Louisiana Division/City Archives   New Orleans Public Library

Image of the Month
February 2010

This image of the Jewish Orphans' Home, at the corner of St. Charles and Jefferson Avenues, appeared in W. E. Myers' 1905 publication, The Israelites of Louisiana. This impressive structure, designed by Thomas Sully, was built in 1887 to replace an earlier home on Jackson Avenue and Chickasaw Street. The Home originally housed both orphans and widows, but Touro Infirmary took over responsibility for the ladies towards the end of the nineteenth century. Shortly thereafter, leaders in the Jewish community established a new institution to provide vocational education to the youngsters at the Home. The Isidore Newman Manual Training School opened its doors in 1905, just a few blocks away from the Home on Jefferson Avenue.

After World War II the facility ceased to operate as a home for orphans but continued to serve the Jewish community of New Orleans in other ways. This change in focus was accompanied by a change in name, to the Jewish Community Center. In the 1960s the old Home was demolished and a new modern structure replaced it. Today the Jewish Community Center provides educational, cultural, and health & wellness services from both its Uptown location and a newer facility in Jefferson Parish.

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