Despite the fact that Jews were officially banned from New Orleans under the Code Noir (Black Code), which was in effect from 1724 until the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, they have been calling the Crescent City home since the 18th century. Founded in 1828, Touro is the city’s oldest synagogue (and the oldest in the country outside the original 13 colonies) and bears a slight resemblance to a red-brick Byzantine temple, with squat buttresses and bubbly domes.

The local congregation began as an amalgamation between local Spanish-descended Jews and German Jewish immigrants, a relatively rare mixed lineage in American Judaism. Tours are by appointment only, with 24 hours' notice required.