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Jews, Settlement

Early Jewish immigrants came to Alberta to establish farm colonies, settling in central and southern Alberta, near places such as Pine Lake, Trochu, Medicine Hat and Lethbridge. This first attempt at farming was not overly successful. Many of those who came were city-dwellers who had grown up in the cities of Europe. A Jewish relief agency in London England raised $400 to distribute the destitute Jewish pioneers. Because of the difficult conditions in Alberta and the Jewish peoples inexperience in farming, many of the immigrants left Alberta soon after, some going to the United States. By 1906, the community had largely reestablished itself in Calgary.

By 1931, only eight percent of the Jewish population in Alberta was living in rural communities. The majority of Jews lived in larger urban areas such as Edmonton, Calgary and Lethbridge. Of the urban Jewish population, most lived in less affluent sections of the cities. World War I almost completely stopped any immigration to Canada.

The end of the economic depression of the 1930s came only with the Second World War and the Holocaust. The aftermath of the Holocaust brought about an influx of Jewish immigration into Canada and Alberta. Many of the Jews who came were survivors of the Holocaust. For Jewish Albertans, the deaths of six million Jews in the Holocaust changed and reinforced the way they saw their community in terms of their Jewish identity.
After World War II, as the community established itself, many moved to more affluent areas in the cities. For example, many Jewish Edmontonians moved to the Glenora neighbourhood and for Calgarians, from Bridgeland to the Mount Royal or Britannia districts.

Jewish Baseball Team

Jewish Baseball Team

Bar Mitzvah Party

Bar Mitzvah Party