HomeApril 2023Orange County’s Jewish History

Orange County’s Jewish History

P. Davis & Bro. Banking House advertisement, Anaheim 1878

All in the Family

    Anaheim was just 21 years old in 1878 but was flourishing financially due to the wine industry and hard working businessmen and women. The tiny city had not one but two banks, one of which, according to the ad below, operated in San Francisco, New York, London, Paris, Berlin, and Franfort [sic]! Quite the reach for the small but mighty Anaheim. P. Davis and Bro. refers to Philip Davis and his brother Gustav (who as the younger brother apparently didn’t mind not having his name in the title). Philip and Gustav were Jewish immigrants from Poland who had changed their name from Chorinsky before settling in Anaheim. They operated a dry goods store and did so much business they added banking to the services they provided. A.W. (Alphonse Washington) Steinhart, the cashier, was their brother-in-law, married to their sister, Henrietta, and was Anaheim’s first Jewish postmaster. Both Alphonse and Gustav are considered California pioneers and their biographies are recorded in the Library of Congress.

Dalia Taft, archivist of the Orange County Jewish Historical Society, highlights images from the archives every month. For more information, please visit https://www.jccoc.org/pages/oc-jewish-historical-society. You can also contact Dalia at daliat@jccoc.org or at (949) 435-3400, ext. 360. The Orange County Jewish Historical Society is a program of the Merage Jewish Community Center and is funded by the Jewish Community Foundation Orange County.

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