Congregation House of Jacob-Mikveh Israel is the oldest Jewish organization in Alberta. Jacob Lynn Diamond, the first permanent Jewish settler in Alberta, came to Calgary in 1888 from the Vilna area as a fur trader. He and his wife Rachel became the pillars of the town's fledgling Jewish community. Their home in East Calgary was the Synagogue, 'Jewish Center', and even the funeral chapel, until the first Synagogue building, located on 5th Ave. SE, was consecrated in 1912.
Formal organization of the congregation took place in 1909, and it was appropriately named 'House of Jacob'. Over the years, it spawned independent Jewish organizations such as the Chevra Kadisha, Calgary Talmud Torah, and others.
By the late 1950's the membership of the parent House of Jacob began to decline. Its original historic site gave way to urban renewal, and the aging congregation found a second home near 12th St. and 12 Ave. SW. Since then, the congregation has succeeded in reestablishing its membership, which now includes many young families drawn to the Synagogue by the warmth and beauty of Jewish life.