Letter from Sydney Chase to Joshua Chase (August 29, 1927)

Dublin Core


Letter from Sydney Chase to Joshua Chase (August 29, 1927)

Alternative Title

Chase Correspondence (August 29, 1927)


Chase, Sydney Octavius, 1860-1941
Chase, Joshua Coffin, 1858-1948
Citrus fruit industry--Florida
Federal Trade Commission (U.S.)
Florida Citrus Exchange
Tung oil industry--United States
Gainesville (Fla.)
Sanford (Fla.)
Orlando (Fla.)
Polk County (Fla.)
Winter Haven (Fla.)
Haines City (Fla.)
Orange County (Fla.)
Crescent City (Fla.)


An original letter of correspondence between brothers and business partners Sydney Octavius Chase and Joshua Coffin Chase. The letter contains information about an interview Sydney and other members of the Florida Citrus Exchange had with a Mr. Edward Fisher, an examiner from the Federal Trade Commission. The topic of discussion between the group of men related to the Florida Citrus Exchange's methods in marketing in comparison to independent marketing campaigns. Sydney also recounts a trip through Gainesville, Florida, to inspect tung oil groves.

Chase & Company was established by the brothers in 1884. The company sold insurance and later invested in storage facilities and fertilizer sales. Chase & Company was known mainly for its agricultural interests and maintained a series of citrus groves throughout Central Florida. The company was based out of Sanford and became one of the city's largest employers into the early twentieth century. The Florida Citrus Exchange was founded by a group of growers on June 21, 1909 to help improve production of citrus in the state. Members shared facilities and helped establish operation and shipping standards. Both Sydney and Joshua Chase were hesitant to join the Exchange because they did not want to jeopardize the business they had successfully managed. Chase & Company eventually became a part of the Exchange, but backed out three years later.


Chase, Sydney Octavius


Original letter from Sydney Octavius Chase to Joshua Coffin Chase, August 29, 1927: Chase Collection (MS 14), box 3, folder 13.46, Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.

Date Created


Is Format Of

Digital reproduction of original letter from Sydney Octavius Chase to Joshua Coffin Chase, August 29, 1927.

Is Part Of

Chase Collection (MS 14), box 3, folder 13.46, Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.
Florida Citrus Exchange Collection , Chase Collection, RICHES of Central Florida.

Is Referenced By

Folder referenced in Chase Collection finding guide, http://web.uflib.ufl.edu/spec/pkyonge/chase.htm.




7,459 KB


4 page typewritten letter on Chase & Company letterhead






Sanford, Florida
Camden, Maine
Orlando, Florida
Washington, D.C.
Winter Haven, Florida
Haines City, Florida
Gainesville, Florida
Crescent City, Florida
Ocala, Florida
Leesburg, Florida
Isleworth, Winderemere, Florida

Spatial Coverage

28.811729, -81.268138
44.209526, -69.064922
28.538084, -81.378593
38.892557, -77.021102
28.022288, -81.732845
28.114685, -81.618176
29.652554, -82.324734
29.430328, -81.510587
29.187536, -82.140369
28.810385, -81.876698
28.477571, -81.526537

Temporal Coverage


Accrual Method


Audience Education Level

SS.K.A.1.2; SS.1.A.1.1; SS.1.A.2.2; SS.1.A.2.4; SS.1.E.1.2; SS.1.E.1.4; SS.1.E.1.6; SS.2.A.1.1; SS.2.E.1.1; SS.3.A.1.1; SS.3.E.1.1; SS.4.A.1.1; SS.4.A.7.1; SS.4.E.1.1; SS.4.E.1.2; SS.5.A.1.1; SS.6.W.1.3; SS.7.E.1.3; SS.7.E.2.4; SS.8.A.1.5; SS.8.E.1.1; SS.8.E.2.1; SS.8.E.2.2; SS.8.E.2.3; SS.912.A.1.1; SS.912.A.1.6; SS.912.A.5.4; SS.912.E.1.5; SS.912.E.1.10; SS.912.E.2.3; SS.912.E.2.12; SS.912.W.1.3


History Teacher
Economics Teacher


Entire Chase Collection is comprised of four separate accessions from various donors, including Cecilia Johnson, the granddaughter of Joshua Coffin Chase and the children of Randall Chase.

Rights Holder

The displayed collection item is housed at Special and Area Studies Collections at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida. Rights to this item belong to the said institution, and therefore inquiries about the item should be directed there. RICHES of Central Florida has obtained permission from Special and Area Studies Collections at the University of Florida to display this item for educational purposes only.

Contributing Project


Marra, Katherine

Digital Collection

External Reference

"Our Heritage: The History of Seald-Sweet." Seald Sweet International. http://www.sealdsweet.com/welcome/our-history.php.
Hopkins, James T. Fifty Years of Citrus, the Florida Citrus Exchange: 1909-1959. Gainesville, Florida: University of Florida Press: 1960.
"Sydney Chase Sr. (1860-1941)." Florida Citrus Hall of Fame. Copyright 2012. http://floridacitrushalloffame.com/index.php/inductees/inductee-name/?ref_cID=89&bID=0&dd_asId=600.
Warner, S.C. "Development of Marketing Citrus Fruits in Florida." Florida State Horticultural Society vol. 36 (1923): 198-200.


August 29, 1927.
Mr. J.C. Chase, Camden, Maine,
Dear Josh:
I spent the entire day Saturday in the Orlando
office. A representative of the Federal Trade Commission,
from Washington, is in the state endeavoring to assemble data with reference to the results obtained on the marketing of citrus fruits thru the independent marketing agencies vs. the Florida Citrus Exchange, calling itself a true co-operative organization, the only co-operative and non-profiting organization in the state.
He did, not want to compare results of the co-operative organization with those of Gentile Bros. for the reason that the majority of their fruit was either produced on their own groves or purchased, and having a very limited
brokerage business. The same applies to the Standard
Growers. The American 2ruit Growers have everything.
The Exchange stated that if the independents were willing to have him go into their results that it would be agreeable to them for him to examine their records for comparative purposes.
He is now at work on the American Fruit Growers' records, and stated that he would have to segregate the merchandising crops from their contract or brokerage crops.
It being impossible for him to make a state wide comparison he has decided to use results obtained thru packing houses putting up Polk County fruit, uwing the Winter Haven Fruit Exchange as the co-operative organization; the American Growers, either their Haines City or Klem house but I think the Haines City house; and wanted to use our Eloise house, as he felt that the general average of quality of fruit passing thru these three houses would be approximately the same. He is not interested in checking the
operating expenses of the packing houses, but takes the fruit after being packed, on an f.o.b. packing house basis.
Mr. Pratt, Bogue, and I were interviewing him. He stated that he was not interested in any of the activities from the grove to the packing house. Mr. Pratt suggested that in order to have the right kind of a com¬parison he should base his findings on the field crate de¬livery to the packing house, and check that against the
packed crate output. That would disclose the amount of
fruit culled out, sent to the cannery, or put in the third
grade. Mr. Edward Fisher, the examiner, could not see
that that would have any bearing on the situation.
finally asked him if the Federal Trade Commission was en¬deavoring to ascertain the net results to the grower, or producer, on a given amount of fruit produced or whether they were trying to ascertain which packing house graded the best and got an extreme price for a very limited
quantity of first grade fruit. After about a half hour’s
talk the light of day dawned, and he stated he saw our point, and would have to go back and get some additional data in order to complete his investigation in one or two points where he had been working.
As I understood it the American Fruit Growers, and often the Exchange, only pack out about 80 per cent of the bulk fruit which comes to the house, whereas we pack out almost box for box, except on an occasional crop where there is a heavy cullage account of scab or other
defects. After he agreed to base his findings on field
crate deliveries we told him we had no objection to his reviewing our records.
He is to separate the auction results from the F. 0. B. results. He can get nearly all the information he wants from the averages we have already prepared. The only thing he will have to take into consideration is the destination, without using the name of the dealer who gets the car.
The information he gets from all these organizations will be held strictly confidential, and it is likely it will be two or three years before they are compiled in a report and go to Congress, and when it does nobody's name will be used.
This man is sent out by the Federal Trade Commission for the reason that on March 17, 1925, following a meeting of some agricultural convention which was held in Washington, and to which you were a delegate, it was requested that this data be compiled as a guide for further and future legislation on the part of Congress. The interview with this man was very interesting and enlightening. He admitted that there were a large number of so called co-operatives who fell short, for some reason or another, in being classed as 100 per cent co¬operative institutions, and were barred from preferred assist¬ance of the government.
After talking with many people interested in the in¬dustry he seemed to feel that there should be a comparative statement rendered with reference to the Orange County citrus movement, and selected Isleworth to check against the Winter
Garden Exchange. Both houses are equipped with pre-cooling,
and the fruit handled is very similar as to quality. The
bulk of their fruit is forwarded to auction. I told him that
the average auction results would not disclose the information I thought they wanted, and it would be necessary for him to check from the auction sales prices obtained on each size and grade, and then make comparison of such findings.
I am satisfied that Mr. Fisher got some real infor¬mation from the conference we had together, and some very
valuable information. He told me that he did not want to
appear as handing out any compliments, but that quite a number of the Exchanged people had stated that we had always been fair in all our dealings, held an enviable reputation, and we were such nice people they did not understand why we had not joined the Exchange.
I expect to visit Orlando tomorrow afternoon, and see how this party is getting on. Mr. Pratt and Patterson
were leaving Orlando this morning to make an inspection tour of all districts, including Manatee and Dunedin, spending enough time at each place to get an insight into the present status of the first bloom fruit, as well as the late bloom. They will probably be absent the entire week.
Randall and drove to Gainesville yesterday, going via Crescent City and returning via Ocala and
Leesburg. We stopped at Crescent City, but Mr. Shiver
was not at home and Mrs. Shiver did not know just where
we could locate him, so we did not tarry. Groves all
thru that section look thrifty and well, but with few ex¬ceptions the groves in sight of the highway have a light crop, including our own groves. The same condition applied to groves we passed prior to darkness on our re
turn trip. We got caught in the rain near Weirsdale,
and remained in it until after we got past Mount Lora.
Our trip yesterday was to inspect Tung Oil orchards, or groves, which were planted two or three years
ago around Gainesville. The three year old trees are pro
ducing quite some nuts this year. Isleworth lung Oil
trees also have a crop of nuts. Next year, however, accord¬ing to Mr. Williamson who seems to be an authority on the Tung Oil business, we should have a larger crop. He states that at four years and thereafter the trees should increase in production quite rapidly, if given proper attention. In 1928 they expect to have a Tung Oil factory in Gainesville
ready to take care of the crop that season. This year's
crop will be sent out of the state to have the oil extracted.
Yours very truly,

If you leave (?) on 18th, when do you figure on reaching (Cant read the rest)

Document Item Type Metadata

Original Format

4 page typewritten letter on Chase & Company letterhead





Chase, Sydney Octavius. “Letter from Sydney Chase to Joshua Chase (August 29, 1927).” RICHES of Central Florida accessed October 4, 2022, https://richesmi.cah.ucf.edu/omeka/items/show/653.



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