Rabbi Dr. David De Sola Pool, World Leader in Judaism, Dies at 85

Funeral services will be held here tomorrow for Rabbi Dr. David de Sola Pool, a world leader in Judaism, who died last night at his home. He was 85 years old. Dr. Pool, who was born in London, served as spiritual leader of the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue, Shearith Israel in New York, from 1907 until 1955, when he retired. In retirement, he continued to take an active interest in serving the congregation, the oldest in America. He graduated with honors from the University of London in 1903 with a B.A., and pursued his graduate studies at the University of Berlin and Heidelberg University, where he was awarded a Ph. D summa cum laude. He completed his rabbinic training in Berlin. Dr. Pool emigrated to America as a young man and at the age of twenty-two was offered the leadership of the Spanish and Portuguese synagogue, which was founded in September 1654 and now occupies an imposing structure in Manhattan.

He won swift respect from national Jewish and non-Jewish organizations and in 1917 was named as one of three Jewish representatives appointed to serve on the food conservation staff directed by Herbert Hoover. He also served as vice-president of the Jewish Welfare Board, in posts as field organizer of welfare work in 1917 and 1918 and as chairman of the Committee on Army and Navy Religious Activists, 1940 to 1947. In 1947 he was awarded the Certificate of Merit from the President of the United States, Harry S. Truman. An energetic and tireless worker, Dr. Pool held high office in various organizations which included the Jewish Educational Association, Young Judea, Union of Sephardic Congregations, Synagogue Council of America and the New York Board of Jewish Ministers. He also served as a delegate to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization congress in London in 1959. Dr. Pool was a prolific author and has several books to his credit. He also served as an editor and translator of many volumes of Hebrew liturgy and Spanish pamphlets.

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