The Western Pennsylvania Jewish Archives of the Historical Society of Western Pennsylvania (HSWP) was established in 1989 with a grant from the Allen H. and Selma W. Berkman Endowment Fund. These funds underwrote a pilot study undertaken by the United Jewish Federation of Pittsburgh (UJF) which recommended the creation of a permanent regional Jewish archives at the Historical Society of Western Pennsylvania. The mission of the Archives was to collect, preserve, and provide access to materials relating to the Jewish people and communities of Western Pennsylvania.
(left to right) Allen Berkman, Selma Berkman, and Edward Perlow, 1989
For the next 10 years, while an endowment to support the position of archivist was being built, the Archives was supported by the UJF, by the in-kind contributions of the HSWP, and by individual donors. In 1999, Richard E. Rauh created an endowment at the United Jewish Federation to complete that effort, and the Western Pennsylvania Jewish Archives was renamed the Rauh Jewish Archives in memory of his parents, Richard S. and Helen Wayne Rauh.
Richard E. Rauh, 2009
In 2004, the United Jewish Federation and the Historical Society entered into an agreement which moved the Rauh Jewish Archives from special project status to that of a program of the Historical Society, now the Senator John Heinz History Center. Since that time, the Archives has been supported by the Rauh Jewish Archives Endowment, the History Center, and the continuing generosity of donors in the community.