"And though your beginning was small, your latter days will be very great.
- Job 8:7
Every dream that becomes a reality must be based on a mission and this mission must fill a need to become a success.
In 1935, a small group of Jewish men and women, led by I.C. Gellman, had a dream. They dreamed of creating a Jewish Community Center where adults and youth could congregate. The three fold mission of the Tri-City Jewish Center, as stated in the early records, was a religious, cultural and social center for all who wished to join.
At that time, the Jewish community consisted of small enclaves of strong and vibrant groups on both sides of the Mississippi River. There was a Reform temple and three Orthodox synagogues, but there was no common meeting ground for the entire community. With this purpose in mind, committees were appointed to raise funds for a new Jewish Center.
The committees went to work and their efforts raised $30,000 from 159 families. With this money, the Tri-City Jewish Center came into existence.
In the fall of 2021, the congregation sold the Rock Island building to Two Rivers YMCA and is shared by a branch of the Rock Island Library.
The new building at 2215 E. Kimberly Road, Davenport, Iowa is named Beit Shalom (House of Peace) and is shared by Congregation Beth Israel, Temple Emanuel and The Jewish Federation of the Quad Cities. We can still be known as The Tri City Jewish Center or Congregation Beth Israel at Beit Shalom.