Two Manhattan Shuls Deemed ‘Sacred Sites’
08/14/12
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Two Manhattan synagogues are among 23 “Sacred Sites” in New York State that have received grants for physical repairs form the New York Landmarks Conservancy.

A $30,000 Jewish Heritage Fund Grant to the Stanton Street Synagogue on the Lower East Side will help pay for repairs on the building’s exterior walls, and a grant of $25,000 to the East Village’s Sixth Street Community Synagogue will go towards repairs of its roof and façade.

“You don’t have to be religious to understand that religious institutions contain some of our finest art and architecture. Many also provide vital social service programs and cultural activities that make significant contributions to their communities,” said Peg Breen, Conservancy president, in a statement.

The Stanton Street Synagogue, constructed in 1913 by combining two adjacent tenement buildings, is one of the city’s few surviving “tenement synagogues.” Its space today is rented to arts groups for readings or performances, including the Jewish Arts Salon, movie nights and social justice lectures.

The Sixth Street Community Synagogue, built in 1847, housed the Evangelical Lutheran Church of St. Matthew, and the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of St. Mark before it was sold to a group of local Jewish business owners. It has become a center for Jewish musical programs in recent years.

Temple Beth Emeth v’Ohr Progressive Shaari Zedek in Brooklyn received a Conservancy grant of $40,000, which will help repair a leaking roof and a severely deteriorated masonry parapet.

The Conservancy is a nonprofit organization “dedicated to preserving, revitalizing and reusing New York’s architecturally significant buildings.” It provides technical assistance, project management services, grants, and loans, to owners of historic properties throughout the state.

Last Update:

01/18/2013 - 07:09

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The Sixth Street synagogue deserves recognition as "sacred ground" for a second reason: As St. Mark's Lutheran Church, it was its members who set out for a tragic picnic aboard the boat "General Slocum" on June 15, 1904. The record loss of 1,021 people was not matched until September 11, 2001.

There is already a plaque, and has been for years, out front which explains exactly the story you are telling. This is public knowledge. Bob Dylan wrote a song about it.

What a shame that the old Romanian Synagogue on or near Rivington Street did not get this status in time as well. My Grandfather would never leave the neighborhood so he could be near his shul. It was not until a few years ago that I found out which one it was and when I wanted to research his , and my grandmother's connection there I found that it was gone.
I do not know where all the artifacts went. Would it be possible to email me that information? Thanks. And thank you for this story too.

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