Rabbi Arthur Schneier Papers
Language of Materials
The Rabbi Arthur Schneier Papers consists of materials created and collected by Rabbi Arthur Schneier over the course of his life as a rabbi and advocate for human rights. The material in the collection dates from 1942 to 2018 with the bulk of the material spanning from the 1970s to the mid 2010s. The content of the collection centers around Schneier's work as an internationally known rabbi and as the president of the Appeal of Conscience Foundation. The bulk of the material present in this collection includes: correspondence, photographs, images, press, clippings, memoranda, and ephemera from various domestic and international events. The collection also contains a small amount of audiovisual material the bulk of which is audio cassette tapes containing recordings of various Appeal of Conscience Foundation events and conferences attended by the rabbi.
Rabbi Arthur Schneier (1930- ) was born on March 20, 1930 in Vienna, Austria, and lived under Nazi occupation in Budapest until age 17. Schneier immigrated to the United States in 1947. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Yeshiva University in 1951 and earned a Masters of Arts from New York University in 1953. In 1955, Schneier received his rabbinical ordination from Yeshiva University. Schneier became the Senior Rabbi at Park East Synagogue in 1962. As of 2019, Schneier continues to serve as the Senior Rabbi of Park East Synagogue. Before coming to Park East Synagogue, Schneier served as the rabbi of Congregation B'nai Jacob in Brooklyn, New York. In 1975, Rabbi Arthur Schneier founded the Park East Day School.
Over the years, Rabbi Arthur Schneier has been an active member of many prominent religious and political organizations including: the Council on Foreign Relations, United Nations Development Corporation, United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Committee. Schneier founded the Appeal of Conscience Foundation in 1965 and has served as the president of the Foundation since its inception. The Appeal of Conscience Foundation brings together business and religious leaders to promote peace and tolerance internationally and domestically.
The material in this collection mostly follows the original order of the inventory supplied by Rabbi Arthur Schneier and maintained by Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives. The arrangement of the collection reflects the groupings by subject matter from Rabbi Schneier's inventory. The arrangement is as follows:
Series I. Appeal of Conscience Foundation Material, 1964-2018, undated
Subseries I.A. Annual Seminar on Foreign and Religious Life for the Foreign Service Institute, 1981-2012, undated
Subseries I.B. Annual Awards Dinners and Luncheons, 1969-2018, undated
Subseries I.C. Appeal of Conscience Foundation Delegations to Foreign Countries, 1966-2012, undated
Subseries I.D. International Political and Religious Leaders Hosted by Appeal of Conscience Foundation, 1968-2014, undated
Subseries I.E. Peace and Tolerance Conferences, 1991-2005, undated
Subseries I.F. Correspondence, 1964-2016, undated
Series II. International and Domestic Events, 1956-2016, undated
Subseries II.A. Conferences, Summits, and Forums, 1956-2015, undated
Subseries II.B. Commemorative Events, 1976-2016, undated
Subseries II.C. Awards and Honorary Degrees, 1976-2011, undated
Series III. Memberships and Affiliations, 1956-2014, undated
Series IV. Rabbi of Congregation B'nai Jacob and Park East Synagogue Records, 1942-2016, undated
Scope and Contents
The Rabbi Arthur Schneier Papers consists of material collected and created by Rabbi Arthur Schneier dating from 1956 to 2016 pertaining to his work as a rabbi and international advocate for peace, human rights, and religious freedom. The bulk of the collection documents Schneier's work as the president and founder of the Appeal of Conscience Foundation, or ACF, an interfaith coalition of business and religious leaders promoting tolerance and conflict resolution throughout the world. ACF created and co-sponsored protests, seminars, conferences, summits, and awards about creating international peace and tolerance through conflict resolution and the expansion of human and religious rights. Material from these events include: programs, correspondence, schedules, lists of attendees, agendas, press clippings and releases, photographs, images, video recordings, and travel documents. A small number of VHS tapes, microcassette tapes, and audio cassette tapes were recorded of ACF's annual award dinners and luncheons as well as the seminars and conferences co-sponsored and created by ACF. ACF also hosted visiting political and religious leaders of international renown and sent delegations abroad to report to meet with international political and religious leaders. The collection mostly contains paper-based and born-digital material, with a small portion of audio cassette tapes documenting those meetings.
Rabbi Arthur Schneier also attended several domestic and international events as individual advocate for religious tolerance and international peace. A large portion of the collection documents Schneier's constant trips to Israel, Europe, and East Asia to attend international events about religious and human rights. Material from Schneier's trips includes: itineraries, schedules, correspondence, photographs, travel documents and ephemera, and reports. A small number of audio cassette tapes and 16mm films were recorded from various international and domestic events attended by Rabbi Schneier as an advocate for religious rights. Another small part of the collection consists of photographs, images, programs, correspondence, born-digital sound and video recordings that record Rabbi Schneier receiving awards and honorary doctorate degrees for his vocational work as a rabbi and advocate. Finally, this collection contains material that documents Schneier's vocation as a rabbi first as the Rabbi of Congregation B'nai Jacob located in Brooklyn, New York then as the Senior Rabbi of Park East Synagogue in New York, New York.
Conditions Governing Access
Materials are open without restrictions.
Conditions Governing Use
This collection is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use materials in the collection in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).
Identification of item, date; Rabbi Arthur Schneier Papers; TAM 694; box number; folder number; Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives, New York University.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The collection was donated by Rabbi Arthur Schneier in 2017 and 2019. The accession numbers associated with this gift are 2017.035, 2017.067, 2017.075, and 2019.011.
All of the materials in this collection were stored either at the Appeal of Conscience office on 251 West 71st street or at the Park East Synagogue at 163 East 67th street. Material was packed by Rabbi Arthur Schneier and his daughter, Karen Schneier.
Audiovisual Access Policies and Procedures
Audiovisual materials have not been preserved and may not be available to researchers. Materials not yet digitized will need to have access copies made before they can be used. To request an access copy, or if you are unsure if an item has been digitized, please contact email@example.com with the collection name, collection number, and a description of the item(s) requested. A staff member will respond to you with further information.
Electronic Records Policies and Procedures
Advance notice is required for the use of computer records. Original physical digital media is restricted. An access terminal for born-digital materials in the collection is available by appointment for reading room viewing and listening only. Researchers may view an item's original container and/or carrier, but the physical carriers themselves are not available for use because of preservation concerns.
During accessioning, the curator was able to weed out most of the boxes that contained administrative and/or financial files. However, there were some administrative files embedded within certain boxes, especially the ones that focus on the Annual Award Dinners which were weeded during processing. Additionally, there were several boxes full of unannotated envelopes, invitation and RSVP cards for the Appeal of Conscience Foundation's Annual Awards Dinner. Two copies of the invitations and RSVP cards were retained, the rest of the material was deaccessioned. There were some boxes that contained receipts, tax return forms, tax audit correspondence, reimbursement documents, and a financial investment portfolio for the United States-Japan Foundation that were deaccessioned from the collection. There were several folders of articles, booklets, pamphlets, and reports about international countries which were not created by the Appeal of Conscience Foundation that had little to no research value which were also deaccessioned. In the same vein as the articles, booklets, pamphlets, and reports, the donor also kept folders of speeches by world leaders from various conferences, summits, forum, news conferences that are not annotated which were also discarded. There were two yarmulkes, housed in boxes 108 and 183, that were offered back to the donor and deaccessioned.
After consulting with the digital archivist, six data cartridges were separated from the collection, offered back to the donor, and deaccessioned. These cartridges were labeled as backup files and are currently unable to be imaged by NYU. The digital archivist said they will need to be sent to a vendor and probably do not contain information of high research value. There were a number of optical discs and floppy disks which blank, damaged, or had copyright issues that were deaccessioned from the collection. Please see the deaccessioning checklist in the collection file for a detailed list of optical disc and floppy disk deaccessions.
Two audio cassette tapes were removed from the collection due to copyright issues. Fifteen audio cassette tapes were also removed from the collection, because they were blank. One 16mm film was removed from the collection due to copyright issues.
Additional accruals are expected for this collection.
About this Guide
At the time of accessioning, July 2017, most of the materials were left in their original file folders and housed primarily in record cartons with spacers as a means to reflect the box inventory written by Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives' Curator, Michael Koncewicz. Further accretions were rehoused in appropriately sized boxes but the original box numbering from the inventory has been maintained. Some boxes donated in the 2019 accrual were not listed on the inventory and were added to the end of the inventory as boxes 192-203.
The collection received minimal rearrangement, rehousing in manuscript boxes, and more granular description during processing from May to October 2019. While the collection had good folder titles, the labels on all of the folders were falling off. Most of the folders in the collection were overfilled and had pieces of dessicated rubber bands stuck to them. The folders were filed within hanging folders and accordion folders. There were several cases of overfilled and underfilled record cartons. During processing, the material in these record cartons were transferred into properly sized boxes and rehoused in scored archival folders. Audiovisual material and physical digital media were housed together as appropriate. Separation sheets were created to sustain the intellectual relationship between paper-based materials and audiovisual materials and physical digital media. Preservation photocopies were created for material printed on thermal fax paper as well as newspaper articles. Hanging folders and accordion folders were removed from the collection. Duplicate material in all formats were deaccessioned from the collection. Original folder titles were used, with descriptive enhancements added as necessary.
Born-digital material was inventoried, labeled, and imaged. Discs were processed using Forensic Toolkit, and video and audio were imaged and uploaded to permanent storage. More than half of the optical discs and floppy disks were deaccessioned due to duplication, damage, or because they contained no files.
New York University Libraries follow professional standards and best practices when imaging, ingesting, and processing born-digital material in order to maintain the integrity and authenticity of the content.