Sharing the pride of accomplishment

Published 7:01 am Sunday, November 20, 2016


Stockholders of Geo. A. Hormel Company Have Pleasant Time”

That was a headline in the Nov. 17, 1909 Austin Daily Herald.

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Almost exactly 107 years ago the company held its annual meeting in its offices on a Tuesday night. The article reported that “About 50 stockholders were present. After the reading of the reports, which showed the company in excellent condition, the following officers were re-elected: President, Geo. A. Hormel; Vice President, Herman G. Hormel; Secretary, A. L. Eberhardt; Treasurer, J. G. Hormel; Directors, the five officers and S. D. Catherwood, Lillian B. Hormel, Elizabeth Hormel and Lena Eberhardt.”

The annual report shared many facts and figures that told of the company’s success during that period of time.

•Annual sales were four million dollars.

•13,767 hogs were killed which equaled 44,593,250 pounds

•59,179,521 pounds of product were sold at the fiscal close on 10/30/1909, which represented an increase of four million pounds over the year before

•Sales were distributed to 32 states and to Canada

The article ended with an account of the activities that took place after the reporting.

“Following the business meeting a delightful luncheon was served in the basement, the lady stenographers and clerks serving. The menu included an oyster stew, boiled ham, sandwiches, etc. The special dishes consisted of Hormel’s Dairy Brand bacon cooked in many ways by Mrs. Geo. A. Hormel and Mrs. A. L. Eberhardt to demonstrate the possibilities of this great food product. The table decorations were chrysanthemums.”

The following day, on Nov. 18, 1909, an editorial was written by the paper’s associate editor, and Hormel family friend, Gertrude Ellis-Skinner. It reflected a feeling of amazement and pride that was representative of Austin residents. It read:

“The figures which appeared in Wednesday night’s Herald, relative to the amount of business done by the Geo. A. Hormel packing plant, came as a complete surprise to some of our people. The company is very reticent about giving out figures and it was only on the solicitation of the Herald that the figures were made public. We can all feel proud of this big institution.”

Both production and sales numbers have increased by incredible proportions since 1909, but I think the sentiment remains the same. We should all feel proud of this big institution that continues to thrive in and support our community.

A Handmade Christmas Craft Event

December 2 and 3

Tickets available at or at the door.