George Huntington Hartford (George Huntington Hartford)

George Huntington Hartford

Businessman, Retail Grocery Magnate. He was the owner of The Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company (commonly known as A&P) from 1878 until his death. Born on a farm in Augusta, Maine, his parents operated a boarding house and livery stable. With little formal education, he relocated to Boston, Massachusetts and worked as a clerk in a dry goods store. In 1859 he and his brother moved to St. Louis, Missouri where they worked in a branch of the leather tanning business owned by George Gilman called Gilman & Company. Soon afterwards, he moved to New York City, New York and worked as a clerk in Gilman’s business that expanded to importing tea. His ability to promote the business by advertising low prices soon expanded to a small chain of retail, tea, and coffee stores in New York City and a national mail order business. In 1870 the firm changed its name to The Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company (A&P) and following the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, he expanded it to Chicago, Illinois. When Gilman retired in 1878, he became manager of the firm. By 1884 there were A&P stores as far west as Kansas City, Kansas and as far south as Atlanta, Georgia. Prior to his death,, A&P operated 1,600 stores throughout the US and Canada and by 1930 it became the world’s largest retailer with 16,000 stores. He died in Spring Lake, New Jersey at the age of 83. (bio by: William Bjornstad)


  • September, 05, 1833


  • August, 08, 1917


  • Rosedale Cemetery
  • USA

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