The Atlantic Jewish Council is dedicated to enhancing the quality of Jewish life in Atlantic Canada and promoting the continuity of Jewish communities in the region.
The museum has in many respects become the public face of the Jewish community in Saint John. Its primary role is to collect, preserve and display the history of the Jewish community.
Articles of Interest
Saint John is centrally located on the southern New Brunswick coast on the Bay of Fundy at the mouth of the St. John River. Because it is the only city on the Bay of Fundy – home of the world’s highest tides – Saint John is known as the anchor of the Bay of Fundy Experience.
As Canada’s first incorporated city (est. 1785), Saint John has been welcoming people from Eastern Europe, the United Kingdom and Ireland for 400 years. The City of Saint John has a population of approximately 70,000, and 120,000 in Greater Saint John.
Uptown is a hub for arts, culture and heritage, and its recreational and cultural facilities are among the best in the Atlantic provinces. The city is home to the province’s heart and trauma centre and the largest hospital in New Brunswick
Saint John has a history as a hub for business, industry and innovation. Creativity and ingenuity have always driven the economy of the city. The variable pitch propeller, the cable ferry, and the steam powered foghorn were invented here.Today, ICT, knowledge, advanced manufacturing, energy, healthcare and tourism sectors continue to form Saint John’s economic base.
The founding of the Saint John Jewish Community began in 1858 with the arrival of Solomon Hart and his family. They sailed from England to New York City, and by chance or circumstance, arrived in Saint John and made it their permanent home where Mr. Hart established a tobacco business.
In 1860, Saint John was the third largest urban centre in British North America and larger than Halifax. The death of a child prompted the establishment and consecration of the Green-Hart Cemetery which is still in existence and used by the descendants of these families. This ultimately led to the establishment of a community cemetery.
The first Jewish wedding in 1882, Elizabeth Hart and Louis Green, was a social event that included the elite of the city including top civic and political functionaries without regard to religious affiliation.
The second wave of immigration began around the turn of the 20th century, when hundreds of Jewish immigrants arrived in the port of Saint John from Eastern Europe, most of them on their way to other centres.
This second wave came to escape religious persecution and poverty. Those who fell ill were quarantined on Partridge Island where some are buried. Members of the Saint John community founded the first Jewish Immigrant Aid Society in Canada, in 1896. Many of these immigrants became the leaders and sculptors of the Saint John Community.
The third wave, due principally to the Second World War, brought only a few immigrants who settled in Saint John, and by 1987 all of these had departed for various reasons. Since 2010, the Saint John Jewish community has renewed the Habonim mission anticipating a new wave of immigration. Today, the Jewish community of Saint John numbers approximately 35 families.
Moncton has the largest metropolitan population in New Brunswick and the second largest in the Maritime Provinces. One of Canada’s top magazines, Chatelaine has named Moncton as one of the best places to live and work in Canada. With a population of approximately 124,000 in Greater Moncton, of which one third is Francophone (French speaking) and two thirds Anglophone (English speaking), Moncton residents take advantage of one of the lowest cost of living environments in the country.
The City of Moncton is an attractive location for immigrants looking at Canada as a place to move their families because of existing immigration support, its excellent quality of life, low crime rate, health care system and economic opportunities.
In the Moncton region you will find two world-class hospitals, three universities including the largest French-language university outside Québec Université de Moncton, multiple parks for walking/biking and many four-season entertainment opportunities. Moncton is close to the spectacular Bay of Fundy and some of the warmest beaches north of Virginia.
Historically, Moncton has been a transportation hub; lately, it has become known as a centre for telecommunications. Its population of 125,000 is rapidly growing along with its Jewish community. The Moncton community has recently experienced growth in its Jewish population, with an influx of young Jewish people attracted by the expanding government and university sectors. Moncton is now the second largest Jewish community in Atlantic Canada, boasting approximately 100 families. The community is served by an Orthodox Synagogue Tiferes Israel.