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Indiana Department of Natural Resources

Historic Preservation & Archaeology > Learn About Topics > Cultures > Jewish Heritage Initiative > Whitley DHPA Jewish Historical Resources

Whitley County MapWhitley County

Whitley County Jewish History Jews living in Whitley County during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries were a part of, not apart from, mainstream culture. According to one report one hundred Jewish individuals lived in the northeastern Indiana county in 1900. Most Whitley Jews resided in Columbia City, but a few families lived in South Whitley and one family lived in Churubusco. Possibly due to their small number, the local Jewish community did not erect a temple or synagogue, a Hebrew school, or kosher businesses. Rather, Whitley Jews befriended their non-Jewish neighbors, attended public schools, occasionally went to Christian Sunday school, and joined interfaith choirs. Yet through individual and group activities, the Whitley Jewry maintained their cultural heritage.

Chicago Fair Building, Columbia City
Chicago Fair Building, Columbia City