Felix Stein, who was born to a Jewish family in Germany in 1888, immigrated to the U.S. at sixteen and later worked as a clerk at the main Stern & Goodman store in Fullerton. When the Olinda, Placentia and Yorba Linda locations came up for sale in 1910, Stern, along with fellow employee William Fassel, purchased all three. The stores sold both groceries and dry goods, and in a 1970 interview with the Cal State Fullerton Oral History Program, Stern stated that “We sold everything. You could buy a cow or you could buy a plowhorse. You could buy a sewing machine or you could buy a mowing machine. We had everything.” In addition to the stores, he owned and maintained several orange and lemon groves. In 1918, he and Fassel bought the main store in Fullerton, which he ran until his retirement in 1970.
Dalia Taft, archivist of the Orange County Jewish Historical Society — a Connect 2 People Initiative of Jewish Federation & Family Services — highlights images from the archives every month. For more information, please visit www.jewishorangecounty.org/historical. You can also contact Dalia at (949) 435-3484, ext. 167.