The Synagogues of Eastern Pennsylvania: A Visual Journey by Julian H. Preisler
With the sixth largest Jewish population and the fourth oldest organized Jewish community in the United States, Pennsylvania has hundreds of synagogues, past and present, and they come in all shapes, sizes and styles. Pennsylvania is unique with regard to the extensive number of locations that either have, or once had, functioning Jewish congregations and communities. While the city of Philadelphia has a large number of synagogues, both current and former, synagogues were established in many of the cities and towns found along the industrial and mining routes of Eastern Pennsylvania. Places such as Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton, Hazleton, Reading, Wilkes-Barre and Scranton among others each have a Jewish history all their own and many beautiful synagogues. By presenting images of these many synagogues, especially the ones that are no longer used for Jewish worship, their history is documented, and the uniqueness and wealth of their architecture is shared for all. This diversity of architecture reflects that very same diversity of the Jewish communities that settled throughout Pennsylvania and indeed the whole United States.
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