While New York City became home for most of the Jewish immigrants who crossed the Atlantic, others journeyed farther, seeking freedom and fortune. The city of Syracuse, easily reached by the Erie Canal, became the next port of call for some. It offered opportunities, open roads, and a small but ever-growing Jewish community. This history traces the development of the Jewish community of the Salt City from its beginnings in the early 18th century, when a handful of peddlers gathered weekly to share a Shabbat meal, to a much larger community that numbered 11,000–12,000 at its peak a century later. The Syracuse Jewish community is a microcosm of the history of Jews in America and is both distinctive and iconic in nature.
About the Author
Barbara Sheklin Davis is principal of the Syracuse Hebrew Day School and director of the Epstein High School of Jewish Studies. She is professor emerita of Onondaga Community College. Susan B. Rabin is a writer, editor, and community volunteer who has lived in Syracuse with her family since 1987. She is a graduate of SUNY College at Cortland and Boston University.