CAMDEN, NEW JERSEY
205 North 28th Street
315 Grand Avenue
Camden is well known for its ethnic communities. The large Polish, Italian, Irish, German, and Jewish communities played a great role in Camden's history in the 19th and first part of the 20th century, while Black and Puerto Rican families have given the city much of its recent flavor. There are other, lesser known ethnic groups that have made up the fabric of the city's life over the years. Greeks, Armenians, and Ukrainians grouped together in the city in Camden's growth years. More recently, Mexicans, Vietnamese, Jamaicans, Dominicans, Haitians, and Koreans have come to the city to live and seek the American dream.
Congregation Beth Israel was organized in 1929 and to my knowledge was the first synagogue to be built in East Camden. By the early 1920s the Kotlikoff family was doing business along Federal Street, the Zeff's owned the Rosedale Inn at 36th and Federal, and the were some other families, but the real Jewish migration to East Camden came when the area along Baird Boulevard and south of Marlton Pike was developed in the 1920s and 1930s. I'm not sure if Congregation Beth Israel predated that, but the building at 208 North 28th Street certainly did. It was used, according the 1929 Camden City Directory, as the home of the Washington Camp No. 27 of the Patriotic Sons of America (P.O.S.A.). City directories also show this address for the Socialist Library Society in 1924 and 1929.
Founding members of Beth Israel included the Kotlikoff family and Mr. and Mrs. Samuel and Mayme Rosen.
By 1956 Congregation Beth Israel erected a new, modern synagogue at 315 Grand Avenue, the corner of Grand and Benson Street, just off of Marlton Avenue.
When I moved to East Camden in the mid 1970s, most Jewish families had left the city and the building had been long closed, but the signs of its use as a synagogue were obvious. A Christian group acquired the property on North 28th Street in the 1980s, and efforts to rehab the building have continued in fits and starts. The newer building on Grand Avenue has been used as a Christian school and as a day care center at various times since Beth Israel left Camden.
Camden Courier-Post - June 13, 1933
Beth-Israel Sisters Hold Last Card Party
The last of a series of charity card parties will be given by the BethIsrael Sisterhood in the Beth-Israel Synagogue, 205 North 28th Street, tonight, at 8 o'clock.
The committee in charge includes Mrs. Samuel C. Rosen, Mrs. David Esterman, Mrs. Morris Josselson and Mrs. Albert Taylor.
|Camden Courier-Post - June 15, 1933|
|CAMDEN JEWS PICK CAPTAINS FOR DRIVE
Committee to Raise $10,000 for Aid, Told of Hardships in Germany
At an executive meeting of the United Committee for Relief of German Jews, held at Beth El Synagogue last night, the captains who will be in charge of teams for the purpose of raising $10,000 for relief of German Jews, were announced by Leon H. Rose, general chairman. In urging the appointees to intensive efforts, Rose said:
"Six hundred thousand Jews are in distress. They are ousted from office, discharged from employment, denied civil and economic rights, persecuted and systematically forced to starve to death.
"There is raging in Germany one of the coldest and cruelest pogroms against the Jews ever known to history.
"We must help. We must rescue those helpless ones. Our weapon for immediate retaliation is money, and we must supply those arms. By the widest stretch of the imagination, it is inconceivable how any Jew in this community can exclude himself from this cause.
"Thousands of German Jews, especially among the young, see a prospect of restarting their lives in Palestine to which some of them already have made their way. Determined, concerted Jewish effort can make it capable of providing a permanent home for a considerable part of German Jewry to whom the rest of the world, with few exceptions, is closed.
"Immediate funds are needed. I appeal to you as self-respecting Jews who understand the suffering of your own race to come to the aid of your stricken brothers and sisters. Give them all you can."
Those named and the organizations they represent are:
Jacob Leventon, Congregation Beth
El; David Lefkowitz, congregation Sons of Israel; Morris Josselson, Congregation Beth
Israel; Benjamin Friedman, B'nai Brith; Mrs.
I.S. Siris, Hadassah; Philip Miller, Hebrew Parent Teachers Association; Herman Odlen, Federation of Jewish Charities; Mrs. Rose
Goldstein, Independent Social; Harry W. Markowich, Zionist Organization; Norman Heine, Junior
Mrs. William Laub, Council of Jewish Women; A. David Epstein, Sigma Alpha Rho; Mrs. Aaron Heine, Beth El Sisterhood; Samuel Shane, Talmud Torah; M. Snyder, Workmen's Circle; M. Bard, F. of S. U.; Louis Tarter, Independent Progress Lodge; Mrs. Zelda Lutz, Jacob J. Hernfeld Link; Dr. I.S. Siris, Jewish Welfare Society; Mrs. M. Shapiro, Hebrew Ladies Charities.
Mizrachi; Mrs. Samuel Litow, Welfare Social Club; D. Breslow, Gordonia.; Dr. Reuben
Cutler, Mizpah Lodge No. 245; F. & A. M.; Meyer Adelman, Camden Level Club; Mrs. Etta Rosen,
B'nai Brith Auxiliary; Mrs. L. Weiss, Ladies Auxlliary of Progress Lodge; Miriam Morris, Junior
Moses Bord was appointed captain of the workers. A mass meeting will be held June 20, at the Talmud Torah building, Seventh Street and Kaighn Avenue, and will be addressed by members of national, state and municipal governments, as well as outstanding Jewish leaders from New York and Philadelphia.
Camden Courier-Post - June 23, 1933
21 RECEIVE DIPLOMAS AT BETH ISRAEL SCHOOL
Diplomas were presented by Morris Josselson, president of the synagogue and prizes were awarded by Herman Kessler, a member of the faculty.
Addresses were given by the honor students, Irving Sackoff, Harry Gartzman, Bernard Adler and Paul Rothman.
February 21, 1943
2:00 PM on February 21, 1943 a service flag was raised at Westfield
Acres to honor the many men who had already gone off to serve in
America's armed forces.
Below - The program of the day's events
|Congregation Beth Israel|
& Mayme Rosen
The Rosen Boys
Sam (Sandy), Jerry, Elliott, Howard, Steve
Beth Israel Graduating Class - circa 1969
Left to Right- .
Click on Image to Enlarge - Click Here To Supersize
A Tribute to Rabbi Max Weine * April 30, 1972
"It has been said that every man should step to the music of his own drummer. Such a man is Rabbi Weine. He has an abiding love of learning and compassion for all men.
He epitomizes the word "rabbi" in its true meaning - a man whose unassuming, soft-spoken manner belies his firm conviction, his steadfast adherence to the principles which guide his beliefs and action.
In the confusion of our times, Rabbi Weine has set his sights on the path most closely aligned with his own "drumbeat." In a period when integrity and humility are rare qualities, he has become, quite unintentionally a man unique in his time.
Rabbi Weine has kept pace the issues of our time, serving his urban community in the interests of equality and the tranquil coexistence of races and religions based on education and understanding.
While his gentle ways and humble concern for the welfare of others might seem out of step among today's clerical masters of oratory bonvivant personalities and astute businessmen, this man is consummately respected by his peers and well loved by his friends and congregants."
The Crown of a Good Name Exceeds All Others. (Pirke Avot)
Dr. Harold Berlin, Chairman Rabbi Max
Weine Tribute Dinner
Monsignor Joseph W. Devlin, Interfaith
Blackman, Congregation Beth Israel
Mr. David Rosoff, President of Congregation Beth Israel
Rabbi Max Weine
A GRATEFUL COMMUNITY PAYS TRIBUTE...
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