Tea box „W. Wissotzky and Ko TEA“. Courtesy of The Lost Shtetl Museum.
Many years ago the young Jew Kalonymos Zeev Wolf Wissotzky established a tea company in Moscow. Born in Žagarė, he studied at a yeshiva and for a time sold bread and grain in Joniškis before reaching unprecedented commercial heights.
Wissotzky Tea & Co. spread around the world. The tea reached the tea rooms and shops of Šeduva and other shtetls around Lithuania but was also exported to the largest cities in the world, including New York and London. From 1900 to 1917 it was the largest tea vendor in the world.
Wissotzky was known for his philanthropic activity which he carried out with members of his family, as well as his impressive commercial success. A yeshiva with more than 60 students operated in Šeduva before World War I. Wissotzky's son-in-law and business partner Rafael Shlomo Gots financially supported the yeshiva from 1910 to 1915.
Wissotzky Tea has been going strong since 1858 till today.