The Pioneer Jewish Organizations of Butte, Montana


The Hebrew Benevolent Association – founded in 1881.

First High Holy Day services were held by the Society in Butte.

The Northern Pacific Railroad deeded land to the Society in 1885 for a Jewish cemetery.

The cemetery was deeded over to B’nai Israel Congregation, in 1905.


Congregation B’nai Israel – founded in 1885 and its building constructed in 1903.

Congregation B’nai Israel was dedicated in 1904.

After the Jewish community split into one reform and two orthodox groups, this temple was built for use by the reform congregation.

The three-story masonry building features a corner bell tower with an onion dome roof, an ornately corbelled front gable with rosette window beneath, and semicircular brick arches.

In 1969, the three groups reunited and a congregation of thirty families now worship together in the synagogue.

B'nai Israel Synagogue Butte, Montana, Vintage Postcard

B’nai Israel Synagogue Butte, Montana,
Vintage Postcard

Adath Israel an Orthodox Synagogue on Silver Street – was purchased from the German Lutheran Church in 1902.

Joseph Weinberg, B. Banks, I. Simon, H. Auerbach, and B. Kopald were active in creating this project.

Near-by mining weakened the structure so Anaconda Company bought the property from the congregation.

The building was demolished.

Eventually, the congregation re-merged with Congregation B’nai Israel.




  • Coleman, Julie L.  Golden Opportunities: A Biographical History of Montana’s Jewish Communities.  Helena, Montana: SkyHouse Publishers, 1994.


Samantha Silver is our Curator for this Jewish Organizations of Butte, Montana Exhibit.

We need pictures and more information to help fill out this exhibit.