The first press report appears in 1880 on the occasion of the David May and Rosa Shoenberg nuptials. Amongst the many gifts received by the happy couple was a “beautiful china chamber set” proffered by M. Altman and J. Schloss. Jacob Schloss and his sons, Abe and Simon, were prominent liquor merchants in early Leadville and Morris D. Altman was his son-in-law through his marriage to the eldest daughter, Rosa, on January 26, 1881. Research indicates that Altman was active in the local Jewish community to the extent that he became secretary of the Hebrew Benevolent Association in 1883 and served on the Arrangement Committee for the Feast of the Dedication (Hanukah) in that year. The Schloss store in 1880 was located at 116 West 2nd Street, but the city directory indicates that it moved to 108 & 110 Harrison Avenue in
1881. This is the same address that May & Shoenberg occupied from 1879 until 1881 when they moved to 318 Harrison Avenue. From 1882 until 1886, The Altmans lived at 227 West 6th Street. For at least one year, 1883, during that period it appears that he was in business for himself selling liquors and cigars at 125 & 127 East 5th Street. The next year Morris and Rosa were recorded attending a chess exhibition at the Jacob Schloss home wherein the “famed chess player” Dr. J. H. Zuckertort was challenged by six locals. Having given odds by removing pieces, Dr. Zuckertort lost three of the simultaneous games.
Altman and May must have had considerable contact and this relationship appears to have had an unfortunate end, culminating in a series of exchanges in the Leadville Chronicle and the Leadville Herald during the fall of 1884. The altercation revolved around May's campaign for county treasurer and disputed property taxes allegedly owed by Altman and his father-in-law (see the Schloss page). We have no record of the resolution to this dispute, but May prevailed at the ballot box and Morris Altman disappears from the city directory after 1886.
Copyright 2016 • Temple Israel Foundation