Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Where Synagogues Once Stood by photographer and filmmaker Judah S. Harris

"One Tisha B'Av afternoon in the late-80s, photographer and filmmaker Judah S. Harris took a walk in Harlem in search of some of the synagogues that once existed  in this former Jewish neighborhood.

"Written a decade ago (2006), his essay "Where Synagogues Once Stood" documents his exploration of the places where synagogues once stood, both in New York City and also in Jerusalem, where the grandest of synagogues once welcomed an entire people.
""Visiting the places where synagogues once stood, where Jewish communities once thrived... can be one way of internalizing the meaning of Tisha B'Av, especially if the structures — their exterior architecture and Hebrew inscriptions — still remain visible but the life within them does not.""


  1. I know Judah, and he has some artistic pics of Washington Heights as well...

  2. Unfortunately the same story in most major American cities. Whether out of ego or a misplaced sense of priorities, congregations erected large, ornate buildings that lasted maybe 50 years before the community disbanded. If that same money was instead invested in educating Jewish children and building yeshivos/seminaries, the end of the story would be different.