Klauber’s

Merchant
1903-c.1920s


Bamberg, SC 29003

FAMILIES: Klauber

In 1872, brothers Simon (1853-c.1910s) and Lee A. Klauber (1856-1919) immigrated to the United States from Bohemia. Simon ultimately settled in Essex, New Jersey, where he operated a grocery store and eventually became a lawyer. Lee A. Klauber made a name for himself in St. George, South Carolina, where he arrived in 1877. In 1879, Lee A. Klauber married Sarah Alice Harbeson (1858-1937), who belonged to “an old South Carolina family of English and Scotch-Irish ancestry.”1 Sometime after he married, Lee A. Klauber opened his own dry goods store, called Klauber’s, adjacent to the railroad tracks in St. George. Klauber’s flourished, and in 1895 Lee A. Klauber built the L. A. Klauber building in St. George to house Klauber’s. Klauber’s continued to expand, and in 1902 it opened a new location in Bamberg, South Carolina. Lee A. Klauber’s two sons, William Adolf (1882-1952) and Robert Lee (1883-1954), both helped their father run Klauber’s. Following Lee A. Klauber’s death in 1919, Robert Lee Klauber became President of the L. A. Klauber Company, to which Klauber’s presumably belonged. In addition to founding Klauber’s, Lee A. Klauber also served as the President of the St. George Cotton Seed Oil Manufacturing Company, founded the Bank of St. George, which later became the First National Bank of St. George, and operated a sawmill near St. George.

1 Yates Snowden and H. G. Cutler, History of South Carolina, Volume 5 (New York: Lewis Publishing Company, 1920), 125.

Above: Reprinted from The Bamberg Herald, August 27, 1903.

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.

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