Today, fewer than fifteen Jewish people live in Natchez, though over two hundred and fifty people filled Temple B'nai Israel's sanctuary when it opened in 1905.
The temple stands as a proud legacy to the town's Jewish heritage, and Natchez's spirit still emanates from the synagogue, elegant antebellum and Victorian homes, King Cotton, and merchant life Under-the-Hill. The temple houses the oldest Jewish congregation in Mississippi (1843). Its stained glass windows and ark of Italian marble make this synagogue one of the loveliest and most historic in the region. The century-old organ is listed on the National Register of Historic Organs. Temple B'nai Israel is open to the public with the support of local docents from the congregation and through its preservation agreement with the Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience.
The Natchez Jewish Experience includes:
Current Exhibit- Of Passover and Pilgrimage: The Natchez Jewish Experience
From the first Sephardic family that settled Natchez in the late 1700s to the height of Jewish trade and business in the 1800s and the construction of the second temple in 1905, the exhibit documents the history and everyday life of Natchez's Jewish families. Extensive use of historic Henry C. Norman photographs make this exhibit a fascinating cultural study.
Tours are conducted year-round by appointment. Please call (601) 362-6357.
Location: 213 South Commerce Street at Washington Street
Tours: Package tours are available for groups wishing to travel to Jewish sites of interest through Mississippi, Louisiana, and Tennessee. Please call the ISJL at (601) 362-6357.
For further information call: