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Goldenson, Samuel Harry


GOLDENSON, SAMUEL HARRY (1878–1962), U.S. Reform rabbi. Goldenson was born in Kalvarija, Poland, and was taken to the United States in 1890. He was ordained at the Hebrew Union College in 1904, then led congregations in Lexington, Kentucky (1904–06), and Albany, New York (1906–18). In 1918 Goldenson moved to Temple Rodef Shalom, Pittsburgh, where he established his reputation nationally. In 1934 he was appointed senior rabbi of Temple Emanu-El, New York, also serving as president of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (1933–35). Becoming rabbi emeritus in 1947, he devoted the last years of his career to preaching in small communities under the auspices of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations. Goldenson adhered to the older standpoint in American Reform Judaism, emphasizing the universal message of the prophets and showing little sympathy for Jewish nationalism and the revived interest in ceremonial matters. He was a lifelong advocate of social justice and was active in campaigns for civic betterment.


New York Times (Sept. 1, 1962).

[Abram Vossen Goodman]

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