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Dr. Hubert J. Rubenstein Personal Papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MS-0096

Scope and Contents

Series I. primarily contains photographs, and family writings, as well as images of artistic renderings by the father of Hubert Rubentstein: J. Harry Rubenstein. A photograph of J. Harry Rubenstein as a boy includes a very young Harold Arlen (later a composer) at the Pine Street Shul, Buffalo, NY. This material was originally found in one bag of the original deposit. This bulk of this collection illustrates genealogical process at a particular moment in time when Jewish genealogy was gaining traction as a significant pursuit by increasingly professionalized “amateur” genealogists who were utilizing primary sources, creating resources, (some of which were newly opened in Eastern Europe) and making these available to a wide audience. These formed the basis of early computerized records of materials, which were carried out by volunteers in “special interest groups” also known as SIGS such as the one that Dr. Hubert Rubenstein worked with (Suwalk-Lomza – Poland). Series II is a window into this period of systematic genealogical endeavor in the mid-late 1980s and early 1990s. This series consists of letters and family tree printouts as well as journal materials. The letters were found loose in a box with family trees printouts usually separated from the letter. Letters was re-ordered in date with their enclosures where present. Separated printouts were kept separate. Correspondence and printout series were organized in date order to reflect the process Dr. Hubert J Rubenstein employed to build his family tree. Exceptions to this rule relate to continued correspondence with the same correspondent, where developing relationships are retained together within the same folder. Correspondence includes individuals in Canada, South Africa, Israel, England, UK, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia. It also includes professional genealogists (Miriam Weiner and Gary Mokotoff), genealogical societies, archives (international and US) and US government departments. As research materials, and group sheets, were separated from correspondence by the creator himself, this order has been maintained. As a result, researchers should check multiple subseries. Although there appears to be multiple copies of some family trees, they are often revised pages from these trees, not duplicates. Two types of printouts exist: Printouts produced by Hubert J. Rubenstein, and printouts he received.


  • 1853-2006
  • Majority of material found within 1983-1991


Language of Materials

Collection material in English, Hebrew, and Yiddish.

Terms and Access of Use

The personal papers of Dr. Hubert J. Rubenstein 1853-2006 are open for research. There are no restrictions regarding access to or use of this collection.


Copyright of papers in this collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns. Researchers must obtain the written permission of the holder(s) of copyright and the University Archives before publishing quotations from materials in the collection. Most papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures unless otherwise specified.

Biographical Note

Hubert John Rubenstein was born in Buffalo on May 3, 1927. His parents were Harry Jay Rubenstein (1890-1944) and Rose Maisel Rubenstein (1898-1965) and Hugh (also Huey) grew up on Richmond Avenue in Buffalo, NY surrounded by a network of extended Maisel and Rubenstein family members. Educated at the University of Wisconsin he was awarded a Bachelor of Science in 1947, delayed due to service in the US Navy from April 1945 to December 1946 serving as a Pharmacist Mate 3. He continued his schooling at the University of Buffalo, School of Medicine, gaining an MD in 1951. In 1954 he married Elayne Joan Spivak of New York. Hubert specialized as an OBGYN and had a successful practice in Sherman Oaks, California for over thirty years. He served as Chief of OBGYN at Valley Hospital Medical Center and was an adjunct professor at California State University Northridge. He was president of the Malibu Medical Society, practicing obstetrics and gynecology in Malibu from 1989. Hubert J. Rubenstein worked for six years compiling his family history, “Roots, Branches and Seedlings,” which traced the ancestral lines of the Urbansky, Rubenstein, Mauerberger, Mayerberg, Lande, Laundau, Maisel, Maizel, Beck, Prüwer and Priver families. He writes, “my interest in genealogy was piqued by two aunts; Della Rubenstein Adler, who is the mother of Professor Selig Adler, and Ida Rubenstein Maisel, who independently of each other wrote about ancestors and earlier generations.” Articles written by Della Rubenstein Adler can be found in 1.13-1.16. Attending the Annual National Meeting of the Jewish Genealogical Society, held in Los Angeles at the suggestion of Ida Maisel, Hubert (also known as Huey, Hugh and Hughie to correspondents) Rubenstein was introduced to the Mormon Family History Library in Los Angeles. It was here that he found a copy of the birth certificate of his great grandfather, Simon Beck [1847-1912], and the names of his father and grandfather going back to Krakow, Poland and the eighteenth century. Many of the relatives he traced were killed during the Holocaust, but the descendants of those who survived, or who had emigrated earlier, became prominent doctors and scientists, economics, and other professionals, as well servicemen. Among his better known 1,550 relatives are director, Steven Spielberg, actor Tom Bosley, composer Richard Rodgers and the cofounder of Music Corporation of America (MCA), Dr. Jules Stein. In Buffalo, many of the Maisel and Rubenstein extended families were actively involved as lay leaders in the Jewish Community. Lewis Rubenstein, who left Buffalo, was a prominent artist who specialized in “time painting.” The Jewish Community Center in Buffalo, on Delaware Avenue, includes a mural painted by him depicting a group of young men and women dancing. Hubert Rubenstein died December 27, 2000 in Malibu, Los Angeles, California and is buried in Mt. Sinai Memorial Park, Simi Valley, California.


3.7 Linear Feet (5 manuscript boxes, 1 half manuscript box ,1 flat box, 1 triangular tube)


The papers of Dr. Hubert J. Rubenstein documents his immediate and extended family's artistic activities and his own genealogy project that he undertook to document the extended Rubenstein-Maisel-Adler as well as other connected families.


This collection is arranged in two series:

  1. Family Materials
  2. Genealogy Project

Acquisition Information

Susan Rubenstein Schapiro donated her brother’s personal materials to the Jewish Buffalo Archives Project in 2009. Susan Shapiro received her brother’s papers from his widow, Elayne Rubenstein. Susan Shapiro added a small amount of additional materials between 2000-2006. The Jewish Buffalo Archives Project was founded in late 2007 under the auspices of the Bureau of Jewish Education of Greater Buffalo with a seed grant from the Foundation for Jewish Philanthropies. The Archives Project collects mainly 20th century documentation relating to the diverse histories, religious traditions and cultures of Jewish communities within the Greater Buffalo area of Western New York, encompassing the geographic areas of Erie and Niagara Counties and partners with the University Archives at the University at Buffalo to make these records accessible. The arrangement and description of the Dr. Hubert J. Rubenstein Papers, 1853-2006 was made possible by funding obtained through the Foundation for Jewish Philanthropies.

Accruals and Additions

Accruals are not expected to this collection.

Related Materials

Processing Information

An initial container listing was created by Amanda Ocasio in 2009. The collection was processed by Chana Kotzin, January 2016. The Finding aid was written by Chana Kotzin in January 2016. Finding aid encoded by Archives staff, February 2016.


Finding Aid for the Dr. Hubert J. Rubenstein Personal Papers
Finding aid was written by Chana Kotzin.
January 2016
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
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Repository Details

Part of the University Archives Repository

420 Capen Hall
Buffalo New York 14260-1674 US
716-645-3714 (Fax)