Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Joseph Alter Cherniack (1885-1972)

Lawyer, community leader.

Born in Russia in 1885, he came to Manitoba in 1905. He worked as a watchmaker for several years to raise money to further his education. He attended St. John’s College (BA, 1915) and the Manitoba Law School (LLB, 1918), after which he practiced as a lawyer in Winnipeg for 51 years. He was one of the founders of the Jewish Radical School in 1914, renamed the I. L. Peretz School in 1915, which was among the first independent Jewish schools in North America. He founded the Jewish Welfare Fund and the Winnipeg League for Yiddish and was active in the United Nations Association, Canadian Institute for International Affairs, and Canadian Jewish Congress. In recognition of his community service, he was inducted into the Manitoba Order of the Buffalo Hunt (1964) and was made a Queen’s Counsel (1970). He and Fanya “Fannie” Golden (1886-1971) had two children: Mindel Cherniack (wife of Cecil Sheps) and Saul Mark Cherniack. He died at Winnipeg on 27 June 1972.


“Government appoints 14 new Queen’s Counsels,” Winnipeg Free Press, 1 January 1970, page 18.

Obituary [Fannie Cherniack], Winnipeg Free Press, 15 December 1971, page 45.

“Cherniack dies at age 87,” Winnipeg Free Press, 27 June 1972, page 57.

Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by John M. “Jack” Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 28 January 2018

Memorable Manitobans

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