Page 55 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 24

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W
isem o n
— L
ibrary
o f
D
rops ie
C
ollege
4 7
Gifts from Mayer Sulzberger
In 1923 the library acquired the valuable collection of Arabic
literature of Dr. Eduard Glaser (1855-1908), the famous itine ran t
scholar in Southern Arabia. In the same year Judge Mayer
Sulzberger (1843-1923), a lifelong patron of the Dropsie College,
bequeathed a portion of his library to Dropsie College Library.
Th is world renowned collection was probably the most extensive
private Hebrew library in the United States. Ephraim Deinard
published a catalogue of this collection en titled
Or Mayer:
Catalogue of the Old Hebrew Manuscripts and Private Books
of the Library of Hon. M. Sulzberger of Philadelphia, Pa.
(New
York, 1896). I t was this nucleus collection which he so mun i­
ficently bestowed to the Jewish Theological Seminary in 1902,
which was to become the largest Jewish library in the world.
Judge Mayer Sulzberger continued to collect discriminately.
His interests were no t confined to subjects of Jewish content, bu t
included a vast range of knowledge. He took pains to bind his
entire library in fine, exquisite bindings. I t is he who contributed
the greatest portion of the incunabula in Dropsie’s possession.
Pursuant to his will, the library received a selection of over 7,000
volumes from his fine collection. I t might be added paren theti­
cally tha t his outstanding law library, regarded as one of the finest
private collections in this country, is deposited in the Judicial
Chamber in the City Hall in Philadelphia.
In 1925, after the death of Dr. Henry Malter, one of the most
profound Jewish scholars of Judaeo-Arabic philosophy and pro­
fessor of Rabbinics and Philosophy at Dropsie College, the
library acquired his considerable collection of over
1,000
volumes
in medieval Jewish philosophy and ethics. T he value of this
collection is enhanced by the great scholar’s personal annotations
and comments in nearly every volume.
After the untimely death of Dr. Max L. Margolis in 1932,
his family presented Dropsie College with his rare and valuable
collection of Biblical literature and cognate learning, compris­
ing over 7,000 volumes. Th is collection is one of the most com­
prehensive of its kind. There is hardly any work of importance
in Bible which is not represented. Especially rich in Septuagint
material, to which Dr. Margolis devoted the last thirty years
of his life, it is housed in the Biblical lecture room in which Dr.
Margolis had taught. His pupil, Dr. Robert Gordis, has written
of this collection, “By merely observing the wonderful arrange­
ment of these volumes, Margolis taught his students the history
of Biblical scholarship.”
Following the death of Dr. Solomon L. Skoss, professor at
Dropsie College from 1925 to 1953, the family bequeathed to