A very enterprising viticulturist who is proud of being a native son is Emil Meyer, who was born in San Francisco, September 1, 1871. His father, Ernst E. Meyer, an early settler of California, was born at Denmark in 1843, a son of Judge Andreas Meyer, an attorney and judge who attained to prominence in his day and became one of the leading men in Hadesleben. Ernst E. received a good education, completing the polytechnic school, majoring as a draftsman, after which he served in the German navy during the years of 1863-64. Then he was engineer on the Hamburg-American line between Hamburg and New York, quitting the sea to locate in San Francisco, in 1868, where his brother, William, was a wholesale and retail florist on Geary Street, and there he continued in business until 1884. Meantime he had purchased four and one-half acres on Stanyan Street, at the Golden Gate Park entrance, and established the Eureka Nursery, and was the first to subdivide and lay out lots in that district. Running through this property were Penoches Avenue, Gratton Street, Stanyan Street, and others. This was accomplished in 1883-84. As early as 1881 Mr. Meyer had purchased 1700 acres of land in the Santa Cruz Mountains, and on November 26, 1884, he located on the place and started the Mare Vista Vineyards. Between 1881 and 1884 he sold off fourteen different tracts to people who improved the lands. The Meyers built over thirteen miles of road at their own expense, and later on these roads were given over to the county. They cleared the land and set out vineyards and built a winery and cellars.

Ernst Meyer was married in San Francisco in 1870 to Maria Detje, born in Hamburg, Germany, whose father, Martin Detje, was a musician. She came to San Francisco with her sister, and thus the acquaintance that had been formed in Hamburg was renewed in the metropolis of the Pacific. Mr. Meyer died April 8, 1918, survived by his widow and two sons: Emil, the subject of this review, and Arthur, who is president of the Michaletschke Company, wholesale cigars and tobaccos in San Francisco; he is widely traveled and was one of the early salesmen in his line for the Alaska trade. The mother, who did her share in making Mare Vista Vineyard a success, still makes her home on the ranch with her son.

Emil Meyer attended the public schools of San Francisco until thirteen years of age, when he came to Mare Vista Vineyard, after which his education was in private schools. From a lad he learned viticulture under his father's guidance and in time became associated with him in the business. Since the death of his father he has taken over the business and is manager of the Mare Vista Vineyards, comprising 500 acres of land—eighty acres being in different varieties of wine grapes. He has a bonded winery but is now specializing in the manufacture of unfermented grape juice. At Wright's, in 1904, Emil Meyer was married to Miss Anna J. Matty, born in San Jose, a daughter of Antoine Matty, a pioneer of San Jose, otherwise represented in this work. To them have been born two children: Arthur K. and Alice Marie. Mr. Meyer is interested in the cause of education and is a trustee of Wright's school district. He is also greatly interested in the good roads movement and is an advocate of the Skyline Boulevard from San Francisco to Woodside and continuing to Watsonville and the Southland, a much-needed thoroughfare. He has faithfully attended the meetings and given his influence for the fulfillment of the project, well knowing, after it is completed, the lateral roads will fall in.
Enterprising and progressive, Mr. Meyer can always be counted on to aid and give his influence towards worthy movements that have for their aim the building up and improving of this favored garden spot of the world. Politically, he is a decided Republican.

 from Eugene T. Sawyers' History of Santa Clara County,California,  published by Historic Record Co. , 1922. page 1111


SANTA CLARA COUNTY The Valley of Heart's Delight