Here stood the small frame house in which Lazarus Straus and his family lived when they came to Talbotton in 1854. Seeking a new home in America after leaving Bavaria, Straus visited Talbotton during a "court week" and decided to make his home among its hospitable people. His family, the only Jewish one in town, became identified with the progress of the community. The sons, Isidor, Nathan and Oscar studied at nearby Collinsworth Institute. Nathan and Oscar attended the Baptist Sunday School.
LAZARUS STRAUS founded a mercantile business in Talbotton and a later one in Columbus. After the War Between the States, he established a crockery and glassware business in New York, a forerunner of Macy's, which became, under the leadership of ISIDOR STRAUS, one of the world's leading department stores. OSCAR STRAUS, among the earliest career diplomats, served as minister, ambassador and cabinet member under Presidents Cleveland, McKinley, Roosevelt, and Taft. Author of several books, he wrote the widely read Under Four Administrations. NATHAN STRAUS, leader in the fight for pasteurization of milk and a pioneer in other health reforms, was known throughout his life as a great philanthropist.The Straus family is honored, not for its wealth, but for its outstanding contribution to the American way of life.