The first Jews to Dublin settled mostly on the north side of the city close to the Synagogues of Marlborough Green and later, Mary’s Abbey, near Capel St. The shift to the South Circular Road area around Portobello came later and the building of the Adelaide Rd. Synagogue in 1892 reflected how the community had developed on the south side of the city.
The museum is situated in what were two typical houses lived in by the new arrivals. Walworth Road was almost entirely occupied by Jewish families and the half square mile area surrounding it was densely populated with both Jews and Catholics living in harmony side by side.
Clanbrassil St. had many Jewish shops and businesses and there were several smaller synagogues throughout the neighbourhood. Before Zion Schools was established in 1932, children attended the local National Schools. There were many active communal organisations and institutions. The vivacity of Dublin’s Jewish community’s social, commercial, and religious life contributed greatly to the city’s cultural, business, and academic success.
Over time, families moved further south towards Rathmines and Terenure. Today, the population is around 1,500 some of whom have come to work here for the multi-national companies operating in Ireland.
Stratford School and College has provided Jewish education to primary and secondary students since the early 1950’s. Following the closing of the Adelaide Road Synagogue in 1999, the Dublin Hebrew Congregation was centred in the Terenure Synagogue (est. 1953). The Dublin Jewish Progressive Community’s Synagogue is located in Rathgar and there is another small Orthodox Synagogue in Terenure, a remnant of former times.
While the much-loved Maccabi Sports Club is no longer in existence, the Edmonston Golf Club is as popular as ever. The community is proud of its many achievements in the areas of sport, business, the arts, medicine, and law.
Although small in number, the Dublin Jewish Community remains active and a welcoming and robust presence in the Ireland of today.