About the Collection

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.

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.

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