Beth Hillel Synagogue of Carmel
Irving Ave. (next to Columbia Hall)
Millville, NJ 08332
Owner: Beth Hillel Congregation
Blk 69 Lot 5 (Map Pg 142)
Exempted 6.3 acres
Constructed during years between 1901 and 1907 following the design of the architect, Louis Mounier of Chestnut Avenue, Vineland, New Jersey, a French immigrant to the United States. The only modifications in the interior was the replacement of the original pews by modern seats purchased from Beth Abraham synagogue in Bridgeton because of the lack of comfort of the pews. Since it was built it has been in constant use by the orthodox Jews of the area, including its use at the present time.
It is one of the last remaining Synagogues in Cumberland County and is individually listed on the State and National Registers of Historic Places. It is also significant in the history of the immigration of Russian Jews to South Jersey under the aegis of Baron de Hirsch and the Hebrew Jewish Agricultural and Industrial Aid Society.
Brick construction. It has been preserved in excellent condition since it was built. The interior has a balcony for women worshipers, since this is the orthodox Jewish tradition that men and women be separated. The architect in his autobiography mentions his concern over the safety of the balcony construction, which later proved to be unfounded, as the balcony is perfectly sound. The Alter has an outstanding Ark made by master craftsmen William Pollock and H. Moskowitz. The Ark houses a superb collection of Torahs. The above-mentioned balcony is an interesting feature of the construction. It has on it drop leaf tables to hold the prayer books and these were built by Moses Horuvitz of Carmel. There are several small tables which have been used by the worshipers, one dated 1900. There is a large bookcase dating from about 1910 which contains diverse leather-bound volumes from the 19th century written in Hebrew, and one set in two volumes dated 1860 which was printed in Leindburg, Germany.