Leon Topf

ID: 17
Industrialist, the owner of "Aida" paper factory in Lviv.
Leon Topf (1871-1927) was one of Lemberg's leading industrialists, the owner of "Aida" paper factory and, together with Izrael and Salomon Elster, founder of Elster & Topf firm.

Topf belonged to a deeply devoted social activists, a man of a wide range of activities, outstanding initiative who spent the last decades of his life reforming Jewish professional education. In 1918 he first suggested his reform plans at the Jewish Rescue Committee (Żydowski Komitet Ratunkowy), in which he was one of the most outstanding members.

Topf saw school reform as a major tool in the transformation of the Jewish community. He participated in the creation of Union for the Spread of Primary Education among Jews (Związek dla szerzenia wykształcenia zawodowego wśród Żydów); worked for the technical school for girls run by dr. Cecylya Klaften and was generally involved in everything that concerned professional education for the Jews.

As a member of the Council of the Jewish Commune (Gmina Wyznaniowa Żydowska) he initiated the organisation of the first Congress of Congregational Communes of Małopolska (zjazd Gmin Wyznaniowych Małopolski), where he reported on the problems in the realm of professional education for the Jews. Topf also organised social welfare for the poor.

As a result of his donation a statistical bureau was created at the Jewish Commune in Lemberg. Topf also initiated the creation of cash desks Gmilath Chesed in the countryside.

Topf was also one of the most active honorary members of Lemberg Association of Tradesmen (Lwowskie Stowarzyszenie Kupców) and was a president of the first fair Targi Wschodnie. Among his other activities were membership in the board and treasurer of the Society of Handcraft Workshops (Tow. Warsztatów Rękodziełniczych); his donation to hthe reconstruction (addition of the third floor) for the technical schools for girls; and his partonship of the vacation colony in Słobodka Lesna.

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Vul. Bohomoltsia, 09 – Lviv Oblast Prosecutor Office (former residence)

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Written by Iryna Kotlobulatova