WEILL, Alexander

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WEILL, Alexander (1834-1906), original investor in the Santa Cruz Island Company in 1869, along with along with nine others:


Alexander Will, born in Phalsbourg, France, was one of 5 sons and 8 daughters born to David Weill (c. 1801-1863) and his wife, Sophie Aron. Weill became a French banker and philanthropist, and was one of the pioneer French Jews to go to San Francisco in 1850, along with his brother, Raphael. Brothers Sylvain and Leon also moved to San Francisco. Alexander Weill was among the leaders of the French Colony in San Francisco. In 1860, the French Benevolent Society was organized with Weill's cousin, Elie Lazard, as President and Treasurer. When Lazard returned to France in 1866, Alexander Weill succeeded him.

Weill, an original incorporator of the Santa Cruz Island Company in 1869, became president of the Santa Cruz Island Company in 1879, after the suicide of Gustav Mahé, former company president. He married his cousin, Julie Cahn (1840-1920) in San Francisco in 1867, a half-sister of the Lazard Brothers. They had son:

  • David David-Weill (1871-1952) = [1897] Flora Raphael
1. Jean Alexander Gerard David-Weill (1898-1972)
2. Desire Gerard Pierre Sulvan David-Weill (1900-1975)
3. Jean David-Weill
4. Julie Simone David-Weill
5. Rosette Marthe David-Weill
6. Antoinette Raphaela David-Weill
7. Francois Raymond Gerard David-Weill (1907-1934)


In the 1870s, Alexander Weill created a Sick Fund and donated $500 to it. He and his wife were for years the benefactors of the San Francisco French colony, both for Jews and gentiles. They departed for France in 1880.

Weill died in Paris in 1906. He had worked for the hardware business, Lazard Freres & Co. which he converted to an investment banking firm. [Gherini, 1997:76].



In the News~

December 8, 1879 [DAC]: “Office of the Santa Cruz Island Company, No. 530 Washington Street, San Francisco—To the Stockholders of the Santa Cruz Island Company: The Stockholders of the Santa Cruz Island Company are hereby notified that it is proposed by the said Company, by resolution of its Board of Trustees, adopted at a meeting held on November 22nd, 1879, at the office of the Company, No. 530 Washington Street, San Francisco, to diminish the Capital Stock to the sum and amount of $50,000; and that a special meeting of the Stockholders be called, to be held at the office of the Company, No. 530 Washington Street, San Francisco, on the twenty-third day of December, A.D. 1879, at 11 o’clock A.M. of that day, to consider and vote upon the said proposition; and that the notice to Stockholders of the meeting be published once a week for four weeks successively in the Daily Alta California, a newspaper printed and published in the City and County of San Francisco. By the order of the Board of Trustees. A. Weill, President of the Santa Cruz Island Company. Mark Tromboni, Secretary.”


June 25, 1906 [LAT]: “Alexander Weill, one of the principal members of the firm of Lazard Freres, bankers, died in Paris yesterday.”


July 4, 1906 [LAT]: “Alexander Weill, the great banker who was buried in Paris last week, was one of San Francisco’s earliest pioneers. He was born in Phalsbourg, Lorraine June 21, 1834, and came to California in February, 1850.”