Surasky’s Department Store

Merchant
1904-1917

120 Laurens St SW (Lupo Building)
Aiken, SC 29801

FAMILIES: Polier and Surasky

Around 1886, Benedict Morris “B.M.” Surasky  (1862-1934) and his wife Sarah Anna Polier Surasky (1864-1959) immigrated to the United States from Knyszyn, Poland. Until the beginning of the twentieth century, B.M. Surasky and his younger brothers made a living as a rural peddler, venturing from country town to the next with general wares. Around 1904, B.M. Surasky opened a business in Aiken called the Surasky Department Store. During its time of operation, between 1904 and 1917, B.M. Surasky was the nominal owner of the business but received assistance from his brothers. His siblings also partnered with him in the eponymous Surasky Brothers Department Store next door at 118 Laurens Street. In 1917, the brothers dissolved their partnerships, with each venturing into separate businesses. 

Main Image: Announcement for Surasky’s Department Store (B.M.), 1917. Reprinted from the Aiken Standard, June 27, 1917. 

The Jewish Merchant Project is supported by the generosity of the Norman and Gerry Sue Arnold Foundation and the Stanley B. Farbstein Endowment at the Coastal Community Foundation. Longtime members of the JHSSC, Mr. Arnold obm, a merchant himself, and Mr. Farbstein obm were both children of South Carolina Jewish merchants.

JHSSC Office
Sylvia Vlosky Yaschik Jewish Studies Center
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Email: jhssc@cofc.edu