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In a quest to continue its public recognition and preservation of Indiana’s history and historic sites and structures, the Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology, in partnership with the Midwest Regional Office of the National Park Service, has intensified its commitment to the interpretation, preservation and representation of the Hoosier State’s historic Jewish communities. To better understand this nearly-forgotten Indiana history, the DHPA has created the Indiana Jewish Heritage Initiative, a project designed to encourage the preservation of remaining Jewish cultural sites and with them the history of these waning communities.
The Indiana Jewish Heritage Initiative, funded through the generous support of the National Park Service, promotes the conservation of Indiana's Jewish cultural resources through the identification, preservation, interpretation, and recognition of sites representative of historic Hoosier Jewish communities. To do this, the Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology has undertaken in-depth research of the state’s Jewish history to compile a list of potentially historic sites including structures such as commercial buildings, houses and cemeteries. The DHPA, along with its network of local and county historians, Jewish federations, synagogues, historical societies, and descendents, will investigate these sites, revealing the often overlooked and underrepresented histories that accompany both standing and former sites and structures.
The map below indicates counties containing sites and structures with significance to Jewish heritage with red highlighting. Click on a county to view the history. (NOTE: Many county histories are not available at this time but will be added in the future as our research progresses)