James "Jim" Knuppe is the founder of AAAAA-Rent-A-Space, the first self-storage business in California.

Knuppe attended Alexander Hamilton Junior High School, and graduated from Oakland High School in 1949. Knuppe attended UC Berkeley, where he rowed crew under legendary coach Ky Ebright.

Knuppe married (?) and they had a son, Michael, but (?) died. Knuppe and his second wife Barbara "Bobbie" Dorato (Knuppe) met at the Ali Baba Ballroom. They were married July 11, 1954 at St. Louis Bertrands Church in Oakland. 1

Bobbie attended E. Morris Cox Elementary, Elmhurst Junior High School and Castlemont High School.

Knuppe had a number of careers, including 18 years as a fireman and engineer for the Southern Pacific Railroad. He then became a builder, with his first big project a 10-unit apartment on Lockwood Street. 2 He founded the Hayward National Bank, and did a whole book's worth of interesting stuff, although much of it not related to Oakland. 1

Links and References

  1. The Jim Knuppe Story by Marc Grossman
  2. Italy Journal 5aspace.com