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Inventory of the Burton L. Padoll Papers, 1957-2009

Descriptive Summary

Abstract: Sermons, addresses, photographs, publications, and other papers of Burton L. Padoll, rabbi and civil rights advocate. Materials largely relate to Padoll's rabbinate at Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim in Charleston, South Carolina, from 1961-1967.
Title: Burton L. Padoll papers
Creator: Padoll, Burton L.
Date(s): 1957-2009    
Extent: 0.8 linear feet
(2 document boxes)
Repository: Jewish Heritage Collection, Special Collections, College of Charleston Libraries
66 George Street
Charleston, SC 29424
Phone: (843) 953-8016
Fax: (843) 953-6319
Call Number: Mss 1082
Language of Material: Materials in English

Biographical Note

Burton L. Padoll (1929-2004), was born to Leah and Charles Padoll in Canton, Ohio. Padoll attended the Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he was ordained in 1957 and received an honorary Doctorate of Divinity in 1982. After his ordination, Padoll served as assistant rabbi in Brookline, Massachusetts. In 1961, Padoll took a position as rabbi of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim (KKBE) in Charleston, South Carolina, where he served for six years. During this time, Padoll strongly advocated for civil rights and criticized Charleston's Jewish community for their failure to aid the struggle for racial equality.

After leaving Charleston in 1967, Padoll moved to Peabody, Massachusetts, where he became the rabbi of Temple Beth Shalom in 1969 until his retirement in 1989. Padoll lived in Mount Jackson, Virginia, until his death in 2004.

Collection Overview

Sermons, addresses, photographs, publications, and other papers of Burton L. Padoll, rabbi and civil rights activist. The bulk of the collection consists of Padoll's typed and handwritten sermons and addresses from his various rabbinates, including at Charleston's Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim. Topics include the Sabbath and High Holy Days celebrations as well as civil rights and other pertinent issues of the period. The collection also includes photographs of Padoll and his family, newspaper clippings announcing his retirement, and an article about Padoll's civil rights activism in Charleston written by Solomon Breibart in 2009.

Collection Arrangement

1.  Biographical files, 1957-2009
2.  Sermons and addresses, 1957-1969

Search Terms

The following terms have been used to index this collection in the Library's online catalog. They are grouped by name of person, family, or organization, by topical subject, by place, and by types of material.


    • Padoll, Burton L.
    • Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim (Charleston, S.C.)


    • Rabbis--Political activity--South Carolina--Charleston--20th century
    • Jews--Political activity--South Carolina--Charleston--20th century
    • Civil rights--South Carolina--Charleston--History--20th century
    • African Americans--South Carolina--Charleston--Relations with Jews

    Types of Material

    • Sermons
    • Clippings (information artifacts)
    • Photographs
    • Articles

    Related Resources

    Related Material

    Related materials in Special Collections include A New Year, 5727: Two Rosh Hashonah sermons; Since 1749- The Story of K.K. Beth Elohim of Charleston, S.C.: American Judaism through more than two centuries; and an oral history interview with Burton Lee Padoll, 1999 (Mss 1035-224).

    Detailed Description of the Collection

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    1. Biographical files, 1957-2009  

    Newspaper clippings, 1964, 1989   box 1 | folder 1

    "A Study of a Liturgy of the Jews of Kai Feng Fu," 1957   box 1 | folder 2

    Padoll's Hebrew Union College graduate thesis.

    Photographs, 1963-1987, undated   box 1 | folder 3

    Miscellaneous, 2005, 2009, undated   box 1 | folder 4

    2. Sermons and addresses, 1957-1969  

    Alert! Materials may not be reproduced in their entirety without the written consent of the donor, Melissa Padoll. Sermons may be quoted in part, but quotes may not exceed more than five consecutive sentences. This restriction expires in 2015 unless renewed by the donor. Please see Special Collections staff for the donor's contact information.

    Sermons were originally housed in binders and are arranged to preserve original order. Transcripts of the sermons are available online via the Lowcountry Digital Library.

    Shabbat sermons, 1957-1969, undated (1-5 of 6)   box 1 | folder 5-9

    Shabbat sermons, 1960-1967, undated (6 of 6)   box 2 | folder 1

    Civil rights, 1958-1968, undated   box 2 | folder 2

    Miscellaneous, 1960-1967, undated   box 2 | folder 3

    Administrative Information

    Access Restrictions

    This collection has access restrictions. Please contact Special Collections at the College of Charleston Libraries for more information.

    Copyright Notice

    The nature of the College of Charleston's archival holdings means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. Special Collections claims only physical ownership of most archival materials.

    The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Burton L. Padoll papers, College of Charleston Libraries, Charleston, SC, USA.

    Acquisitions Information

    Sermons and addresses were donated in 2005 by Melissa Padoll. Additional material was donated by Shelia Padoll in 2005 and 2011.

    Alternate Form of Materials

    Digital reproduction available online in the Lowcountry Digital Library.

    Processing Information

    Processed by Joshua A. Minor, February 2011.

    Encoded by Sarah Dorpinghaus, September 2011.

    Funding from the Council on Library and Information Resources supported the processing of this collection and encoding of the finding aid.

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