History

In 1892, a group of Russian Jewish immigrants established the New England Hebrew Farmers of the Emanuel Society in Chesterfield, Connecticut. They built a one-room wooden synagogue and created a thriving rural Jewish community in the Chesterfield-Salem-Oakdale area. Although that Jewish community is now gone, the descendants of those early immigrants reactivated the Society in 2006 in order to preserve the remains of the community’s historic site in Chesterfield and to honor the memories of our ancestors who established a new life in America.

Explore our materials that present the community’s history in a number of ways: a text summary and interactive timeline of the early community; a virtual tour of the historic site as it looks today; an archive of historic photos; and a summary of what the reactivated Society is doing today to research the history of the Chesterfield Jewish community and preserve the historic site.