"Sons of Jacob . . . is . . . different from other congregations. Big-City Jews rarely get to experience the intensity and inclusiveness of Jewish life which Waterloo, Iowa provided!" - Rabbi Arnold M. Turchick

"The values that guide me were imparted in years . . . at . . . Sons of Jacob, where I learned that being Jewish means, above all, caring for the oppressed, pursuing social justice and striving for empathy toward others." - David Schulman


The founders of our congregation were among the first to arrive in Waterloo, Iowa. In August of 1905, fifteen members came together to organize the first synagogue in the Cedar Valley.

Rabbi L. Babrow was the first leader of the congregation. Services were held in the homes of charter members, some of whose families are still part of the congregation today.

The congregation moved to the former Christian Science Church at 613 West 5th St. in 1909. By 1949, the congregation of Sons of Jacob had grown to 153 families. The current synagogue was too small, and two groups began planning new buildings. The final decision was to build at our present location, 411 East Mitchell Ave. On Sunday, September 6, 1953, the new synagogue was dedicated.

For over 100 years Sons of Jacob has continued to promote the welfare of the Jewish Community in Waterloo and surrounding areas.