Del Monte Packing Plant History - San Jose, CA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member saopaulo1
N 37° 19.261 W 121° 54.250
10S E 597092 N 4131046
Quick Description: A sign in a new San Jose park.
Location: California, United States
Date Posted: 4/14/2015 10:01:28 PM
Waymark Code: WMNPPA
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member lumbricus
Views: 1

Long Description:
Del Monte Park is named after the cannery that once occupied this site and the land across the street. California was a major producer of fruits and vegetables in the late 1800's. Santa Clara Valley was known as the Valley Of Heart's Delight for its high concentration of orchards, flowering trees, and plants. However, bumper harvests in the late 1860's saturated the modest local market, causing significant economic disruption among the orchardists and farmers. The completion of the transcontinental railroad in 1869, created the possibility of reaching nationwide markets, A technology could be developed for processing fruits and vegetables, allowing for them to be shipped long distances.

The first cannery in the Valley was JM Dawson & Company, founded in 1871 by Dr. James M. Dawson, his wife Eloise Jones Dawson and their son Thomas Benton Dawson. The cannery packed 300 cases of peaches, apricots, pears and plums in their first year of operation. The cannery later incorporated in 1875, as the San Jose Fruit Packing Company (SJFPC). By 1881, employing over 300 hands during the running season, about one million cans a year were packed, mostly by women and girls. In 1893, SJFPC constructed a state-of-the-art cannery on the site across the street. The new cannery was then the world's largest fruit cannery, shipping 275,000 cases (6.6 million cans) in 1895.
In 1899, 11 of the state's biggest canners merged under the name California Fruit Canners Association (CFCA). In 1916 SJFPC merged with CFCA, another canner, and a food brokerage house, incorporating into California Packing Corporation, or Calpak, and began marketing its products under the Del Monte label. Thomas Dawson was Calpak's first General Superintendent. The new company grew operations to more than 60 canneries, with locations in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Alaska. Pineapple lands and a cannery in Hawaii were acquired in 1917, and in the 1920s, canneries in Florida, the Midwest and the Philippines were added. After World War II more facilities were constructed or purchased overseas. With multinational operations, the name California Packing Corporation was changed in 1967 to the Del Monte Corporation, still known for processing, canning and distributing food. Until the 1960s, Santa Clara Valley was the largest fruit production and packing region in the world, with 39 canneries. The plant across the street continued to operate for 82 years, operating as Del Monte Corporation's Plant #3 from 1967 until its closure in 1999. About 1,200 seasonal workers where employed when the plant closed. It was the last operating cannery in San Jose. The Del Monte Park site was acquired by the cannery and used as a parking lot. In 2005, KB Home South Bay Incorporated acquired the closed cannery and the parking lot to create the new residential project across the street. Following the State's Quimby Act and a City ordinance, KB Home dedicated the parking lot to the City, paid park fees and paid for the development of the Del Monte Park Master Plan, satisfying their parkland obligation. The Park developed on the parking lot site, was funded entirely by a grant under Statewide Park Program in Proposition 84 the Safe Drinking Water, Water Quality and Supply, Flood Control, River , and Coastal Protection Bond Act of 2006."
Group that erected the marker: City of San Jose

Address of where the marker is located. Approximate if necessary:
806 W Home St
San Jose, CA USA

URL of a web site with more information about the history mentioned on the sign: Not listed

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