The Only Pictures of the First Synagogue

This close-up of a 1902 map of Homestead provides the only known rendering for what the first synagogue might have looked like.  (Source:  Panoramic map of Homestead, PA, 1902.  I would highly recommend clicking through to explore the whole map — it’s pretty cool!)  Homestead’s city directories list its address as 540 Ammon St.

HHCRS 1902

For context, the main streets of the Jewish neighborhood are identified here (click on the image to view full-sized):

1920 syn and neighborhood

We can get another glimpse of the first synagogue from three of the Sanborn maps of Homestead:

May 1901 map of Homestead shows an empty lot of land where the new synagogue will be built. For context, the lot was purchased two months before this map, the cornerstone was laid three months later, and the synagogue was dedicated in March of the following year.

The May 1901 map of Homestead shows an empty lot of land where the first synagogue will be built. For context, the lot was purchased two months before this map, the cornerstone was laid three months later, and the synagogue was dedicated in March of the following year.

Map of Homestead showing HHCRS, Feb 1907. (No idea why it is listed as a Greek Church?!)

The February 1907 map of Homestead is the first to show HHCRS. (No idea why it is listed as a Greek Church?!)

July 1913 map of HHCRS. Though this is two years past the fire, the site is still listed as a synagogue. (Another section of this map shows that the new 10th Ave synagogue is not yet built at this time.) I wonder if they were able to continue to use the building -- or part of it -- during almost four years from the Feb. 1911 fire and the Sep. 1914 dedication of the new building?

Though this July 1913 map is more than two years after the fire, the synagogue building is still present. I wonder if they were able to continue to use the building — or part of it — during almost four years between the Feb. 1911 fire and the Sep. 1914 dedication of the new building? (Another section of this map confirms that the new 10th Ave synagogue was not yet built at this time.)

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