Metropolis of the state of Wisconsin. The oldest congregation of Milwaukee, Bene Jeshurun, was organized in 1855 by Löbl Rindskopf, Leopold Newbauer, Solomon Adler, Emanuel Silverman, and others of the first Jewish settlers in the city. At the outset the congregation had as ḥazzanim Messrs. Alexander, Lasker, and Marcus Heiman in the order named, and it then came under the guidance of Rabbis Isidor Kalisch, M. Falk, Elias Epstein, Emanuel Gerechter, and Victor Caro, the present (1904) incumbent. On Oct. 18, 1869, under the leadership of David Adler and Henry Friend, a new congregation named "Emanu-El" was organized, which was incorporated Feb. 17, 1870. After a short period of service by M. Schulhof as ḥazzan, Rabbis E. M. V. Brown, M. Spitz, Isaac S. Moses, Sigmund Hecht, and Julius H. Meyer were successively the spiritual guides of the congregation. There are four other incorporated congregations.
A federation of Jewish charities was effected in Jan., 1903, the income of the new organization being about $12,000. Out of this sum the following local charities are supported: the Hebrew Relief Association; the Settlement; the Jewish Hospital Association; the Ladies' Relief Sewing Society; and the Sisterhood of Personal Service. From this source, also, the contributions of Milwaukee Jews to national Jewish charities are made.
In a total population of 300,000 there are about 8,000 Jews.