Michael C. Hirsch
Michael C. Hirsch served as President of Keneseth Israel for one brief term following the death of David Klein, from 1891-1892. During this time, the congregation moved into the new building at North Broad and Columbia, which was dedicated on September 9, 1892. With the move, Keneseth Israel commissioned Hillborn Roosevelt, the premier organ builder of the day, to build a new pipe organ for the synagogue for $12,000. On October 19, 1892, the Keneseth Israel Free Library was established in the new building.
Michael C. Hirsch was born on February 5, 1835 in Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany. He lived at various points in Philadelphia and the Lehigh Valley, where he was a wealthy slate operator, and was married to Theresia Hirsch. He was a member of the firm Thalheimer & Hirsch and ran the Consolidated Lehigh Slate Company. He also owned a general store in Slatedale to supply his employees. He spent his summers in Slatington and served as Treasurer of B’nai B’rith District Grand Lodge No. 3. In 1901 he became sick and moved back to Philadelphia full time to be treated at the city’s hospitals. He died on April 15, 1906 in New York City, and was buried at Adath Jeshurun Cemetery.