Our History

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Our History in Brief

  • In the Beginning

    In the Beginning

    The roots of Temple Beth El were planted in 1922 when the first organized Jewish religious services in San Pedro were held at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Levin.

    There were about 25 Jewish families then living in San Pedro.  

  • Our First Building

    Our First Building

    In 1935 the founding men and women of Temple Beth El built the San Pedro Jewish Community Center at the corner of 19th and Cabrillo Street.

    By 1938 about 75 Jewish families lived in San Pedro and the name “Congregation Beth El” was adopted.

    San Pedro Jewish Community Center
  • Our First Rabbis

    Our First Rabbis

    We welcomed our first resident Rabbi in 1940.

    Our longest tenured Rabbi was David Lieb, z'l, Rabbi Emeritus.

    Rabbi David Lieb, z'l
  • During World War II

    During World War II

    Our small congregation involved itself in the considerable support that San Pedro gave to the war effort.

  • “Shanghai Red” Eisenberg

    “Shanghai Red” Eisenberg

    San Pedro’s most “infamous” Jewish resident, “Shanghai Red” Eisenberg, hailed from Temple Beth El.

    The Shanghai Red Bar
  • Building Campaign of 2015

    Building Campaign of 2015

    In 2015 we undertook a major remodel of our facility to improve and update our infrastructure, provide handicapped access, transform a library into a Beit Midrash, and beautify and renew major parts of our building.

    Building Nearing Completion