The Lower East Side of Manhattan is now filled with lots of young hipsters, restaurants and trendy bars but many people don’t know is that it is filled with lots of Jewish history.
At the Lower East Side Tenement museum, visitors can get a first-hand look at a tenement apartment that was home to working class immigrants. Guests will see how immigrants survived the depression. Social activist Ruth Abram founded the tenement house when she wanted to build a museum that honored America’s immigrants. The museum can only be seen by a guide tour. Not only is there a tour of the building, but also a tour of the neighborhood.
The Museum at Eldridge Street is a National historic landmark that was designed more than 100 years ago and became the first Eastern European Orthodox Jewish synagogue in America. Get a chance to learn and discover the history and architecture of the Eldridge Street Synagogue. Some of their annual events include concerts, lectures, and festivals.
Another landmark is The Bialstoker Synagogue, a historic orthodox synagogue. The building itself is a piece of history that was built in 1826 in the late Federal style. Be sure to check out the small break in the wall in the women’s gallery that was a stop in the Underground Railroad. The synagogue is open to people of all religious levels and hosts regular Shabbat services.
Get to the Streit’s Matzo Company to see one of the last neighborhoods matzo companies in the United States. Aaron Streit and his wife opened the factory on the lower east side back in in 1916. Check out how matzo is moved on a conveyer belt and then cut into separate pieces.
Don’t forget to check out some of these other lower east side landmarks including Katz’s Delicatessen, the oldest deli in New York, Yonah Schimmel’s Knish Bakery and Russ & Daughters, that was run by the Russ family since 1914.