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Finding Aid to the Robert Levinson papers, 1880-1979, bulk 1962-1979
BANC MSS 2010/715  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Collection Summary
  • Information for Researchers
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical Information
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Collection Summary

    Collection Title: Robert Levinson papers
    Date (inclusive): 1880-1979,
    Date (bulk): bulk 1962-1979
    Collection Number: BANC MSS 2010/715
    Creators : Levinson, Robert E., 1938-1980
    Extent: Number of containers: 9 cartons, 1 box, 1 oversize box, and 3 cardfile boxes Linear feet: 10.2
    Repository: The Bancroft Library
    University of California, Berkeley
    Berkeley, California, 94720-6000
    Phone: (510) 642-6481
    Fax: (510) 642-7589
    Email: bancref@library.berkeley.edu
    URL: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/
    Abstract: The collection consists of Robert Levinson's correspondence; files, drafts, and a card file relating to Levinson's dissertation on Jews and the California Gold Rush; and a small number of files on Camp Swig.
    Languages Represented: Collection materials are in English
    Physical Location: Many of the Bancroft Library collections are stored offsite and advance notice may be required for use. For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

    Information for Researchers

    Access

    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 94720-6000. Consent is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission from the copyright owner. Such permission must be obtained from the copyright owner. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html. 
    Restrictions also apply to digital representations of the original materials. Use of digital files is restricted to research and educational purposes.All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 94720-6000. Consent is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission from the copyright owner. Such permission must be obtained from the copyright owner. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html. 
    Restrictions also apply to digital representations of the original materials. Use of digital files is restricted to research and educational purposes.Materials in this collection may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.). In addition, the reproduction of some materials may be restricted by terms of University of California gift or purchase agreements, donor restrictions, privacy and publicity rights, licensing and trademarks. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owner. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.
    All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from, or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley 94720-6000. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html .

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Robert Levinson papers, BANC MSS 2010/715, The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

    Alternate Forms Available

    There are no alternate forms of this collection.

    Related Collections

    Interviews concerning early Jewish settlements in California and Oregon [sound recording] / conducted by Robert E. Levinson, 1966 May-Aug. (BANC CD 424:1-3)

    Separated Material

    1 reel-to-reel audiotape transferred to the museum holdings of The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life for separate handling and cataloging.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    Levinson, Robert E., 1938-1980--Archives
    Judah L. Magnes Memorial Museum. Commission for the Preservation of Pioneer Jewish Cemeteries and Landmarks
    Cemeteries--West (U.S.)
    Jewish pioneers--California
    Jewish pioneers--West (U.S.)
    Jews--California
    Jews--California--Genealogy
    Jews--West (U.S.)
    Jews--West (U.S.)--Genealogy
    Freemasonry--West (U.S.)--Lodges
    California--Gold discoveries
    Amador County (Calif.)--History
    Calaveras County (Calif.)--History
    El Dorado County (Calif.)--History
    Mariposa County (Calif.)--History
    Nevada County (Calif.)--History
    Sierra County (Calif.)--History
    Tuolumne County (Calif.)--History
    Court records--West (U.S.)
    Interviews--West (U.S.)
    Biographies--West (U.S.)
    Census records--West (U.S.)
    Correspondence--West (U.S.)
    Genealogies--West (U.S.)
    Obituaries--West (U.S.)
    Jewish historians--California.
    Western Jewish History Center. 181
    Judah L. Magnes Museum. WJHC 1967.017
    Bancroft Library. Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life
    Online Archive of California

    Administrative Information

    Acquisition Information

    The Robert Levinson papers were gifted to The Bancroft Library by the Judah L. Magnes Museum in 2010.

    Accruals

    No future additions are expected.

    System of Arrangement

    Collection is arranged into 3 series: Correspondence; Dissertation materials; and Camp Swig Files.

    Processing Information

    Processed by the Judah L. Magnes Museum staff in 1968. Additional processing by The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life staff in 2011.

    Biographical Information

    Robert Levinson was an historian, educator, and author who specialized in the history of Jews in the western United States. His doctoral dissertation, "The Jews in the California Gold Rush", was published in 1978 and it remains the major work about the history of the Jews during the California Gold Rush. Levinson was a professor of history (1967-1980) and the director of the Sourisseau Academy for State and Local History (1973-1976) at California's San Jose State University. He played a leading role in founding San Jose State's Jewish Studies Program in 1975 and he was its first director. As an executive vice-president for the Judah L. Magnes Museum's Commission for the Preservation of Pioneer Jewish Cemeteries and Landmarks (1968-1973, 1977-1978), Levinson helped renovate and publicize pioneer Jewish cemeteries in California's Mother Lode. He also served as a cantor for Congregation Beth David in Saratoga, Caliifornia and as a cantor, leader of services, and a lecturer for Congregation Shir Ami in Castro Valley, Calif.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The collection consists of Robert Levinson's correspondence; files, drafts, and a card file relating to Levinson's dissertation on Jews and the California Gold Rush; and a small number of files on Camp Swig, a California youth camp affiliated with the Union of American Hebrew Congregations (now the Union for Reform Judaism). The correspondence includes personal correspondence, professional correspondence (on writings, conferences, and general academic matters), research correspondence, correspondence relating to Levinson's work with the Commission for the Preservation of Pioneer Jewish Cemeteries and Landmarks, genealogy and family history correspondence, correspondence with historical societies, museums and other Jewish heritage organizations, and correspondence from Levinson's cantorial and rabbinical work. The research correspondence, which dates between 1962 and 1979, is particularly rich with information about the Jews of California and the western United States during the Gold Rush. Among the dissertation materials in the collection are research files on a range of Gold Rush era subjects, towns, and families; drafts of Levinson's thesis; and a card file that consists of Levinson's attempt to index Mother Lode newspapers from circa 1850 through 1880 for Jewish content. Newspapers indexed include those from the following California towns: Angels, Columbia, Downieville, Grass Valley, Jackson, Mammoth Tree Grove, Mariposa, Mokelumne Hill, Nevada City, Placerville, San Andreas, San Francisco (for content relating to Jews in the Mother Lode counties), Sonora, Sutter Creek, and Volcano. The Camp Swig series in this collection consists of files relating to Levinson's work with the camp during the 1960s and 1970s.