You can read much more about this building and its cultrual and architectural context in my article in Jewish History (2011) available here.
By contrast, Temple Concord in Binghamton, is a mix of old and new. The synagogue consists of the National Register listed Jonas M. Kilmer House, an impressive mansion built in 1898, to which a modern sanctuary, built in 1964 and decorated with splendid stained glass windows by Jean-Jacques Duval, is attached.
In New York City, two only three surviving "tenement" synagogues will also be open. They also happen to be tow of my very favorite small congregations. Kehila Kedosha Janina (KKJ), on Broome Street, is home synagogue of America's Greek Romaniote community will keep its usual Sunday opening hours. The small synagogue has been meticulously restored, though you cannot tell since every original aspect was left intact. It also houses a small but very informative museum about the history and fate of Greek Jewry.
The Stanton Street Shul remains a small but active congregation that is now embarking on a much needed restoration program for the building. Their approach is entirely different from the Meseritz Congregation on East 6th Street - which will soon sacrifice its historic interior in order in order to develop the site for income (read more and see pictures here). This decision, just recently announced, is a great lose to New York Jewish history, and makes the task of saving the Stanton Street Shul all the more important.
According to the Stanton Street Shul website, "[The Shul] is a historic, intimate, and vibrant Orthodox congregation serving the diverse Jewish population in Lower Manhattan. We attract and welcome Jews of all religious, educational, and cultural backgrounds from the Lower East Side, Alphabet City, East and West Villages, Stuyvesant Town, and Tribeca." Some sense of the congregation's history and dynamic can be gleaned from the congregational memoir (more of a personal ethnographic meditation) by anthropologist and congregant Jonathan Boyarin, Mornings at the Stanton Street Shul: A Summer on the Lower East Side. I recently visited Stanton Street and will soon post a longer report on the synagogue, its decorations and its urgent preservation needs.
The Old Broadway Shul in Manhattanville carries some of the flavor of the lower East Side uptown. Founded as the Orthodox Shul Chevra Talmud Torah Anshei Marovi, Inc in 1911. in 1923,the congregation built its sanctuary at 15 Old Broadway - incorporating an old house on the site. The synagogue has remained open for prayer since then. You can read more about the history of the congregation and building here.
The New York Landmarks Conservancy's Sacred Sites
Since 1986 The New York Landmarks Conservancy's Sacred Sites program has supported more than 675 religious institutions throughout the state which have received over $7.3 million in matching grants, and mobilized more than $540 million in restoration and repair projects. Sacred Sites is the country's oldest and largest statewide grant program to help landmark religious properties providing financial and technical assistance to help save historic religious properties.
Stanton Street Shul
Jewish Open Orthodox (all welcome)
180 Stanton Street NY, NY 10009
Saturday May 18, 2013
9:30 am-1:00 pm; 7-8 pm
According to the Landmarks Conservancy the weekend has three objectives: