Hyde-Shaw Company

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Main Location

San Jose


Richardson and Robbins, Shaw Family Cannery

The Hyde-Shaw Company was a fruit cannery run by Elton R. Shaw, supposedly known for their fancy fruit packed in glass jars and high-quality jams. A 1907 ad advertises "tomatoes, cherries, peaches, peeled apricots, spiced prunellas, and spiced peaches... put up in quart jars by the Hyde-Shaw Co."[1]. The company also made peanut butter[2].

The May 30, 1910 Hawaiian Star noted that Elton Shaw had been working with the Hawaiian Pineapple Company, and had formerly been a sales manager for the "Economy Jar", and had just acquired the entire property and business of the Hyde-Shaw Company of San Jose, "one of the very few concerns in the United States that have made a success of packing fruits in glass." The Hawaiian Pineapple Company and its shareholders were planning to watch the business with Shaw, and hoped to can pineapple juice at a later date. The May 27, 1910 issue of the Hawaiian Star stresses the purchase of the company as a site to can pineapple juice.

The cannery was sold in 1915 to Richardson and Robbins from Delaware according to the March 13, 1915 California Fruit News. Shaw was "well known in California", and would be taking responsibility for both the company's Dover, Delaware plant as well as the California plant. California Grocers Advocate noted that Shaw "has served many of the largest packing interests in a consulting capacity, both as efficiency engineer and expert in fruit packing[3]. Richardson and Robbins planned to expand the plant significantly, but ended up selling it back to Shaw in April 1918.

Edith Daley visited the plant in the August 5, 1919 San Jose Evening News. She notes that Richardson and Robbins sold the plant back to Shaw in April 1918, and the plant was then known as the Shaw Family Cannery.

The Principals

The "Hyde" in the company's name was "W.H. Hyde Jr."[4]. Hyde lived in Berkeley at the time. His father, William Hershel Hyde Sr. was a former 49er, house mover, and contractor who appears to have been pretty successful in his day. There are examples that William Hyde Junior lived in San Francisco through 1903, then worked for Hyde-Shaw. Hyde shows up as living in Berkeley in 1910, and listed his occupation at the time as "capitalist".


Location Years Address Details
San Jose 1907, 1910, 1915 4th and Patterson

Southeast corner[5].


  1. Advertisement: October 6, 1907 Sunday San Jose Mercury and Herald. Like other Hyde-Shaw and Shaw Family Cannery references, the Farmers Union in San Josa always referred to their products by name.
  2. June 29, 1914 San Jose Evening News. Again a Farmers Union ad.
  3. High Grade Fruit in Tin and Glass Is Richardson and Robins 1915 Pack: March 12, 1915 Retail Grocers Advocate
  4. 1911 San Jose City Directory
  5. 1909 San Jose City Directory