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A Brief History

Synagogue Emanu-El:  A Brief History

Summer 1947
Seventy-three charter members gathered on Sullivan's Island.  They name the group Synagogue Emanu-El; its Sisterhood is founded at the subsequent meeting.  Services that summer are held in a church at Ft. Moultrie.

December 18, 1955
After a meeting in a former Army chapel for seven years, a permanent sanctuary on Gordon Street is dedicated.

Kronsberg Library is established.

Chapel is dedicated in memory of Dr. Matthew Steinberg (the chapel would be rededicated in honor of Dr. Steinberg and his four brothers in 1979).

The Gordon Street property is sold; Emanu-El services are held for the next two years at the JCC on Raoul Wallenberg Boulevard and the Gaillard Municipal Auditorium (High Holidays).

December 9, 1979
The new facility at 5 Windsor Drive, under the direction of Howard Hoffman, is dedicated.  The congregation continues to meet there to this day.

February 1981
Jewish Theological Seminary Chancellor Gershon D. Cohen speaks at Emanu-El.

September 21, 1989
Hurricane Hugo strikes Charleston; High Holiday services take place nonetheless, despite occasional rainfall inside the sanctuary.  The synagogue overcomes serious damage to its roof and the destruction of 127 trees on the property.

November 1, 1997
Synagogue Emanu-El celebrates its 50th Anniversary Gala at the Charleston Hilton.

Completion of construction that includes a new lobby and new locations for synagogue offices and library.

August 19, 2012
Congregation votes overwhelmingly to amend its constitution to add more inclusive membership categories.

December 24, 2012
COSY, Emanu-El's United Synagogue Youth chapter, wins USY International Chapter of the Year.

April 14, 2018
Synagogue Emanu-El celebrates its 70th anniversary with a gala at the Charleston Marriott.

Sat, December 9 2023 26 Kislev 5784