George Washington Weidler

George Washington Weidler

Transportation Agent + Merchant
Born Oct 22, 1837

George Washington Weidler was a prominent 19th century transportation agent, investor, and business owner in Portland in the U.S. state of Oregon. Born in Pennsylvania, he moved as a young man to St. Louis, Missouri, where he began a career in merchandising and shipping. His work gradually took him further west, to Nevada, California, and in 1866 to Oregon, where he remained for the rest of his life.… Read More

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Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of George Washington Weidler.


1837 Birth George Washington Weidler was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, on October 22, 1837, to Isaac C. and Catherine Gaelbach Weidler, U.S. citizens of Swiss-German descent. … Read More


1855 18 Years Old In 1855 he was put in charge of a mule-drawn wagon train, hauling goods to a new general store in Salt Lake City, Utah. … Read More


1861 24 Years Old In about 1861, Weidler took a job as an agent for a company that ran stagecoaches between Carson City and Virginia City, Nevada. … Read More
1866 29 Years Old In 1866 Weidler moved to Portland, acting as the local agent for Holladay's steamship company. … Read More


1871 34 Years Old He was part owner of the Portland Street Railway (PSR), which Holladay built in 1871. … Read More


1879 42 Years Old In 1879 Weidler, who was an agent for the Oregon Steamship Company owned by Henry Villard, became a shareholder in the Oregon Railway and Navigation Company (OR&N), formed by Villard after he gained control of the OSN. … Read More
1880 43 Years Old In 1880 he set up a dynamo in his sawmill and became
1881 44 Years Old the first person to sell electric lighting in Portland when he ran a primitive transmission line to the nearby Ainsworth Dock in 1881. … Read More
1885 48 Years Old G. W. Weidler and his wife had seven children, five of whom lived to adulthood. The Weidlers lived in a large house built in 1885 on Northwest 19th Street between Kearney and Lovejoy streets. … Read More


1908 71 Years Old Late in life Weidler joined the Episcopal Church, where his father-in-law was a prominent member and vestryman. Weidler belonged to the Arlington, Portland, and Commercial clubs. He died of a stroke on September 19, 1908, in Portland. … Read More
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