Winnipeg Jewish Review  
Site Search:
Home  |  Archives  |  Contact Us
Features Local Israel Next Generation Arts/Op-Eds Editorial/Letters Links Obituary/In Memoriam



By Rhonda Prepes, P. Eng.


The book is an encyclopedia of who’s who in Winnipeg Jewry. From farmer to politician, rich to poor, socialist to Zionist, secular to religious – many people who made a contribution to the development of Winnipeg’s Jewish community from the 1880’s to present day are mentioned in this book. You will scan the index to look for your own surname, for your friends’ surname, and for your neighbors’ surname. Some may be mentioned, others will not.

I learnt that my former neighbor Al snuck away from his home in 1948 at the age of eighteen to defend and liberate Israel. I read that in 1953, my cousin Soody conceived the concept of Camp Massad, the Hebrew speaking summer camp still in existence north of Winnipeg Beach. And I discovered much more about many other fascinating Manitoba Jews in the 511 page volume.
Levine’s accounts come from interviews, personal diaries, conversations, public records, historical documents, books, essays and newspaper articles.
The reason for the survival and success of the Jewish community is found in the fortitude and devotion of the people who lived here. From the Coblentz brothers, the first Jews to settle permanently in Manitoba in the late 1870’s to the culmination of the opening of the Asper Jewish Community Campus in 1997 – this book illustrates that time and again individuals have been willing to put the needs of the Jewish community ahead of their own interests.
Every Jewish Winnipegger, current or former, should read this book because “the only way to anticipate the future and to comprehend the present is to understand and appreciate the past.”
Allan Levine is an award winning internationally selling author. “Coming of Age” is Levine’s 10th book including fiction and non-fiction titles. He was commissioned to write this book by the Jewish Heritage Centre of Western Canada.
The enlightened and well informed Jewish reader recognizes that Levine’s supply of pivotal Manitobans who contributed to the Jewish community is endless. There are many significant doctors, lawyers, artists, community leaders, volunteers, business owners, spiritual leaders, etc. who did not make it into this 511 page volume. More notable, is the absence of vital community institutions like Brock Corydon and Margaret Park schools which offer Hebrew language programs in public school settings (a real rarity in North America) and the Shalom Residences which provide homes and support services for adults with disabilities within a Jewish environment. But every author has a planned objective, a deadline, and a budget to which to adhere.
What do you think?
Have you read “Coming of Age”?
Will you read it now?
Do you think it tells the complete story of Jewish history in Manitoba? Or do you think there are important pieces of the story missing that you would like to have seen included in the book?

I don’t read many books. I just don’t have the time. But I made time to read “Coming of Age – A History of the Jewish People of Manitoba” by Winnipeg historian Allan Levine. I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to catch up on 125 years of Jewish history in just a couple of days. It was well worth my time. Mind you, I have a keen interest in the history of Jews in Winnipeg having just researched my ancestors’ migration in 1924 from the Ukraine to Winnipeg. With stunning pictures and remarkable stories, Levine chronicles the history of Winnipeg Jewish immigrants and their descendants who produced one of the most vibrant and culturally rich communities in North America.
<<Previous Article       Next Article >>
Subscribe to the Winnipeg Jewish Review
  • Orthodox Union
  • Accurate Lawn & Garden
  • Coughlin Insurance Brokers
  • Munroe Pharmacy
  • Tel Aviv University Canada
  • Booke + Partners
  • Gislason Targownik
  • James Teitsma
  • Janice Morley-Lecomte
  • Obby Khan
  • Artista Homes
  • Fetching Style
  • Ronald B. Zimmerman
  • Chisick Family
  • Stringers Rentals
  • Winnipeg Beach Home Building Centre
  • KC Enterprises
  • John Wishnowski
  • JLS Construction
  • Ingrid Bennett
  • Gulay Plumbing
  • The Paper Fifrildi
  • Joanne Gullachsen Art
  • Laufman Reprographics
  • Levene Tadman Golub
  • Taverna Rodos
  • Holiday Inn Polo Park
  • Bruce Shefrin Interior Design
  • Bridges for Peace
  • Bridges for Peace
  • CVA Systems
  • Chochy's
  • Lakeside Roofing
  • Ambassador Mechanical
  • Shoppers Drug Mart
  • Shoppers Drug Mart
  • kristinas-greek
  • The Center for Near East Policy Research Ltd.
  • Sarel Canada
  • Santa Lucia Pizza
  • Roofco Winnipeg Roofing
  • Center for Near East Policy Research
  • Nachum Bedein
Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

Opinions expressed in letters to the editor or articles by contributing writers are not necessarily endorsed by Winnipeg Jewish Review.