Congregation Atereth Israel

Atereth Israel was an Orthodox congregation chartered in South Philadelphia in 1903. Its full name, Atereth Israel Anshe Brahin v’ Kholmeḥ, reflects its founders’ origins in Belarus.

In July 1908 the congregation purchased an existing building at the corner of 6th and Morris Streets and in 1915 added the adjacent brick row house. Rabbis associated with the congregation include Joseph Grossman (1864-1920) and Mordechai (Max) Yohlin (1883-1942). The congregation disbanded in 1978. Today the building is apartments.

(Source: South Philadelphia Neighborhood Study)

This pinkas, dated 1908, contains the bylaws of the congregation, the names of founding members and officers, and a list of people who contributed to paying off the mortgage. Unusually, the pinkas is entirely in Hebrew.

There is a second pinkas for this congregation’s Ḥevra Tehillim v’Gemilut Ḥasadim—perhaps the most exemplary immigrant pinkas of them all.

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