The Petition to Save Beth Hamedrash Hagodol on Norfolk Street

Posted on: March 4th, 2013 at 11:20 am by

beth-hamidrash-norfolk

You read our earlier plea to save this priceless historic building at 60 Norfolk, Beth Hamedrash Hagodol, most recently the home of the first Russian-American Jewish Synagogue in the nation.

The time is now.

Neighborhood activists Friends of the Lower East Side just started an online petition to help save this remarkable 163-year-old building. Its history is rich, having been both a church and a synagogue, thereby appealing to a universal group of people (should religion even be a factor).

Per the email blast:

Remove not the ancient landmarks that thy ancestors set up, Proverb 22:28 [ed: AMEN, AMEN, AMEN!]

Join the campaign to preserve a 163-year-old landmarked building.  Oppose granting of a Hardship Application leading to a permit to demolish Beth Hamedrash Hagodol, 60 Norfolk Street, and replace it with a luxury condo.

1850:  Erected as the Norfolk Street Baptist Church – a congregation that evolved into Riverside Church on the Upper West Side. The building was later occupied by a Methodist church.

1885:  Acquired by Congregation Beth Hamedrash Hagodol and converted into the first Russian-American Jewish synagogue in the nation.  It became known for its eminent rabbis and as a center for prayer, religious study and the interpretation of Jewish law.

1967:  Granted landmark designation by the Landmarks Commission, acting on a request by the synagogue’s spiritual leader Rabbi Ephraim Oshry, a survivor of the Holocaust and a distinguished religious scholar.

2012:  Hardship Application submitted to the NYC Landmarks Commission by the present rabbi who had refused offers of funding for building maintenance and allowed the structure to deteriorate.

You can also write into the Landmarks Preservation Commission and ask them to deny the application to demolish this structure.

Come one, come all NYC.

Help save our history.

Recent Stories

300lafayette-1
300 Lafayette Bills itself as ‘Cutting Edge’ with New Ad Banners

Alive for many months, the project site at 300 Lafayette Street is finally ready to go big on the hype. Banners pimping the new seven-story commercial building were affixed to the sidewalk bridge earlier this month, promising “cutting edge.” Hard to believe it’s already been a year since the BP gas station at the corner of […]

da-falafel-guys-rivington
‘Da Falafel Guys’ Coming to Rivington Street, Forged from the Remains of the Falafel Shop

The retail reanimation of 127 Rivington Street includes a bizarro version of its former self. Seven months later, no longer known as the Falafel Shop, the tiny store is now home to something called Da Falafel Guys. The signage and offering are nearly identical to the predecessor, but it’s under different ownership. Da Falafel Guys […]

trump-dick-face-orchard_wm
Dick-Faced Trump Paster Appears at Hanksy’s ‘Dump Trump’ Wall on Orchard Street

It was a beacon of anti-Trumpism for more than a year. Until this past January when Hanksy’s Dump Trump Mural was whitewashed. The narrative at the time suggested that the building owners received a letter from the city last summer to clean up this shit or face fines. But the real reason was that they […]

thelma-clinton-gate
Thelma on Clinton is reborn as ‘Lil Gem’ Lebanese Restaurant

Chef-restaurateur Melissa O’Donnell delivered on her promise to return to the Lower East Side with a new concept. Indeed, more than a month after shuttering the three-year-old Thelma on Clinton, the space at 29 Clinton Street has been transformed into a Lebanese restaurant called Lil’ Gem. Evoking her Lebanese heritage again – Thelma was named […]

138bowery-update-1_wm
New Condo-Hotel on the Bowery Ascends Halfway to 8 Stories

Now that the centuries-old Federal-style houses are a footnote in the pages of local history, the next chapter is foisted upon us. It’s been a few months since our last progress report on the status of the historically significant 138-142 Bowery development site. In that time, activity has been swift. The forthcoming condo-hotel has already […]