Beth El Synagogue

Durham's first Jewish citizens arrived in the 1870s and set up retail businesses, then were joined by Russian emigrants brought to Durham to roll cigarettes. They organized a congregation in 1887, worshipping in rented space until buying a church building at Liberty and Queen streets for their first synagogue.

The congregation took the name "Beth El" in 1921, after raising a new synagogue at Queen and Holloway streets. That building served the growing community until 1957, when it moved to its new, Modernist home at Watts Street and Markham Avenue in Trinity Park.
Queen StreetHolloway StreetLiberty Street