Jewish Landmarks

2021 Jewish Landmarks Survey

Have you heard about the numerous famous (and infamous!) Jewish architects, developers, businessmen, politicians, musicians, and activists who lived right here in the Rochester area?

The Landmark Society was generously funded by the Farash Foundation and the Esther Krakower Fund at the Jewish Federation of Greater Rochester to conduct a survey of properties in Monroe County associated with the Jewish community. We worked with a committee that was comprised of leaders in the Jewish community, preservationists, local historians, and neighborhood advocates to identify sites of Jewish significance and narrow that list to approximately 80 representative sites for the survey. This survey is the initial step in a broader Rochester Religious Landmarks Initiative that LSWNY is introducing, although this particular project was not limited to Jewish houses of worship.

The survey team photographed and performed base-level research on each of the properties, which included a physical description of the building or site and a history on the property, congregation, person(s), and businesses that are associated with each site. The primary purpose of the survey is to bring awareness to future generations of the existence of these sites and the impact that they had on the Rochester and surrounding suburbs. It can also serve as a foundation for further research and as a planning tool for local groups, Jewish congregations, and others utilizing these properties. This survey aims to do this through the identification and documentation of the extant, standing resources that have held historic significance in Jewish culture and religion, the clothing industry and labor movement, and that have contributed to the growth of the Jewish community in the Rochester area. The information provided in this survey can also be the basis for the listing of selected sites in the National Register of Historic Places.

The Jewish Landmarks Survey Report compiles a general history of the Jewish community in the Rochester area and the documentation of individual surveyed sites. Landmark staff and our project committee are currently working to finalize the report document, as well as plan an official celebration to mark the release of the report. Stay tuned for more information!