Atlas, Paula
Interview Date
Respondent worked on Three Rivers Art Festival, born 1918.
[T1S1] Respondent talks about immediate family, grandparents, childhood memories of Philadelphia, religious life while growing up, cultural events, neighborhood life, religious observances. Respondent compares Philadelphia of youth to today; Philadelphia to Pittsburgh. Respondent mentions activities in high school, college at Pennsylvania State University including sorority AE PHI; college awards, tuition; first job after college. Respondent talks about first marriage to William Skirble in 1941
[T1S2] their courtship, marriage; his career; their children Joel, Roseanne; their homes in Pittsburgh; Jewish life; children's education grade school to graduate school; their careers; daughter reporter for Voice of America; son, lawyer involved in Hispanic cases; daughter's marriage, children. Respondent explains how she became involved with Ladies Hospital Aid Society of Montefiore Hospital. Respondent talks about first husband's death at age 38; experiences taking over husband's business. Respondent recalls courtship, marriage to Ralph Atlas in 1958. R details how she became involved with Three Rivers Art Festival in 1961; responsibilities over the years.
[T2S3] Respondent mentions involvement in Democratic Party; other volunteer activities. Respondent mentions impressions of Great depression, effect on home life. Respondent recalls her mother, her strength. Respondent talks strength of Pittsburgh's Jewish community. Respondent mentions travels including to meet Ralph's family.
[T2S4] Blank
[T3S5] Respondent mentions she was born in hospital in Philadelphia. Respondent talks about Ralph; his birth in Poland in 1908; his home life; Jewish education; family's move south because of Cossacks; family Zionist; grandfather settling in Palestine in late 1800's, he started a vineyard; Ralph settles in Palestine with family at age 12; lists names of Ralph's family. Respondent describes Ralph's religious family life in Palestine; how religious life is different here. Respondent talks about Ralph's education; college in Israel then Carnegie Mellon along with brother to study engineering; brother Noah designed highways around Israel. Respondent recalls Ralph was involved with Haganah; why he came, settled in Pittsburgh; his education, fondness for Israel, work before war. Respondent describes Ralph's involvement with Haganah; writing military training manuals; his first marriage to Gertrude Lowenstein; serving in British Army during WWII; life in Palestine; Ralph's father. Respondent talks about Ralph's boxing; his induction into Western Pennsylvania's Sports Hall of Fame. Respondent tells story about how Ralph smuggled microfilm into the U.S. during the war; jobs Ralph had in Pittsburgh.
[T3S6] Respondent talks about Ralph's travel from Poland to Israel; why family left. Respondent recalls courtship to Ralph; their social life. Respondent continues to talk about Ralph; her first trip to Israel; his decision not to move back to Israel. Respondent talks about Ralph's family in Israel. Respondent recalls Ralph's receiving Hall of Fame Award in 1991; his other awards. Respondent describes Ralph's hobbies; religious observances in their home; Ralph's illness.
Atlas, Ralph; Haganah (Organization); Israel; Palestine; Philadelphia (Pa.); Poland; Three Rivers Arts Festival (Pittsburgh, Pa.); Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame. Western Chapter
Birth Date
Philadelphia, PA
Three Rivers Arts Festival
Length (hours)
Adelson, Ruth
Leyton, Hope
Collateral Materials
Box 100 FF 14
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