This tool, as with all of the tools in 1991.69, is a cooper's tool that was used at the Heinz plant in Holland, MI to repair pickle shipping barrels. The donor worked at the Heinz plant for 42 years, retiring ca. 1979. It is uncertain if he actually worked as a cooper and used the tools in 1991.69. The accession files indicate that the donor acquired the tools upon his retirement.
In 1896 an agent from the H. J. Heinz Co. of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania traveled to west Michigan looking for a place to build a processing factory. Eventually Holland, MI was chosen due to the soil, harbor access and the lobbying of local businessmen (including William Beach, Gerrit J. Diekema, Arend Visscher and Oscar E. Yates).
By 1898 a three-story factory went up on west 16th Street on Black Lake (Lake Macatawa) known as branch No. 7 (1903, 1914 city directories). John J. Baxa (1874-1967) was Holland's manager in 1906 through 1914, followed by James A. Hoover (1872-1957) from approximately 1921 to 1940 and Charles B. McCormick (1897-1977) from approximately 1945 to 1961 (Holland city directories).
Gift ofSchierbeek, Edward