Miriam Boskowitz Aiken (1886-1976)
Miriam Aiken (nee Boskowitz), born July 3, 1886, was the second daughter of Sarah Bloch and Isaac Boskowitz. Her paternal grandparents came west from New York after the Civil War in search of opportunity and were among the first Jewish families to settle in Oregon. Miriam’s father ran a general store in Union, Oregon when she was born and then moved his family to LaGrande, Oregon to open the first general store there. They frequently traveled to Portland from their home in eastern Oregon to attend Congregation Beth Israel for the Jewish holidays. Feeling it would be better to be part of a larger Jewish community, the family eventually moved to Portland, where Miriam, her brother Anselm, and her sister Mina attended public high school. Both Miriam and her brother, Anselm, worked for Fleischner-Mayer, Co. as teenagers. When Miriam was 23, she met and married Frank Aiken, after which the couple moved to Omaha, Nebraska before eventually settling in Utah. Miriam returned to Portland after her husband’s death in 1972; she died in 1976.