A few interesting facts about the synagogue: At one time the the manumitted slaves of Cochin Jews automatically became member of this synagogue (J B Segal, History of the Jews of India, 1993, p.76). Names of the two trustees who managed the synagogue in early 20th century are recorded in the Jewish Year Book of 1907/08 as Elias E. Madai and Nahamiah Elijah Bawok. Among some unique artifacts displayed inside the synagogue were a crown for the Torah scrolls made of pure gold (Ruby Daniel and Barbara C. Johnson, Ruby of Cochin, 2001, p.36) and four Ostrich eggs suspended from the ceiling as a token for good luck (Louis Rabinowitz, Far East Mission, 1952, p.130).
The synagogue functioned almost 300 years before it was abandoned in 1955 when most of the Malabari Jews of Mattancherry migrated to Israel. There are different versions on what happened to the synagogue later. According to some, the synagogue was first kept under the guardianship of the Paradesi Jewish community and was later purchased by a Paradesi Jew who converted it into a two-storey residence. Another version is that the last members of its congregation upon their emigration to Israel in 1955 physically demolished the structure but the Holy Ark was dismantled and stored at Kadavumbagom Synagogue of Ernakulam. If so, it’s the only one among the eight synagogues of Kerala that was demolished by their owners.
Nathan Katz throws more light into the events that followed after the synagogue was abandoned. He discusses about the curse said to have stricken those who demolished the synagogue, heard from an elderly man of Jew Town. According to him, after the Jews left in 1955, the synagogue became abandoned, but remained untouched by the locals, since they believed of ancient spirits inhabiting the structure. Eventually, two of the former congregants returned from Israel and oversaw the demolition of the synagogue around 1964. “The men disposed of the timber and valuable building materials, then sold the parcel of land to the Paradesi Synagogue. Their business finished, one man returned to Israel, where he committed suicide by hanging himself. The other man, while walking on the streets of Bombay, died of a sudden heart attack’. The story continues, the plot was purchased by a Paradesi Jew, Elias Koder who built a grand house 4 years later. He too faced a tragic fate when his wife died by cancer and both his children migrated to Israel leaving him alone to live in the synagogue turned residence (Nathan Katz and Ellen S. Goldberg, 1993, The Last Jews of Cochin, p. 288). More recently (2011), the building was purchased by a non-Jew who has plans to convert it into a heritage hotel.