When congregants enter the Seashore Haven Jewish Center in Gravesend, Brooklyn, they go a modest plaque hanging just outside the most important sanctuary.
“Fred Trump. Humanitarian,” declare the gold embossed, all-caps letters. “Let this plaque be a token of our sincerest appreciation, never to be overlooked, generally to be a shining mild to all adult males who have religion.”
The plaque, inscribed Dec. 15, 1956, is the most visible reminder of an unlikely and mostly not known friendship among the Lutheran actual estate developer — and father of President Trump — and this enclave of Orthodox Jews in Brooklyn.
“I would say that the Seaside Haven Jewish Heart would not be what it is today, if not for Mr. Fred Trump,” Rabbi Shimmy Silver explained to The Submit. “We are grateful for his kindness and without end indebted to him for what he has finished for our local community,”
In the 1950s, Brooklyn’s Jewish community was exploding as new arrivals — numerous of them Holocaust survivors — tried to begin new lives.
This presented a predicament for Rabbi Israel Wagner, whose congregation was starting off to outgrow the garage of a developing in Fred Trump’s Beach front Haven growth complex wherever it had been beforehand conference.
So in 1955, he established out to meet up with the landlord.
Wagner, a indigenous of Poland, wasn’t guaranteed what to anticipate when he met Fred Trump. They had by no means spoken and the rabbi only knew the actual estate magnate by his hard status.
The two strike it off immediately. Trump donated the land on Brooklyn’s Avenue Z, to Wagner’s congregation. A deed of sale from Oct 1955 demonstrates the land formally transferring from Fred to the new Jewish middle for $10. The elder Trump also financed much of the design costs, as the new household of worship was born a calendar year afterwards.
Trump and Wagner’s “mutual enjoy, respect, and friendship only deepened in excess of the following 48 many years,” reads the synagogue web page — in which the tale is prominently featured.
Inside of a small synagogue archive, modern day documents and photos explain to additional of the tale.
Trump under no circumstances missed the synagogues’s once-a-year fundraiser supper, which he attended through the 1970s and 80s — usually cutting checks for $2,500 and $3,500.
Pristinely preserved black and white images display a beaming Trump standing along with Wagner, the person he known as “my rabbi.”
The temple ongoing fantastic relations with the Trump spouse and children even right after Fred Trump’s loss of life in 1999. When Wagner’s widow turned 90 in Israel in the mid-2010s, Donald Trump sent birthday wishes, according to Rabbi Silver.
Some more mature users however have reminiscences of Fred Trump, and his sons Donald and Fred Jr., bouncing all over the previous family places of work just down the street on Avenue Z.
As for existing politics, Rabbi Silver said he was delighted with new Israel protection treaties secured by the president, but was otherwise mum, declining to opine about upcoming month’s election.
“We are a synagogue and Jewish community heart. Our sole aim is strengthening the Jewish id and observance of our group,” he claimed.