of this collection is material regarding his wife, Sally Cohn, who was very involved in women's groups and the sisterhoods of the congregations Cohn served. She started the San Diego Women's Association for the Salk Institute. They had two children Jane and Morton Cohn Jr. Rabbi Cohn died in 1991; Sally Cohn died in 1994.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Jews--California--San Diego
    Congregation Beth Israel (San Diego, Calif.)