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National Register of Historic Places Program

The National Register of Historic Places is the official list of the Nation's historic places worthy of preservation. Authorized by the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the National Park Service's National Register of Historic Places is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect America's historic and archeological resources.


Property Name Congregation Tifereth Yehuda Veyisroel
Reference Number 13000632
State New York
County Ulster
Town Kerhonkson
Street Address 24-26 Minnewaska Trail
Multiple Property Submission Name N/A
Status Lisetd 8/27/2013
Areas of Significance social history, architecture
Link to full file
Congregation Tifereth Yehuda Veyisroel Synagogue is significant as a representative intact example of an early twentieth century vernacular synagogue in New Yorks Catskill Mountain resort region. The building was constructed in 1924 to serve Jewish farmers and merchants in the small Ulster County hamlet of Kerhonkson and the immediately surrounding area. Primarily immigrants from Eastern Europe, the newcomers were part of a wave of thousands of Jewish farmers who relocated to a small area of Ulster, Sullivan and Delaware Counties in the 1910s and 20s to avoid persecution in their homelands. One of approximately twenty surviving synagogues built in the Catskills before 1950, the building is typical of the type, combining decorative and functional features characteristic of eastern European orthodox synagogues with forms and materials typical of regional vernacular architecture. As is characteristic, the Kerhonkson synagogue is a rectangular building, three bays wide, with a Baroque-inspired parapet on the faade. Like others of the type, it was originally clad in stucco on all four sides (the faade is now concealed by asbestos shingles) and features opaque and colored glass windows incorporating Hebrew symbols. The interior features a vestibule and sanctuary and a traditional orthodox plan, defined by a central bimah with pews facing it on three sides, an ark, and a gallery on three sides that originally provided separate seating for women. Like others in the set, the Kerhonkson synagogue was constructed with stock building materials, such as standard moldings and pressed tin, creating a space that is both similar to the regional architecture of the period and evocative of ancient religious traditions. Congregation Tifereth Yehuda Veyisroel Synagogue has been the spiritual and social center for Kerhonksons Jewish community for nearly ninety years. The nomination also includes the c1954 Community House, which was constructed as a social hall and Hebrew school. Both buildings retain a substantial level of integrity.


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