Temple Israel came into existence in 1923, when six Jewish families in West Palm Beach decided to create a synagogue which would inspire and perpetuate the ideals of progressive Judaism.
Charles and Emma B. Franke donated a lot on Broward Avenue as a building site, and organizers met on October 27, 1923 to draw up preliminary plans. The first officers elected included Max Sirkin, President; Julius Lax, Vice President; Harry Halpern, Secretary; Harry Sirkin, Sr., Treasurer; and Joseph Mendel, Chairman of the Board of Trustees. A committee was appointed to raise funds, a mortgage was obtained, and Temple Beth Israel (as it was then known) was officially dedicated in 1924 by its lay leadership. During the first year, a Sisterhood was organized with the goal of conducting fundraising events and providing social functions for the small community of Jewish families then living in West Palm Beach.
The congregation quickly grew to 45 families, but the collapse of the Florida land boom and the devastating hurricane of 1928 meant that mortgage payments could not be met. President Cy Argintar asked Mrs. Nathan B. Spingold for help in raising the necessary funds, which she did almost single-handedly. Five years later, when, an additional structure was added to the rear of the Temple at 2014 Broward Avenue for use as a Religious School and Recreation Hall, it was named Schwartzberg Hall in memory of her parents.
Read more: Our History
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Nancy & Don Carter Campus 1901 North Flagler Drive West Palm Beach, Florida 33407 P: (561) 833-8421 F: (561) 833-0571