Ahawas Achim record book cover, Bangor, 1853Item 59260 info
Bangor Public Library
It is hardest to maintain a firm grasp on our roots when we are alone. In groups, in a community, we can find strength in one another.
In order to build this communal cohesion, the six Jewish families of Bangor established Ahawas Achim, or "Brotherly Love," in 1849.
Ahawas Achim was the first synagogue established in Maine. As there were so few Jews in the city, creating an organization that brought them together and fostered a unified sense of purpose was very important to maintaining Jewish identity.
Ahawas Achim advocated for the observance of kosher laws and purchased land for a Jewish cemetery in 1849. This demonstrates the organization's dedication to tradition and community, which it upheld until its dissolution in 1856.