Guide to the Records of Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry, undated, 1972-1991, 1997

* I-507

Processed by Andrey Filimonov

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 Andrey Filimonov in February 2011. Description is in English.

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry
Title: Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry,
Dates:Records, undated, 1972-1991, 1997
Abstract: The Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry records documenting the activities of a human rights non-governmental organization on behalf of Soviet Jewry. The records date from 1972-1997 with the bulk in the late 1970s through 1980s. The collection includes administrative files, documents pertaining to various local and national institutions, programs and activities related to the Soviet Jewry movement, reports of trips to visit Jews in the U.S.S.R., information on U.S.-U.S.S.R. trade relations, Soviet laws and Soviet Antisemitism, information on Seattle’s sister city Tashkent. Besides the series with the general materials the collection features a series with files concerning Soviet Jewish Prisoners of Conscience, and Refuseniks and an audio-visual series with photographs of Soviet Jews and local and national coverage of the events related to Soviet Jewry.
Languages: The collection is in English and Russian.
Quantity: 6.5 linear feet (13 manuscript boxes)
Identification: I-507
Repository: American Jewish Historical Society
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Historical Note

The Records of Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry represent one collection housed within the Archive of the American Soviet Jewry Movement (AASJM). These papers reflect the effort, beginning in the 1960s through the late 1980s, of thousands of American Jews of all denominations and political orientations to stop the persecution and discrimination of Jews in the Soviet Union. The American Soviet Jewry Movement (ASJM) is considered to be the most influential Movements of the American Jewish community in the 20th century. The beginnings of the organized American Soviet Jewry Movement became a model for efforts to aid Soviet Jews in other countries, among them Great Britain, Canada, and France. The movement can be traced to the early 1960s, when the first organizations were created to address the specific problem of the persecution and isolation of Soviet Jews by the government of the Soviet Union.

Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry was formed by Judy Lash Balint in 1974. Upon returning from a trip to the U.S.S.R., where she and her husband visited Refuseniks in Ukraine and Russia Mrs. Bailint felt the need to force the issue of Soviet Jewry onto the Seattle communal agenda. She initiated Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry and with the help of local attorney Leonard Schroeter made contact with other groups interested in the Soviet Jewry issue. In 1975 Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry became formally affiliated with Union of Councils for Soviet Jews. By establishing relationships with congressmen and senators the SASJ focused political pressure which produced significant successes on behalf of individual Refusenik and prisoner cases. For many years Seattle was a center for the Citizen Diplomacy movement which found the city hosting many delegations of visiting Soviet officials and major conferences. In May 1987 Seattle and sister-city Tashkent in Uzbekistan brought the U.S./Soviet Sister Cities Conference to Seattle. In July 1990 a conference on human rights accompanied the Goodwill Games in Seattle. At these events and others, such as the Phil Donahue "Citizens Summit" television exchange with Vladimir Pozner, the SASJ was pivotal in creating a coalition of local groups concerned with the issue of Soviet Jewry, and adherence to the principles of the Helsinki Accords. The vigilance of the SASJ and other local groups made their presence felt at the events mentioned above, as well as many other events, and helped to shape the agendas at these meetings.

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Scope and Content Note

The Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry records date from 1972-1997 with the bulk in the late 1970s through 1980s. The collection includes administrative files, documents pertaining to various local and national institutions, programs and activities related to the Soviet Jewry movement, reports of trips to visit Jews in the U.S.S.R., information on U.S.-U.S.S.R. trade relations, Soviet laws and Soviet Antisemitism, information on Seattle’s sister city Tashkent. Besides the series with the general materials the collection features a series with files concerning Soviet Jewish Prisoners of Conscience, and Refuseniks and an audio-visual series with photographs of Soviet Jews and local and national coverage of the events related to Soviet Jewry.

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Arrangement

The collection is divided into three series as follows:

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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

The records of Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry is one individual collection within the Archive of the American Soviet Jewry Movement (AASJM) located at the American Jewish Historical Society (AJHS). Other Soviet Jewry Movement collections at AJHS include the records of Action for Soviet Jewry (I-487), the National Conference on Soviet Jewry (NCSJ; I-181 and I-181A), the Union of Councils for Soviet Jews (I-410, I-410A), Houston Action for Soviet Jewry (I-500), Bay Area Council for Soviet Jews (I-505), Medical Mobilization for Soviet Jewry, the papers of Joel Ackerman (P-787), Julia Mates Cheney (P-806), Jerry Goodman (P-863), Laurel and Alan J. Gould (P-866), Carolyn W. Sanger (P-870), Si Frumkin (P-871), Elaine Pittell (P-873), Sanford A. Gradinger (P-880), Shaul Osadchey (P-882), Leonard S. Cahan (P-883), Doris H. Goldstein (P-887), David H. Hill (P-888), Margery Sanford (P-889), Pinchas Mordechai Teitz (P-891), David Waksberg (P-895), Pamela B. Cohen (P-897), Moshe Decter (P-899) and William Korey (P-903).

Individual accounts of activities within the Soviet Jewry Movement are preserved in the UJA Oral History Collection (I-433), which includes accounts from members of the following organizations: the Union of Councils for Soviet Jews, Bay Area Council on Soviet Jews (BACSJ), Seattle Action for Soviet Jews, Houston Action for Soviet Jews, Chicago Action for Soviet Jews, Colorado Committee of Concern for Soviet Jews and the National Conference on Soviet Jewry. Interviewees include accounts by Lillian Forman (BACSJ), Ann Polunsky, Morey Schapira, Myrtle Sitowitz, Deborah Turkin, David Waksberg, Sylvia Weinberg and Dolores Wilkenfeld. In addition, posters related to the Soviet Jewry Movement can be found in the Jewish Student Organizations Collection (I-61).

Additional materials from other collections include records dealing with the Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry (SSSJ) located within the North American Jewish Students Appeal (NAJSA, I-338) and the records of the National Jewish Community Relations Advisory Council (NJCRAC, I-172). Related records are also located at the AJHS in Boston, MA including memorabilia and ephemera of the New England Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry (I-237) and the Records of the Student Coalition for Soviet Jewry - Brandeis University (I-493).

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Provenance

The records were donated by the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2007.

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Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:
Identification of item, date (if known); Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry, ; I-507 ; box number; folder number; American Jewish Historical Society, Boston, MA and New York, NY.

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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: General Files,  undated, 1972-1992, 1997

English, Russian.
Boxes 1-11.
Arrangement:

Alphabetically by subject.

BoxFolderTitleDate
1 1 Abram, Morris and Edgar Bronfman: Visit to Soviet Union 1987
1 2 Action From Other U.S. Cities 1972-1987
1 3 Adopt-A-Family undated, 1977
1 4 Al Tidom Association, Inc., Brooklyn, NY: Russian Hebrew Publications 1990-1992
1 5 American Bar Association (ABA) and Association of Soviet Lawyers (ASL) Agreement 1985-1988
1 6 American Bar Association (ABA) and Association of Soviet Lawyers (ASL) Agreement 1985-1988
1 7 Art Work 1981, 1983, 1988
1 8 Bar Mitzvah, Includes Twinning Updates, Blank Certificates of Twinning and Adopt-A-Family Profiles 1990-1991
1 9 Bibliographies on Jews in The Soviet Union 1986, 1988
1 10 Cohen, Travel Itinerary 1987
BoxFolderTitleDate
2 1 Congressional, Includes Slepak Principles, H.R. 5444, H.R. 2022, OPIC Reauthorization 1984-1989
2 2 Cultural Exchange, Includes Resolution at All-Union Congress Of Jewish Organizations and Communities of The U.S.S.R., Moscow, December 20, 1989 1985-1991
2 3 Direct Flights to Israel 1988
2 4 Donahue-TV, Phil Donahue "Citizens Summit," Vladimir Pozner, News Clips 1986-1987
2 5 Elected Officials, Includes Sample Text for Proclamations/Resolutions 1986-1988
2 6 Emigration: Jewish Emigration Statistics From U.S.S.R. 1960-September 1989 1989
2 7 Emigration: New Soviet Emigration Decree, Includes Statements From Various Groups January 1987
2 8 Festivals undated, 1982-1983
BoxFolderTitleDate
3 1 General Info: Background Materials on Anti-Semitism, Emigration, Materials From Other Groups, Testimony of Judy Balint at Public Hearing, April 8, 1986 undated, 1983-1988
3 2 General Info: Background Materials on Anti-Semitism, Emigration, Materials From Other Groups, Testimony of Judy Balint at Public Hearing, April 8, 1986 undated, 1986-1990
3 3 Goodwill Games Seattle July 1990 and Conference on Human Rights undated, 1987-1990
  

(contains Russian)

 
3 4 Goodwill Games Seattle July 1990 and Conference on Human Rights undated, 1986-1990
3 5 Gorvitz 1989
  

(contains Russian)

 
3 6 Hebrew Teachers, Includes Priority List of Moscow Hebrew Teachers and List of Hebrew Teachers Outside Moscow undated, 1976, 1985-1986, 1988-1989
BoxFolderTitleDate
4 1 Helsinki: CSCE, Documents, News Clips, Correspondence, Materials from Other Groups 1976-1990
4 2 Israel Action (Organization of Former Soviet Jewish Activists and Concerned Individuals In Israel): Misc., Contains Materials From Other Groups undated, 1987
4 3 Local Peace: Correspondence, News Clippings 1983-1988
4 4 Mail and Phone: How To Mail To U.S.S.R., Correspondence From U.S.S.R. 1986-1990
4 5 Medical Mobilization, Includes Materials From Various Groups and News Clippings 1985-1989
4 6 Miller, Rep. John 1978-1988
4 7 National Conference on Soviet Jewry New York 1976-1989
4 8 Non-Jewish Action Groups, Includes Articles, News Clips, Materials From 1976
BoxFolderTitleDate
5 1 Pamyat and Anti-Semitism, Includes Pamyat Manifesto 1988-1990
5 2 Peace and Freedom: Seattle Peace and Freedom Coalition and World Without War Council, Statement on Goodwill Games 1987-1989
5 3 Peace: General, Mostly News Clippings 1983-1988
5 4 Psychiatry, Abuses of in U.S.S.R. 1986-1991
5 5 Public Summit '88, a Forum on The Future of U.S.-Soviet Relations 1988
5 6 Readings, Poems undated, 1982, 1987
5 7 RTI (Right to Identity) and Other Materials 1980-1988
5 8 Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry: Advisory Board--Responses to June 11, 1986
5 9 Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry: Soviet Jewry Report March 1985
BoxFolderTitleDate
6 1 Sister Cities: Seattle-Taskent: General, Other Sister Cities 1985-1991
6 2 Sister Cities: Seattle-Taskent: General, Other Sister Cities 1985-1991
6 3 Sister Cities: U.S.-Soviet Sister Cities Conference and Rally, Seattle, May 21-23, 1987, Includes List Of U.S./Soviet Sister Cities 1987
6 4 Soviet Exhibits, Exhibits About Jews In The Soviet Union 1986-1988
BoxFolderTitleDate
7 1 Soviet Jewry Legal Advisory Center Waltham, MA: Correspondence, General undated, 1987-1988
7 2 Soviet Jewry Legal Advisory Center Waltham, MA: Lawyer's Action Manual 1986
7 3 Packet of Materials 1982, 1984-1986
7 4 Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry Projects and Ideas, Includes History of SSSJ and Materials From Other Groups 1974-1976
7 5 Summit Mobilization: Demonstration For Soviet Jews, Washington, D.C. December 6, 1987
7 6 Tourist Reports--Miscellaneous, Includes a Letter in Russian 1988
  

(contains Russian)

 
7 7 Trade: Jackson-Vanik Amendment: Articles, News Clips, Correspondence, etc. 1972-1989
7 8 Trade: Jackson-Vanik Amendment: Articles, News Clips, Correspondence, etc. 1972-1989
7 9 Transportation: Soviet Aliyah, Problems, Issues, etc. 1990-1992
BoxFolderTitleDate
8 1 Union Of Councils for Soviet Jews: General 1979-1992
8 2 Union Of Councils for Soviet Jews: Nominating Committee 1988-1992
8 3 U.S.S.R.: Andizhan, Uzbekistan: Events In 1990 1990
8 4 U.S.S.R.: Glasnost Issues N.5 and 6 (October 1987) and N.13-15 (October 1988) 1987-1988
8 5 U.S.S.R.: Konstantinov, Andrei: "Jews In The U.S.A. Through The Eyes Of Americans" (Moscow: Novosti Press Agency, 1985) 1985
8 6 U.S.S.R.: Laws 1977-1978, 1986-1988
8 7 U.S.S.R.: Press, Includes New Times (July 6, 1987) A Soviet Weekly Of World Affairs 1986-1988
8 8 U.S.S.R.: Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Seattle’s Sister City: General, News Clippings 1972
8 9 U.S.S.R.: Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Seattle’s Sister City: General [1 of 2] 1977-1989
BoxFolderTitleDate
9 1 U.S.S.R.: Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Seattle’s Sister City: General [2 of 2] 1977-1989
9 2 U.S.S.R.: Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Seattle’s Sister City: Refuseniks, Lists of 1988-1992
9 3 U.S.S.R.: Travel Info 1987-1988, 1992
9 4 U.S.S.R.: Travel to--Includes Tips for Travelers, Debriefing Checklist, Briefing Guidelines, Articles/News Clips, Requests for Things to Take-Needs Lists, Orientation Information, Names of People Who Want to be Visited, Objectives for Travel to U.S.S.R. 1985-1992
9 5 U.S.S.R.: Trip Reports 1976-1977
9 6 U.S.S.R.: Trip Reports 1983-1985
9 7 U.S.S.R.: Trip Reports 1986
9 8 U.S.S.R.: Trip Reports 1987
BoxFolderTitleDate
10 1 U.S.S.R.: Trip Reports 1988
10 2 U.S.S.R.: Trip Reports 1989
10 3 U.S.S.R.: Trip Reports of Visits to: UCSJ Trip October 1989
  

(contains Russian)

 
10 4 U.S.S.R.: Trip Reports 1990-1991
10 5 U.S.S.R.: Vilna: Refuseniks, Includes List 1987-1989
10 6 United States: Congress Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE): Vienna Final Document 1988-1990
10 7 VISA (Visits International for Soviets and Americans, Berkeley, CA) undated
10 8 Women's Campaign for Soviet Jewry (35s), Los Angeles, CA undated, 1976
10 9 World Without War Council, Seattle, WA undated, 1988-1989
10 10 Untitled Folder, Miscellaneous undated, 1985-1991
  

(contains Russian)

 
BoxFolderTitleDate
11 1 Current Info Bulletins (Accretion of 1997) 1975-1976, 1984-1985, 1997
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Series II: Prisoners Of Conscience and Refuseniks, undated, 1975-1991

English.
Boxes 11-12.
Arrangement:

Alphabetically by subject.

BoxFolderTitleDate
11 2 Prisoners (Former)--Includes Lynn Singer Life Behind the 'Gates Of Hell.' A Collection of Case Historiesundated, 1975-1979, 1981-1989
11 3 Prisoners—General: Profiles, Lists, News Clippings, Includes National Conference On Soviet Jewry The Prisoner Of Conscience. A Resource Book and Maoz, Leonid Lubman: An Abandoned Prisoner of Zion undated, 1982, 1986-1991
11 4 Photos From Publications undated, 1982-1986
11 5 Refugees--Noshrim: Soviet Jewish Immigration To U.S., Includes News Clips/Articles, Testimony, Position Papers, Materials From Other Groups 1976-1991
BoxFolderTitleDate
12 1 Beinus, Arkadi and Khaya, Daughter Elena Besprozvanny and Family Cannot Get Exit Visa 1986-1988
12 2 Bodner, Felix and Roman undated, 1990
12 3 Kazachkov, Mikhail--Includes a NYT Article About Perm 35 undated, 1988-1991
12 4 Nudel, Ida undated, 1984, 1986
12 5 Slepak, Vladimir 1987
12 6 Tatyana Osipova and Ivan Kovalev: A Tragedy of One Family (Center for Democracy) 1986
12 7 Zunshine, Tatiana and Zachar undated, 1987
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Series III: Photographs and Videotapes, undated, 1982, 1985-1987, 1989

English.
Boxes 12-13.
Arrangement:

Alphabetically by subject.

BoxFolderTitleDate
12 8 Photographs: Besprozvanny, Ilya and Elena with Mrs. Royer And Unidentified in U.S. Consulate, Leningrad, 3x5, Color 1987
12 9 Photographs: Blitschtein, Lev, Moscow, 4x5, B/W, Glossy April 1986
12 10 Photographs: Edelshtein, Tanya with Jim Mcdermott, Lev Blitshtein, Nancy Sternoft and Paul Carlson (2), 3x5, Color, Glossy November 1985
12 11 Photographs: Epstein, Ludmilla, Timofey, Maxim and Ilya--Denied Refugee Status, Rome, 3x5 Color, Glossy February 16, 1989
12 12 Photographs: Feltsman, Anna and Vladimir in Moscow, 8x10, B/W, Glossy 1986
12 13 Photographs: Fradkova, Nadezhda, 3x3, B/W, Glossy 1986
12 14 Photographs: Gorodetsky, Yakov (9), 4x5, Color, Glossy, Includes Negatives June 1986
12 15 Photographs: Group of People Meeting at Edge of a Forest--The Description is in Russian, 5x7, B/W, Glossy undated
12 16 Photographs: Ioffee, Alex and Rosa 3x5 B/W, Glossy undated
12 17 Photographs: Ioffee, Rosa (with Samech) Anna and Alex, 3x5, B/W, Glossy undated
12 18 Photographs: Keis, B., 3x5 B/W, Glossy undated
12 19 Photographs: Khasina, Natlia Moscow, 4x4, B/W, Glossy April 1986
12 20 Photographs: Lawmakers Offering Support To Jews Who Cannot Leave U.S.S.R., Includes a Descriptive News Clipping (6), 4x4, Color, Glossy undated
12 21 Photographs: Lein, Evgeny, 3x5, B/W, Glossy undated
12 22 Photographs: Lifshits, Anna, 5x7, B/W, Glossy 1986
12 23 Photographs: Lovonshonky, Natalya, Leningrad, 4x4, B/W, Glossy April 1986
12 24 Photographs: National Women's Day--Kathryn Porter and Annette Lantos at Soviet Embassy with Policeman, 5x6, B/W, Glossy March 6, 1986
12 25 Photographs: Nudel, Ida(2), 5x7, B/W, Glossy, with Negative (1), 4x5, B/W, Glossy; and (1) 4x5, B/W, Glossy undated, September 1982
12 26 Photographs: Pevzner, Valery, with Alex Kushner and Sid and Rosalie Meltzer, Odessa, 4x5, Color, Glossy November 22, 1985
12 27 Photographs: Rabenovitch, Yakov, Leningrad, 4x4, B/W, Glossy April 1986
12 28 Photographs: Sharansky, Natan with Unidentified, 4x5, B/W, Glossy undated
12 29 Photographs: Sheiba, Lev and Vera, 3x5, B/W, Glossy undated
12 30 Photographs: Simozsky, Elya, 3x5, B/W, Glossy undated
12 31 Photographs: Stern, Michele (2), 3x5, B/W, Mat 1986
12 32 Photographs: Strelchik, Boris Moscow (2), 4x4, B/W, Glossy April 1986
12 33 Photographs: Summit Mobilization: Demonstration For Soviet Jews In Washington, D.C.--Crowd and Washington Monument, 5x7, Color, Glossy December 6, 1987
12 34 Photographs: Taratuta, Ida, 4x5, B/W, Glossy 1986
12 35 Photographs: Tashkent, Uzbekistan (11), 6x9, B/W, Glossy 1989
12 36 Photographs: Uspensky, Igor, 3x5, B/W, Glossy undated
12 37 Photographs: Yelistratov, Victor and Batsheva, 3x5, B/W, Glossy undated
12 38 Photographs: Zelichonok, Alec and Galina, 3x5, B/W, Glossy, with Negatives undated
12 39 Photographs: Unidentified Elected Officials Standing on Steps Of a U.S. Court Building, 3x5, Color, Glossy undated
12 40 Photographs: Unidentified Man Holding Proclamations From City of Los Angeles and California Legislature, 8x10, B/W, Glossy undated
12 41 Photographs: Unidentified Men undated
12 42 Photographs: Unidentified Woman Singing, 3x5, B/W, Glossy with Negatives 1986
12 43 Photographs: Unidentified Negatives undated
BoxFolderTitleDate
13 1 Video: Local and National Coverage of Release of Anatoly Sharansky February 1986
13 2 Video: Local and National Coverage of Soviet Jewry Rally in Washington D.C. December 6, 1987
13 3 Video: Local and National Coverage of Soviet Jewry Rally in Washington D.C. December 6, 1987
13 4 Video: Congressional Hearings - Includes Testimony of Sharansky, Orlov, and Cotler January 23, 1987
13 5 Video: Family Tishler's First Chanukah in Seattle Local Coverage on KIRO News December 1989
13 6 Video: "Who Do You Think You Are?", with Subtitles. Awarded Best Feature Debut of 1985-1990 in U.S.S.R.. undated
13 7 Video: United Israel Appeal "The Jews of Uncertainty" undated
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