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Guide to the Mary Grace Heller Cope collection
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Processing Information
  • Biographical Sketch
  • Scope and Content
  • Related Material

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Guide to the Mary Grace Heller Cope Collection
    Dates: 1896-1982 Bulk 1959-1982
    Collection number: MS0009
    Creator: Cope, Mary Grace Heller (daughter of Dorothy Lubin Heller) and the descendants of David Lubin
    Collection Size: 0.5 linear feet (1 box)
    Repository: Center for Sacramento History
    Sacramento, California 95811-0229
    Abstract: The Mary Grace Heller Cope Collection covers a time period from 1896 through 1982. The collection contains copies of David Lubin's correspondence and writings during his lifetime, and tributes that were published after his death. The collection also contains family correspondence to archival institutions regarding the donation and use of David Lubin's documents starting in 1959 and continuing until 1982. The collection is 0.5 cubic feet in size.
    Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English
    Physical location: SP: 28:I:4, 4:G:1 (Drawer I)


    Collection is open for research use.

    Publication Rights

    All requests to publish or quote from private manuscripts held by the Center for Sacramento History (CSH) must be submitted in writing to csh@cityofsacramento.org. Permission for publication is given on behalf of Center for Sacramento History as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the patron. No permission is necessary to publish or quote from public records.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identifcation of item], Mary Grace Heller Cope Collection, MS0009, Center for Sacramento History.

    Acquisition Information

    Received from Mary Grace Heller Cope on December 27, 2011 by the Center for Sacramento History (accession #2012/013).

    Processing Information

    Processed and finding aid prepared by Alexander C. Guilbert, 2013.

    Biographical Sketch

    David Lubin was born in Klodawa, Poland in 1849. His father died while he was still an infant. His mother, Rachel, eventually married Solomon Weinstock and the family moved to England. The family immigrated to the United States in 1855. David Lubin left school at the age of 12 and embarked on a series of odd jobs that took him back and forth across the United States.
    David Lubin went to San Francisco, California in 1874 to help his recently widowed sister, Jeannette, and his step-brother, Harris Weinstock, run a dry goods store. Later that year he decided to open his own store, and unable to find a suitable location in San Francisco, decided to try his luck in Sacramento.
    By 1875, Harris Weinstock joined David Lubin in Sacramento. The business prospered and evolved from a dry goods store into a department store and mail-order business. The business was incorporated in 1888 as Weinstock, Lubin & Company. Meanwhile, the store's success allowed David Lubin to focus on his interest in agriculture and the small farmer, specifically, farming collectives and the California Fruit Exchange.
    David Lubin's first marriage to Louisa Lorraine Lyons produced six children. Due to the infidelity of his wife, the couple divorced in 1896. He then left the country with his children for a trip to Europe to avoid the publicity. After returning to the United States at the end of the year, Lubin and his family took up residence in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and sought input on President William McKinley's revision of tariffs. His suggestions were not adopted, but while in Philadelphia he met and later married Florence Platnauer in 1897. David Lubin, his new wife, and children then moved to San Francisco, California.
    David Lubin wrote a book, Let There Be Light, about his ideas of a universal religion that was published in 1900.
    Working with his son Simon, from his first marriage, David Lubin developed the idea for an international chamber of agriculture and unable to obtain support in the United States he pursued his goal in Europe. In 1904, Italian King Victor Emmanuel III gave political and monetary support to David Lubin's idea. In 1905 a world conference was held with representatives of 41 countries. The result of the conference was the inauguration of the International Institute of Agriculture (IIA) headquartered in Rome. Lubin was appointed the permanent United States delegate to the IIA. During World War I, Lubin continued his work with the IIA from Rome.
    In 1916 Lubin met H.G. Wells and the two men corresponded until Lubin's death on January 1, 1919 a victim of the influenza epidemic.
    The IIA was dissolved in 1946 and its functions and several of its assets were transferred to the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. The David Lubin Memorial Library was dedicated in Rome in 1952.
    David Lubin's second marriage produced three children, Dorothy Sophie, Grace, and Theodore. This collection was donated by Mary Grace Heller Cope, the daughter of Grace Lubin Finesinger.
    Information for this biography was partially derived from Weinstock's: Sacramento's Finest Department Store by Annette Kassis.

    Scope and Content

    The Mary Grace Heller Cope Collection is arranged in two series: 1. David Lubin and 2. Family. Items span the years 1896 to 1992, with the bulk of items being the family correspondence to archival institutions dating from 1959 through 1982. The total of both series consists of one-half cubic foot containing documents. Correspondence documents are often photocopies or typewritten transcriptions of the originals.
    The first series, David Lubin, is divided into eight subseries: Correspondence; H. G. Wells; Book, Let There Be Light; Writings; International Institute of Agriculture/Food and Agriculture Organization; Tributes; Biographical Information; and Correspondence between family members and archival organizations (FAO, American Jewish Archives, and the Western Jewish History Center of the Judah L. Magnes Memorial Museum).
    The second series, Family, is divided into two subseries: American Jewish Archive Interviews and Newspaper Clippings.

    Related Material

    For additional information regarding David Lubin, researchers should consult the Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life at the Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley.