Anshei Israel Synagogue is a small, simple building covered in white clapboard with a gable roof and tower. Surrounded by trees, the synagogue enjoys a beautiful, if somewhat remote, location. It sits on a plot of land that was given by local farmer and congregation member Harry Rothenberg.
The closest population centers are Lisbon, (current populated estimate: 4300; population in 1940: 1100), and Jewett City (current population: 3500; population in 1940: 3700). The synagogue's rural setting is unusual among historic Connecticut synagogues, which were typically founded in cities such as Hartford or New Haven. The setting had some effects on the community's practices. Although traditionally, congregants would have preferred to walk to services, their dispersion through the countryside made walking impractical. They therefore rode part of the way and walked the rest.
David Ransom, who researched Anshei Israel Synagogue for its inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places, summed up its significance as follows:
Anshei Israel Synagogue is significant architecturally because it is a good example
of a small country Jewish house of worship. The architecture is the epitome of
simplicity, but, due to its tall projecting tower, undeniably in the Colonial Revival
tradition. At present, the building is sound and in a good state of preservation, but
unused. Nestled close to the road among trees and encroaching underbrush, it is visually
distinguished by its setting, which is unique among historic Connecticut synagogues (p. 137).