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 Sunday October 19
This very unusual comprehensive tour – conducted by Shulamith “Shuli” Berger from the Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy – will focus on the distinctive history and contemporary Jewish community of Washington Heights. Shuli is the Curator of Special Collections at the Yeshiva University Library and a Washington Heights resident.

Our tour will begin on the campus of Yeshiva University. The inauguration, in 1928, of an imposing Moorish Revival building on Amsterdam Avenue (architects Charles B. Meyers and Henry Beaumont Herts) finalized YU's relocation from the overcrowded, impoverished neighborhood of the Lower East Side to the then bucolic Washington Heights. We will tour this dynamic, urban campus.

Making our way west, we will view the major facilities of K'hal Adath Jeshurun, (1939) – known locally as “Breuer’s” – a unique German-tradition kehilla (centralized religious community) on Bennett Avenue. We will discuss the legacy of Rabbi Sampson Raphael Hirsch who, in 1851, founded the original kehilla that bore this name in Frankfurt-am-Main in Germany. After Kristallnacht (November 10, 1938) Rabbi Hirsch’s grandson, Rabbi Dr. Joseph Breuer, came to Washington Heights and revived the spiritual traditions on these shores.

Our tour will also include Mount Sinai Jewish Center, an Orthodox Ashkenazi congregation that includes, along with its older long-time members, many congregants in their 20s and 30s.

Our next stop will be Chabad of Washington Heights, the most recent addition to communal life in Washington Heights. We’ll then take a possibly unexpected elevator ride to the top of the bluff to Bennett Park. Built on the site of Fort Washington, from which the Continental Army delayed the advance of British troops in 1776, the park was named for James Gordon Bennett, Sr. – the newspaper publisher who launched the New York Herald in 1835. Bennett Park is located at the highest natural point in Manhattan.

Tour concludes with viewing of the Hebrew Tabernacle Congregation, founded in 1906 and housed in a dramatic Art Deco building. For those who want to end the tour with a “nosh” – Justin will make a special post-tour stop at Gideon’s Kosher Bakery !




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