Rabbi Jacob Rothschild | WABE 90.1 FM

Rabbi Jacob Rothschild

Brenna Beech / WABE

The role of Atlanta’s African-American leaders in the civil rights movement is well-documented. But, the city’s Jewish community supported the struggle too. 

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This is the 150th anniversary year of Atlanta’s oldest synagogue, called The Temple. The milestone has become an opportunity to honor The Temple's civil rights legacy.

Library of Congress

Tuesday is November 3.  

If we were to turn Atlanta's clock back 58 years to that date in 1957, we'd witness the release of the so-called "Ministers' Manifesto"─ calling for calm and reason during the on-going dispute over the integration of public schools.  

After the Supreme Court ruled that segregation of schools was unconstitutional in Brown v. Board of Education in 1954, resistance to that decision by many Southern whites increased.  

Atlanta's 'The Temple' Bombed 57 Years Ago

Oct 12, 2015
AP Photo

A dynamite bomb crumbled walls and devastated parts of The Temple in Atlanta on Oct. 12, 1958.

“The bombing was in retaliation for the outspoken activism of The Temple’s senior rabbi Jacob Rothschild,” according to The Temple’s website. Rothschild was an advocate for racial equality and desegregation.

White supremacists, calling themselves the “Confederate Underground,” made the bomb of 50 sticks of dynamite. The Temple’s website says that although the bomb created an equivalent of $750,000 today, there were no resulting injuries or deaths.