B. Berman


Main Street
Columbia, SC


Bernhardt “Barnette” Berman (1850-1922) was born in Poland and immigrated to the United States in 1868. After spending two years in New York, Barnette moved to Columbia, South Carolina, at the suggestion of Barrett Visanska (1848-1932), a local jeweler and family friend from Suwałki, Poland. Around 1870, Barnette opened a clothing store in his own name at 1631 Main Street where he sold fine jewelry, watches, cigarette cases, and vanity boxes, in addition to clothes. In 1873, he married Rosa Fannie David (1850-1893), a fellow Polish immigrant, and started a family. After more than thirty-five years in business, Barnette retired in 1907. He also served as the president of the Columbia Hebrew Benevolent Society for thirty years and was largely responsible for the creation of the chapel that his funeral service was held in after his death in 1922.

Main Image: Photo of Barnette Berman. Reprinted from The State, September 24, 1916.


Above Image: Closing sale announcement. Reprinted from The State, January 18, 1907.

The Jewish Merchant Project is supported by the generosity of the Henry & Sylvia Yaschik Foundation and the Stanley B. Farbstein Endowment at the Coastal Community Foundation.

JHSSC Office
Sylvia Vlosky Yaschik Jewish Studies Center
96 Wentworth Street
Charleston, SC 29424
Phone: 843 953 3918