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A guide to the Tubbs Cordage Company records, 1850-1981
HDC0496 (SAFR 18874)  
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Tubbs Cordage Company records (SAFR 18874, HDC 496) includes correspondence, accounting ledgers, deeds, contracts, estate papers of the Tubbs family, billheads, and receipts of the Tubbs Cordage Company spanning the years 1854 to 1981. The Tubbs Cordage Company was family-owned from its creation in 1856 until it was sold in 1986. Some of the business papers are also personal in nature such as property owned and estates.The collection has been processed and is open for use without restriction.
From its beginning in 1856 until well into the twentieth century, the Tubbs Cordage Company was the largest rope making firm on the Pacific coast. For over a hundred years the original plant at the Potrero district in San Francisco was the headquarters of the company. In order to maintain a near-monopoly in the cordage industry, branch mills were subsequently founded in Portland, Seattle, Manila, and Orange, California. The founding brothers, Alfred and Hiram Tubbs, ran the business until their deaths in the 1890s, and from then until 1986, Tubbs Cordage was owned and managed by their familial heirs. Only in the 1960s did Tubbs Cordage finally abandon its San Francisco factory, in order to consolidate its works in Orange and adapt to modern times by producing rope made with synthetic fibers. Then, in 1963, Tubbs donated its Victorian-era rope-making machinery and a Victorian wood frame building to the National Maritime Museum in San Francisco. In 1986, shortly before its sale to an eastern firm, the company also donated its old photographs and the business records which form this collection to the Maritime Museum. (A separate scope and content guide has been written for the photographs, collection #P92-030.) These records document the activities of the Tubbs Cordage Co. in all five branches for over a hundred years.
28.5 linear ft.
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This collection is open for use unless otherwise noted.