Meyer Group's History

johann meyer resim Johann Meyer

Johann Meyer was a clock master in the Ottoman Palace. When he was 33, he came to Istanbul from Germany to serve for 2nd Abdulhamid.

Johann Meyer was born on November 18, 1843 in Athens. His father was working for the Greek royal corps. Immediately after Johann's birth, the family travelled to Istanbul, where Johann was going to spend the first four years of his life. Later, the Meyer family went back to Thessaloniki, to the north of Greece.

Johann got his education in Berlin, Germany. He worked in a watchmaker on the Unter den Linden street in Berlin. There he saw a job posting. Ottoman Sultan was looking for a watchmaker for his palace. Johann applied for the job and got the job. So, at the age of 33, he came to Istanbul to work serve for 2nd Abdulhamid

Thus, in 1876, he became the chief watchmaker in the Yildiz Palace in Istanbul. Here he took care of the watches of princes, sultanas, ministers, high officials and commanders, especially of sultan and in the palace.


Meyer Watches


meyer osmanlı devlet nişanı Edict stating that Johann Meyer got the favor from the Sultan

In 1878, Johann Meyer established Meyer Watchmaking Company as a watch factory in the heart of Istanbul. At that time, the tunnel connecting Karakoy to Galata was being built. Johann Meyer opened his shop on May 1, 1878, just opposite the new tram stop, hoping to make it a haunt. And his dream came true. It went so well that he had to hire two apprentices in a short time. The reputation of the German Watchmaker also went beyond the borders of the city. Prince and high officials were still their customers.

Johann was the master of his craft and had a dream; to develop a watch that both operated in the modern clock system, and showed the prayer times which were determined according to the position of the sun. After eight years of struggle, he achieved. Johann presented his invention to the Sultan, and in return, he was awarded a favor.


5 Generation Meyer


meyer 100 yıl kart Card printed in Istanbul in 1978 in memory of the 100th anniversary of Meyer Watchmaking

On September 3, 1883, Johann's son Emil was born. Like his father, he got his education in Berlin and became a watchmaker. In 1914, he returned to Istanbul and headed his father's shop. Emil married Marthe Luise Josephine Kinkelin, who was born in Istanbul like him. The couple had four children. Johann Meyer died on August 4, 1920 and was buried in the Meyer family tomb at the Istanbul Protestant cemetery. When Emil Meyer died in 1954, his son Wolfgang took over Meyer watchmaking and ran it as the third-generation member of the family until his death in 1981. Meanwhile, with his shop, he even managed to overcome the upheavals during the Second World War. Towards the end of the war, the Germans living in Turkey were sent to the cities in Central Anatolia. And Wolfgang Meyer could not stay in Istanbul for one year.


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