Guide to the Records of the Jewish Vocational Aid Society, undated, 1910-1985 (bulk 1933-1979)
 
*I-216

Reprocessed by Nancy Bernard (April 2008)

American Jewish Historical Society, New England Archives

99-101 Newbury St.

Boston, Massachusetts

Phone: (617) 226-1245

Email: reference@ajhsboston.org

URL: http://www.ajhsboston.org

© 2014, American Jewish Historical Society, Boston, MA and New York, NY. All Rights Reserved.
Finding aid was encoded by Marvin Rusinek on April 30, 2008. Description is in English.

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Jewish Vocational Aid Society (Boston)
Title: Jewish Vocational Aid Society (Boston) records
Dates:undated, 1910-1985 (bulk 1933-1979)
Abstract: The Jewish Vocational Aid Society, Boston, founded by Mrs. Margaret Davidson and incorporated under the laws of Massachusetts in 1907 as the Jewish Children's Aid Society; original purpose was in aiding destitute Jewish children. In 1936 became known as the Jewish Vocational Aid Society; members focused efforts on raising funds for needy Jewish students. Later, eligibility for scholarships was expanded to include non-Jewish students as well. In 1973 was forced to transfer most of its funds to the Combined Jewish Philanthropies and become a constituent agency of the latter organization. In 1979, remaining funds were transferred to the CJP and the JVAS was effectively dissolved.
Collection contains JVAS materials dating from its beginnings as the JCAS and ending with correspondence between Mrs. Margaret Goldman (granddaughter of Margaret Davidson) and the CJP in 1979. Included are invitations and notices of meetings and functions (1920's-1968) and a program for a reception and dance given by the "Destitute Children's Aid Society" (February 21, 1910), invitations to memorials for Mrs. Davidson, speeches and reports (1933-1964), a certificate officially changing the organization's name from the Jewish Children's Aid Society to the Jewish Vocational Aid Society, JVAS by-laws, program books for annual brunches and luncheons (1943-1970), appeals for money, miscellaneous financial reports, lists of committees and an election ballot, case reports, papers marking the transferring of funds from the JVAS to the Combined Jewish Philanthropies, correspondence with the CJP, miscellaneous correspondence, a program book for the 25th anniversary celebration of the Jewish Children's Aid Society (November 28, 1933), newspaper clippings (1960's), and miscellaneous printed materials.
Languages: The collection is in English.
Quantity: .5 linear feet (1 manuscript box)
Identification: I-216
Repository: American Jewish Historical Society
Location: Located at AJHS, Boston, MA.
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Historical Note

The Jewish Vocational Aid Society (JVAS), founded in 1907 by Margaret E. Davidson, began with her desire to raise funds for musical education for orphans. It originally formed as the Jewish Children’s Aid Society of Boston (JCAS of Boston) to give musical education and vocational training to children of the Home for Jewish Children. In 1909, JCAS of Boston was incorporated under the laws of Massachusetts. The organization was completely run by volunteers with no overhead. Financial aid was given based on worthiness and need--not just scholastic ability--and to be used for any vocational training that would lead to a career. The organization’s goal was self-support. JCAS of Boston assisted students in the greater Boston area, regardless of age, sex, race, or creed. The aid was administered in the form of interest-free loans, repayable when the recipient was financially independent. The JCAS of Boston officially changed its name to JVAS on April 13, 1936. On June 26, 1973, the Board of Trustees of the Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP) approved a resolution put forward at the Executive Committee Meeting on February 20, 1973 to transfer the funds of JVAS to the CJP Endowment funds. CJP also agreed to use the funds for scholarship purposes under the terms established by JVAS. JVAS would continue administering assistance from the funds.1

1 Compiled from JVAS Archives, CJP Archives.

Chronology of the Jewish Vocational Aid Society

1907Margaret E. Davidson begins raising funds for musical education for orphans.
1909Jewish Children's Aid Society of Boston is run as a corporation under the laws of Massachusetts.
1936Jewish Children's Aid Society of Boston officially changes its name to Jewish Vocational Aid Society.
1952By-laws are revised.
1973Jewish Vocational Aid Society transfers funds to the Combined Jewish Philanthropies Endowment Funds.
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Scope and Content Note

This collection contains records of the Jewish Vocational Aid Society (JVAS), with the bulk of the material from 1933-1979. The collection has been organized into five series: Correspondence, Financial Records, General, Governance and Programs. A short historical background of JVAS can be found in the Correspondence series. This series also includes information and the terms regarding the transfer of funds from JVAS to CJP. The Financial Records series includes official documents relating to this transfer. The General series is mostly made up of news clippings, including several articles about JVAS and its mission as well as a copy of facts about JVAS. Mrs. P. Kervin Goldman, granddaughter of the founder of JVAS, is profiled in two articles. In addition, this series contains newspaper photos of some of the luncheon committee volunteers. The majority of documents in the Governance series consist of annual reports and speeches. This series also contains the certificate regarding the name change of JVAS from JCAS. The final series of this collection, Programs, includes many Annual Meeting Luncheon and Brunch program booklets. The only photo of the founder of JVAS, Mrs. K.M. Davidson, is in this series as well as a 1912 program of the Dedication of the Memorial Reading Room made in her memory. The oldest item in the collection, a 1910 program can be found in this series as well as a 25th Anniversary booklet.

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Arrangement

The collection is divided into five series, as described below:

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Access and Use

Access Restrictions

The collection is open to all researchers by permission of the Director of Library and Archives of the American Jewish Historical Society, except items that are restricted due to their fragility.

Use Restrictions

Information concerning the literary rights may be obtained from the Executive Director of the American Jewish Historical Society. Users must apply in writing for permission to quote, reproduce or otherwise publish manuscript materials found in this collection. For more information contact:
American Jewish Historical Society, Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York, NY, 10011
email: reference@ajhs.org

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Related Material

Jewish Children’s Aid Society, Combined Jewish Philanthropies (I-220).

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Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:
Identification of item, date (if known); Jewish Vocational Aid Society (Boston) records; I-216; box number; folder number; American Jewish Historical Society, New York, NY, and Boston, MA.

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Acquisition Information

The collection was donated to AJHS in May 1, 1986 by Margaret Goldman.

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Access Points

Click on a subject to search that term in the Center's catalog. Return to the Top of Page

Container List

The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.

 

Series I: Correspondence, undated, 1967-1985

The Series is in English.
2 Folders.
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

The majority of this series contains correspondence regarding the transfer of JVAS funds to CJP. Correspondence includes accepting transfer of funds resolutions on March 5, 1973, letter to CJP stating that JVAS unable to continue on its own on June 25, 1979, and terms set forward regarding the transfer of JVAS funds to CJP. This series also contains donation acknowledgement letters and correspondence with The American Jewish Historical Society regarding donating JVAS material. A short historical background of JVAS can also be found in this series.

BoxFolderTitleDate
1 1 CJP 1971-1979
1 2 Miscellaneous undated, 1967, 1977, 1985
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Series II: Financial Records, undated, 1943-1976

The Series is in English.
3 Folders.
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

This series contains several donation appeals drafts, statements from 1959-1963 of cash receipts and disbursements of the general fund and scholarship reports from 1974-1976. Also included is a stipulations document from 1972 regarding JVAS transferring its funds to CJP, a meeting minutes from a general meeting regarding information on an agreement with CJP to act as a trustee of funds and to allocate scholarships under JVAS through CJP Scholarship Board, and a proposed by-law amendment stating theses changes. There is also a document confirming the transferring of JVAS funds to CJP. A 1973 CJP Board of Trustees minutes states that the Board of Trustees of the CJP approved a resolution voted by the Executive Committee on February 20, 1973 on the transfer of funds by JVAS to the CJP Endowment Fund.

BoxFolderTitleDate
1 3 Donation Appeals undated, 1943, 1961
1 4 Financial Reports 1959-1964
1 5 Scholarship Reports, Transferring of Funds to CJP; Proposed Amendments, Minutes, Discussion Summary 1972-1976
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Series III: General, undated, 1961-1975

This Series is in English.
3 Folders.
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

In this series are several case reports: one from 1967 and two from 1975. News clippings make up the bulk of this series and contain mostly undated photos of luncheon committee workers; however one photo is from 1962. There are also articles about JVAS and its mission as well as two profiles written in 1961 and 1963 of Mrs. P. Kervin Goldman, one of the organization’s presidents and granddaughter of the founder. In addition, there are forms of JVAS Scholarship-Loan Notes and a printed copy of facts about JVAS.

BoxFolderTitleDate
1 6 Case Reports 1967, 1975
1 7 News Clippings undated, 1961-1963
1 8 Printed Materials, Miscellaneous undated
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Series IV: Governance, undated, 1935-1974

This Series is in English.
4 Folders.
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

This series contains the certificate from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts regarding the name change of the Jewish Children’s Aid Society of Boston to the Jewish Vocational Aid Society on April 13, 1936 and a printed booklet of the revised By-Laws of JVAS. A large portion of this series consists of annual reports and speeches, mostly dated between 1959-1964. Included is the speech written by Mrs. P. Kervin Goldman, accepting the office of president in 1961. The remainder of this series is a Slate of Candidates for the Elective Position, most of which are dated from the 1956-1966, but one is from 1948-1949. There are also Board Members lists forms from 1971-1974.

BoxFolderTitleDate
1 9 Annual Reports, Speeches undated, 1959-1970
1 10 By-Laws 1952
1 11 Election Information, Administrative Membership List, Standing Committee List, Election Ballot 1948-1974
1 12 JCAS Name Change Documents, State Certificate, Articles of Amendment, Receipt 1935-1936
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Series V: Programs, undated, 1910-1972

This Series is in English.
6 Folders.
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

This series contains Annual Meeting Luncheon and Bruncheon program booklets from 1943, 1948-1949, and 1961-1970. Of special note, the Annual Luncheon Booklet of 1947-1948 has a photo on the cover of the JVAS founder, Mrs. Kallman M. Davidson. This is the only photo of her in the entire collection. Another large portion of this series is made up of The Spokesman, the JVAS bulletin, with issues ranging from 1934-1939, 1945, and 1966-1971. Also in this series are invitations to other social events, some undated, but issued under the Jewish Children’s Aid Society name, while others are dated between 1968-1974. An invitation and program of the Dedication of the Memorial Reading Room in memory of Mrs. K.M. Davidson, 1912, can be found here as well as a Resolutions document written after her death. The Programs series also contains the oldest item in the collection: a Reception & Dance program of the Destitute Children’s Aid Society held in 1910. In addition, there is a booklet of the 25th Anniversary Celebration (1933).

BoxFolderTitleDate
1 13 Annual Brunches, Luncheons, Booklets 1963-1970
1 14 Annual Luncheon, Booklets 1943-1962
1 15 Destitute Children’s Aid Society, Reception & Dance Program 1910
1 16 Margaret E. Davidson, Founder JCAS, Tributes, Resolution 1912
1 17 Newsletter, Invitations, Play Program undated, 1934-1972
1 18 25th Anniversary, Program Book 1933
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