Simon Bachman: Pioneer Jewish Purveyor of Cigars & Tobacco in San Francisco

Simon Bachman

Simon Bachman, San Francisco, Cigar Merchant

Simon Bachman, San Francisco, cigar merchant

Values Codes I – E – L


Simon Bachman was born in Bavaria, Germany, in 1834.

He came to the United States as a young man, arriving in California in the early 1850’s.


Along the way . . . .

Simon Bachman first settled in Mission San Jose, where he embarked in the mercantile business.


San Francisco

Bachman soon moved north to San Francisco, where he joined Mendel Esberg as Esberg & Bachman Wholesale Cigars & Tobacco.

When Mendel Esberg died in 1896, the firm was changed to Simon Bachman & Co.

In 1906, Simon Bachman ceased selling tobacco and dealt exclusively in cigars.



Bachman was one of the pioneer members of Congregation Emanu-El.

He was also active in other Jewish charity organizations.

“The traits that distinguished Simon Bachman as a man among men were his fairness and his impartiality in all his dealings.”

— Rabbi Martin Meyer, 1916



Simon Bachman married Sophie Goldman in 1865.

Together, they had one son, Arthur, and two daughters, Mrs. Samuel Dinkelspiel and Mrs. Louis A. Schwabacher.


Simon Bachman died in 1912.


  • Martin A. Meyer, The Jews of San Francisco (San Francisco: Emanu-El, 1916).

David Epstein is curator of this Simon Bachman exhibit.