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California Genealogy and History Archives

Biographies
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Sacramento County

 

DAVID LUBIN

A history of Sacramento county would not be complete without mention of David Lubin, who stands today among the benefactors of the world and more directly of the farmer. Coming from his native country in Europe, he began his career in this country as an apprentice as a jewelry polisher in North Attleboro, Mass. In 1867 he drifted to California and thence to Arizona, where he worked in a lumber yard and as a cowboy. Returning to San Francisco, he worked in Gray & Co.'s jewelry factory and afterwards, returning east, became a commercial traveler for a lamp manufacturing firm.

In 1874 he came back to Sacramento and started in business as a member of the firm of Weinstock, Lubin & Co., in which he remained an active partner for many years.

A number of years ago Mr. Lubin withdrew from active work in the firm and devoted himself to an idea which he had conceived, of benefiting his fellow men. The idea is embodied in what he terms "the single numerical statement." Observing that the farmer was at the mercy of the middleman and speculators, who fixed the price which he received for his wheat, regardless of the world's supply for the year, he formulated and perfected a plan for ascertaining the exact supply of wheat produced in the various wheat-producing countries of the world. He became an enthusiast in the propagation of his idea and has devoted years to carving it out, visiting foreign countries and importuning the governments to establish departments for collecting and exchanging crop data, through a central organization. As a prophet is not without honor save in his own country, Mr. Lubin was forced to meet with discouragement after discouragement at Washington, but finally succeeded in overcoming the opposition and being appointed to represent this country at the International Institute of Agriculture at Rome. For it was in King Victor Emanuel of Italy that Mr. Lubin first found a willing ear and a mind quick to grasp his idea and appreciate its importance to the world. He built a palace for the use of the institute, and endowed it with 12,000 a year, or $60,000. It stands on an eminence in a lovely spot of the beautiful Villa Borghese, and there Mr. Lubin resides and carries on his life work. There in 1905 the delegations from the various powers gathered and signed a convention to create the institute, but not till 1910 did Mr. Lubin see the culmination of his hopes, when the first single numerical statement of six nations was published, and in August, the following month, data from eleven nations followed. In 1912 fifty nations provided the necessary data, Russia being the last one to join, after long and repeated solicitation by Mr. Lubin. The principal wheat-growing countries are now all represented, and the farmer today can now know the total crop prospects or output of ninety-five per cent of the land in the world and ninety-eight per cent of the world's population - a practical world's summary. He has all the information formerly possessed by the middleman and the speciilator, who can no more exploit his ignorance, to his own ad- vantage and the detriment of the producer. The nations are contributing liberally to the support of the institute. Returns are now being gathered for other crops and products as well as the cereals, and the work of the institute is expanding in many other directions also. It is a work of building up and making life easier, and the results of Mr. Lubin's persistence and enthusiasm will live long after him. 


Source:
History of Sacramento County, California
Biographical Sketches of The Leading Men and Women of the County Who Have Been Identified With Its Growth and Development from the Early Days to the Present
History By: William L. Willis
Historic Record Company, Los Angeles, California (1913)

Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011