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Jewish Neighborhood House Fund

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Rosh Hashanah is this week, celebrating the Jewish New Year. A fund at the Community Foundation enables a piece of Memphis’s Jewish history to help sustain its community for the future.

Established in 1912 in an old synagogue in the Pinch district, the Jewish Neighborhood House served poor, uneducated immigrants arriving in Memphis. Classes held at the House helped newcomers learn English, find jobs, and gain citizenship skills. The original Jewish Neighborhood House remained open for more than a half-century, serving thousands of families in need before the center was demolished in 1963 to make way for an expressway. It continued to offer some services offsite but ceased operations in 1980.

In the years that followed, the Neighborhood House’s remaining assets have benefited a variety of causes, and in 1991, the Jewish Neighborhood House Fund was established at the Community Foundation. It annually supports the Temple Israel cemetery fund, the Memphis Jewish Home, and the Temple Israel Museum.

Click here to learn more about the Jewish Neighborhood House and the fund, from an article originally published in the Community Foundation 2016 Annual Report.

Photo: © 2016 Center for Southern Folklore Archives, from the Celia Burson Collection