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Irvine/Valencia Growers Packing House Records

Orange County's agricultural industry has a rich history, but few records documenting its growth, variety, significance, and decline have been preserved for public use. Thanks to the generosity of the Irvine Company, however, a major body of material documenting the historically significant Irvine Valencia Growers Packing House is now available for research in Special Collections and Archives.

The IVG Packing House played a significant role in the growth of the Valencia orange industry in Orange County, and its records, which span more than half a century (1926-1998), therefore provide important insights into the area's agricultural business and labor history. The collection provides unique source materials for investigating topics such as the early 20th-century rise of a Progressive Era cooperative approach among fruit growers; the strong influence of the Irvine Company in Orange County's segment of the California Cooperative; and the company's involvement with local citrus worker strikes in 1935-1936.

The collection consists of a complete, high-quality set of photocopies of the firm's original business records, which remain in the custody of the Irvine Company. Materials include many types of business records that are invaluable for research: incorporation documents and by-laws, board and shareholder meeting minutes, financial records, audit reports, annual reports, trademark files, growers' pool records and accounts, appraisals and inventories, correspondence concerning machinery and equipment, worker training and safety materials, oral histories and other interviews, maps, photographs, and architectural records. In addition to the historical records, the collection includes extensive records created by the engineering and architectural consultants who fully documented the packing house in photographs, architectural drawings, and contextual narratives prior to the structure's destruction in 2003.

The IVG Records are accompanied by a detailed inventory available in Special Collections and Archives. For more information contact Bill Landis (blandis@uci.edu or x43113).

 

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