Projects in the Archives
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Reuben Brainin in crowd in Tel Aviv
JPL Historic Photograph Collection

The Jewish Public Library Archives houses close to 17,000 historic photographs, dating from the late 19th Century to current day. The images capture the visual memory of the Montreal Jewish community as it is defined through great writers, artists and poets, the organizations and institutions that drive the community, the events that shape our history and future and the families that built it all. Photographs not only provide pleasing images, they have the ability to invoke emotion and understanding where sometimes plain text fails. The value of these images to researchers is monumental as it engages the public in so many different ways.

Currently, the JPL Archives is working on a major project that will improve the preservation, retrieval and representation of the Photograph Collection. Eventually, researchers, students and community members will be able to search through our photographs right on the web! The project, started by grants from Archives nationale du Québec and the Young Canada Works in Heritage Organizations program, has just received significant additional funding from the Birks Family Foundation. Birks' generosity will allow the Archives to complete the major first phase of the project, work that will ensure these photographs will be accessible for future generations and researchers in and out of the community.

To promote and celebrate this project, the Archives will continue to display examples from the Photograph Collection in the display cases at the Jewish Public Library of Montreal. Please watch the cases for new photographs and this site for continuing developments!

For more information on the JPL Historic Photograph Collection, please contact the Archives.
Members of the Montefiore Club Playtime at Neighborhood House Demonstration in support of Polish Jews Labour activist float