Courtesy of the New York Public Library Ref

Cyrus Adler 1863-1940

Jewish scholar and educator Cyrus Adler was born in Van Buren, Arkansas, and began his career as Honorary Assistant Curator of Semitics at the Smithsonian Institution, where he built the institution's Hebraic collection and eventually rose to the position of Assistant Secretary. Adler also served as Special Commissioner to the Orient for the World's Columbian Exhibition of 1893, for which he organized the Oriental Department, and as an editor of the Jewish Encyclopedia from 1899 to 1905. He helped found The Jewish Publication Society of America in 1888, and later edited the first seven volumes of the American Jewish Year Book and the Jewish Quarterly Review. Adler was also instrumental in founding the American Jewish Historical Society in 1892. In 1908, he became president of Dropsie College for Hebrew and Cognate Learning in Philadelphia and in 1924 was appointed chancellor of The Jewish Theological Seminary in New York. Adler was one of the founders of the American Jewish Committee (AJC) and the Jewish Welfare Board.