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The Rabbi Joshua Trachtenberg Memorial Library

Library History
Our library is named for the beloved rabbi and scholar who served our congregation in the 1950s. Upon his untimely death in 1959, his widow left his book collection to us as a living legacy. There were over 2,000 books: works of philosophy, history, and biography, volumes in Hebrew, German, and Yiddish, an extraordinary reference section. The collection included classics written by Rabbi Trachtenberg himself: Jewish Magic and Superstition and The Devil and the Jews.

Over the years the library has continued to grow and flourish, thanks to the generous donations of congregants to our Milestone Memories Book Dedication Program. The library remains a valuable resource for research into all aspects of Jewish life from ancient days to modern times. The library now offers over 3,500 books, DVDs, current magazines, newspapers, as well as children's books.

In the fall of 1998, the library moved into spacious and inviting new quarters. Now light streams in through the stained-glass windows that once graced Temple Emeth's original Larch Avenue home. Rabbi Trachtenberg's portrait and biography are prominently displayed. We take great pride in the library that bears his name.

The Rabbi Joshua Trachtenberg Memorial Library has received basic accreditation from the Association of Jewish Libraries (AJL), which recognizes that we have met the professional objectives and standards the AJL sets for Jewish libraries.

The Rabbi Joshua Trachtenberg Memorial Library Center's mission is to be Temple Emeth's hub of Jewish learning. In our comfortable, warm and inviting library we have materials ranging from the ancient to the modern—for the scholar, the adult learner, and children of all ages. We support the Temple's programs, as well as serve the individual by offering access to a wide range of resources—books, periodicals, newspapers, and DVDs. Jewish authors and topics are our focus. We aim to be a place where committed Reform Jews can cultivate and strengthen their Jewish identity through the study of Jewish history, practice, theology, culture, philosophy, and values.

Programs and Displays
Library displays are often coordinated with particular visiting speakers, programs, or holidays. For example, a particular author's books may be featured when that author speaks to an adult education group. A showcase of books about mysticism can further illuminate a museum exhibit on that theme. Other displays include:

  • Recent acquisitions
  • Torah commentaries
  • Books for Jewish Book Month
  • Books written by members of the congregation

The Library Comes to You!
At certain Onegs, you can check out books right in the Social Hall. Look for a table with a display of recent acquisitions, a handpicked selection on a special theme, or a featured author. A volunteer will be on hand to assist you.

Circulation Policy
Temple members may borrow books. Nonmembers are welcome to browse, but circulation is limited to members. Books and DVDs may be borrowed for four weeks. Three items may be borrowed at one time.

The library is open whenever the building is open, or you may call the Temple office at (201) 833-1322 for special requests.


Tue, July 16 2024 10 Tammuz 5784