Meyer, Fred G., 1886-1978

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Meyer, Fred G., 1886-1978

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1886-1978

History

Fred G. Meyer was born Frederick Grubmeyer in 1886 in Brooklyn, New York. He moved West in the 1900s starting in Alaska and eventually making his way to Portland, Oregon. He married Eva Chatfield Chiles who would become his business partner and the inspiration behind Eve's Restaurants which were coffee shops attached to many Fred Meyer stores. Fred G. Meyer died in 1978 at the age of 92. His will established a charitable trust to create a philanthropic organization now known as the Meyer Memorial Trust which is now one of the largest private foundations in the nation. The first Fred Meyer grocery store opened in downtown Portland, Oregon in 1922. Meyer opened more stores in downtown Portland in the 1920s and 1930s, then expanded into the outlying areas of Portland and beyond. By the 1990s there were stores bearing the Fred Meyer name throughout Oregon, Washington, California, Idaho, Montana, Utah, Arizona and Alaska. In addition to the supermarket stores, Fred Meyer, Inc. also included jewelry stores, restaurants, federal savings and loan banks, print shops, bakeries, dairies and music stores. In 1999, Fred Meyer, Inc. merged with Kroger, Inc., making the combined company the largest grocery store chain in the country.

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