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Bill Sent to Nixon, District of Columbia May Get Its First Jewish Historical Museum

A bill passed by the Senate and sent to President Nixon for his signature yesterday may result in the establishment of the first Jewish historical museum in the District of Columbia. The measure authorizes the District government to lease a former synagogue, now designated as a national landmark, to the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington for use as a museum.

The synagogue was built between 1873 and 1876 in downtown Washington and for several generations housed the Adas Israel congregation. The congregation moved to a new site after World War II and the old building has been used for many purposes since then in what is now a predominantly Negro neighborhood. The Historical Society, however, may decide to locate the museum at a different site which the District government would provide. There has been debate over a new site because of frequent muggings in the old neighborhood. In any event, the D.C. City Council would provide a $60,000 restoration grant to be matched by a sum from the Jewish Historical Society.