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Rabbi Zacharya Yosef Rosenfeld

November 26th, 2007 · 27 Comments

Rabbi Zacharya Yosef Rosenfeld

זכריה יוסף ב"ר משה גאבריאל

Chief Rabbi, St. Louis, Missouri

Date of Death: Thu. September 9, 1915 - Tishrei 1 5676
Rosh Hashana

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Cemetery Details
7550 Olive Blvd (corner Hanley Road)
University City, MO 63130
United States

Phone: 314-721-4658
Contact: Dave Hoffman


Cemetery Map:

Notes: Cemetery is usually locked please call in advance. If you cant get Dave Hoffman try calling Stanley Citerman 314-469-1891.

Directions to Kever: The Chesed Shel Emeth Society Cemetery is located in St. Louis, Missouri, Location: Ohel on the Hanley Road side of the cemetery

Biographical Notes:

.Rav Zechariah Rosenfeld
Photo caption: The only known picture of the Rav Zacharya Yosef Rosenfeld

Photo Caption: Reb Mordechai Yosef (Mordche Yosl) and Reizl Perel, Kowel c. 1890, Reb Mordche mother Malka Perel was Rav Zacharya Yosef Rosenfeld sister, Credit: Rebeca Gilad

Bio Information:
Rav Rosenfeld was a founding member of the Agudath HaRabonim

Credit: Needed

Tags: Chief Rabbi · Missouri

27 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Hersh W // Jan 13, 2009 at 2:56 am

    I know his great grandson, he is a choshevah guy!

  • 2 Miller // Jan 13, 2009 at 4:30 pm

    There is a Tschuvah in Shu”t Maharsham to the Rav about Machine-Matzohs in St. Luis.

  • 3 EruvRav // Oct 29, 2009 at 5:09 pm

    See link for some bio info and picture:

  • 4 Joshua Wall // Dec 11, 2010 at 12:01 pm

    In reasearching my family I found a link to Rabbi Rosenfeld. My mother was Sheva Heller, from Matzev, then Denver, the daughter of Betzalel (Chas) Heller. Rabbi Rosenfeld’s son, Benjamin (1877-1946), married Nachama Heller , daughter of Aaron Heller II (1843-1914), a teacher is Ratno, Poland. Aaron’s father, my ancestor, Yitzchak Isaac II (1836-1916) was a shochet, as was Benjamin Rosenfeld.

  • 5 David // May 23, 2011 at 7:31 pm

    Photo Credit: Needed?

  • 6 Rabbi Stern // May 24, 2011 at 10:57 am

    It’s not his picture!!!!!!!!!

  • 7 David // May 24, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    Um, as far as I know he was the first to find it and post it.

  • 8 Sruly // Mar 21, 2012 at 12:32 pm

    There is also a tshuvah in Machaze Avroham (R Avroham Steinberg) to R Rosenfeld about machine matzoh.

  • 9 Admin // Apr 17, 2012 at 3:18 pm

    The following information about Rabbi Zechariah Joseph Rosenfeld comes from the book Zion in the Valley by Walter Ehrlich:

    He was born in Turisk, in Russian Poland, in about 1846. He was educated there by his father, Rabbi Moses Gabriel Rosenfeld, earned his s’micha at age fifteen, and actually succeeded his father as rabbi of the Turisk shul. He came to American in 1890, served briefly in Baltimore, and in 1891 arrived in St. Louis. He was already forty-five years old, and he brought with him a rich background of Talmudic scholarship and rabbinic experience. He was engaged as rabbi of Sheerith Sfard Congregation, one of the preeminent shuls in the Ghetto, and remained there until he died in 1915.

    During Rosenfeld’s ministry in St. Louis, Jewish journals all over the country ranked him as one of the most learned Talmudic scholars in the United States. One, in fact, said his fame was as great in Europe as in America. In addition to the usual congregational ministrations of weddings, funerals and baby namings, Rosenfeld was a highly respected counselor and adviser to many St. Louisans, both Jews and non-Jews, in personal and business matters. The press featured him as more than respected; the community “venerated him for his piety and his wisdom.” “He lived the life of a just man, according to the letter and spirit of the Orthodox faith,” said the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, refusing even to being photographed lest it be a violation of the biblical proscription against a graven image.

    Rabbi Rosenfeld died at home on September 9, 1915, shortly after returning from services at Sheerith Sfard synagogue on the first day of Rosh Hashannah. Despite his desire for just a simple burial, the outpouring of mourners attests to how highly the entire St. Louis community regarded him. A funeral procession of more than two hundred automobiles started at Sheerith Sfard at Fifteenth and Wash and stopped at nine more synagogues en route through the city to Chesed She Emeth Cemetery. At least forty thousand mourners jammed those synagogues to pay their last respects. About thirty-five thousand people lined the streets, and some fifteen thousand thronged into the cemetery, creating logistical complications in the burial service itself. Catholic priests and Protestant ministers stood reverently there among those who attended, as also did St. Louis Mayor Henry Kiel. It was one of the largest crowds of mourners ever seen in St. Louis. Merchants of all faiths even closed their stores during the funeral as a sign of respect. It was indeed a fitting tribute to “the most pious Jew in St. Louis.”

  • 10 Yehuda Horovitz // May 10, 2012 at 6:19 am

    How does Rabbi Stern [commenting above] know that the picture is not Rabbo rosenfeld’s??

  • 11 Farshlufen // Feb 28, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    His death certificate:

  • 12 Steve Weinreich // Jun 17, 2013 at 4:24 pm

    Rabbi Zacharya Yosef Rosenfeld

    I have a pdf file and jpg image of a 1915 newspaper article that discusses the Rabbi’s last will requests upon his death. Included are his burial instructions. Would you like those copies? Glad to send them. Steve

  • 13 Nechunya // Jun 19, 2013 at 1:26 pm

    I would appreciate to get any info on Reb Zacharye Rosenfeld. Please send to:

  • 14 Jordan B. Glaser M.D. // Aug 31, 2013 at 9:54 am

    I’m one of his offspring. The family story goes that while in Russian Poland he was also a physician for the Jews (they couldn’t use the local physicians). He also used to smuggle Jewish men of draft age out of the area, since the Russians would make them serve for as many as 16 years (in order to destroy their families). When the Russians got wind of his activities, he vamoosed to the USA. His elderly grand-daughter and her son live around the block from me in Flatbush. My great-grandfather took over his rabbinate in Poland, when the Reb left for America.

  • 15 John Heimann // Nov 26, 2013 at 8:22 pm

    I’m one of his great great grandchildren as well. I assume the elderly grand-daughter and her son Dr. Glaser refers to are my (now late) great aunt Helen and my cousin-once-removed Zach. To the best of my knowledge the photo previously posted is in fact his photo, but I’ll have to check with the family on the source.

  • 16 Patricia Rosenfeld Fogel // Jan 15, 2014 at 10:30 pm

    Yes, as a Rosenfeld descendant raised in St. Louis, I can at least confirm that the family knows that the photo is the only known photo of Rabbi Z.Y.Rosenfeld. There is a copy at the Vaad Hoeir office in St. Louis and has been in our family since I can remember, not that we care who take credit for it. Mr. Heimann: was your great-aunt Helen Rosenfeld Abrams? How are the Glasers related? Thanks.

  • 17 Christopher Heimann // Mar 16, 2014 at 6:24 am

    Helen Rosenfeld Abrams was our great Aunt (I am John’s brother). Our grandmother was Irma Rosenfeld Heimann. I am not sure how the Glasser’s are related. But I have a family history compiled by aunt Helen around somewhere and may try to look it up.

  • 18 Christopher Heimann // Mar 19, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    According to Aunt Helen’s family tree, Zechariah had 6 children, including Chayah Pearl (1869 to 1900). Chayah Pearl married Rabbi Yoshiah Glaser. They had two children, Rala Glasser and Rabbi Azrael Glaser. Azrael had two children, Pearl Glaserr and Rabbi Samuel Zechariah Glaser. That’s all the information I have about the Glasers (I think — I did not look through all the material she left).

  • 19 YD Miller // Mar 24, 2014 at 2:17 pm

    תשובה להג”ר זכרי’ יוסף בעת שימשו כמו”ץ בעיר קאוולא, רוסלאנד

    משנת תרמ”ד

  • 20 Jordan B. Glaser M.D. // Aug 15, 2014 at 9:27 pm

    Rabbi Samuel Zechariah Glaser is my father. He currently lives in Boca Raton. Yes, I was referring to Helen.

  • 21 Barbara Tuttle // Mar 9, 2015 at 6:26 pm

    My father was from St. Louis and knew little about his family, since they died when he was little, and he was raised in the Jewish orphanage there. But I found his parents’ marriage certificate from 1907 and saw that they were married by Rabbi Zechariah Rosenfeld. I got a copy of Zion in the Valley and was quite impressed to learn of Rav Rosenfeld’s reputation. Since they were married by him, I wondered if my grandmother was possibly from the same town he was, Turisk. I do know she was from Volhynia. Anyway, he sounds like a most impressive man!

  • 22 Ben Bee Zee // Mar 11, 2015 at 3:15 pm

    Barbara, can you please email me the info you have on Rav Rosenfeld, it would be greatly appreciated. Thank You

  • 23 Rebeca Bialik-Gilad // Apr 26, 2017 at 12:22 pm

    I just learned from my St. Louis cousin that Rabbi Zachariah Joseph Rosenfeld was the brother of my great-great-grandmother Malka Rosenfeld (married to Bunim Perel). They lived in Radovychchi, had 7 children who lived in Kowel and Turisk.
    Several of the descendants of Malka live in St. Louis.
    If you Christopher or John Heimann or Patricia Rosenfeld Fogel read this, please contact me at

  • 24 Rebeca Bialik-Gilad // Apr 26, 2017 at 12:24 pm

    Dear Dr. Glaser: could you please contact me at I want to ask if you have a family tree that includes Rabbi Rosenfeld’s siblings. Many thanks,

  • 25 Chaim Green // Jun 26, 2017 at 6:07 pm

    I found a מציבה of his daughter פערל in someone’s backyard in turiisk, you can contact me for a picture of it

  • 26 MEER // Jun 30, 2017 at 2:08 am


  • 27 Jordan Glaser // Jan 20, 2020 at 8:37 am

    Rabbi Samuel Zechariah Glaser (Sam) passed away on Friday evening, just short of his 91st birthday. Sam did his Rabbinic training at Yeshivah University and joined the Elmont Jewish Center on Long Island where he became the youngest tenured rabbi in the United States. The rapid growth of his congregation reflected his wise, interpretive, and witty sermons. Sam also earned a PhD in clinical psychology and served for many decades as an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Hofstra University. Sam is also remembered for his efforts on behalf of Israel – Sam smuggled arms to Palestine in the 1948 War of Independence. After serving the Elmont community for 39 years, Sam (along with his wife Joyce) retired to Boca Raton, FL, joining many of his prior congregants. Sam’s prolific writing, along with his sharp wit and keen mind, continued throughout his retirement right up until his peaceful passing. He enjoyed sharing his last years with his partner, Kay Kroll. Sam was not only a scholar and intellectual, but also was a skilled athlete. In his younger years, he was a Junior NYC handball champ and a semi-professional basketball player; he won a local tennis championship in his 70s and enjoyed playing golf regularly until just a year ago. Sam is survived by his sons Dr. Jordan B. Glaser and Dr. Lawrence E. Glaser, and their families. A funeral at the Gutterman’s Rockville Center chapel will take place at 1PM on Wednesday followed by his burial at Beth Moses Cemetery, Farmingdale, NY. Donations in his memory may be made to the Center for Discovery in Harris, NY.
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