Guide to the Leo Finkelstein Papers, 1903 - 1998

Summary Information

Title: Leo Finkelstein Papers, 1903 - 1998
Collection: AC.107
Extent: 1.5 linear feet (3 boxes)
Abstract:

The Leo Finkelstein Papers contain materials relating to Leo Finkelstein, resident of Asheville, North Carolina, the Asheville Lions Club, Elks Club, and the Beth Ha-Tephila Cemetery in Asheville. It contains computer discs, notes, scrapbooks, book drafts, correspondence, photographs, programs, fliers, and other materials related Leo Finkelstein, his wife Sylvia, and the Jewish Community in Asheville, North Carolina, with some items duplicated on paper and in media formats.

Creator: Finkelstein, Leo, 1905-1998

Biographical/Historical Note

Leo Finkelstein (1905 - 1998) was a life-long resident of Asheville, North Carolina. He owned a pawnshop and was a member of the Asheville Jewish community and several civic organizations, including the Lions Club and the Elks Club. He served as president of Beth Ha-Tephila. After retirement, Finkelstein collected and compiled stories and personal histories into two books, Letters from Leo: World War II Correspondence to the Asheville Lions Club (1997) and Asheville and The Poor Man's Bank (1998), which were edited by Appalachian Studies Director Patricia Beaver. He married Sylvia Eva Bein in 1945. Beth Ha-Tephila is a reform Jewish Community in Asheville, North Carolina. It organized in 1891 of primarily European immigrants who immigrated to Asheville in the late 1880s. The Beth Ha-Tephila Cemetery is a Jewish cemetery in Asheville organized in 1891.

Scope and Contents

This collection contains materials relating to Leo Finkelstein and Asheville, North Carolina. It contains drafts of Finkelstein's two books, personal histories, digital photographs, print photographs, correspondence to the Asheville Lions Club, and academic papers.

Scrapbooks, photo albums, and Finkelstein's World War II diary are available only on microfilm. Some digital materials are stored on zip discs that are currently inaccessible. Original materials are located at the Archives of Beth Ha-Tephila Congregation in Asheville, North Carolina. Original materials, including the color photos in Series III, in this collection were donated separately by Patricia Beaver in 2001.

Series I: Papers and Book contains copies of a variety of materials belonging to Leo Finkelstein and housed in the Archives of Beth Ha-Tephila in Asheville, NC. This includes photo albums, including fifteen photographs of gravestones at Beth Ha-Tephila Cemetery in Asheville, North Carolina written in Hebrew dated 1995, two photographs of Asheville businesses including Finkelstein's Loan Office from the 1950s scrapbooks, notes, recollections, and stories used in Finkelstein's books, military documents, financial documents, vital records, his World War II scrapbook, diary, and discharge papers, documents relating to the Lions and Elk Clubs, and the Asheville Jewish community. Materials in this series are contained on three microfilm reels and date from 1912 to 1999. Some materials in the scrapbooks have been glued over other materials, rendering them illegible and inaccessible. Items on microfilm are duplicated on CDs and floppy disks. Series I also contains Patricia Beaver's donated materials on the Jewish Community in Asheville, Finkelstein's notes, fliers, and materials relating to the Asheville Lions Club, Elks Club, and the Jewish Community.

The Series II media items are copies of Series I items and duplicated on microfilm, CD, and zip drives. The zipdrives were not digitized due to lack of proper in-house equipment.

Series III contains six color 4x6 photographs of Leo Finkelstein and Pat Beaver's class when the class visited Asheville, North Carolina and Leo in 1996. These are housed in Cold Storage.

Arrangement

There are three series in this collection - Series I: Papers and Book, Series II: Media, and Series III: Color Photographs. Most papers are in the original order as much as possible. The color photographs have been sleeved and are in a folder in Cold Storage.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for use in the Dougherty Reading Room. An appointment for research is recommended. The Dougherty Reading Room is located on the 4th floor of Belk Library in Special Collections. The collection is protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U. S. C.). Reproductions are made only for use as personal study or research. It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright ownership and to obtain all necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials. The Archives of Beth Ha-tephila Congregation in Asheville, North Carolina retains copyright.

Acquisitions Information

This collection was donated by the Finkelstein family to the Archives of Beth Ha-Tephila Congregation in Asheville, North Carolina, in 1998, and allowed the W.L. Eury Appalachian Collection to maintain duplicates within its manuscript collection. Patricia Beaver donated additional materials in 2001, which were also microfilmed and the originals maintained in the collection.

Processing Information

Processed in 2000 and 2010; Added accessions were incorporated with additional processing in 2013 by Anita Elliott. This collection was reprocessed as part of a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. The grant funded extensive processing of the backlog within the W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection between 2012 and 2014.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], AC.107: Leo Finkelstein Papers, W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University, Boone, North Carolina, USA.

Container List

Series I: Papers and Book, circa 1940s-1998, undated 

Series Description

Series I: Papers and Book contains copies of a variety of materials belonging to Leo Finkelstein and housed in the Archives of Beth Ha-Tephila in Asheville, NC. This includes photo albums, including fifteen photographs of gravestones at Beth Ha-Tephila Cemetery in Asheville, North Carolina written in Hebrew dated 1995, two photographs of Asheville businesses including Finkelstein's Loan Office from the 1950s scrapbooks, notes, recollections, and stories used in Finkelstein's books, military documents, financial documents, vital records, his World War II scrapbook, diary, and discharge papers, documents relating to the Lions and Elk Clubs, and the Asheville Jewish community. Materials in this series are contained on three microfilm reels and date from 1912 to 1999. Some materials in the scrapbooks have been glued over other materials, rendering them illegible and inaccessible. Items on microfilm are duplicated on CDs and floppy disks. Series I also contains Patricia Beaver's donated materials on the Jewish Community in Asheville, Finkelstein's notes, fliers, and materials relating to the Asheville Lions Club, Elks Club, and the Jewish Community.

  Box Folder

Papers and Photographs, Patricia Beaver and Robin Jolly, 1995 

Scope and Contents

1. Early Jewish Gravestones of the Beth Ha-Tephila Cemetery, Documentation of Material Culture, by Robin Jolly, May 11, 1995

2. Jewish Roots in Appalachia: The Development of the Jewish Community in Asheville, North Carolina, by Patricia D. Beaver, 1995

3. Photographs, Black and white, and Memorial Record Sheets, by Robin Jolly, 1995

1 1

Notes and Beaver Interview of Leo Finkelstein, July 27, 1995 

1 2

Correspondence and Advertising, 1987, undated 

1 3

Presentations by Finkelstein, 1987, undated 

1 4

Diary (photocopy of original), Leo Finkelstein, World War II-1995 

1 5

Drafts with Edits, "Letters from Leo: World War II Correspondent to the Asheville Lions Club", 1997 

1 6

More Drafts/Edits of "Letters From Leo", 1996, undated 

1 7

Letters for the Lions Club, 1939-1996 

1 8

Reports to Asheville Lions Club by Lion Leo Finkelstein, 1989-1998 

1 9

Personal History Accounts of Finkelstein, undated 

2 1

Personal History Accounts of Finkelstein, circa 1935-1996 

2 2

Personal History Accounts of Finkelstein, 1993-1998 

2 3

Personal History Accounts and Lions Club Report/Presentation by Finkelstein, 1996-1998 

2 4

Paper, "Jewish Jitter Bugs" by Leo Finkelstein, 1940 

2 5

Rough Drafts with Edits, "Leo Finkelstein's Asheville and The Poor Man's Bank", 1995 

2 6

Final Drafts with Edits,"Leo Finkelstein's Asheville and The Poor Man's Bank", 1995 

2 7

Final Copy, "Leo Finkelstein's Asheville and The Poor Man's Bank", 1995 

2 8

Correspondence and Copies, Photograph permissions from Asheville-Buncombe Library System and University of North Carolina-Asheville Special Collections, circa 1940s-1998 

2 9
,

Series II: Media, 

Series Description

The Series II media items are copies of Series I items and duplicated on microfilm, CD, and zip drives. The zipdrives were not digitized due to lack of proper in-house equipment. The series has been divided into four subseries based on material format: Subseries A: Microfilm; Subseries B: Zip Drives; Subseries C: CDs; and Subseries D: Floppy Diskettes.

Subseries A: Microfilm, 1912-1998 

Box
3

Spiral notebook, notes, 1930s 

Spiral notebook, World War II notes, undated 

Photograph Album/Scrapbook #1, 1922-1967 

Photograph Album/Scrapbook #2, World War II, 1940s 

Photograph Album/Scrapbook #3, Elks Club, Jewish Community, 1930s-1993 

Photograph Album/Scrapbook #4, personal photographs, 1981-1998 

Photograph Album/Scrapbook #5, personal photographs, 1980-1987 

Photograph Album/Scrapbook #6, Lions Club, 1900s-1961 

Historical Facts on Congregation, undated 

Sternberg and the Freight Car Robbery at Asheville from the World magazine, May 20, 1923 

Parties, 167 Boardway and Cumberland Avenue (2 photographs, scanned), undated 

Programs for Beth Ha-Tephila 75th, 100th Anniversaries, 1992 Directory, undated 

Leo Finkelstein's Declaration of a desire for a natural death, 1986 

Birth, Marriage Certificates, Sylvia Eva Bein and Leo Finkelstein 

Leo Finkelstein's Last Will and Testament, November 30, 1993 

Leo Finkelstein's U. S. Army Discharge, September 3, 1945 

Leo Finkelstein's Social Security records 

World War II Letters and Notes 

Leo Finkelstein's autobiography of Jews in Asheville, 1982 

Asheville Lions Club in the 1930s and 1940s 

Speech at U of NC, History Class, March 21, 1998 

Correspondence, 1940 

Jews in Asheville notes and stories 

Leo Finkelstein's autobiography of Jews in Asheville, 1982 

Veteran's Administration papers, life insurance policy, medical claims forms, 1971-1998 

Advertisement for Asheville and the Poor Man's Bank 

Phyllis Finkelstein's illustrations 

Business, birthday, membership cards, Jewish Community fliers 

Scottish Rite Cathedral Program, April 1998 

Lions Club, Elks Club, Pawnshop notes 

Asheville High School 50th Reunion (includes 1922 yearbook), 1982 

Lions Club, Pawnshop notes 

Users Manuals (clock radio, Dustbuster, life chair, blender) 

Paperwork on the selling of 133 Westwood Road, Lakeview Park, Asheville 

"Mrs. Bein," (Leo Finkelstein's mother-in-law), 1972 

"Marvin," correspondence (Sylvia Finkelstein's son-in-law) 

"Cemetery," Low Pollock Memorial Park, Beth Israel Cemetery Committee, 1951-1953 

"Rabbi," Beth Ha-Tephila Bulletin, fliers and correspondence, 1999; 1912 

"Jack Cole" (fiddler, Lions Club band, "Sanctimonious Seven") 

"History," Nashville Bar Association Memorial Service, birthday cards, correspondence in shorthand 1998 

"Lions," Lions Club notes and ephemera 

Financial Statements, 1945-1995 

"Trip to California with Mr. and Mrs. Harrison, 1933," photographs 

World War II Diary, 1943-1945 

Letters from Leo original text 

"I Remember When," history of Lions Club 

Poor Man's Bank drafts, edited 

Photocopies of Leo Finkelstein's scrapbooks 

Subseries B: Zip Drives, 

Box
4
  Box Disc

Group Photo, Costume Party of Asheville, NC, Jewish Community, (dressupparty.tif), circa 1920  

2 1

Leo and Sylvia Finkelstein, (wsyl.tif),  circa 1980 

  Box Disc

Young men with pistol, bowling pin, dice, (boys at play.tif), circa 1920-1930  

2 2

Newspaper clipping Leo Finkelstein new Elk ruler, (elknew.tif), undated 

Finkelstein house, Asheville, NC (house.tif), 

Retreat house (ivyhouse.tif), 

Group of children in front of car, Asheville, NC, (kids in car.tif), 1910s 

Fannye Sherman Finkelstein, (mother.tif), undated 

Newspaper article Leo Finkelstein as Lions Club new president, (newscli.tif), 1939  

Retreat group of teens and young adults, (pantaloons.tif), circa 1920 

"'Santimonious Seven' Socko," (santim.tif), undated 

Leo Finkelstein in uniform, (War II.tif), circa 1940  

Leo and Sylvia Finkelstein, (wsyl.tif), circa 1980 

yleo.tif, 

  Box Disc

"Pawnshops Here Could Furnish Good Museum," with photo of Leo Finkelstein standing with stuffed bear, Asheville Citizen-Times, (bear.tif), March 26, 1939 

2 3

Finkelstein house (house.tif), 

Harry and Fannye Sherman Finkelstein wedding, (wedding.tif), circa 1940 

  Box Disc

Not readable, 

2 4

Subseries C: CDs, 1920s-1998, undated  

Box
4

"Pawnshops Here Could Furnish Good Museum," with photo of Leo Finkelstein standing with stuffed bear, Asheville Citizen-Times, (bear.tif), March 26, 1939 

Asheville, NC Convention badge for Leo Finkelstein, (button.tif), 1933 

Deputy sheriff certificate for Leo Finkelstein, (certification.tif), 1936 

Father of Leo Finkelstein in front of car, (father.tif), circa 1910 

Plaque, Lion of Judah Award Presented to Leo Finkelstein, (judah.tif), 1997 

Group of children in front of car, Asheville, NC, (kids in car.tif), 1910s 

"Retired Pawnbroker Enjoying Slower Pace," Asheville North, (leocli.tif), November 15, 1983 

Julie Nixon in front of Finkelstein pawnshop, Asheville Citizen-Times, (nixon.tif), undated 

"'Santimonious Seven' Socko," (santim.tif), undated 

  Box Disc

Talent Show Certificate of Award to Leo Finkelstein, (certif.tif: file), May 1997 

2 2

"Those Asheville Blues," program cover, (cover.tif), undated 

Group Photo, Costume Party of Asheville, NC, Jewish Community, (dressupparty.tif), circa 1920 

Group Photo, Party of Asheville, NC, Jewish Community, (fancy.tif), circa 1920 

Leo and Sylvia Finkelstein, (leo and sylvia.tif), circa 1980 

"Those Asheville North Ca'lina Blues," sheet music by Frank B. Cook, page 1 (p1.tif), 1925 

"Those Asheville North Ca'lina Blues," sheet music by Frank B. Cook, page 2 (p2.tif), 1925 

"Those Asheville North Ca'lina Blues," sheet music by Frank B. Cook, page 3 (p3.tif), 1925 

"Those Asheville North Ca'lina Blues," sheet music by Frank B. Cook, page 4 (p4.tif), 1925 

Newspaper Photograph of Finkelstein's Pawnshop, (pawnph.tif), undated 

"Age of Easy Credit Making it Hard on Pawnshops," Asheville Citizen-Times, (pawnsh.tif), undated 

Harry and Fannye Sherman Finkelstein wedding, (wedding.tif), circa 1904 

Subseries D: Floppy Diskettes, undated 

Box
4

Index, undated 

Photos, "Beaver", "Cratis Williams Introduction", "LeoAsheville", undated 

,

Series III: Color Photographs, 1996 

Series Description

Series III: Color Photographs is a collection of six color photos taken of Leo Finkelstein and the class of Pat Beaver when the class visited Leo and Asheville, North Carolina in 1996. Notes about some of the group pictures state that some of the people in the photos are: Alythea McKinney, Paige Ford, Dot Tate, Pat Beaver, and Patricia Brown. These are housed in Cold Storage.

Photographs, color (6), Leo Finkelstein and Pat Beaver's Class trip to Asheville, North Carolina, 1996 

Cold Storage