Jewish Heritage Collection: Oral history interview with Rosa From Poliakoff

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Jewish Heritage Collection: Oral history interview with Rosa From Poliakoff
Rosengarten, Dale, 1948-
Poliakoff, Rosa From, 1914-1999
Rosa From Poliakoff was born in Union, South Carolina, in 1914, to Israel and Bertha From, who emigrated from Ponevezys, Lithuania, around the turn of the twentieth century. The Froms settled in Union in 1905 and, two years later, Israel, who initially was a peddler, opened I. From Dry Goods & Notions. Rosa reports that they were the only Jewish family in Union. The Froms acquired a Torah and hosted services in their home for Jews who lived in nearby towns. Eventually, they joined Spartanburg’s B’nai Israel and donated their Torah to that congregation. Rosa notes that her mother was very observant and both parents stressed the importance of education and their Jewish identity. Rosa graduated from Agnes Scott College in Atlanta and taught in that city for three years before marrying Myer Poliakoff. She recalls how she met her future husband at a Yudedum Club dance in Columbia. They raised their three children in Abbeville, South Carolina, where they ran the D. Poliakoff Department Store, established in 1900 by Myer’s father, David. Rosa describes a From family car trip to Worcester, Massachusetts, to visit Israel’s family, the effects of the Great Depression on local Jewish merchants, and how the Poliakoffs came to settle in Abbeville. The transcript includes comments inserted by the interviewee during proofreading.
Jewish Heritage Collection Oral Histories
Contributing Institution:
College of Charleston Libraries
Media Type:
Oral Histories
Personal or Corporate Subject:
B’nai Israel (Spartanburg, S.C.)
Topical Subject:
Jews--South Carolina--Interviews, Jewish merchants--South Carolina--Union--History, Jewish merchants--South Carolina--Abbeville--History, Jews--South Carolina--Union--Religious life
Shelving Locator:
Mss 1035-014
S.C. County:
Abbeville County (S.C.), Union County (S.C.), Spartanburg County (S.C.)
Internet Media Type:
Digitization Specifications:
Mp3 derivative audio created with Audacity software. Archival masters are wav files.
Preferred Citation:
Rosa From Poliakoff, audio interview by Dale Rosengarten, 1 May 1995, Mss 1035-014, Special Collections, College of Charleston, Charleston, SC, USA.
Copyright Status Statement:
Copyright © College of Charleston Libraries.
Access Information:
For more information contact Special Collections, Addlestone Library, College of Charleston, Charleston, SC 29424.