Financial records of the Prussia & Co. store, the first women's apparel store in San Jose. Willard L. Prussia founded Prussia
& Co. in 1903, and opened the location at 129-133 South First Street in 1909.
W. L. Prussia was a native of Danville, N.Y., where his father was a wholesale merchant. Prussia came to California by himself
at the age of 16, and worked as a window trimmer for Taft & Penneyer in Oakland. Between 1884 and 1904 he was employed by
stores in Los Angeles, San Diego, Oakland and San Jose. He was associated with L. Loeb & Bros. in San Jose before going into
business for himself. He founded Prussia & Co. in 1903, and opened the location at 129-133 South First Street in 1909. He
died in 1937.
The firm changed its name to W. L. Prussia & Son in January, 1933. Son Leland S. Prussia was added as a full partner in the
firm, and they bought out the interests of original partner S. M. Grier of New York, thereby making Prussia's a wholly family-owned
Leland Prussia continued to run operations with his wife Doris Fowler Prussia until they retired in 1954. In 1953 the store
was taken over by chain menswear firm Harris & Frank.