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Simcha (Sidney) Myer (1878–1934)

Mr. Sidney Myer, governing director of the Myer Emporium, collapsed and died suddenly a few hundred yards from his house in Clendon Road, Toorak, shortly before 1O a.m. today. Death apparently was due to heart failure. The late Mr. Myer, who was 38 years of age, had complained at breakfast that he was not feeling wei, and said he would take a short walk before going into thc city. Four leading Melbourne men -old friends of his- found him lying on the footpath of Woorigoleen Road.

"Content with things achieved is the first sign of decay" was the maxim on which Sidney Myer based life, for although in the completion last year of the great building scheme in Bourke street premises, he saw the achievement of a life ambition, he had further plans in view for a policy of continual progress, which he discussed only yesterday with his architect.

Packer of Parcels

Born at Nilna, south of Warsaw, the late  Mr.Myer, at the age of 19, landed in Australia with practically nothing and started his career packing parcels in Flinders Lane. Setting up in Bendigo as a travelling trader, and later, with his brother, opened a shop which in a few years he extended to take in ten adjoining businesses. In 1912 Sidney Myer bought out the old established softgoods firm of Wright and Neil, Bourke street, Melbourne. He rebuilt the premises on modern lines, and it became the first unit of a colossal enterprise, now known as the Myer Emporium, extending through Bourke street and Little Bourke street, to Lonsdale street.

Building Wonder

The building programme of the Myer Emporium has been for many years one of the wonders of the business life of Melbourne. Huge distribution establishments have been instituted throughout the Emporium, thousands of hands have been employed to supply the firm's retail establishment, and two woollen mills have been acquired in provincial centres.

Throughout all his business activities, the late Mr. Myer never forgot the interests of his employees, and he has given thousands of pounds to charity, and to the Melbourne University about £75,000.

The late Mr. Myer leaves a widow and four children.

Citation details

'Myer, Simcha (Sidney) (1878–1934)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 22 June 2024.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2024

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Baevski, Simcha

8 February, 1878
Mogilev, Belarus


5 September, 1934 (aged 56)
Toorak, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Cause of Death

heart disease

Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.

Religious Influence

Includes the religion in which subjects were raised, have chosen themselves, attendance at religious schools and/or religious funeral rites; Atheism and Agnosticism have been included.