To be continued in Pt. II...
For biographical information and sources see Tzvi Harkavy, Le-Heker Misphahot, (Jerusalem: Hotsa’at ha-Sefarim ha-Erets-Yisre’elit, 1953), 47-48 and n.79.
A complete bibliography of his works, both published and unpublished, appears in Tzvi Harkavy, Le-Heker Misphahot, (Jerusalem: Hotsa’at ha-Sefarim ha-Erets-Yisre’elit, 1953), 45-46. Rashash’s comments on Rambam were printed in Mekorei Rambam, first published in 1870 in Vilna, and while not a true stand alone work, Rashash’s comments appear alone, without the Rambam’s text. See Mekorei ha-Rambam, Harkavy ed., (Jersualem, Hatsa’at ha-Sefarim ha-Erets-Yisre’elit, 1957, Im ha-Madurah, and p. 59.
For a list of the handful of pages he omitted, see Rafael Katzenellenbogen, Rash”sh le-Shitato, in Mekori Ha-Rambam Le-Rash”sh, ed. Harkavy, (Jerusalem, 1957), 64.
 For general biographical details on the Strashun family, see Frida Shor, From “Likute Shoshanim” to “The Paper Brigade” The Story of the Strashun Library in Vilna, (Tel Aviv: Ariel, 2012), 15-28, and the sources cited therein. See also Shua Engelman, “Rabbi Samuel Strashun and his Haggahot on the Babylonian Talmud,” (PhD dissertation, Bar-Ilan University, 2009; Hebrew); regarding Samuel’s Talmudic annotations as compared to others, see Yaakov Shmuel Spiegel, Chapters in the History of the Jewish Book, Scholars & their Annotations (Ramat-Gan: Bar Ilan University, 2005), 421-22. Cf. Mordechai Zalkin, “Samuel and Mattiyahu Strashun: Between Tradition and Innovation,” in Mattiyahu Strashun, 1817-1885: Scholar, Leader, and Book Collector, (New York: YIVO Institute, 2001), 6-7.
Moshe Shimon Anktokolski, Evel Kaved, infra n.12, 23.
 Mordechai Zalkin, “Samuel and Mattityahu Strashun: Between Tradition and Innovation,” in Yermiyahu Aharon Taub, ed., Mattityahu Strashun, 1817–1885: Scholar, Leader, and Book Collector (New York: YIVO Institute, 2001), 1-27. Samuel has made a very small number of comments that can be read to be consistent with ideas of the haskalah, but these do not approach Matisyahu’s active involvement with the movement, including his very public support of the movement. Additionally, it is unclear if Samuel’s comments are simply limited to their specific context.
Indeed, the examples Zalkin provides regarding Samuel’s alignment with haskalah do no support Zalkin’s thesis. Id. at 25 n.10. First, Zalkin, cites Strashun’s comment in Gitten 6b, that “we find many amora’im who did not know how to read scripture” as proof of his “unorthodox” views. But we find a similar statement from the medieval period. See Tosefot, Bava Batra, 113a. Zalkin’s second citation is to Rashas’s comments, Rosh ha-Shana 26a, “certain things that were uttered in a particular time and particular place are inserted by editors of the Talmud in their appropriate location in the text.” This misrepresents the Rashash. Rashash is attempting to answer how the Talmudic sage, Levi, was unaware of an explicit verse as the TB in RH 26a implies. Rashash explains that although there is no explicit mention of the time or place that this story occurred, Rashash posits that the story in Rosh Hashana occured at the same time as another story with Levi, Yevamot 105a, where he had a moment of senility. Rashash is not offering his opinion regarding the redaction of the Talmud, instead he is merely dating the story in Rosh ha-Shana. Finally, it is unclear the relevance of Zalkin’s third example, “you will find many contradictions between different locations is (sic) Rashi’s text.” Locating and alleging contradictions in Rashi is hardly remarkable.
 Zalkin, id., at 15.
Shalom Pludermacher, Zikaron le-Hakham: Zeh Sefer Tolodot ha-Rav ha-Go’an, he-Hakham ha-Kollel Rabbi Matitayahu Strashun Z’L, in Mattiyahu Strashun, Matat-Ya, Haghot, Hidushim ve-He’arot Me’irot ‘al Midrash Raba Pri Eito Shel Matityahu Strahsun, (Vilna: The Widow and Brothers Romm, 1893), 15.
 A partial bibliography of Strashun’s articles appears in his Sefer Matat Yah (Vilna, 1893), 41-74 (Hebrew), available online here. Reading, and certainly actively participating with, haskalah related newspapers was considered inconsistent with Ultra-Orthodox values and was grounds for expulsion from Volozhin Yeshiva. Shaul Stampfer, The Lithuanian Yeshiva, Revised & Expanded Edition, (Jerusalem: The Zalman Shazar Center for Jewish History, 2005), 176.
Aviva Astrinsky, “A Brief History of the Strashun Library,” in Yermiyahu Aharon Taub, ed., Mattityahu Strashun, 1817–1885: Scholar, Leader, and Book Collector (New York: YIVO Institute, 2001), i.
Duberosh ben Aleksander Torsh, Me’arat ha-Makhpelah, shnei Hepadim . . ., (Warsaw, 1887), 50.
Moshe Shimon Antokolski, Evel Kaved, (Vilna: be-Defus Avhram Tzvi Katzenellenbogen, 1886), 8; Tzvi Harkavy, Le-Heker Misphahot, supra n.1, 47. During his lifetime he also donated to public institutions, among them, the yeshivot of Mir and Volozhin. Id. at 24.
Moshe Shimon Antokolski, Evel Kaved, supra n.12, 11.
Mordechai Zalkin, supra n.6, 17-8.
Hagit Cohen, At the Bookseller’s Shop, The Jewish Book Trade in Eastern Europe at the End of the Nineteenth Century, (Jerusalem: The Hebrew University Magnes Press, 2006), 48-52.
Shalom Pludermacher, Zikaron le-Hakham, 1893), 17. His meetings are reflected in Strashun’s ownership of their works. See Likutei Shoshaim, nos. 386,1024,1178, 2522, 3352, 3650, 3781, 4377, 5399, 5592.
Regarding other well-known Hebrew book collectors and their collections, see Alexander Marx, “Some Jewish Book Collectors,” in his Studies in Jewish History & Booklore, (New York, 1941), 198-237; Cecil Roth, “Famous Jewish Book Collections & Collecztors,” in Essays in Jewish Booklore, (New York: Ktav Publishing House, 1971) 330-35.
“A Collection of Letter from Jewish Scholars to ShZH”H,” in Yad ve-Shem, reprinted in Yeshurun.
 David Oppenheimer’s library was the first library that was posthumously sold intact – to the Bodleian Library. See Alexander Marx, “Some Notes on the History of David Oppenheimer’s Library,” Revue des Études Juives 82 [=Israel Lévi Festschrift] (1926): 451-460; Charles Duschinsky, “Rabbi David Oppenheimer: Glimpses of His Life and Activity, Derived from His Manuscripts in the Bodleian Library,” Jewish Quarterly Review 20:3 (January 1930): 217-247; Alexander Marx, “The History of David Oppenheimer’s Library,” in Studies in Jewish History and Booklore (New York: Jewish Theological Seminary of America, 1944), 238-255; and more recently in Joshua Teplitsky, “Between Court Jew and Jewish Court: David Oppenheim, The Prague Rabbinate, and Eighteenth-Century Jewish Political Culture (PhD dissertation, New York University, 2012); and Abraham Schischa, “Rabbinic Writings from the Collection of Rabbi David Oppenheim,” Yeshurun 31 (2014): 781-794 (Hebrew).
For other significant personal Hebrew libraries and their purchasing history, see Binyamin Richler, Hebrew Manuscripts: A Treasured Legacy (Clevland/Jerusalem: Ofeq Institute, 1990) 66-67.
For earlier examples of private libraries see Nehemya Allony, The Jewish Library in the Middle Ages, Book Lists from the Cairo Genizah (Jerusalem: Ben-Zvi Institute, 2006); S.D. Goitein, A Mediterranean Society (Berkley: University of California Press, 1967), vol. II, 206, 248; vol. V 3-4, 425.
 It is unclear whether Strashun meant this literally because while the 19th century witnessed the modern period of the public library, there were not any public libraries in Eastern Europe during Strashun’s lifetime.
 Shor, supra n. 4, at 26.
 Sefer Matat Yah, supra n. 9, at 35, listing Strashun’s bequests.
Moshe Shimon Anktokolski, Evel Kaved, supra n.12, 17.
Among those who had access during this time was Ya’akov Wallensky. During this time, Wallensky was writing his supplement to Piskei Teshuvot on Yoreh De’ah. Piskei Teshuvot itself is a collection of obscure and rare works discussing issues appearing in Yoreh De’ah. Because Wallensky’s materials were even more obscure and rare, the only place he could access these was the Strashun Library. Ya’akov Wallensky, Daltei Teshuva, (Vilna, 1890), Introduction, 5-6, (link).
 Shor, supra n. 4, at 29
 Cf. Aviva Astrinsky, “A Brief History of the Strashun Library,” in Yermiyahu Aharon Taub, ed., Mattityahu Strashun, 1817–1885: Scholar, Leader, and Book Collector (New York: YIVO Institute, 2001), iii, who provides that his collection was only comprised of 5,739 items.
 Shor, supra n. 4, at 29. Regarding the conflicting reports of the Library’s locations during this period, see id., n.71.
 Shor, supra n.4, 32-3.
 While the Library moved to the new building in 1901, and its dedication ceremony occurred on April 14, 1902, it would not be until October 20, 1902 that the Library secured the necessary governmental permits to fully open to the public. See Shor at 34-35. The government license is reproduced in Layer Ran, Jerusalem of Lithuania, vol. 2, (New York: Laureate Press, 1974), 346.
 Frida Shor, supra n.4, 51-65,174-87. See Berger, “The Strashun Library in Vilna,” in Zevi Scharfstein, ed., Hebrew Education and Culture in Europe Between the Two World Wars (New York: Ogen Publishing House of Histadrut HaIvrit BeAmerica, 1957), 513 (Hebrew), who discusses the varied subject matter of the Library’s collection.
 According to one account, the Library had over 200 patrons daily, but only 100 seats, forcing people to share chairs and encounter waits of over a half-hour just to enter the Library. Id. at 513.
 Ben Tzion Dinur, “Yerushalim de-Lita,” in Layzer Ran, Jerusalem of Lithuania, vol. 1 (New York: Laureate Press, 1974), XVI; but see the English translation of Dinur’s article that comingles the two groups and has both the Orthodox and younger generation studying “respona or modern Hebrew novels.” Id. at XX. It is unclear what accounts for this discrepancy in translation.
Lucy S. Dawidwowicz, From That Place And Time, A Memoir 1938-1947, (New York: Bantam Books, 1991), 119, provides a remarkably similar account to Dinur’s (“On any day you could see, seated at the two long tables in the reading room, venerable long-bearded men, wearing hats, studying Talmudic texts, elbow to elbow with bareheaded young men and even young women, bare-armed sometimes on warm days, studying their texts. The old men would sometimes mutter and grumble about what the world had come to. The young people would titter.”).
For a breakdown of the Library’s readership by type (i.e. students, academics and public intellectuals, workers, etc.), see Berger, supra n. 28, 514-15.
 See Shor, supra n. 4, 174, see also the description of David Wolfson’s Vilna visit, Israel Klausner, “The Zionist Movement in Lithuania,” in Yahdut Lita (Tel Aviv: Am Hasefer Publishers, 1950), 522 (Hebrew). For a photo of one such visit, see Layzer Ran, Jerusalem of Lithuania, vol. 2 (New York: Laureate Press, 1974), 416.
 Shor, supra n. 4, 174-75.
 Berger, “The Strashun Library in Vilna,” at 519; Shor, MeLekutei, supra n. 4, 169; Khaykl Lunski in Yeshurin’s ווילנע (New York, 1935 – in Yiddish), p. 286-7
 Abraham Joshua Heschel, “Yerushalim de-Lita,” in Ran, Jerusalem, vol. I, XVII; David E. Fishman, The Rise of Modern Yiddish Culture (Pittsburgh, PA, University of Pittsburgh Press, 2005), 143, provides that the holdings of the Strashun Library prior to the Holocaust was comprised of “some forty thousand volumes.”
 See Shor, MeLekutei, 38-9; 42 (discussing a 1926 public appeal that the Library undertook where it described its financial condition as “dire and catastrophic”); id. at 43 (“The Strashun Library underwent many difficult financial periods throughout the nineteen years of Polish rule (10/9/1920- 9/19/1939). But, it continued to major Vilna cultural institution.”).
 Shor, MeLekutei, 44-7.
Sem C. Sutter, “The Lost Libraries of Vilna and the Frankfurt Institut zur Erforschung der Judenfrage,” in Lost Libraries, The Destruction of Great Book Collections Since Antiquity, ed. James Raven (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004), 220-22.
Id. at 223 & 224 discussing other Vilna Libraries that were targeted by the Nazis. See also Dov Schidorsky, Burning Scrolls and Flying Letters (Jerusalem: Magnes Press, 2008), 165-201; David E. Fishman, The Rise of Modern Yiddish Culture (Pittsburgh, PA: University of Pittsburgh Press, 2005), 141-44; Frida Shor, supra n.4, 189-200.
Sem C. Sutter, “The Lost Libraries of Vilna,” supra n.38, 224.
Id. at 226.
 Berger, “The Strashun Library of Vilna,” at 517. The books that were not deemed important we pulped or used as heating fuel. Schidorsky, supra 39, 182. The exact date of when the Strashun Library was transferred to Germany is unclear; however, it was some date after April 1943. See David E. Fishman, supra n.39,173 n.9. Similarly unclear is the exact number of books that were sent to Frankfort. Sem C. Sutter, “The Lost Libraries of Vilna,” supra n.38, 228. But, according to Aviva Astrinsky, “almost all of the Strashun books were crated and shipped by rail to Germany. Aviva Astrinsky, “Mattitayahu (Mathis) Strashun,” supra n.24, i.
 See Ran, Jerusalem, vol II, 522, for a photo of post-war building. For a discussion regarding the numbers of books that survived from the Strashun Library, see Frida Shor, supra n.4, 204-05.
Dov Schidorsky, supra n.39, 225, listing the countries and libraries who books were deposited at the Offenbach Depot. Sem C. Sutter, “The Lost Libraries of Vilna,” supra n.38, 229-32.
Lisa Moses Leff, The Archive Thief: The Man who Salvaged French Jewish History in the Wake of the Holocaust (United States: Oxford University Press, 2015), 121.
Id. at 124-30, 136-40.
 Dov Schidorsky, supra n.39, 233, provides the numbers and location of heirless books returned by the Jewish Culture Reconstruction. For a listing of U.S. institutions that received heirless cultural property from the Offenbach Depot, see Herman Dicker, Of Learning and Libraries, The Seminary Library at One Hundred, (New York: The Jewish Theological Seminary, 1988), Appendix B. See also F.J. Hoogewoud, The Nazi Looting of Books and its American ‘Antithesis’. Selected Pictures from the Offenbach Archival Depot’s Photographic History and Its Supplement,” Studia Rosenthaliana 26:1-2 (1992): 158-192; and F.J. Hoogewoud, “Dutch Jewish Ex Libris found among looted books in the Offenbach Archival Depot (1946),” in Chaya Brasz and Yosef Kaplan, eds., Dutch Jews as Perceived by Themselves and by Others (Leiden: Brill, 2001), 247-261.
 Solomon B. Freehof, On the Collecting of Jewish Books, (New York, NY: Society of Jewish Bibliophiles, [196-]), 17; regarding the books that Hebrew University received, and its efforts to locate and claim heirless works throughout Europe through its Otzrot Ha-Goleh committee, see Shlomo Shunami, About Libraries and Librarianship, (Jerusalem: Rubin Mass, 1969), 56-65; Zvi Baras, A Century of Books, The Jewish National & University Library 1892-1992, (Jerusalem: Jewish National & Univ. Library,1992), nos. 94-101; Dov Schidorsky, supra n.39, 212-91.
Dov Schidorsky, supra n. 39, 250-51.
Id. at 248-50. According to Scholem, Abraham Ya’ari, Scholem’s partner on behalf of Hebrew University and its Goleh ha-Otzrot program, returned to Israel, in part, because of the difficultly in securing the necessary authorizations to enter Germany. Id. 248; 351.
Id. at 250-51.
Id. at 251 n.51.
 See Druker, Of Learning and Libraries, 58. Druker, however, concludes that Tavel’s unilateral decision “resulted in no real harm.” One wonders if any surviving heirs who had legal claims to the Manheim collection would reach the same conclusion.
 Lucy S. Dawidwowicz, From That Place And Time, A Memoir 1938-1947, (New York: Bantam Books,1991), 314-16.
See David E. Fishman, supra n.39, 143-53 174 n.20, discussing the YIVO Library under the Nazis and its ultimate transfer to YIVO in New York.
 Id. at 318.
For more information regarding Weinreich and YIVO, see id. at 126-39.
 Id.; for a fuller treatment of this attempt see Shor, From ‘“Likute Shoshanim”, 44.
 Aside from Dawidowicz’s telling, according to the documents that discuss YIVO’s efforts to save its library and the Strashun and the Lithuanian government’s response throughout this attempt, the Strashun Library is described as a Vilna community library and not the property of one institution or another. See Shor, From “Likutei Shoshanim”, at 44.
Her argument has the perverse effect that the trustees attempt to save the library immediately resulted in completely losing control of the library.
 Aviva E. Astrinsky, Mattistyahu Strashun 1817-1885, Scholar, Leader, and Book Collector, YIVO, New York: 2001, ii, iv. But, Astrinsky also indicates that YIVO recovered “a substantial part of the Strashun Library.” Id. at i. According to YIVO’s website, however, YIVO only received part of the Strashun Library and the remainder “were transferred to the library of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. (). Similarly, Berger, “The Strashun Library in Vilna,” p. 517 claims that part of the Strashun Library went to YIVO and the other part to Hebrew University.
Beyond these unsupported statements, there is no evidence that any books from the Strashun Library were sent to the JNUL. While the JNUL’s post-war efforts at obtaining heirless books are well documented, see supra, there is no mention of the Strashun Library. Similarly, the JNUL catalog does not list any items whose provenance extends to the Strashun Library. It is possible that YIVO and Berger confused the JNUL with the Jerusalem Central Library discussed below. Or simply conflated the Strashun Library with the numerous other European libraries that the JNUL successfully rescued.
 See, e.g., the YIVO catalog entry for Solomon Adret’s Hidushe Nidah leha-Rashba, Altona, .