Jewish Life in Western North Carolina: Who Knew!
The talk will highlight tales of Jews who moved to Western North Carolina and their historical background.
Sharon Fahrer is a recovered New Yorker with a background in geography and urban planning. She and her husband were drawn to Asheville by its wonderful historic neighborhoods. They live in an 1896 house they restored in Montford. She co-founded History@Hand with Jan Schochet when they set out to reveal the history of Jewish businesses, creating a book and an exhibit titled The Family Store: A History of Jewish Businesses in Downtown Asheville from 1880-1990. Since then she has continued to research history panels, which are installed along the French Broad River, downtown Asheville, on the campus of UNC Asheville, the aSHEville museum, Asheville Community Theater (ACT), and the Sprinza Weizenblatt Gallery on the campus of Mars Hill University. She has also written two books: The Man Who Lived on Main Street, about Sol Shulman of Sylva (coauthored with Jan Schochet), and A Home in Shalomville, the History of Asheville's Jewish Community. The latter book was awarded the 2016 Bob Terrill book award from the Old Buncombe Genealogical Society. Fahrer also created the Jewish Museum without Walls, which highlights locations that are part of Asheville’s Jewish history. In 2003 she started the Montford Music and Arts Festival which happens the third Saturday in May. Currently she leads walking tours in downtown Montford, Riverside Cemetery, and Biltmore Village in Asheville.