Her 2nd great grandfather is Aaron Meier. Aaron was born 22 May 1831 in Ellerstadt, Bavaria. Aaron immigrated in 1855 to Downieville, California where 2 of his brothers (Julius and Emanuel) had settled before him. He soon moved north to a plot of land in Wilsonville, Oregon and he began selling merchandise from a pack in the rural areas south of Portland.
So Aaron took his inheritance and open another store, a dry goods establishment located on Front Street between Yamhill and Taylor. On one of his trips to San Francisco to purchase stock for the store, he met Emil and Sigmund Frank. He brought them up to Portland to work as clerks in his store. In 1873, Emil Frank became a partner of Aaron Meier and the signs were changed to Meier & Frank.
In 1882 a fire destroyed the establishment and Aaron lost everything. Aaron Meier refused to give up. They somehow rebuilt the store, making it bigger and better than ever before.
Aaron and Jeannette had 2 other children - Abraham Meier (my sister-in-law's great grandfather) and Julius Meier.
In 1900 Abraham took the helm of the business. Abe’s younger brother Julius became the store manager and actually guided the store’s growth. Julius Meier had a great deal of influence in civic and political circles and was elected Governor of Oregon in 1930 as an independent—the first Jewish Governor of the state.
I have had such a blast pouring over society pages of the Portland newspaper of the time. On ancestry.com, we were delighted to see passport applications (some even had photos) as well as ship passenger lists. Over at genealogybank.com I found an abundance of newspaper articles and obituaries on the Meier family. At heritagequest.com, it seemed that every book about the history of Portland, Oregon has some mention of her Meier family.