History of the Jews in Brazos County, Texas

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Jewish settlement in Brazos County, Texas, began in 1865. This history includes the present Jewish communities and individuals of Brazos County and Texas A&M University.[1][2]

Temple Freda[edit]

One of the first Jewish temples in Brazos County is Temple Freda, which was built in 1912 and added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places on September 22, 1983. Temple Freda is one of the three oldest religious buildings in the county.[3] The temple is named for Ethel Freda Kaczer (1860–1912), wife of the president of the Jewish community when the synagogue was built.[3] The temple being named after a woman is unique for a Jewish place of worship.[4][5]

Texas A&M Hillel[edit]

Texas A&M Hillel is the oldest Jewish campus organization in the United States using the name "Hillel."[6] Founded in 1920, three years before the founding of the first official Hillel Foundation at University of Illinois, Texas A&M Hillel began as the TAMC Menorah Club and was organized in 1916 by Jacob Joseph Taubenhaus. He and his wife Esther founded the "TAMC Hillel Club" in 1920, with assistance from Rabbi David Lefkowitz.[6][7][8] In 1958, Texas A&M Hillel opened up a building of its own.

Peter Tarlow, a rabbi, was the executive director of Texas A&M Hillel from 1983 to 2013.[6][8][9]

Chabad of Brazos Valley[edit]

Chabad of Brazos Valley, also known as the Chabad Center of Texas A&M, was founded on July 10, 2007.[10][11] In 2007, the organization began participating in an international inititiative among Jewish students to write a Torah scroll.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lone Stars of David: The Jews of Texas Brandeis University Press page 190
  2. ^ Page, Bill. Before Temple Freda: Jewish residents of Brazos County, Texas, 1865-1913. 1998.
  3. ^ a b "A Guide to Historic Brazos Valley" (PDF). Brazos Heritage Society. 2003. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2008-10-01. Retrieved 2007-10-22.
  4. ^ Temple Freda, Bryan, Texas
  5. ^ International Survey of Jewish Monuments record for Freda Temple
  6. ^ a b c Texas A&M Hillel History Archived 2009-03-07 at the Wayback Machine Texas A&M Hillel Retrieved on 2008-07-09
  7. ^ From Christian Science to Jewish Science: Spiritual Healing and American Jews Oxford University Press page 160
  8. ^ a b Gabrielle Birkner (2005-05-06). "A Cushy Fit In Bush Country". The Jewish Week. Archived from the original on 2007-05-30. Retrieved 2007-12-30.
  9. ^ Lacy Ledford (2004-06-30). "Senate approves $20 million for A&M's NERRTC". The Battalion. Retrieved 2007-12-31.
  10. ^ "The Chabad Jewish Student Center provides a place of comfort for students regardless of religion". The Battalion. College Station, TX. January 22, 2008.
  11. ^ "New Jewish Center Opens Doors". The Battalion. College Station, TX. September 12, 2007.
  12. ^ "Student Unity Torah initiative at Chabad – Texas A&M University". Jewish Herald-Voice. December 20, 2007.

Further reading[edit]