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Collection Number: 05129-z

Collection Title: Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979

This collection has access restrictions. For details, please see the restrictions.

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Wilson Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the World Wide Web. See the section for more information.


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Size 125 items
Abstract Businessman Joseph Ehrlich married Rebecca Smolensky in 1897. Ehrlich owned dry goods businesses in Milledgeville and Manassas, Ga. Rebecca's parents remained in Bialystok, Poland, but corresponded with Rebecca, her sister Minnie, and her brother-in-law Louis, who owned a dry goods businesses in Swainsboro and Savannah, Ga. Frances Ehrlich, daughter of Joseph and Rebecca, married Morris Rabhan (b. 1896) of Savannah, Ga. The Ehrlich and Rabhan Family papers consist primarily of letters in Yiddish from Joseph Ehrlich chiefly in Milledgeville, Ga., to his fiancee, Rebecca Smolensky in Savannah, Ga. Nearly 80 letters written during the span of about one year profess love, express wishes of good health and happiness, and inquire about family members. Topics of discussion also pertain to their upcoming wedding, Ehrlich's dry goods business, and travel. A smaller number of undated letters from Rebecca's parents in Bialystok (also written in Yiddish) request information about the man she is to marry, specifically about his committment to Judaism, and urge her to observe Judaism as best she can. Reproductions of nine Ehrlich family photographs are included, and a CD contains translations of several letters included in the collection. The collection also includes a book prepared by Morris Rabhan, Our Family History, 1840-1979, which extensively documents Rabhan family history and includes genealogical charts, narratives, and photographs.
Creator Ehrlich family.



Rabhan family.
Language Yiddish English
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Restrictions to Access
No restrictions. Open for research.
Use of audio materials may require production of listening copies.
Copyright Notice
Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
Preferred Citation
[Identification of item], in the Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers #5129-z, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received from Joan R. Jacobson of Raleigh, N.C., in 2003 (Acc. 99599).
Sensitive Materials Statement
Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, the North Carolina Public Records Act (N.C.G.S. § 132 1 et seq.), and Article 7 of the North Carolina State Personnel Act (Privacy of State Employee Personnel Records, N.C.G.S. § 126-22 et seq.). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill assumes no responsibility.
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The following terms from Library of Congress Subject Headings suggest topics, persons, geography, etc. interspersed through the entire collection; the terms do not usually represent discrete and easily identifiable portions of the collection--such as folders or items.

Clicking on a subject heading below will take you into the University Library's online catalog.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Biographical Information

Businessman Joseph Ehrlich married Rebecca Smolensky in 1897. Ehrlich owned dry goods businesses in Milledgeville, Ga., and Manassas, Ga. Rebecca's parents remained in Bialystok, Poland, but corresponded with Rebecca, her sister Minnie, and her brother-in-law Louis, who owned a dry goods businesses in Swainsboro and Savannah, Ga.

Frances Ehrlich, daughter of Joseph and Rebecca, married Morris Rabhan (b. 1896) of Savannah, Ga. Rabhan family history is extensively documented in a book prepared by Morris Rabhan, Our Family History, 1840-1979, which is included in the collection.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Scope and Content

The Ehrlich and Rabhan family papers consist primarily of letters in Yiddish from Joseph Ehrlich, chiefly in Millidgeville, Ga., to his fiancee, Rebecca Smolensky in Savannah, Ga. Nearly 80 letters written during the span of about one year profess love, express wishes of good health and happiness, and inquire about family members. Topics of discussion also pertain to their upcoming wedding, Ehrlich's dry goods business, and travel. A smaller number of undated letters from Rebecca's parents in Bialystok, Poland (also written in Yiddish), request information about the man she is to marry, specifically about his committment to Judaism, and urge her to observe Judaism as best she can. Reproductions of nine Ehrlich family photographs are included, and a CD contains translations of several letters included in the collection. The collection also includes a book prepared by Morris Rabhan, Our Family History, 1840-1979, which extensively documents Rabhan family history and includes genealogical charts, narratives, and photographs.

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Contents list

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated.

About 125 items.
Folder 1

Letters from Joseph Ehrlich, 1896-1897 #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." Folder 1

Folder 2

Letters from Mr. and Mrs. Smolensky, undated #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." Folder 2

Folder 3

Our Family Story, 1840-1979 #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." Folder 3

Folder 4

Translations #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." Folder 4

Partial translations of letters of 19 October 1896, 22 October 1896, 31 January 1897 by Selma Froom of Chapel Hill, N.C., in 2006; rough audio translation of a selection of letters (CD-5129/1) by Rabbi Abe Schoen of Raleigh, N.C., undated

Image P-5129/1

Joseph Ehrlich and Rebecca Smolensky #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." P-5129/1

Image P-5129/2

Rebecca, Joseph, 2 store clerks, son Ben, store clerk #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." P-5129/2

Image P-5129/3

Rebecca and Ben #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." P-5129/3

Image P-5129/4

Rebecca and Joseph's home #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." P-5129/4

Image P-5129/5

Party at Ehrlich home: Daughter Frances seated 5th from left in front row, Rebecca is last on right in back row #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." P-5129/5

Image P-5129/6

Ehrlich store #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." P-5129/6

Image P-5129/7

Leon Ehrlich, farmer #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." P-5129/7

Image P-5129/8

Joseph and Rebecca's wedding invitation #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." P-5129/8

Image P-5129/9

Rebecca #05129-z, Series: "Ehrlich and Rabhan Family Papers, 1896-1897, 1979, and undated." P-5129/9

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Processing Information

Processed by: Jodi Berkowitz, July 2006

Encoded by: Jodi Berkowitz, July 2006

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