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Dorothy G. Kapenstein


Dorothy G. Kapenstein, born on October 28, 1928, passed on October 15, 2019 at the age of 90. Wife of the late Henry Kapenstein, mother of Jack (Bonnie) Kapenstein, Larry (Mari Anne) Kapenstein and Joe (Jolan) Kapenstein. Sister of Mitchell Goldstein. Also survived by nine grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Relatives and friends are invited to Funeral Services Friday, October 18 at 1:00 p.m., precisely, at Goldsteins’ Rosenberg’s Raphael Sacks Suburban North, 310 Second St. Pike, Southampton, Pa. Interment is at Montefiore Cemetery. Shiva will be observed at the home of Jack and Bonnie Kapenstein.

Dorothy was a graduate of the Philadelphia High School for Girls class of '46. She remained the archivist for the school until her death and organized many events for the alumnae association. She dearly loved Girls High and it was a big part of her life. Dorothy graduated with honors from the University of Pennsylvania with a BA in History and Languages class of '50, and then a Master of Library Science degree from Drexel University in 1953. Her post graduate work also included 2-1/2 years of study towards a Ph.D. in Arabic and Islamic History at Dropsie University, a Post Master’s certificate in Library Science in 1978 from Drexel, and two years of study in Theatre History at the University of the Arts in the 1980’s.

She was a speaker at many high schools and colleges over the years in her areas of expertise including Egyptian, Greek and Roman history, the Golden Age of Islam, Emperor Charles V, Japanese Theatre and other topics. She was a consultant for an encyclopedia of Medieval History (The world of the Middle Ages) and contributed to the curriculum writing for the Philadelphia School District.

Dorothy loved to listen and watch operas and had a keen interest in African American History. She was a librarian and schoolteacher at Wanamaker Middle School in north Philadelphia for 34 years where she was awarded teacher of the year in 1987 in her district. She had previously worked at the University of Pennsylvania Library and the Free Library of Philadelphia. In retirement she continued to participate in the academic community through her work as a consultant with the PATHS/PRISM educational group. She continued to write newsletters and proposals for grants for Historic B'nai Jacob Synagogue in Middletown, Pa. as well as a monthly column on African American History for a prize winning church newsletter known as “Church Chat” a publication of the Calvary Baptist Church. Her articles were compiled into a book named “African Americans Who Made History.”

Contributions in her memory may be made to the Philadelphia High School for Girls Alumnae, 1400 W. Olney Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19141.