Where was the first synagogue opened in NSW? When was the Hakoah Club bombed? Who was Australia’s second Jewish Governor-General?
The Australian Jewish Historical Society maintains a dynamic timeline of Jews and the Jewish experience in Australia since the start of European Colonisation in 1788, highlighting major events and figures in the participation of the Jewish people in Australia history, and the development of its community.
Jewish History in Australia can be explored via the Timeline at a high level or in detail, extracting important dates by subject area, including: Politics, Military, Synagogues, Events, etc.
Special thanks to Harvey Cohen.
Over a thousand people of Jewish descent estimated to have been sent to Australia as convicts during the next 60 years.
Proposed to Judge-Advocate David Collins to establish a night watch, 'to be selected among the convicts for the purpose to stem the frequent commission of offences in the settlement'.
Jewish convicts arrived from the then failing colony of Sorrento on Port Phillip Bay to Sullivans Cove – now the city of Hobart.
Johnson's common-law wife was Esther Abrahams of the First Fleet who was Jewish.
Concealed his identity at the time.
Another contender is Ann Bocherah, the free wife of Solomon Bocherah, a Second Fleet convict arriving in mid 1790. She was the second Jew to arrive free after Rosanna Abrahams, the infant daughter of Esther Abrahams born in Newgate prison.
One of the few convicts with Jewish knowledge
Cohen is authorized by the British Chief Rabbi Solomon Hirschel to perform Jewish marriages. Cohen superintended the formal establishment of the Sydney Hebrew Congregation in 1832.
Michael Hyam received a grant of 41 acres of waterfront land in 1859 and the beach and town arenamed after him.
Levey trusted Peel as he was 2nd cousin of British P.M., Sir Robert Peel, and that Peel deigned to become the partner of a Jewish former convict. Levey paid dearly for this misjudgment.
Held at the Argyle Street, Hobart home of wealthy emancipist Judah Solomon.
Sefer Torah purchased by subscription. Services become more regular.
Substantial synagogue erected 1879. Closed 1898.
Ketubah still exists.
First synagogue in Australia was opened in rented premises
Resumed in 1901 for Central Railway Station.
Jewish convicts were married prior, but such marriages had been performed by the Anglican ministers, hence historians do not accept these as Jewish weddings.
Cousin of Sir Moses Montefiore
Burnt down in 1840.
One of the venture's backers is Sir Moses Montefiore.
Synagogue in use 1844-1877
Constructed on land donated by Judah Solomon. Now the oldest synagogue in Australia and is still in use
The others were Goulburn (1848) and Raphael's Ground (1867).
Victorian Jewish population increases from 200 in 1848 to 3000 1861.
Over 50 Jewish MPs served during the colonial period. 1849-1900
When government funding ended, both schools disband: in Melbourne in 1872 and Sydney in 1880.
Earlier Manastra Flatow, another German Jew, was one of those arrested in connection with the burning of the Eureka Hotel.
After separating from the Melbourne Hebrew Congregation.
Served numerous terms as NSW Treasurer and Post Master-General.
Due to a split in the Sydney Congregation
1790-1864. Australia's first tram fatality
They meet in rented auction rooms and a Masonic temple pending the consecration of its first synagogue in 1886.
Operated till 1882 when Government aid for denominational schools stopped.
Headed by Rabbi Samuel Herman of Ballarat.
Now oldest in Melbourne and only synagogue in the CBD.
Replaces York St synagogue
Second oldest ongoing synagogue in NSW - 3rd in Australia after Hobart and Launceston. Religious services at the home of Abram & Naomi Solomon
Foundation stone laid 7 July 1885
Declined to be sworn in "because of the hostility of the then current members of the bench"
Synagogue opened in 1897
A founding trustee and president of the trustees.
3 years before the first Zionist Conference in Basle, Switzerland.
Editor Alfred Harris
Not affiliated to any particular congregation and performed a number of Chupahs.
Isaac Isaacs, Vaiben Louis Solomon, Elias Solomon, Pharez Phillips, in the House of Representatives.
Protest (at the Czarist policies that promoted this pogrom) meeting held at Sydney Town Hall by concerned citizens of all faiths. Speakers included Abraham Pearlman, storekeeeper in Boggabri (NSW), born in Kishinev.
Zionist and Yiddish activities.
Closed 1991. Subject to Arson attack.
Dowling and Napier Streets Paddington
13 per cent of the Jewish community enlisted in the Australian Imperial Forces, compared to 9.2 per cent of the general population.
57 Jewish ANZACS were killed in action at Gallipoli.
Only General to survive unscathed
For the 'most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty' at Battle of Lone Pine
For bravery and gallantry in voluntarily rescued wounded men during the second batlle of Ypres. Later Member for Melbourne in the Australian House of Representatives.
Jews in New South Wales constitute only 0.4% of the population.
Leads the Australian Corps through the victorious battles of the closing stages of the war.
Australia's first suburban congregation
1920-25. Earlier Governor of Gold Coast, Hong Kong & Natal, Chairman of the British G.P.O. and Chairman of the Inland Revenue.
Later became the NSW branch of the National Council of Jewish Women of Australia, NCJWA.
Sir John Monash is elected its first President
Estimated 250,000 mourners attended state funeral.
Other Jewish presidents of VFL Clubs in the 1930's were Dr D. Berman of North Melbourne; Reuben Sackville of St Kilda, Ewart Joseph of Fitzroy.
Led by Isaac Nachman Steinberg Does not eventuate
Later renamed the Australian Maccabi council, and in 1957 Maccabi Australia.
First Liberal/Progressive Synagogue built in Australia.
Aids the establishment of Temple Emanuel (now Emanuel Synagogue)
Now known as Emanuel Synagogue
Australian representative, White says Australia would not undertake "any scheme of large-scale foreign migration". Sydney Morning Herald editorial condemns White's speech.
7000-9000 Jews able to take up the visas under the "Victims of Oppression" allotment before the outbreak of World World II stopped the program.
Led by William Cooper
The club went on to be four time National Soccer League champions.
Proposal for settling Jewish refugees in the Kimberley region of Western Australia is a public issue.
568 Refugees incarcerated as enemy aliens in camp at Hay.
Now in East Hawthorn
A critical event in Australian Jewish history as British apologists, notably Sir Isaac Isaacs, lost all community credibility.
Forerunner was the NSW Jewish Advisory Board founded in 1932 and comprising representatives of synagogues only
Forerunner of Moriah College.
Recommends that post-war Australia should foster immigration from Britain and the European continent
Open letter to Sir Isaacs Isaacs, who sought to lead a crusade against Zionism.
Jewish migrants are excluded from all Australian government sponsored programs. 1947-52
Radical changes are implemented in immigration policy to allow for massive post war migration to Australia. Continues under the Menzies governments.
Leifer was former head of religion and principal of Adass Israel School and fled Melbourne for Israel in March 2008
including Konrad Kalejs, who serves as immigration officer in Bonegilla from 1950-53
Established in St. Kilda Road with 143 students.
This was "the first diplomatic mission of Israel for 2000 years".
Dr Ronald Mendelsohn elected first president.
1961 Federal Member for Phillip. 1965 State member for Bondi. Was responsible for establishing Australia’s consumer laws
Ultimately launching him to worldwide acclaim.
Real name Harry Van Der Sluice
Later became Lord Mayor of Melbourne
With 11 pupils
Melbourne becomes the Diaspora community with the highest percentage of Holocaust survivors.
High School opened 1982
Response to 6 Day War
Currently artistic director of the Komische Oper Berlin.
Established in 1963, Meriton has built more than 77,000 apartments
Recommendation by the Road Safety Committee chaired by Walter Jona MP.
Also made Knight of the Order of the British Empire (KBE) in 1974. Also knighted by the Pope
Features the sharing of facilities for both orthodox and liberal services.
The Whitlam government introduces multiculturalism as official policy, bringing to an end the White Australia policy
Zelman Cowen proposes political solution in public letter. Kerr's secretary, David Smith, prorogues parliament on steps of (old) Parliament House.
Original name was Rapoport.
Held office 8/12/1977-29/7/1982
Estimated over 7000
First instance of international islamic terrorism in Australia.
Relocated to Randwick in 1985
Minister for arts, heritage and the environment until 1987.
For contribution to international architecture.
Nominal rank of Brigadier
Ian Bersten president. Similar entity in Melbourne (Julie Ruth)
Increased to 53 during 1991
Five synagogues attacked by arson in Sydney during the Gulf War
The Special Investigations Unit closed in June 1992
Claimant Eddie Mabo, a Murray Islander; represented by Ron Castan QC.
Served from 1992-2003. The first woman to become chief judge of any jurisdiction within the state of NSW.
Australian born. Nominated by U.S. President Bill Clinton, Wolfensohn was only the third World Bank President to complete two terms, stepping down June 1st 2005.
4 Australian athletes killed and 60 injured
Served from May 1988 - May 2011
Served from 1998 to 2008.
Prayer shawls doused with kerosene and set alight
Three Australian families Elterman, Zines and Small
Won the 1962 Archibald Prize for portrait of author Patrick White
Ignoring order resulted in Toben being jailed in 2009
Melbourne plastic surgeon Graeme Southwick present, helped save lives.
Majority of the Jewish community protests the award
Amid charges of encouraging antisemitism.
New Zealand demanded an apology from Israel and suspended diplomatic relations. Israel later apologised in Jul 2005.
First time in the electorate’s history that two Jews representing the major parties have come head-to-head.
Jewish communal philanthropist
At 33, the youngest JCCV president in Victorian history
For services to business, law and tax reform, Aboriginal reconciliation and the Jewish community.
Holocaust survivor living in Sydney,
Actual figure is estimated to be about 15-20 per cent higher.
Mastermind behind iconic Sydney buildings such as Australia Square, the MLC Centre and Grosvenor Place
First Australian author to win the prestigious prize
After being admitted five weeks earlier to Sydney's Wolper Hospital with advanced Parkinson’s disease
Central figure in Heather Morris' book.
Believed to be the world’s oldest Holocaust survivor
Polish Jewish migrant created the multibillion-dollar Visy packaging empire
Human-rights campaigner, guilty in case involving a speeding ticket.
(1913-2009), industrialist, innovator, philanthropist and family patriarch. Arrived with no English from the Ukraine at age 14.
At Israel’s maximum security Ayalon prison.
A fire on the first night of Rosh Hashanah, thought to have begun after a candle was left burning in the kitchen.
Appointed 19th Governor-General in 1977
Similar established in Sydney, Ayelet HaShachar. Services loosely based on the Humanistic Jewish movement in USA and the musical-prayer group Nava Tehila in Israel.
Welcomed by Jewish community leaders.
Position first held by Sir Isaac Isaacs nearly 100 years ago.
A first for Australia
The document is later signed by MPs from both sides of Parliament
Hosted in every major city in Australia and more than 230 locations around the world
Also first female Governor of Victoria
Policy Council liaises closely with the Vatican on inter-religious issues
Apparent decrease due to change in Census form.
Seasoned Israeli diplomat and the face of Israel on the world’s TV news bulletins
First visit by a sitting NSW premier.
In the weeks that follow, different factions attempt to gain the upper hand and a breakaway community is formed.
3000 Australians attend
Honoured at a state memorial service
First by an incumbent Israeli PM.
Ilan Buchman and Oscar Shub married at Sydney’s Emanuel Synagogue 5 months after Australia legalized gay marriage
Ending Lowy family ownership of Westfield Shopping Centres.
When Scott Morrision elected Prime Minister
Commemorates all 341 Jewish Diggers who are known to have died on active service.
Defeating Dave Sharma and forcing Liberal government into minority
Immediate past president of the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies succumbs to a rare form of cancer.
Gus Nosti, 57, financial controller at Moriah College in Queens Park between 2004 and 2016
Melbourne’s Yeshivah Beth Rivkah Colleges (YBR) closed following confirmation that a teacher has tested positive for the coronavirus
Was a survivor of the Holocaust and one of the founding members of the Sydney Jewish Museum.
New hub for Sydney Jewish community
Leifer was former head of religion and principal of Adass Israel School and fled Melbourne for Israel in March 2008