Welcome to the JHSFC

The Jewish Historical Society of Fairfield County provides historical and educational materials and information about the Jewish community of Fairfield County and serves the community through its membership and its archival resources.


Please visit us and come and participate in the Society! google-site-verification: google3e3b08ba1bb82285.html


Announcements, etc.

Want a program about Jewish history in Fairfield County 1654 - 2016?

Do you know that the first Jew came to Fairfield County in 1654 to buy a slave? Do you know about some of the earliest Fairfield County Jews?

The first Jewish resident of Stamford was Nehemiah Marks. The earliest Jewish resident of Greenwich, was Abraham Hays, who settled there in 1728. The first Jew in Norwalk was Ralph Isaacs, who lived there with his family in 1724.

According to historian Irwin Miller, "There are many stories, such as the tale of Louis Drucker, the first Jew to settle in New Canaan in 1869. He was a tailor, volunteer fireman and town constable. He was murdered attempting to thwart a robbery, and his killer is thought to be the last man hanged in Connecticut." And, there's so much more! Join us to discover what we know, how we know it, and how you can be part of the continuing Jewish story of Fairfield County.

For information, contact JHSFC:
Phone: (203) 321-1373 x150
Email: info@jhsfc-ct.org

The 2017 National History Day Contest

Attention, all students in grades six-12 in public schools, Jewish day schools, and Jewish congregational schools: The Jewish Historical Society of Fairfield County in conjunction with Connecticut History Day, announces that it will again sponsor two monetary awards for the 2017 National History Day Contest.

Entries must fit the theme of the National contest, which is "Taking a Stand". In addition, to receive a JHSFC award, students must incorporate Jewish history or heritage and/or a Jewish personality into the 2017 National History Day theme.

National History Day is a program for students in grade six-12 that encourages exploration of local, state, national and world history.

For more information, visit: www.historydayct.org
***Press Release***

Joan Lapin, of New Canaan, visits the JHSFC Archives to donate photos, newspaper clippings, historical documents, a Master's thesis about the history of the Jews of New Canaan, and many other items from her files and scrapbooks. She is showing Elissa Kaplan, President of JHSFC, pictures of her father's grocery store, Rosen Brother's Market.

Become a Volunteer at the JHSFC

Volunteers are the heart of any non-profit organization.

Please consider volunteering to assist the JHSFC with its mission to collect historical artifacts related to Jewish life in Fairfield County and with its ongoing program activities.

No experience necessary! All activities come with training . . .

To volunteer contact JHSFC:
Phone: (203) 359-2196
Email: info@jhsfc-ct.org

Upcoming Events

JHSFC Book Talks

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

by Herman Wouk
Presenter: Dr. Judith Katz

A flash of the past! This novel takes us back to the classic story of a young woman released from the constraints of a 1950s Jewish family.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017
@10:00 AM
Stamford JCC
1035 Newfield Avenue
Stamford, CT 06905

FREE and Open to the Public

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

A Novel

by Stuart Rojstaczer
Presenter: Dr. Anne Peskin

This historical mystery asks the question, "Has the world's greatest female mathematician spitefully taken the solution to one of math's impenetrable problems to her grave?" Not all shivas are peaceful!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017
@10:00 AM
Stamford JCC
1035 Newfield Avenue
Stamford, CT 06905

FREE and Open to the Public

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Israeli Poetry and Songs
Presenters: Richard Schwartz and Guest

Israeli poetry can be found in books, in songs, and on the streets. This conversation will take a surprisingly fresh look at Israeli poetry.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017
@10:00 AM
Stamford JCC
1035 Newfield Avenue
Stamford, CT 06905

FREE and Open to the Public



The Jewish Communities of Greater Stamford

This publication presents a broad historical view of the Jewish people of Stamford, Darien, and New Canaan, Connecticut and Pound Ridge, New York from the era just prior to the American Revolution to the 1900s.


An American Jewish Community 50 Years, 1889-1939: The Sociology of the Jewish Community in Stamford, CT.

This book, authored by Samuel Koenig, Ph.D., offers a unique study documenting the Jewish community of Stamford from 1889 to 1939.

Programs and Exhibits

JHSFC Monthly Program

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Holocaust Denial and Distortion
the Growing Threat to Historical Memory

The Guest Speaker is Mark Weitzman, Wiesenthal Center Chief Representative to the United Nations.

This program is co-sponsored by the Jewish Historical Society of Fairfield County and Holocaust Child Survivors of Connecticut (HCSC).

Wednesday, March 22, 2017
@2:00 pm
Temple Israel
14 Coleytown Road
Westport CT 06880

FREE and Open to the Public.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Distinguished Educators
Discuss the Best of Holocaust Literature

Christine Bonarrigo and Emily Hernberg have taught a senior elective, Literature of the Holocaust, at New Canaan High School for many years. In this outstanding course, students read literature written by survivors, including memoirs, poetry, diaries, and songs.

These works pose serious questions, such as "Why did the Holocaust happen?" and "How do real individuals deal with human trauma and devastation?"

Discover what Yehudah Amichai's "A Pity, We were Such a Good Invention" and Carl Sandberg's "A Teamster's Farewell: Sobs En Route to a Penitentiary" have in common and how they both enlighten us.

In addition to teaching English classes and Honors Classes, Christine Bonarrigo created this Holocaust Literature Class, and Emily Hernberg has taken it to new heights.

Sunday, March 26, 2017
Refreshments will be served @1:00 pm
Program begins @1:30 PM
Temple Sinai
458 Lakeside Drive
Stamford CT 06903

FREE and Open to the Public.

JHSFC 2016
National History Day Winners

Established in 2013, this year’s contest focused on the theme "Exploration, Encounter and Exchange". Connecticut students in grades 6-12 were invited to submit work related to the theme of Jewish history or heritage, or that highlighted a notable Jewish personality.

**Jewish Historical Society Honors National History Day Winners.**

Archives Showcase

Please visit our exhibit case with an outstanding collection from the Society's Archives.

On display at the Stamford JCC

Bridging Yesterday and Tomorrow,
Will You Be Part of the Story?

The Jewish Historical Society of Fairfield County is one of the largest secular Jewish organizations in Fairfield County, Connecticut.

As we enter our 30+ years, we invite you to join us. We need your help in telling your community's story so that we can together explore it further, preserve it and share it. Who were the first Jews in your community? Why did they come, what did they accomplish? How did the community change and grow? Who were and are the Jewish movers and shakers in the Jewish and overall community? What Jewish institutions were established? Through our archives in Fairfield County and our programs, library, traveling exhibit and oral/video history projects we discover and maintain our communities' collective memory dating back to the first recorded Jewish presence in our area in the late 1600's.

Help us capture your special story, so your community will be included in the greater story that is the Jewish story of Fairfield County, Connecticut.

Diaries, emigration documents, household objects, legal documents, letters, obituaries, postcards, posters recipes, scrapbooks vintage clothing, photographs and film clips of family and community events . . .

For information contact JHSFC:
Phone: (203) 359-2196
Email: archives@jhsfc-ct.org

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The Jewish Historical Society of Fairfield County is a recipient agency of
United Jewish Federation of Greater Stamford, New Canaan and Darien.

©2014 Jewish Historical Society of Fairfield County