Guide to the Eric Breindel Papers (1955-1998),
undated, 1943-2007
(Bulk 1988-1998)

P-896

Processed by Michael D. Montalbano

American Jewish Historical Society

Center for Jewish History

15 West 16th Street

New York, N.Y. 10011

Phone: (212) 294-6160

Fax: (212) 294-6161

Email: reference@ajhs.org

URL: http://www.ajhs.org

© 2014, American Jewish Historical Society, Boston, MA and New York, NY. All Rights Reserved.
Electronic finding aid was encoded in EAD 2002 by Michael D. Montalbano in June, 2010. Description is in English.

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Breindel, Eric (1955-1998)
Title: Eric Breindel Papers
Dates:undated, 1943-2007
Bulk Dates:1988-1998
Abstract: The Eric Breindel Papers (1955-1998) provides a glimpse into the life and untimely passing of New York Post editor and columnist Eric Breindel. The bulk of this collection documents the many awards and honors he received for his contributions to the Jewish community, and the community at large. The collection also includes many photographs of Breindel with friends, colleagues, and notable individuals. Some samples of his writing and research can also be found in the collection. Other interesting material documents the grief of his early death and the sentiments expressed by many about his loss.
Languages: The collection is in English.
Quantity: 12.5 linear feet (8 manuscript boxes and 5 OS1 boxes)
Identification: P-896
Repository: American Jewish Historical Society
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Biographical Note

Eric Breindel, political commentator and columnist, was born in 1955 to Dr. Joseph H. and Sonia of New York City. Eric attended and graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, New Hampshire. He would go on to graduate magna cum laude from Harvard College. While at Harvard, he had the distinction of being elected to Phi Beta Kappa and served as the editorial chair of the Harvard Crimson newspaper. He sought to advance his education by pursuing graduate work at the London School of Economics, and Harvard Law, where he earned his J.D. in 1982.

Breindel worked as an aide to Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s (D-N.Y.) Senate Intelligence Committee. He then went on to work for the Public Broadcasting Corporation as a correspondent. In 1986, he was made Editorial Page Editor of the New York Post. He wrote on a variety of topics and was noted for his conservative perspective. During his time at the helm of the New York Post's editorial page his convivial personality allowed him befriend many of the city’s leaders, not only in politics but in other areas as well, regardless of political persuasion or affiliation. In 1997, nearly ten years later he was appointed to the position of Senior Vice President of News Corporation and made host of Fox News Channels’ Fox News Watch.

Suffering from a variety of ailments, he died in 1998 at the age of 42. At the time of his death, Senator Moynihan of New York paid tribute to Eric in the Congressional Record for March 12, 1998. His memorial service was held at the Park Avenue Synagogue on March 9, and attended by many of the city’s most influential citizens. He was survived by his father Joseph H., then chief of obstetrics and gynecology at New York's Beth Israel Medical Center and Sonia Breindel of New York and his sister, Monique.

Although he wrote numerous editorials in the New York Post, below is provided some of his lengthier authorial efforts. In 1998, John Podhoretz, editor of Commentary magazine, compiled a collection of Breindel’s writings, titled A Passion for Truth: The Selected Writings of Eric Breindel that had appeared in that magazine.

Sources

LeDuff, Charlie "Eric Breindel, 42, Commentator and New York Post Columnist." New York Times, March 8, 1998, Obituaries. http://www.nytimes.com/1998/03/08/nyregion/eric-breindel-42-commentator-and-new-york-post-columnist.html

"Journalist Breindel Dies at 42: Eric M. Breindel '77 was New York Post editor, Jewish community leader." Harvard Crimson, March 20, 1998. http://www.thecrimson.com/article/1998/3/20/journalist-breindel-dies-at-42-peric/

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Scope and Content Note

This collection has been divided into four series for ease in access. Series I, Research and Writings, documents the work of Eric Breindel. This series has been further organized into three sub-series. The first, appropriately titled, Sub-series 1 - Writings, documents the singular and collaborative output of Eric Breindel. This includes his senior thesis from Harvard titled, A Study in Terrorism: The Origin, Ideology, and Tactics of the Stern Group; his work, which he coauthored with Herbert Romerstein, on the Venona papers, titled The Venona Secrets; and a collection of his essays that appeared in Commentary magazine and were posthumously edited by John Podhoretz titled, A Passion for Truth: The Selected Writings of Eric Breindel. Along with these works are copies of the original Venona papers used in the writing of The Venona Secrets. Then, Sub-series 2 - Research, includes documents that have no immediate or obvious relationship to the writings of Eric Breindel that were deemed appropriate enough by the donor to be included in the collection. These include a manuscript and selections of David Horowitz’s Radical Son: A Generational Odyssey, Nicholas Eberstadt’s The End of North Korea, and a manuscript of Bernard Fergusson’s The Trumpet in the Hall, 1930-1958. While the connection to Breindel’s work in vague these documents lend insight into his interests. Finally, Sub-series 3 – Assorted, this contains an assortment of papers of a personal and professional nature. These include the haftarah of his sister Monique, various award letters from his time at Harvard, and an assortment of writings of indeterminable origin and authorship.

Series II, titled, Memorial, documents the events following Eric Breindel’s death, including his funeral and subsequent memorials and tributes. These include numerous condolence letter, obituaries, and tributes. Some of those who attended the funeral and send letters of condolences to the family include, author Elie Wiesel, journalists Peter Jennings, Barbara Walters, Brit Hume and John Podhoretz, designer Oscar De La Renta, actor Ron Silver, and many politicians.

Photographs can be found in Series III. These visually document the life of Eric Breindel. Individuals of note within this series include, Senators Bob Dole and Chris Dodd, media mogul Rupert Murdoch, New York Governors Mario Cuomo and George Pataki, U.S. Presidents Richard M. Nixon and George H.W. Bush, New York Mayors Ed Koch and Rudy Giuliani, Israeli Prime Minister and President Shimon Peres, political activist and author Natan Saransky, and many other politicians and pundits. This series also contains a flyer for the 1948 Presidential Campaign of Progressive Party candidate Henry Wallace and a painting of a young unknown girl.

The many awards, medals and plaques Eric Breindel received can be found in, Series IV – Awards and Honors.

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Arrangement

The documents in this collection have been organized according to topic and document type. The collection has been broken up into series. Series 1 has been further organized into sub-series. These sub-series have been arranged by topic. All files have been organized within their respective series and sub-series first alphabetically, then chronologically.

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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

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

National Security Agency and Central Security Service’s website on the U.S. Army's Signal Intelligence Service’s VENONA program to uncover Soviet spies operating in the United States can be found at: http://www.nsa.gov/public_info/declass/venona/

Eric Breindel was a student of U.S. Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan and served under him as an advisor. Senator Moynihan's papers may be found at the Library of Congress. A finding aid is available at: http://www.loc.gov/rr/mss/moynihan/moynihan-home.html

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Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:
Identification of item, date (if known); Eric Breindel Papers; P-896; box number; folder number; American Jewish Historical Society, New York, NY, and Boston, MA.

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Acquisition Information

This collection was received in three accessions. The first accession dates from June 3, 1999 and was received as a gift from Eric’s parents Joseph and Sonia Breindel. The second accession dates from June 6, 2001 as a gift from Sonia Breindel, Eric Breindel’s mother. The third accession is dated from December 23, 2008 and was received as a gift from Elizabeth (Lally) Weymouth, a close friend.

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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

 

Series I: Research and Writings, undated, 1941-1999

This series is in English.
2.25 linear feet (4.5 manuscript boxes and 1 oversize folder) Box 1, Folder 1 to Box 5, Folder 4 and Box 10, Folder 4.
Arrangement:

This series has been arranged into three sub-series. Each of these sub-series documents a particular aspect of the life of Eric Breindel. The folders within these sub-series are organized alphabetically and chronologically.

Scope and Content:

Series I – Research and Writings documents the work of Eric Breindel. This series has been further organized into three sub-series. The first, appropriately titled, Sub-series 1 - Writings, documents the singular and collaborative output of Eric Breindel. This includes his senior thesis from Harvard titled, A Study in Terrorism: The Origin, Ideology, and Tactics of the Stern Group, his work with Herbert Romerstein, The Venona Secrets, and a collection of his essays that appeared in Commentary magazine and were posthumously edited by John Podhoretz titled, A Passion for Truth: The Selected Writings of Eric Breindel. Along with these works are copies of the original Venona papers used in the writing of The Venona Secrets. Then, Sub-series 2 - Research, includes documents that have no immediate or obvious relationship to the writings of Eric Breindel they were deemed appropriate enough to by the donor to be included in the collection. These include a manuscript and selections of David Horowitz’s Radical Son: A Generational Odyssey, Nicholas Eberstadt’s The End of North Korea, and a manuscript of Bernard Fergusson’s The Trumpet in the Hall, 1930-1958. While the connection to Breindel’s work in vague these documents lend insight into his interests. Finally, Sub-series 3 – Assorted, this contains an assortment of papers of a personal and professional nature. These include the haftarah of his sister Monique, various award letters from his time at Harvard, and an assortment of writings of indeterminable origin and authorship.

Sub-Series I: Writings, undated, 1941-1999

1.5 linear feet (3 manuscript boxes) Box 1, Folder 1 to Box 3, Folder 5.
Arrangement:

Arrangement is alphabetical by folder title and chronological by date.

Scope and Content:

This subseries documents the singular and collaborative output of Eric Breindel. This includes his senior thesis from Harvard titled, A Study in Terrorism: The Origin, Ideology, and Tactics of the Stern Group, his work with Herbert Romerstein, The Venona Secrets, and a collection of his essays that had appeared in Commentary magazine posthumously edited by John Podhoretz titled, A Passion for Truth: The Selected Writings of Eric Breindel. Along with these works are copies of the original Venona papers used in the writing of The Venona Secrets.

BoxFolderTitleDate
1 1 Commentary - Articles 1977-1995
1 2 A Passion for Truth: The Selected Writings of Eric Breidel 1999
1 3 Speech at Yeshiva University undated
1 4 A Study in Terrorism: The Origin, Ideology, and Tactics of the Stern Group - Thesis AB Harvard (Copy 1) 1977 March
1 5 A Study in Terrorism: The Origin, Ideology, and Tactics of the Stern Group - Thesis AB Harvard (Copy 2) 1977 March
1 6 A Study in Terrorism: The Origin, Ideology, and Tactics of the Stern Group - Thesis AB Harvard (Copy 3) 1977 March
BoxFolderTitleDate
2 1 The Venona Secrets undated
2 2 Venona Secrets (1 of 3) 1941-1996
2 3 Venona Secrets (2 of 3) 1941-1996
2 4 Venona Secrets (3 of 3) 1941-1996
2 5 Venona Secrets - Bride (1 of 6) 1943-1996
BoxFolderTitleDate
3 1 Venona Secrets - Bride (2 of 6) 1943-1996
3 2 Venona Secrets - Bride (3 of 6) 1943-1996
3 3 Venona Secrets - Bride (4 of 6) 1943-1996
3 4 Venona Secrets - Bride (5 of 6) 1943-1996
3 5 Venona Secrets - Bride (6 of 6) 1943-1996

Sub-Series II: Research, 1970-1999

0.625 linear feet (1.0 manuscript boxes and 2 folders) Box 4, Folder 1 to Box 5, Folder 2.
Arrangement:

Arrangement is alphabetical by folder title and chronological by date.

Scope and Content:

This subseries includes documents that while having no immediate or obvious relationship to the writings of Eric Breindel they were deemed appropriate enough to be included in the collection by the donor. These include a manuscript and selections of David Horowitz’s Radical Son: A Generational Odyssey, Nicholas Eberstadt’s The End of North Korea, and a manuscript of Bernard Fergusson’s The Trumpet in the Hall, 1930-1958. While the connection to Breindel’s work is vague these documents lend insight into his interests.

BoxFolderTitleDate
Box 10 (OS1) Clippings undated
BoxFolderTitleDate
4 1 Cold War International History Project Bulletin: The Cold War in Asia 1995-1996
4 2 The End of North Korea by Nicholas Eberstadt 1999 October
4 3 Radical Son by David Horowitz 1995
4 4 Selections from Radical Son by David Horowitz 1995
4 5 Manuscript - The Trumpet in the Hall, 1930-1958 by Bernard Fergusson (1 of 4) 1970
4 6 Manuscript - The Trumpet in the Hall, 1930-1958 by Bernard Fergusson (2 of 4) 1970
BoxFolderTitleDate
5 1 Manuscript - The Trumpet in the Hall, 1930-1958 by Bernard Fergusson (3 of 4) 1970
5 2 Manuscript - The Trumpet in the Hall, 1930-1958 by Bernard Fergusson (4 of 4) 1970

Sub-Series III: Assorted, 1965-1999

0.125 linear feet (2 folders) Box 5, Folder 1 to Box 5, Folder 2.
Arrangement:

Arrangement is alphabetical by folder title and chronological by date.

Scope and Content:

This subseries contains an assortment of papers of a personal and professional nature. These include the haftarah of his sister Monique, various award letters from his time at Harvard, and an assortment of writings of indeterminable origin and authorship.

BoxFolderTitleDate
5 3 Assorted Papers 1965-1979
5 4 Reviews 1987-1999
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Series II: Memorial, 1998-2007

This series is in English.
1.0 linear feet (1.5 manuscript boxes) Box 5, Folder 5 to Box 7, Folder 5.
Arrangement:

Arrangement is alphabetical by folder title and chronological by date.

Scope and Content:

This series documents the events following Eric Breindel’s death, including his funeral and subsequent memorials and tributes. These include numerous condolence letters, obituaries, and tributes. Some of those who attended the funeral and sent letters of condolence to the family include: author Elie Wiesel, journalists Peter Jennings, Barbara Walters, Brit Hume and John Podhoretz, designer Oscar De La Renta, actor Ron Silver, and many politicians.

BoxFolderTitleDate
5 5 Condolence Letters (1 of 7) 1998
5 6 Condolence Letters (2 of 7) 1998
5 7 Condolence Letters (3 of 7) 1998
5 8 Condolence Letters (4 of 7) 1998
BoxFolderTitleDate
6 1 Condolence Letters (5 of 7) 1998
6 2 Condolence Letters (6 of 7) 1998
6 3 Condolence Letters (7 of 7) 1998
6 4 Guest Book 1998
6 5 Honors - The Eric Breindel Award for Excellence in Opinion Journalism 1998-2007
6 6 Honors - Tributes 1998
BoxFolderTitleDate
7 1 Honors - Zionist Organization of America 1998 November 1
7 2 Letters to the Editor of New York Magazine Concerning the Craig Horowitz Article 1999
7 3 Obituaries 1998
7 4 Obituaries - Letters to the Editor 1998
7 5 Will 1998 May 4
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Series III: Photographs, undated, 1956

This series is in English.
3.42 linear feet (3 folders and 2 OS1 boxes) Box 7, Folder 6 to Box 10 (3 items).
Arrangement:

Due to the nature and lack of information concerning the documents in this series no organization has been made. Concerning the photographs, in the first two folders there is an assortment of photographs. The third folder contains photographs of President Nixon's visit to the New York Post while Breindel was editor there.

Scope and Content:

This series contains photographs that visually document the life of Eric Breindel. Individuals of note within this series include, Senators Bob Dole and Chris Dodd; media mogul Rupert Murdoch; New York Governors Mario Cuomo and George Pataki; U.S. Presidents Richard M. Nixon and George H.W. Bush; New York Mayors Ed Koch and Rudy Giuliani; Israeli Prime Minister and President Shimon Peres; political activist and author Natan Saransky; and many other politicians and pundits. This series also contains a flyer for the 1948 Presidential Campaign of Progressive Party candidate Henry Wallace and a painting of a young girl.

BoxFolderTitleDate
7 6 Photographs (1 of 3) undated
7 7 Photographs (2 of 3) undated
7 8 Photographs (3 of 3) undated
BoxFolderTitleDate
Box 9 (OS1) Pencil drawing of a girl - artist and title unknown 1956
Box 9 (OS1) Framed Photograph - Speaking at Shomrim Society undated
Box 9 (OS1) Framed Photograph - Eric Breindel and Mario Coumo undated
Box 9 (OS1) Framed Photograph - Eric and Joseph Breindel undated
Box 9 (OS1) Framed Photograph - Eric Briendel and Others undated
BoxFolderTitleDate
Box 10 (OS1) Oversize Photographs undated
Box 10 (OS1) Framed Photograph - Eric Breindel at Shomrim Society undated
Box 10 (OS1) Framed Photograph - Eric Breindel and unidentified individuals undated
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Series IV: Awards and Honors, undated, 1990-1998

This series is in English.
5.66 linear feet (1 folder, 1 manuscript box and 3 OS1 boxes) Box 7, Folder 9 to Box 13 (OS1)
Arrangement:

This series has been arranged by document type. Further consideration was placed on the size of the documents and the efficiency of there placement within the containers.

Scope and Content:

This series documents the numerous awards and honors received by Eric Breindel.

BoxFolderTitleDate
7 9 Assorted 1994-1998
BoxFolderTitleDate
8 Award - Zionist Organization of America 1998
8 Medal - Ellis Island Medal of Honor 1994
8 Medal - New York Shields 1990
BoxFolderTitleDate
Box 11 (OS1) Plaque - Friends of the Israel Defense Forces undated
Box 11 (OS1) Plaque - Crimebuster Award undated
Box 11 (OS1) Plaque - Society of Professional Journalists - Sigma Delta Chi Award and Bronze Medallion for Editorial Writing 1991 October 8
Box 11 (OS1) Plaque - Stern College of Women - Mordecai Ben David Award 1993 June 2
BoxFolderTitleDate
Box 12 (OS1) Plaque - New York Shields - Certificate of Commendation 1992 November 24
Box 12 (OS1) Plaque - Holocaust Studies Center - Bronx High School of Science - Distinguished Service Award 1990 April
Box 12 (OS1) Plaque - Queens Region of Hadassah - Excellence in Journalism Award 1994 May 23
Box 12 (OS1) Plaque - Uniformed Firefighters Association - Media Award 1994
BoxFolderTitleDate
Box 13 (OS1) Plaque - New York Shields - Police Commissioner's Law Enforcement Support Award 1994 May 1
Box 13 (OS1) Plaque - Shomrim Society New York City Police Department - Person of the Year Award 1991 October 20
Box 13 (OS1) Plaque - B'nai B'rith Women - Sons of the Covenant Award 1993 October 17
Box 13 (OS1) Copy of the Congressional Record in which Senator Al D'Amato (R-NY) honored Eric Breindel 1994 June 7
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