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Town of Ramsgate
Ramsgate (population about 38,000) is a coastal resort on the English Channel in southeast England, which was particularly popular among both Jews and non-Jews in the nineteenth century. It is part of the Isle of Thanet, which, although originally separated from the mainland by the Wantsum Channel, is now practically joined to the mainland as a result of the build up of silt and shingle. Ramsgate is in the local government district of Thanet in the county of Kent, formed in 1974 by the merger of the municipal borough of Ramsgate with of the municipal borough of Margate and adjoining areas.
The Ramsgate Jewish Community
Ramsgate’s first recorded Jewish family was that of Isaac Lyon, a silversmith, who first appears in 1786, initially living in the High Street and later at 13 Harbour Street, Ramsgate. This family was followed quickly by Levi Abraham formerly of Portsmouth, a tailor, who had married Elizabeth Moses from a Dover family. He had his shop first at 63 and then at 70 High Street, Ramsgate.1 The earliest recorded circumcision of a Jewish child in Ramsgate was in 1789.2 The Ramsgate Jewish community was significantly enhanced by Sir Moses Montefiore taking up residence there in 1822 and erecting the synagogue in 1833.
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