The Goldbergs: Two Generation Jewish Pioneers of Jefferson, Texas

The Goldbergs

Values Codes I-E-P

Louis Goldberg was born in Koenigsberg, Germany in 1832.

Along the way . . .

In 1851, Louis Goldberg emigrated to Louisiana.

Texas

Around 1867, Louis Goldberg moved to Texas, where he and his wife settled in the East Texas, steamboat town of Jefferson.

In the 1870s, Louis Goldberg opened a mercantile firm.

Community

In 1873, Louis Goldberg helped found the Hebrew Sinai Congregation in Jefferson.  The Hebrew Sinai Congregation is now the Jefferson Playhouse.

Hebrew Sinai Synagogue, now the Jefferson Playhouse, #WS 45/4

Hebrew Sinai Synagogue, now the Jefferson Playhouse,
#WS 45/4

As the Jews left Jefferson, the synagogue was given to the Jessie Allen Wise Garden Club in exchange for the garden clubs perpetual care of the Mt. Sinai Cemetery.

Family 

Louis Goldberg married Miriam Levy (1837-1916).

Their children were Isaac (1857-1910), Rachel (1866-1910), Jeannette Miriam (1868-1935) and Isaiah (1876-1923).

Louis Goldberg died in 1899 in Jefferson, Texas.  He is buried in the Mt. Sinai Cemetery with his family in the Goldberg Mausoleum.

Second Generation

Isaiah Goldberg graduated from the Agricultural & Mechanical College of Texas.  He served as Mayor of Jefferson, Texas from 1920-21.  Though many Jews, including his sister Jeannette, chose to leave Jefferson when the economy turned, Isaiah remained in the town of his birth for his whole life.

Isaac Goldberg (center) with classmates at Texas A&M, WSJH 45/4

Isaac Goldberg (center) with classmates at Texas A&M,
WSJH 45/4

Isaiah Goldberg was a 32nd degree Mason.

Isaish Goldberg passed away in 1923 .

He is buried in Jeffereson’s Mt. Sinai Cemetery.

 

Jeannette Miriam Goldberg graduated from Vassar College and Rutgers College.

She was the first Field Secretary of the National Council of Jewish Women.

In 1905, she became the secretary of the Jewish Chautauqua Society.

Later, Jeannette moved to Philadelphia and was an active member of the Pennsylvania Federation of Temple Sisterhoods, as well as the Temple Rodeph Shalom Sisterhood.

Goldberg Family Tomb in Jefferson, Texas, WS 45/4

Goldberg Family Tomb in Jefferson, Texas,
WS 45/4

For more information, see this issue of Western States Jewish History:

  • Louis Goldberg & Family: Pioneer Jews of Jefferson, Texas, by Jeff Campbell, WSJH, Vol. 45, Issue #4

This was a reader submitted article to Western States Jewish History. WSJH and the Jewish Museum of the American West is eager to publish Jewish Pioneer family history articles from your family. Contact us.