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Friday, April 16, 2021
Home Authors Articles by Ellie Kahn, Oral Historian

Ellie Kahn, Oral Historian

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My Survival; A Holocaust Memory

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Editor's note: This story was originally published April 14, 2015. It has been reformatted for Yom HaShoah. I interviewed Ann Axelrod in 2000 at the...

I’m Not Going To Take It

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Editor's note: This story was originally published July 27, 2015. It has been reformatted for Yom HaShoah. I interviewed Sidonia Rosenheck Lew in 1996, when...

PASSOVER; Adding Your Own Family’s Stories to the Holiday

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This Passover, Jewish families will gather to recall the story of our ancestors’ departure from Egypt. How about — since the family is together anyway—taking...

The Jewish Culture Club of Elsinore, Part 2

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The Jewish Culture Club of Elsinore    Part 2   During World War II, a group of Jewish residents of Los Angeles, primarily needle trade workers,...

The Jewish Culture Club of Elsinore

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The Jewish Culture Club of Elsinore    Part I During World War II, a group of Jewish residents of Los Angeles, primarily needle trade workers, established...

On the Anniversary of Hiroshima

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Harold Willens was born in a small village in the Ukraine in 1914.  He escaped with his mother when he was eight, joining his...

The Sturman Family History

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  In 2008, I was hired to interview two brothers, Marty and Leon Sturman, to record stories and memories about their personal and family history....

Father’s Day: The lesson of free speech

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“My father definitely inspired my own political life. He was extremely fair-minded and socially conscious.

A father’s love: Stories for Father’s Day

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My father, Bob Goldhamer, passed away two years ago, a week after his 94th birthday.

A German Jew who served the U.S. at Utah Beach

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“Col. James Van Fleet took me aside and said, ‘Bodlander, since you speak both French and German, I want you on my boat when we go ashore. And, incidentally, I will be the first person to step onto land; you’ll be the second,’ ” Walter Bodlander said in a recent interview.

Mother’s Day: I Remember Mama

I’ve been motherless for almost 10 years, but I occasionally listen to recordings of my mother, Marcia Goodfriend, just to hear her voice. I...

One Year of Labelled Canned Goods – Excerpts from an Oral History

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Robert Howard Goldhamer was known in his family as a fantastic storyteller. His oral history, conducted when he was 83, included many recollections of...

Harold Willens, the Life of a Peace Activist

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Harold Willens, a political activist and entrepreneur, was the author of California's nuclear freeze initiative of 1981. I interviewed him in 1997, when he...

Harold Willens, Peace Activist Part II

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Harold Willens, a political activist and entrepreneur, was the author of California's nuclear freeze initiative of 1981. I interviewed him in 1997, when he...

A Family’s Journey – Czechoslovakia to Nebraska to Cleveland

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Robert Howard Goldhamer passed away at 94 years old.  What follows is taken from his oral history interview, conducted when he was 83.  “My father’s...

Louise…Falling in Love

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      <iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/b8vAdT_Dvpg " width="560">   Louise Polansky was 98 when she passed away a few days ago, on November 30. I interviewed Louise a...

Coming to America, 1922

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This is the second excerpt from Elsie Schwartz's oral history, recorded when she was 88 years old.    "Finally, finally, the day came when we got...

Hungarian childhood memories

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Elsie Schwartz was 88 years old when I interviewed her to record her life memories and stories.  When we finished, she said, "My story...

A World War II Veteran’s Story

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Many of my oral history interviews are with people who served in World War II.  Their stories are always educational, moving and inspiring.  The...

About

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Ellie Kahn is an Oral Historian, journalist and psychotherapist.  She created Living Legacies Family Histories 25 years ago to record the stories and memories...

Aging Creatively

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As my friends and I navigate our 60s and 70s, we notice — with amusement and consternation — how our conversations have changed. Instead of talking about our kids’ college applications and the best camping sites, we find ourselves discussing back pain and long-term care insurance. The bottom-line concern, of course, is how to create the best quality of life as we age.

How to record your family’s story

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When my friend and I couldn’t get a table at Junior’s, we sat at the counter. Of course sitting at the counter means having lunch with the stranger next to you.

Mom’s final resting places — a cremation story

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If you are offended either by the idea of cremation or humor about the dead, you may want to stop reading. It\'s OK.

Saying Goodbye to Mom

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For the past six years, my mother\'s often challenging journey and our evolving relationship have inspired much of the writing in my column. Although she\'s no longer here in my life, she\'s definitely still alive in my thoughts and memories.

Senior Moments – Proudly Jewish in ‘Sunset’

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Within the first moments of the comedy/drama \"Sunset Park,\" I wanted to get to know Sheila Oaks, who plays widowed mother.

Senior Moments – And in This Corner, Stella Goren

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Stella Goren is only about 4-foot-10, but she packs a strong punch. It all started when she was turning 79, and her husband asked what she wanted for her birthday. \"I\'d like to work out at a gym with a personal trainer,\" Goren told him. In spite of thinking she was meshugge and assuming this wouldn\'t last, her husband gave his wife of 45 years what she wanted. \"I was very happy,\" Sam Goren recalled. \"I didn\'t have to go out and buy her a present.\" It turned out to be the perfect gift. Goren has been working out at the In Training Fitness Center in Hollywood, and loving it, for the past five years.

My New Mother

My mother has become a serene and content old woman. The changes, probably due to both her dementia and medications, have created an unexpected-and quite wonderful -- new chapter in our relationship.

A Man and His Toys

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Irvin Kipper may be 88 years old, but he still loves wooden blocks and Tinker Toys. In fact for 60 years, \"Kip\" has spent his days thinking almost exclusively about dolls and trains and stuffed bears, because he owns Kip\'s Toyland in the original Farmers Market. Kipper just can\'t stay away from his store. \"The few times when I haven\'t gone to work, I feel like I\'m kind of lost,\" he said. \"I might do a few things around the house, but I think, \'What am I doing here? I should be over there working.\'\" And work he does, Monday through Saturday, still making sure that his customers find that special toy for their children or grandchildren.

Problems Abound in Pampering Parents

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My mother and father are both in diapers. I wasn\'t at all prepared for this possibility. Dealing with the visual and olfactory aspect of my son\'s end products when he was a baby was an expected part of being a mom, but it\'s a completely different matter when it\'s my parents wearing the Pampers.
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