America’s Pioneer Jewish Congregations

Architecture, Community and History

Julian Preisler

From early congregations in 13 colonies to those established in central and western regions, beautiful synagogues were built. Congregations and their members contributed to the life of small and large cities alike. This book takes a tour of the oldest existing Jewish congregations and the whole spectrum of synagogue life is represented.
Date Published :
December 2017
Publisher :
Fonthill Media
Illustration :
Color and B&W photographs
Format Available    QuantityPrice
ISBN : 9781625450647
Pages : 144
Dimensions : 9.25 X 6.5 inches
In stock


The United States has the second largest Jewish community in the world with a wealth of history and architecture spanning 363 years. From the earliest Jewish congregations established in the original thirteen colonies, to the later congregations established in the central and western regions of the country, beautiful synagogues were built and vital communities were created and thrived. Jewish congregations and their members contributed to the life and success of small towns and large cities alike. America's Pioneer Jewish Congregations: Architecture, Community and History takes the reader on a tour of the oldest existing Jewish congregation in each of the 50 states plus Washington, DC, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands. It highlights the history of each congregation and includes photographs of the various buildings that housed these congregations over the years. Some are one of only a few synagogues in a particular state, while others are part of a statewide Jewish community with hundreds of synagogues. The whole spectrum of American synagogue life is represented in all its diversity.


5 stars “Photographs of past and present captivate before one turns to histories that reflect the customs of original homelands, revealing how mobility in the United States has enhanced rather than diminished traditions. The book is a testament to the author’s ability to integrate the history of Jewish presence as a worthy example of freedom of religion while also showing the remarkable variation in architecture.”

- Seattle Book Review

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