Rebecca Fromer

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Rebecca Camhi Fromer (c. 1927 – January 1, 2012) was an American playwright, historian and poet. Fromer co-founded the Judah L. Magnes Museum of Berkeley, California, in 1961 with her husband, Seymour Fromer.[1] The museum, which is now called the Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life and became part of the University of California, Berkeley in January 2012, houses more than 15,000 Judaica artifacts and manuscripts, the third largest collection of its kind in the United States.[2]

Fromer was born in New York City and raised in Los Angeles.[3] She moved to Oakland, California, with her husband in 1953.[3]

Fromer authored and co-authored several historical books and articles on Jewish history.[4] Her books authored included Sonderkommando, Bridge of Sorrow, Bridge of Hope, The Holocaust Odyssey of Daniel Bennahmias, The House by the Sea: A Portrait of the Holocaust in Greece and Rumkowski and the Orphans of Lodz.[4] Fromer was familiar with Sephardic culture and could speak the Ladino language.[3]

Fromer, a resident of Berkeley, died on January 1, 2012, in San Francisco at the age of 84.[1] She was survived by her daughter, Mira Z. Amiras, and two grandchildren, Michael Zussman and Rayna Savrosa.[4] Her husband, Seymour Fromer, who co-founded the museum with her, died in 2009.[5]


  1. ^ a b Dinkelspiel, Frances (2012-01-03). "Rebecca Fromer, co-founder of Magnes Museum, dies at 84". Berkeleyside. San Francisco Chronicle (Berkeley Blog). Retrieved 2012-01-20. 
  2. ^ Rothstein, Edward (2012-01-22). "A Jewish Museum Shifts Identity". New York Times. Retrieved 2012-01-30. 
  3. ^ a b c Pine, Dan (2012-01-05). "Rebecca Fromer, Magnes Museum co-founder, dies at 84". Jweekly. Retrieved 2012-01-30. 
  4. ^ a b c Dinkelspiel, Frances (2012-01-03). "Rebecca Fromer, co-founder of Magnes Museum, dies at 84". Berkeleyside. Retrieved 2012-01-20. 
  5. ^ Woo, Elaine (2009-11-08). "Seymour Fromer dies at 87; founder of Jewish museums". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-01-30.