Synagogue Photos and Historical References
for Selected Shuls in
Southern States

Transcribed and formatted
by Lynn Franklin
February 2008


This is a table of contents for photos of, and historical references to, several synagogues located generally in the southern or southern border states of the United States. To view our assembled material for any synagogue, just click on the name of each shul listed below. Unless otherwise indicated, the photos were taken by and are the intellectual property of Lynn Ann Franklin of Memphis, TN. Please e-mail or write to her directly for permission to use or reproduce any of these photos at the venues shown below. We hope that you find this information both intrinsically rewarding and a reminder and stimulus to help preserve the old history of our Jewish community, both in the South and elsewhere.

History of Settlement of Jews in Paducah and the Lower Ohio Valley, Isaac W. Bernheim, 1912

Gemiluth Chassed Temple, Port Gibson, Mississippi
Temple Beth El, Helena, Arkansas
Temple Israel, Paducah, Kentucky
Temple Beth Israel, Clarksdale, Mississippi
Temple Adas Israel, Brownsville, TN
History of Adas Israel Temple, Brownsville, TN
Baron Hirsch Congregation, Memphis, TN
Beth Sholom Synagogue, Memphis TN
Rodeph Sholom Synagogue, Rome, GA
B'nai Israel Congregation, Jackson, TN
Beth-el Temple, Anniston, Alabama
Temple Beth Israel, Gadsden, Alabama
Temple Anshe Emeth, Pine Bluff, Arkansas
Jewish Community in Jonesboro, Arkansas
Temple B'nai Jeshurun, Demopolis, Alabama
Temple Beth El, Bessemer, Alabama
Congregation Ahavath Rayim, Greenwood, Mississippi
Temple Beth Israel, Greenwood, Mississippi
Hebrew Union Temple, Greenville, MS
Temple Beth Israel and Temple Ohel Jacob, Meridian, MS
German Cemetery and the Osyka Jewish Section
Temple B'nai Shalom, Huntsville, AL *
Temple B'nai Israel, Florence, AL
Temple Beth El Emeth, Camden, AR
The Jews of Asheville, NC
The Jews of Chattanooga
The Jews of Raleigh

* Editor's Note: There are actually many sources on the history of Jewish settlement and life in the Huntsville area. Here are a few additional selctions. Note that we can provide PDF copies on request for the following sources::

--In Retrospect: One Hundred Years of Reform Judaism in Huntsville by Doris Kirshtein and Marsha Kass Marks, Huntsville Historical Review, Volume 5, Number 4, 1975
--5 Generations of Life: My Family and the Huntsville, Alabama Jewish Community: 1852-1982 by Margaret Anne Goldsmith Hanaw, Huntsville Historical Review, Volume 12, Numbers 3-4, 1982
--The Architecture of the 1899 Temple of B'nai Shalom by Harvie P. Jones, Historic Huntsville Quarterly, Volume XX, Number 4, 1994 (as well as several other articles in this volume)

For a comprehensive history of Jewish history in one part of the old South, the standard setting source is Corner of the Tapestry: A History of the Jewish Experience in Arkansas 1820s-1990s by Carolyn Gray LeMaster (University of Arkansas Press, 1994). The book can be purchased online at several sources. A complementary source is the entry on Jews in The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History and Culture.

Another excellent regional history is A History of Temple B'nai Israel by Erwin M. Coleman. Avaialable online from the temple bookstore in Florence, the history covers the area of Muscle Shoals and northwest Alabama from the 1840s onward. Finally, there is much useful information in the Jewish Encyclopedia, published between 1901-1906, which is now in the public domain and offers over 15, 000 articles online.


Return to Selected Southern Jewish Databases.

Copyright 2008 Lynn Ann Franklin. All Rights Reserved. Prior written permission is required from Lynn Ann Franklin before this material can be printed or otherwise copied, displayed or distributed in any form. Contact: Lynn Franklin at or by writing to her at 194 Yates Road South, Memphis, TN 38120-2256.This is a FREE genealogy site sponsored through RootsWeb and can be reached directly at Selected Southern Jewish Databases (