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Henry John Heinz III

March 8, 2012 by staff 

Henry John Heinz III, Henry John Heinz (October 11, 1844 – May 14, 1919) was an American businessman who founded the H. J. Heinz Company. Heinz was one of eight children born to John Henry Heinz and Anna Margaretha Heinz. Both parents had emigrated from Kallstadt, Germany and settled in the Birmingham section of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-today known as the South Side.

When Henry was six, the family moved several miles up the Allegheny River to the little town of Sharpsburg. There, at age six, young Henry (called Harry by his family) started helping his mother tend a small backyard garden behind the family home. At age eight Henry was canvassing the neighborhood with a basket under each arm selling vegetables from the family garden door to door. By age nine he was growing, grinding, bottling and selling his own brand of horseradish sauce, based on his mother’s recipe. At ten he was given a ¾-acre (3,000 m²) garden of his own and had graduated to a wheelbarrow to deliver his vegetables. At twelve he was working 3½ acres (14,000 m²) of garden using a horse and cart for his three-times-a-week deliveries to grocery stores in Pittsburgh. At seventeen he was grossing $2,400 a year-a handsome sum for the times.

Heinz attended public schools and then Duff’s Business College. After graduating from college, he started employment with his father’s brick manufacturing business, eventually becoming a partner in the firm. During this time he continued growing and selling fresh produce.

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