The University of Southern Mississippi -- McCain Library and Archives
Historical Manuscripts Home
Alphabetical List of All Collections | Collections Listed By Subject

Collection Title: Temple B'Nai Israel Records

Press Release:

November 5, 1998

Temple B'nai Israel of Hattiesburg has donated to the USM Archives three cubic feet of records that document the history of the Congregation over the last forty years.

The Congregation was organized in 1915, and the first services were held in the Odd Fellows Hall on Front Street. In 1920 the first synagogue was built at 402-03 West Pine Street. It was a white frame structure made of materials from the Jewish Welfare Board's recreation building at Camp Shelby during World War I. After the Second World War, the current brick synagogue was erected on Mamie Street.

The first ordained resident Rabbi to serve Temple B'nai Israel was Rabbi Arthur Brodey, who assumed his position in 1935 and conducted both Reform and Orthodox services. During the 1950's and 1960's, Rabbi Charles Mantinband, a prominent Civil Rights spokesman, served the Congregation.

Auxiliary organizations such as the B'nai B'rith Lodge, the Temple Sisterhood, the Hadassah Women's Zionist Organization, and the Laurel-Hattiesburg Jewish Youth Organization have also flourished over the years.

The decision to preserve the Temple's records at USM was made by the members of the Congregation and by the Board under the direction of Dr. Stephen A. Doblin, President of the Temple Board and Dean of USM's College of Science and Technology. Congregant Denise Rosenblatt assisted in transferring the records to USM. The papers of Rabbi Charles Mantinband were recently donated to the USM Archives by his daughter Mrs. Carol Ginsburg of Shreveport, Louisiana.

Accession Number: AM 98-59

Inclusive Dates: 1960-1997

Volume: 3 cu.ft.

Given By: Donated by the Congregation of Temple B'nai Israel.

Copyright: This collection may be protected from unauthorized copying by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code).

Form of Material:

Records of Temple B'nai Israel in Hattiesburg, Mississippi:

  1. Accounting book.
  2. Documents pertaining to purchase and maintenance of Temple properties.
  3. Board and Congregation minutes.
  4. Scrapbook and other materials relating to the Temple B'nai Israel Sisterhood.
  5. Copies of "Temple B'nai Israel Messenger", a monthly newsletter written by the Rabbis.
  6. Bar Mitzvah programs.
  7. Rabbi recruitment papers.
  8. Miscellaneous other materials.

Related Collections:

M 327 Mantinband (Rabbi Charles) Papers

Accession Number: AM05-33

Dates: 1952 - 1954

Volume: 2 items

Provenance: Donated by Judy Stribling

Form of Material:

Two paper-bound copies of temple bulletins from Temple B'nai Israel for 1952-53 and 1953-54. The bulletins contain brief descriptions of services and news items of interest to the congregation.

Created by: Bobs M. Tusa
Prepared and maintained by
The University of Southern Mississippi Libraries Special Collections
118 College Drive #5148   Hattiesburg, MS 39406-5148

Please send comments or questions to Ask-a-Librarian
Revised: March 31, 2006