Ruined Abandoned Synagogue of Anshe Kenesseth Israel

abandoned synagogue in chicago

The former Anshe Kenesseth Israel synagogue (later the Friendship Baptist Church and then the Shepherd’s Temple Missionary Baptist Church) was at 3411 West Douglas Boulevard, in North Lawndale, the West Side of Chicago, Illinois.

forgotten jewish church abandoned

This synagogue was demolished in 2012 but it began in 1913. It was built by the Aroner & Somers architects for the predominately Jewish area of the time for a price of $100,000 USD. As time progressed the area became less and less dominated by Judaism and almost all synagogues in the area were sold to churches in the 1950’s.

Friendship Baptist Church bought the building in 1962 and it is reported that Martin Luther King Junior spoke at the church in 1966. He stood on the front steps during his fair housing campaign. This was one of the many points that preservationists had on their list of reasons of why the church should not be demolished. Friendship Baptist Church moved to a new building in 1982 with Shepherd’s Temple Missionary Baptist Church moving in after. They occupied the site until 1997 and the building was vacant until its demolition in 2012.

Before its demolition it had been looted of anything of value and left unto the elements.

Where is the now vacant lot of the formerly abandoned Anshe Kenesseth Israel synagogue located? You can find it with these coordinates. 41.862197,-87.711109

All photos used and licensed under CC By NC SA 2.0. All photos by Eric Allix Rogers.

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