Meyer Guggenheim Biography

Meyer Guggenheim

industrialist, philanthropist
Born: 2/1/1828
Birthplace: Langnau, Switzerland

Having emigrated to the United States in 1847, he began manufacturing stove polish, then switched to retailing, specializing in importing Swiss embroidery and needlework. The business prospered, allowing him to turn his attention to other interests. In 1888, nearly 60 years old, he and his sons established the Philadelphia Smelting and Refining Company, which became a market leader worldwide. The success of his enterprises was continued and amplified by his sons, who also shared his sense of social responsibility through philanthropy.

Died: 3/15/1905