THE YEAR 1869

SPAN OF A CENTURY
1828-1928

100 YEARS IN THE HISTORY OF CAMDEN AS A CITY

COMPILED FROM NOTES ANDS DATA COLLECTED BY
CHARLES S. BOYER

PRESIDENT CAMDEN COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY

PUBLISHED BY
CENTENNIAL ANNIVERSARY COMMITTEE
OF CAMDEN, NEW JERSEY

ADDITIONAL PHOTOS AND NOTES BY PHILLIP COHEN IN 2003

The paid Fire Department was established on September 2, 1869. The fire apparatus which was installed December 7, 1869 consisted of two engines, two hose carts and one hook and ladder truck. Part of the equipment was housed at 5th and Plum (now Arch) Streets; and part in the house of the Independence Fire Company in South Camden. William Abels was Chief Fire Marshal at this time. Prior to this the fire protection was furnished by a number of volunteer companies, to each which the city made a small contribution. 

The West Jersey Homeopathic Medical Society was organized in May of 1869. 

Wildey Hall at 5th and Pine Streets opened October 26, 1869

The Campbell Soup Company had its inception in 1869, when Joseph Campbell and Abram Anderson, under the name of Anderson & Campbell, established a canning and preserving plant at 41 North 2nd Street in Camden. The building was still standing and in good condition and was in active use by the Company as late as 1928. In that year the Campbell Soup Company’s plants and warehouses covered approximately five city blocks of Camden, and accounted for approximately 18 acres of floor space. With additions authorized and building in 1928 in Camden and Chicago, the total of the floor space of the Campbell plants increased to approximately 36 acres.
      Abram A. Anderson retired from the firm in 1873 and Joseph Campbell continued the business under his own name until 1882, when a co-partnership was formed under the title of Joseph Campbell & Company, consisting of Joseph Campbell, Arthur Dorrance, Joseph S. Campbell, and Walter Spackman. The business was incorporated in 1891 under the title of Joseph Campbell Preserve Company, Inc.
     
Joseph Campbell was the first to pack strictly fancy small peas in the United States. Campbell’s Beefsteak Tomatoes became famous and were known from coast to coast.
      
As the years passed, new lines were added until, at the time of the introduction of Campbell’s Soups, over two hundred varieties of food products were packed and merchandised by the Company. With the assurance of the success of condensed soup, the other lines were eliminated one by one, until all effort was concentrated on the production of Soup, Pork and Beans, and Spaghetti. This was an early and outstanding example of “simplification of practice”.
       Joseph Campbell was President until 1895 when he was succeeded by Arthur Dorrance. John T. Dorrance entered the employ of the Company in 1897. To him belongs the credit of originating Campbell’s Soups. His was the idea of commercially canning a broad line of condensed soups, and his the vision of the possibilities that the idea opened up.

      
The production of Campbell’s Soup was begun in 1898. Back in those days of the Spanish-American War the company produced five varieties of soup, with a total yearly output of 500,000 cans. In 1928 the production was often 500,000 cans an hour.
      
In 1905 the corporate title was changed to Joseph Campbell Company. In 1914 John T. Dorrance was made President of the Company. Arthur Dorrance retired in 1915. In 1923 the business was reorganized under the name Campbell Soup Company.
      
Charles S. Boyer, the president of the Camden County Historical Society, wrote of Campbell Soup in 1928 the following:

       “Millions of couriers of good will, dressed in their Red-and-White labels go forth daily from this great plant to the four corners of the globe to spread the fame of Camden.”
 

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