David Wolfe


Camden, SC


David Wolfe (1861-1938) was born in Charleston, SC to Prussian immigrants Simon (1828-1901) and Enstina Wolfe (birth date/death date unknown).1 By 1870, the Wolfe family was living in Orangeburg, SC, where Simon worked as a dry goods merchant. About three years later, the family moved again, this time to Camden, SC. There, Simon worked as a dry goods, grocery, junk, and scrap metal merchant. At eighteen years old in 1880, David was working as a clerk, presumably in his father’s store. Before 1900, however, he opened his own retail dry goods store, and in 1893 he married Pennsylvania native Bertha Rubenstein (1869-1933). David worked as a dry goods merchant in Camden until 1934. In addition to operating his store, David served as a director of the Bank of Camden and president of the Wateree Building and Loan Association, and he was a member of Kershaw Lodge No. 29 of the Freemasons.



1 “Enstina” is the name of Simon Wolfe’s wife in the 1870 Census. The 1880 Census lists her name as simply “E.” The name Enstina conflicts with the name of son David Wolfe’s (1861-1938) mother as listed on his death certificate: “Sarah Goldstein.” The name of son Isadore Wolfe’s (1869-1935) mother as listed on his death certificate is “uk” or unknown. It seems unlikely that Enstina is David and Isadore’s stepmother, as cemetery records from South Carolina and New York do not reveal a Sarah Goldstein or Sarah Wolfe (accounted for name variations) that died around the time of David’s birth.

Main Image: David Wolfe advertisement. Reprinted from The Camden Chronicle, September 11, 1903.

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.

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