Andrews and Coykendall Ham Company

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Summary
Business

Dried Fruit Packer
Main Location

San Jose, CA
Active

1893-1917
Aliases

A. & C. Ham Company
Successors

California Prune and Apricot Growers

Andrews and Coykendall Ham Company was a former meat wholesaler which turned itself into a dried fruit packer. A&C Ham (named after the two principals, Hardage Lane Andrews and Jonathan B. Coykendall) was founded as a pork processor in the 1870's[1]. The initial storefront was at 3rd and San Fernando Streets, with a warehouse at Senter and Cinnabar[2] (1899 and 1902 city directories show store at 90 East San Fernando Street in San Jose; 1900 city directory shows them only in ham and bacon business.) Some time around 1900, Coykendall got interested in the fruit business, and the company slowly switched to a dried fruit packer. After his death in 1904, his sons Frank Coykendall and Horatio G. Coykendall continued the business. When Frank Coykendall, the 1917 owner, became the general manager for the newly-formed California Prune and Apricot Growers ("Sunsweet") cooperative, Frank sold A&C Ham to Sunsweet to avoid the conflict of interest.

San Jose Plant

The business's primary location throughout its life was at Senter and Cinnabar Streets in a succession of buildings. An 1884 Sanborn map shows a house on the property, but no plant, as does an 1891 Sanborn map. Listed as Andrews and Coykendall Ham Co in 1893 city directory The meat packing house burned on December 5, 1892[3]. The plant also burned in 1903.

By 1901, the company was seriously into dried prunes. A 1901 article notes that A & C Ham bought leftover prunes from the California Cured Fruit Association, planned to open two warehouses to store the fruit[4]. In 1902, A&C Ham added two large buildings to their plant[5] They were still operating as grocer / meat packer in 1903[6]

September 17, 1903 San Jose Evening News reports "Armed Men Guard a Fruit Drier: Excited orchardists who want pay for prunes sold to Costa Brothers. There is a lot of prunes at what is known as the Costa drier on the Almaden Road, about three miles south of the city, that are being guarded by arms men. It appears that Louis and George Costa bought prunes from a number of orchardists in the section referred to. They then sold them to Coykendall & Sons, packers of prunes. The Costa Brothers received an advance of $5,000 on the prunes, and the latter were taken possession of by the Coykendalls. The new owners engaged in finishing the drying of the prunes. Then the parties that had sold the prunes to the Costas came around and demanded that they be paid for the prunes, asserting that the Costas had not paid in full for the fruit."

In the same issue: "For Europe: Large Shipments of Prunes from this Valley. The prune crop is short in France, and it is a good thing for that industry in Santa Clara Valley. The firm of J. Coykendall & Sons of this city are preparing a shipment of 200,000 pounds of prunes that are already sold in Antwerp, and are shipped direct from San Jose to the latter point. These prunes are for consumption in Belgium... the Coykendalls have shipped 450,000 pounds of Santa Clara Valley prunes direct to Havre. This fruit is for consumption in France."


1915 city directory shows them on Cinnabar at Senter, and only as a fruit packer.

May 18, 1917 San Jose News article on fire.

San Jose plant destroyed by fire on May 18, 1917 according to June 1917 Western Canner and Packer May 19, 1917 documents planed rebuilding May 26, 1917 California Fruit News notes that their house next door was saved, but the wooden packing house burned. They were in the process of expanding, and the machinery they'd bought from the California Cured Fruit Exchange in Emeryville would be used in the rebuilt plant. Very little fruit was lost, but many sacks, labels, and boxes for shipping the fruit was burned. The plant was not in use at the time.

Must've had something up and running within a couple months. In "July 21, 1917 San Jose Evening News": http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=LykiAAAAIBAJ&sjid=KqQFAAAAIBAJ&pg=2025%2C814783

In list of Sunsweet collection stations listed as "A & C Ham, Cinnabar Street"

Became affiliated with Sunsweet in 1918. Run by H.G. Coykendall and his brother Frank. Coykendall had been the first general manager for Sunsweet.

Sold to Sunsweet in July 1918 according to July 27, 1918 California Fruit News partially because Coykendall was a principal for the grower's association.

A&C Ham's 1917-era packing house survived into the modern era on Cinnabar St. next to the SP main line.

Locations

Location Years Address Details
San Jose 1893-1917 Cinnabar St at Senter Street Listed as "Andrews and Coykendall Ham Co." in 1893.
West Side 1900 Listed in San Francisco Call 1900 list of delivery spots.

Hardage Lane Andrews, one of the founders was born in the 1830's in Boonville Missouri and trained as a jeweler. He came to California in 1850 and "was one of the pioneer pork packers on the Pacific Coast"[7] Andrews died in 1889[8]. Hardage never married, and lived in San Jose with his brother, David Andrews Jr. who was also in the business. By 1892, David Andrews was no longer listed as associated with the company[9].

Photos

Dried fruit delivery pre-1900

1917 concrete packing house in the early 1960's.

Sanborn map showing post-1917 packing house

A&C Ham Packing Co. plant, after 1900.

References

  1. list of pioneer families
  2. 1876 city directory
  3. Burning Hams and Bacons: December 5, 1892 San Jose Evening News.
  4. November 30, 1901 San Francisco Call..
  5. August 23, 1902 San Francisco Call
  6. 1902-1903 letters with F.A. Hihn
  7. William Foreman Johnson, History of Cooper County, Missouri.
  8. From great-great-nephew. Supposedly, Andrews committed suicide in February 1889, and was buried in his home town in Missouri.
  9. David Andrews: 1892 San Jose City Directory. David Andrews is listed as "capitalist", living at Stockton and Lentzen.