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Rabbi Moshe Zevulun Margolies

December 26th, 2007 · 16 Comments

Rabbi Moshe Zevulun Margolies

משה זבולן ב"ר שלמה זלמן

Rav, Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun, New York City

Date of Death: Tue. August 25, 1936 - Elul 7 5696

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Cemetery Details
83-45 Cypress Hills Street
Glendale, NY 11385
United States

Phone: (718) 366-5900


Cemetery Map:

Notes: Mount Carmel operates many of the surrounding cemeteries. Gates open Sunday through Friday, 8:00AM to 4:00PM. Closed Saturdays and some Jewish Holidays

Directions to Kever: Mount Carmel Cemetery in Queens maintains computerized records and will provide a detailed location map upon request. Section: 1, Block: C, Map: 1A, Society: KEHILATH JESHURAN

Name Listed on Cemetery Database: MARGOLIES, MORRIS

Biographical Notes:

Ramaz pic 2
Photo Caption: Rav Moshe Zevulun Margolies, Credit: Institute For Judaic Culture and History (IFJCAH)

Credit: Yeshiva University 
Photo Caption: Rav Moshe Zevulun Margolies speaking at Madison Square Garden, Credit: Moreshes Chachmei America’s Archives
Ramaz Stamp
Photo Caption: Rav Moshe Zevulun Margolies’s official seal as Chief Rabbi of Boston, Massachusetts, Credit:  Institute For Judaic Culture and History

Credit: Yeshiva University

Photo Caption: RAMAZ along with John Calvin Coolidge (30th President of the United State), d. 1933, Moreshes Chachmei America
Lookstein Pic
Photo Caption: Rabbi Joseph Lookstein (L) grandson-in-law of Rav Margolies and founder of the RAMAZ school in New York City, Credit:  Institute For Judaic Culture and History (IFJCAH)

Bio Information:
A number of books and articles have been penned on the life and times of Rav Moshe Zevulun Margolies often referred to by the acronym RAMAZ.

Credit: Shmuel Amsel, Brooklyn, NY

Credit: Shmuel Amsel, Brooklyn, NY

Credit: Shmuel Amsel, Brooklyn, NY

Credit: Shmuel Amsel, Brooklyn, NY

Tags: Chief Rabbi · Mount Carmel Cemetery, NY · New York · Queens / L.I., NY · Rosh Yeshiva

16 responses so far ↓

  • 1 YD Miller // Sep 17, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    The rav had a son Reb Shlomo Zalmen in Cleveland OH. who was a Volzhiner Talmud, he was struck in an accident at a young age in 1917 and passed away.

    His body was brought over to NY where he was buried in Mt. Carmel Cemetery.

    anyone with more info?

  • 2 HL // Jan 8, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    Rabbi Margolies was born in the small Lithuanian city of Meretz, not far from Kovna and Slobodka. On his father’s side, he was the grandson of Rabbi Abraham Margolies, chief of the bet din of Telshe, and of Rabbi Wolf Altschul, chief of the bet din of Lutzan who traced his lineage to Rashi. On his mother’s side, he was the grandson of Reb Eliyahu Krosczer, the brother-in-law of the Vilna Gaon. Ordained by his uncle and by Rabbi Yom Tov Lippman Halpern, the rabbi of Bialystok in the year 1876. He served as rabbi of Sloboda for 12 years. In 1889 he was invited to assume the chief rabbinate of Boston. In 1906 he was called to the rabbinate of Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun in New York, a post which he held until his death. His primary occupation was study. The Talmud was always open on the dining room table. He began study at five in the morning and he would make a siyyum on the completion of the whole Talmud every year on the yahrzeit of his mother. It meant that he covered seven pages of the Talmud every day. Rabbi Margolies introduced the system which supervised the distribution of kosher meat in New York City. He served as president of the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of the United States and Canada. He founded the New York Kehillah and the Central Relief Committee (later absorbed by the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee). An early Zionist, Rabbi Margolies was a member of the Mizrachi Organization of America. He also served as president of the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Yeshiva (which ultimately became Yeshiva University) for several years, presiding over the ordination of a generation of Orthodox rabbis.
    Gifted with a sharp and crisp wit, he used it not to entertain people but to drive home a point and to help solve a problem. He was consulted by people of all religious persuasions on both personal matters and communal issues. On one occasion, he was consulted by the impresario Meyer Weisgal who had scheduled a performance of “The Romance of a People” at the Polo Grounds in New York on a Saturday night in late August which coincided with the first selihot (penitential service). The performance was to start 8:00 in the evening which, at that season of year, would involve violating the Sabbath. Weisgal wanted the rabbi to grant absolution for the Sabbath violation. “Mr. Weisgal,” the rabbi responded, “You came to the wrong Moses; I would have to refer you to the original Moses. He was the one who gave us the Sabbath.” A wise and witty observation ended the inquiry.

    His last public appearance just months before his death was at a Madison Square Garden rally against Hitler’s Nuremberg laws. He had to be carried on to the stage. His hands trembled, but his voice never wavered, as he read his message. When he finished, 20,000 people rose to their feet in reverence and appreciation. He was known to many as the RaMaZ (an acronym for Rabbi Moses Zevulun).

  • 3 YD Miller // Jan 11, 2010 at 11:22 am

    Thanks HL for the remarkable Biography, it would be noteworthy that the photo of his apearance in MSG at the rally against nazism is available and can bee seen in the link below

  • 4 J. Helfand // Feb 8, 2011 at 12:49 am

    And the Ramaz School in Manhattan is named in his memory.

  • 5 YD Miller // Apr 5, 2011 at 12:11 pm

    I found a Mazel Tov wishing to Rav Margolies in Hamelitz 1894 while he was Rabbi in Boston upon the marriage of his daughter Chava to Hirsch Feingold.

    It was signed by Rav Margolies Father-in-Law Y. Abramowitz, anyone with more information in the son-in-law Feingold or the father-in-law Abramowitz?

  • 6 Ruth M.Kaufmann // Dec 3, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    I was interested in Rabbi Margolies because he came from Meretz. My late father, Rabbi Elias Margolis, and my late uncle, Max Leopold Margolis, well known scholar, also came from Meretz, and my Dad knew Harry Fischel as well. The family is descended directly from Yom Tov Lippman Heller. I am curious as to the similarity of names-my grandfather, Rabbi Isaac Margolis, has his named mispelled in the Encyclopedia Judaica, and I wonder if we are in some vague way related to the KJ Rabbi Margolies. I never heard my Dad mention him, but my family came to the USA in 1884, and my Uncle was a professor at HUC where my Father became a Reform Rabbi who left the movement to follow his bent for Zionism, returning to the Conservative movement under Solomon Schecter. As far as I know I have no Orthodox relatives, but you never know. Rabbi Reichel wrote an article in The Jewish Week, and the Name of Rabbi Herbert Goldstein, his grandfather, rings a bell. I also own a copy of THE MARGOLIS FAMILY, by Dr. Neil Rosenstein, originally from So. Africa, and don’t recall any reference to Rabbi Margolies. I’d appreciate hearing from anyone with information if it exists. Ruth M. Kaufmann

  • 7 reuben hyde // Feb 5, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    my grandfather founded Beth Israel 1901 cambridge, mass. it was fashioned after R’b’
    Margolies Beth Isreal Baldwin Place North End
    Boston. He is buried from Beth El cemetery Baker St. I search time and time and no records are left from R’bi. Margolies Boston I thought he might have married my grandparents or they came to his shul when he arrived. I still must find vital statistics of Mass. If any notes or papers exist I wish to know. I have been at the New England Jewish Archieves while writing a biography of grandfather who passed in 1935 1st
    av at 63. Am at the facility now.

  • 8 Hatte Blejer // Dec 5, 2013 at 2:41 am

    Meretz is a town associated with my Margolis family (I’m a distant cousin of Ruth Kaufmann above) and I visited it in June 2012 and saw the large cemetery lost in the pine forest, the impressive former Jewish school and synagogue. According to another cousin, she was told that her great great grandmother (a Margolis by birth, born in Kalwariya) was related to Rabbi Margolies. Numerous members of our Margolis family lived in Meretz over the years, including David Tebele Efrati who wrote Toldot Anshei Shem which gives the genealogy of the family. I’d be very interested in exploring whether the two families are related, considering they were in Meretz and in the same area of Lithuania in the same era.

  • 9 YD Miller // Dec 17, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    Letter written by RAMAZ Margolies in an effort to help the Telshe yeshiva:

  • 10 Chaim Lang // Jan 18, 2015 at 12:30 am

    My wife’s name is chaya Sara margolese.
    Her grand father dr Oscar margolese was born
    In Karlsruhe Germany of parents who were in transit from Lithuania. Oscar’s parents were first
    Cousins. They came from rassianai very close to
    Khrazai in fact oscars father joseph looks exactly
    The same as your moshe Zebulon we have a photograph from 1909 in Montreal the resemblance is picture perfect as cousins. Joseph’s wife Dina lehrnblatt’s father was a rabbi in a place called sassmacken in courland for 58 years
    According to ovchinsky His brothers were dovid an expert in dinei mononos. His brother in law was Avraham Shmuel Dubitsky who Rov in me retch as well as other places in courland and thence Montreal. One daughter married Gabriel elyon
    From the family luntz another grand daughter
    Married the nephew of the adderett as well as a
    Brother in law of ay kook. An d Russian chief rabbi
    Rav olwang of plungen and petersberg
    I would like to talk to relatives about this family as we also have a family tradition of seven generations of rabbis going back to the levush

  • 11 Laurel // Apr 1, 2016 at 10:26 pm

    According to information about my Great Aunt Mikhle (Minnie) Shohet Singer, she was a cousin to Rabbi Margolies. The rabbi married Minnie and was mentioned in various newspaper milestones. Minnie’s sister Eta was the wife of Rabbi Chaim Nosan Shohet, who was also a rabbi in Boston and NY. Minnie’s father was Avraham Shlomo Schochet.. possibly married to Leah. I don’t know what the actual connection is.

  • 12 Laurel // Aug 5, 2016 at 3:23 pm

    Does anyone know how Rabbi Margolies was related to his uncle, Rabbi David of Meretz? That is, whether Rabbi David was a sibling of one of Rabbi Margolies’ parents, or the husband of a sibling?

  • 13 תולדות ושורשים // Feb 17, 2017 at 6:41 am

  • 14 Diana Korzenik // Dec 14, 2017 at 9:19 pm

    Rabbi Abraham Margolies had been principal of Brooklyn’s New Hebrew School founded in 1920
    in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn 148 Stockton Street “to teach Orthodoxy tempered with modernism.” See Abelow’s
    History of Brooklyn Jewry.
    Might these two Rabbi Margolies have been related?

  • 15 Benjamin Cerf // Feb 1, 2018 at 7:18 pm

    Responding to Laurel’s question on how RaMaZ was related to Rabbi David. From the biographical notes in R. Joseph Lookstein’s unpublished biography, “He (R. Moshe Zevulun) was privately educated by his uncle Reb David’l Krosczer, the Rabbi of Meretz” and then later “On his mother’s side he was the grandson of Reb Eliyahu Krosczer…” So, likely Reb David Krosczer was Reb Eliyahu Krosczer’s son, making him the RaMaZ’s uncle on his mother’s side.

  • 16 Shara // Mar 20, 2019 at 1:50 pm

    Hi All,

    Another long lost cousin here. RaMaz was my great great grandfather. His daughter Esther, also my mother’s name, was my mother’s grandmother.

    I know that Esther Margolies (who oddly went by Smith for a time) married Harry Adelman (Eidelman?) but I’m unclear how the two met and married in Chicago. Both are from Lithuania but I’m unclear if from the same town or there was another arrangement made in US to marry them. Any ideas?

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