Girish Mahajan (Editor)

Bronfman family

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit

The Bronfman family is a Canadian Jewish family. It owes its initial fame to Samuel Bronfman (1889–1971), who made a fortune in the alcoholic distilled beverage business during the 20th century through the family's Seagram Company.


The family is of Russian Jewish and Romanian Jewish ancestry; "they were originally tobacco farmers from Bessarabia". According to New York Times staff reporter, Nathaniel Popper, the Bronfman family is "perhaps the single largest force in the Jewish charitable world."

Family tree

Some of the family members include:
Please note capitalization of surnames is typically used in genealogy trees

Works or publications

  • Bronfman Family Dynasty on Biography (video
  • Seagram Museum collection at Hagley Museum and Library (finding aid)
  • Bronfman Family

  • Faith, Nicholas. The Bronfmans: The Rise and Fall of the House of Seagram. New York: St. Martin's Press, 2006. ISBN 978-0-312-33219-8
  • Gittins, Susan. Behind Closed Doors: The Rise and Fall of Canada's Edper Bronfman and Reichmann Empires. Scarborough, Ont: Prentice Hall Canada, 1995. ISBN 978-0-131-82189-7
  • MacLeod, Roderick, and Eric John Abrahamson. Spirited Commitment The Samuel and Saidye Bronfman Family Foundation, 1952-2007. Montréal: Published for the Samuel and Saidye Bronfman Foundation by McGill-Queen's University Press, 2010. ISBN 978-0-773-58333-7
  • Marrus, Michael R. Samuel Bronfman: The Life and Times of Seagram's Mr. Sam. Hanover: Published by University Press of New England [for] Brandeis University Press, 1991. ISBN 978-0-585-26546-9
  • Newman, Peter Charles. Bronfman Dynasty: The Rothschilds of the New World. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1978. ISBN 978-0-771-06758-7
  • Also published as Newman, Peter Charles. King of the castle: the making of a dynasty : Seagram's and the Bronfman empire. New York: Atheneum, 1979.
  • Whisky man inside the dynasty of Samuel Bronfman. Kelowna, B.C.: distributed by FilmWest Associates: 1996. (video)
  • Video abstract: "Documents the rise to success of the Bronfman Family, who came to Canada as poor immigrants and became rich and powerful through selling (through Prohibition) and distilling whisky (Seagram Company). Family members recall the tough and determined character of Samuel who strove for social acceptance and respectability while alienating many of his family."
  • Charles Bronfman

  • Bronfman, Charles, and Jeffrey Solomon. The Art of Doing Good: Where Passion Meets Action. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2012. ISBN 978-1-1182-8574-9
  • Bronfman, Charles, and Jeffrey Solomon. The Art of Giving: Where the Soul Meets a Business Plan. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass, 2010. ISBN 978-0-4705-0146-7
  • Edgar Bronfman, Sr.

  • Bronfman, Edgar M., and Jan Aronson. The Bronfman Haggadah. WorldCat. New York: Rizzoli International Publications, 2012. ISBN 978-0-8478-3968-1
  • Bronfman, Edgar M. Good Spirits: The Making of a Businessman. New York: Putnam, 1998. ISBN 978-0-399-14374-8
  • Bronfman, Edgar M., and Beth Zasloff. Hope, Not Fear: A Path to Jewish Renaissance. New York: St. Martin's Press, 2008. ISBN 978-0-3123-7792-2
  • Bronfman, Edgar M. The Making of a Jew. New York: Putnam, 1996. ISBN 978-0-399-14220-8
  • Bronfman, Edgar M., and Catherine Whitney. The Third Act: Reinventing Yourself After Retirement. New York: G. P. Putnam, 2002. ISBN 978-0-399-14869-9
  • Saidye Bronfman

  • Bronfman, Saidye. My Sam: A Memoir. Erin, Ont: Porcupine's Quill, 1982. Privately printed. One thousand copies have been printed. Written by his wife, Saidye Rosner Bronfman.
  • Phyllis Lambert

  • Lambert, Phyllis, and Barry Bergdoll. Building Seagram. New Haven, Connecticut ; London, England : Yale University Press, 2013. ISBN 978-0-300-16767-2
  • Book abstract: "The Seagram building rises over New York's Park Avenue, seeming to float above the street with perfect lines of bronze and glass. Considered one of the greatest icons of twentieth-century architecture, the building was commissioned by Samuel Bronfman, founder of the Canadian distillery dynasty Seagram. Bronfman's daughter Phyllis Lambert was twenty-seven years old when she took over the search for an architect and chose Mies van der Rohe (1886-1969), a pioneering modern master of what he termed "skin and bones" architecture. Mies, who designed the elegant, deceptively simple thirty-eight-story tower along with Philip Johnson (1906-2005), emphasized the beauty of structure and fine materials, and set the building back from the avenue, creating an urban oasis with the building's plaza. Through her choice, Lambert established her role as a leading architectural patron and singlehandedly changed the face of American urban architecture. Building Seagram is a comprehensive personal and scholarly history of a major building and its architectural, cultural, and urban legacies. Lambert makes use of previously unpublished personal archives, company correspondence, and photographs to tell an insider's view of the debates, resolutions, and unknown dramas of the building's construction, as well as its crucial role in the history of modern art and architectural culture."
  • References

    Bronfman family Wikipedia