Campbell soup is as American as apple pie and the Fourth of July. Cans of tomato, chicken noodle, and cream of mushroom soup, sporting the company's distinctive red-and-white labels have found places on millions of dinner tables around the globe. In 1869, fruit merchant Joseph Campbell and icebox manufacturer Abraham Anderson formed the Joseph A. Campbell Preserve Company, purveyors of canned tomatoes, vegetables, jellies, soups, condiments, and mincemeat. In 1897, general manager Arthur Dorrance decided to hire his twenty-four-year-old nephew, John T. Dorrance. It was on John Dorrance's ingenious invention of condensed soup in 1897 that the company's fortunes grew and expanded far beyond its Camden, New Jersey headquarters. Campbell Soup Company opens the company's archives with a wonderful assortment of photographs. Among the images are those of aproned workers dicing carrots and of white-hatted chefs stirring vats of boiling soups. Also pictured is the factory where America's original comfort food was conceived. In these pages, readers will learn the history behind the iconic red-and-white cans touted by such celebrities as Ronald Reagan, George Burns, Gracie Allen, and Johnny Carson. Today, in addition to soup, the company produces such well-known brands as Pepperidge Farm, Franco-American, V8, Prego, and Godiva. Campbell Soup Company traces the history of a small, southern New Jersey canning concern that made its products staples of American living.
Author Bio: Journalists and authors Martha Esposito Shea and Mike Mathis compiled these photographs from the archives of the Campbell Soup Company, the private collection of retired longtime employee Harry Nelson, and Burlington County Times photographer Dennis McDonald.
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