At Monterey Square, this temple is home to Georgia’s oldest Jewish congregation, the third-oldest congregation in the U.S. Designed by architect Henry G. Harrison, who had previously designed only Christian churches, this is the nation’s only Gothic synagogue (ca. 1878). Its founding members were Spanish, Portuguese, and German Jews who came to Savannah in 1733 to escape persecution in their homelands. With them, the group carried a precious relic, the Sepah Torah, the oldest Torah in America. The temple today houses a museum with more than 1,800 historical artifacts on view, including portraits, religious objects, documents, and letters to the congregation from presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison.
- Frommer's Staff