Fierman, Floyd S.

Hide Profile

Rabbi; formerly of El Paso, Texas. Born 1917, died 1989. Author of numerous books on Jews in the Southwest and active collector of historical materials concerning Jews in New Mexico and western Texas.

From the description of Papers of Floyd S. Fierman, ca. 1850-1995 (bulk 1870-1970) (University of Arizona). WorldCat record id: 39694657

Rabbi and historian, of El Paso, Tex.; b. 1916; d. 1989.

From the description of Papers, ca. 1847-[19--]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70925041

This collection was compiled between 1949-1989 by Rabbi Floyd Fierman, Ph.D. (1917-1989), who served Temple Mount Sinai of El Paso, Texas from 1949 to 1979. His leadership in the community extended far beyond the temple. He was actively engaged in combating racism and fighting for civil rights in El Paso. He was also dedicated to interfaith education and communication and to tracking the history of Jews in the binational southwest.

This collection is the result of his interest in the careers and accomplishments of Jewish pioneers who moved west with their families seeking opportunities of various sorts. As these pioneers settled, they built synagogues, business interests, and communities. By 1860 there was a strong Jewish presence in America's western-most reaches.

Although Fierman was not trained as a professional historian, his contributions to the field included several books and monographs on Jews of the southwest, including Guts and Ruts: The Jewish Pioneer on the Trail in the American Southwest (1984), and its sequel Roots and Boots (1988). He also wrote for several scholarly journals including Western States Jewish History, American Jewish Historical Quarterly, American Jewish Archives, and Arizona and the Southwest .

In his search for historically-significant materials, Fierman photocopied documents from many regional repositories, such as the New Mexico State Records Center and Archives. He also maintained close contact with archivists and librarians from all over the country in his quest for materials and documents. He developed a particularly close relationship with the late Rabbi Jacob Marcus, archivist and historian at the American Jewish Archives.

A sizable portion of the material collected is a product of Rabbi Fierman's notes as taken down on whatever material was available to him at the moment, including hotel and airplane stationery. He often recopied these notes several times and compiled elaborate appendixes to the files which are often longer and more complex than the original record.

From the guide to the Floyd S. Fierman papers, ca. 1850-1997 (bulk: 1870-1970), (University of Arizona Libraries, Special Collections)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Floyd S. Fierman papers, ca. 1850-1997 (bulk: 1870-1970) University of Arizona Libraries, Library Special Collections
creatorOf Fierman, Floyd S. Papers, ca. 1847-[19--]. The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives
creatorOf Fierman, Floyd S. Papers of Floyd S. Fierman, ca. 1850-1995 (bulk 1870-1970) University of Arizona Libraries
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Barth, Solomon, 1842-1928. person
associatedWith Bibo, Solomon, 1853-1934. person
associatedWith Bloom Southwest Jewish Archives. corporateBody
associatedWith B'nai Jeshurun Educational Institute. corporateBody
associatedWith Cohen, Josiah. person
associatedWith Committee of American Israelites. corporateBody
associatedWith Ganz, Emil. person
associatedWith Jewish Theological Seminary of America. corporateBody
associatedWith Lesinsky, Henry. person
associatedWith Lyons, Jacques J. (Jacques Judah), 1813-1877. person
associatedWith Ravel, Sam. person
associatedWith Segilman, Arthur, 1873-1933. person
associatedWith Strauss, Levi, 1829-1902. person
associatedWith Union of American Hebrew Congregations. corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
Southwest, New
New Mexico
Texas--El Paso
United States
New Mexico
Apache Indians
Copper industry and trade
Frontier and pioneer life
Indian traders
Jewish bankers
Jewish merchants
Jewish pioneers
Jewish religious education
Pueblo Indians
Jewish historians


Active 1847



Ark ID: w60c5hwc

SNAC ID: 69834770