Synagogues  /  Anshe Emes

Congregation Anshe Emes was founded as Russian Hasidic Shul on the East Side of Buffalo and was also known as the Little Hickory Shul.


Congregation Anshe Emes (c.1906-1947) was founded as a Russian Hasidic shul on the East Side around 1906 in a home of a founding member Morris Simon on Mortimer Street near Peckham. It formerly incorporated in 1908.  Members eventually bought a building at 209 Hickory Street in 1912 from Brith Israel and the Anshe Emes congregation became known as the “Little Hickory Shul”.  A small cemetery at 548 Pine Ridge was also established in Cheektowaga, that is now administered by the Jewish Federation Cemetery Corporation.

The congregation was led by two long serving Presidents: Morris Simon 1910 to 1918 and Morris Bergman from 1920 to 1932. Morris Simon (1880-1952) helped establish the short-lived council of Orthodox congregations known as the Jewish Kehillah of Buffalo that formed in 1918, and supported other Jewish organizations and charities, most notably the Rosa Coplon Jewish Old Folks Home. Two rabbis were heavily identified with Anshe Emes. Until just before his death in 1932, Rabbi Abraham M. Frankel (d. 1932, originally from Vilna), served the congregation for over a decade. He was followed by Rabbi Samuel Gitin (1872-1942), who served from 1931 to 1942. In 1947, the congregation relocated to North Buffalo merging with Brith Israel, the former Big Hickory Shul, which rented space at 1191 Hertel Avenue. A synagogue designed by Jack Kushin was built at 1287 Hertel Avenue and the merged congregation became Brith Israel-Anshe Ames. The 390-seat building was formerly dedicated during services on 30 August, 1954 and a plaque erected in honor of Morris Simon was added to the building below the cornerstone.


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There are currently no known archives or images of this congregation. We are seeking any photographs, documents, mementos or written recollections relating to Congregation Anshe Emes (sometimes Anshe Ames) and also known as the “Little Hickory Shul” for digitization. If you have materials you’d like to make available for this purpose, please contact us.