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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Cumberland in Allegany County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Ber Chayim (Well of Life) Congregation

Dedicated March 2, 1867

 
 
Ber Chayim (Well of Life) Congregation Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, September 1, 2019
1. Ber Chayim (Well of Life) Congregation Marker
Inscription.  Jewish citizenry in Cumberland can be documented back to 1816. By 1853 twelve Jewish families had taken residence in this growing city of 6150 people. It was this small group which applied to the Maryland General Assembly for an Act incorporating the Ber Chayim (Well of Life) Congregation on May 23, 1853. Steps were taken in 1865 to acquire a site for the temple and by 1866 the temples construction was completed at the corner of South Center and Union Streets at a cost of $ 7,427.02. The synagogue was dedicated on March 2, 1867. Weekly dues of 25 cents, offerings, and help from other communities paid the construction cost. Ber Chayim was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. It is the oldest continuously operating synagogue building in the State of Maryland, the sixth oldest Reform Congregation in America and the tenth oldest synagogue in country.
 
Erected 2017 by Ber Chayim Congregation, Historic Preservation Commission City of Cumberland, Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation.
 
Location. 39° 39.051′ 
Ber Chayim (Well of Life) Congregation Marker image. Click for full size.
By Jerry Klinger
2. Ber Chayim (Well of Life) Congregation Marker
N, 78° 45.637′ W. Marker is in Cumberland, Maryland, in Allegany County. Marker is on West Union Street just east of South Centre Street, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 100 South Centre Street, Cumberland MD 21502, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Christ's (St. Paul's) Lutheran Church (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Cumberland Veterans Memorial (about 400 feet away); The First National Bank and Trust Company of Western Maryland (about 400 feet away); A Boom for Cumberland (about 600 feet away); Capture of Generals B.F. Kelly and George Crook (about 600 feet away); Capture of Generals (about 700 feet away); McNeills Raid (about 700 feet away); Military Hospital (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Cumberland.
 
Regarding Ber Chayim (Well of Life) Congregation. First Permanent Jewish House of Worship in Western Maryland and the 6th oldest, continually functioning Synagogue in the Country.
 
Categories. Churches & Religion
 
Ber Chayim Congregation Building image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, September 1, 2019
3. Ber Chayim Congregation Building
Plaque on the building image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, September 1, 2019
4. Plaque on the building
 

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Credits. This page was last revised on September 7, 2019. This page originally submitted on May 25, 2019, by Jerry Klinger of Boynton Beach, Florida. This page has been viewed 85 times since then. Photos:   1. submitted on September 7, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.   2. submitted on May 25, 2019, by Jerry Klinger of Boynton Beach, Florida.   3, 4. submitted on September 7, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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