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Bernard "Bunny" Solomon papers

 Collection
Identifier: M077

Scope and Content Note

The collection documents the public life of Bernard "Bunny" Solomon, encompassing his political, professional, and philanthropic activities, including his active involvement with Northeastern University. The bulk of the collection comprises photographs and clippings from newspapers and other publications. Solomon carefully collected mentions of himself and his compatriots in the press regarding his myriad positions and interests. In his lengthy public career, he has made the acquaintance of many important and influential public figures, particularly in the political arena. Correspondence from these individuals, often indicative of great friendship, comprises much of the remainder of the collection.

Dates

  • 1925-2006

Creator

Language of Materials

Materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access:

The collection is unrestricted.

Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use:

Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be discussed with the University Archivist.

Historical Note

Northeastern University's "number one fan," Bernard "Bunny" Solomon, was born in Brookline, Massachusetts in 1923. He matriculated at Northeastern University as a member of the Class of 1946, but the Second World War interrupted his studies. He was transferred to the University of Illinois into its Army Specialized Training Program to train for a tour in the infantry. Upon arrival in England in 1944, he was transferred to the military police and was stationed in Germany.

When the war ended, Solomon returned to Sheltenham, England and studied at the American University there. Completing his degree, he returned to Massachusetts to work in his father's lingerie manufacturing business. As a successful business man and active Democrat, he became friends with Foster Furcolo, then Massachusetts state treasurer, in 1953. Solomon managed Furcolo's campaign for state senate in 1954 and for governor in 1956. Furcolo appointed him an assistant to the governor in 1956, and state purchasing agent in 1957.

Bernard Solomon was reappointed state purchasing agent after Furcolo's reelection in 1958, but in 1960 he left to become vice president of civic, government, and community affairs for the Stop & Shop Companies. Despite his official move to private industry, Solomon remained active in political affairs as a member of the University of Massachusetts Building Committee until 1987 and the Emergency Finance Board until 1972. He also continued to be involved with the state Democratic Party, serving as a delegate-at-large to the 1960, 1964, and 1968 Democratic National Conventions, and being elected to the Brookline Town Committee in 1968.

In 1982, Solomon left Stop & Shop to become vice chair of the Patriot Bank. When the Bank of New England acquired the Patriot Bank in 1987, he became an executive vice president. In 1990, Solomon retired.

Throughout his life, Bernard Solomon has been actively involved in the affairs of Northeastern University. He has served as vice-chair emeritus of the Board of Trustees since the mid-1990s, has been a director and chair of the National Council, and chaired the Facilities Committee. An avid fan of Northeastern Athletics, Solomon was inducted into the Northeastern University Athletics Hall of Fame in 1998 for his fund raising efforts. Both the Northeastern University indoor and outdoor track facilities bear his name, as does the basketball court in the Cabot Physical Education Center. In 1991, he received an honorary Doctorate of Public Service from Northeastern University in recognition of his abiding commitment to and support of his alma mater. In addition to his donation of these papers, Solomon also donated his extensive collection of jazz albums to the University Libraries; they comprise the Solomon Jazz collection, which resides in the Snell Library Media Center.

Bernard Solomon did not confine his philanthropy to Northeastern. He was active for over 40 years in Jewish philanthropy, acting as a trustee of the Combined Jewish Philanthropies and Temple Ohabei Shalom, serving on the board of the Associated Jewish Committee, and encouraging the development of cultural relations with Israel. He has been instrumental in other charitable causes, including the fight against childhood leukemia and bringing arts education to disadvantaged youth.

Bernard Solomon married Jolane Solomon in 1957. (The papers of Dr. Solomon, an eminent biologist, are at the Schlesinger Library at Harvard University.) They have two children, Samuel and Sally. Bernard Solomon also has a daughter, Sue, from a previous marriage.

Chronology

  • 1923 Bernard Solomon was born in Brookline, Mass. on March 17th.
  • 1944 Solomon joined the military and was stationed in England and Germany.
  • 1953 Managed Foster Furcolo's campaign for State Senate.
  • 1954 Managed Furcolo's campaign for Governor.
  • 1956 Appointed Assistant to the Governor.
  • 1957-1960 Appointed State Purchasing Agent.
  • 1957 Married Jolane Solomon.
  • 1960-1982 Became Vice President of Civic, Government, and Community Affairs for the Stop & Shop Companies.
  • 1960 Served as Chairman to Emergency Finance Board.
  • 1960 Served as Delegate-At-Large to the Democratic National Conventions.
  • 1964 Served as a Delegate-At-Large to the Democratic National Conventions.
  • 1968 Served as Delegate-At-Large to the Democratic National Conventions.
  • 1968 Elected to the Brookline Town Committee.
  • 1982 Became Vice Chair of the Patriot Bank.
  • 1984 Dedication of Northeastern University's Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field in his honor.
  • 1987 Received Honorary Doctor of Laws from University of Massachusetts, Amherst.
  • 1987-1990 Appointed executive Vice President of Patriot Bank when the Bank of New England acquired the Patriot Bank.
  • 1990 Retired from Patriot Bank.
  • 1991 Received an honorary Doctorate of Public Service from Northeastern University.
  • 1998 Inducted into the Northeastern University Athletics Hall of Fame for his tireless fund raising.
  • 2006 Died on October 19th.
1923
Bernard Solomon was born in Brookline, Mass. on March 17th.
1944
Solomon joined the military and was stationed in England and Germany.
1953
Managed Foster Furcolo's campaign for State Senate.
1954
Managed Furcolo's campaign for Governor.
1956
Appointed Assistant to the Governor.
1957-1960
Appointed State Purchasing Agent.
1957
Married Jolane Solomon.
1960-1982
Became Vice President of Civic, Government, and Community Affairs for the Stop & Shop Companies.
1960
Served as Chairman to Emergency Finance Board.
1960
Served as Delegate-At-Large to the Democratic National Conventions.
1964
Served as a Delegate-At-Large to the Democratic National Conventions.
1968
Served as Delegate-At-Large to the Democratic National Conventions.
1968
Elected to the Brookline Town Committee.
1982
Became Vice Chair of the Patriot Bank.
1984
Dedication of Northeastern University's Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field in his honor.
1987
Received Honorary Doctor of Laws from University of Massachusetts, Amherst.
1987-1990
Appointed executive Vice President of Patriot Bank when the Bank of New England acquired the Patriot Bank.
1990
Retired from Patriot Bank.
1991
Received an honorary Doctorate of Public Service from Northeastern University.
1998
Inducted into the Northeastern University Athletics Hall of Fame for his tireless fund raising.
2006
Died on October 19th.

Extent

2.30 cubic feet (3 containers, 1 flat file, 1 art box file)

Overview

Bernard "Bunny" Solomon was born in Brookline, Massachusetts in 1923. A member of Northeastern University's Class of 1946, he served in Europe in World War II, returning home to a position in his father's lingerie manufacturing business. He became an active Democrat and was appointed State Purchasing Agent under Governor Foster Furcolo in 1957. Solomon resigned his position in 1960 and became a vice president of the Stop & Shop Companies. In 1982, he left Stop & Shop to become the vice chairman of Patriot Bank, later Bank of New England. Solomon retired in 1990. He was an active fund raiser for and booster of Northeastern University. The indoor and outdoor track facilities and the indoor basketball court are named in his honor. In recognition of his tireless support for Northeastern, Solomon was granted an honorary Doctorate of Public Service in 1991.

Overview

The collection documents the public life of Bernard Solomon, encompassing his political, professional, and philanthropic activities, including his active involvement with Northeastern University. The bulk of the collection comprises photographs and clippings from newspapers and other publications. Solomon carefully collected mentions of himself and his compatriots in the press regarding his myriad positions and interests. In his lengthy public career, Solomon has made the acquaintance of many important and influential public figures, particularly in the political arena. Correspondence from these individuals, often indicative of great friendship, comprises much of the remainder of the collection. Of particular interest are photographs of and correspondence with President John F. Kennedy, Senator Edward M. Kennedy, President Harry S. Truman, and Cesar Chavez.

System of Arrangement:

Organized into 5 series: 1. Political; 2. Professional; 3. Philanthropic; 4. Northeastern University; and 5. Personal

Physical Location

70/4, FF4/D3
Title
Finding aid for the Bernard "Bunny" Solomon Papers
Author
Finding aid prepared by Molly Overholt; updated by Danielle Hubing
Date
October 2002, September 2009
Language of description
Description Is In English

Repository Details

Part of the Northeastern University Archives and Special Collections Repository

Contact:
92 Snell Library
Northeastern University
360 Huntington Avenue
Boston MA 02115 US