Chas. C. Hart Seed Company
, Connecticut

The Chas. C. Hart Seed Company was founded in 1892 by Mr. Charles C. Hart who had been connected with the Johnson & Robbins Company for fourteen years. He started a small consignment package seed business, using the back kitchen of his home as a packing room, warehouse, and office. At that time there were five seed firms in business in Wethersfield, this venture being the sixth.

In 1894, Mr. Hart entered into a partnership with Mr. Frank J. Wells, establishing Hart, Wells & Company. They purchased the general wholesale seed business of Egbert Decker on Marsh Street in Wethersfield and moved their operations there for a time. As business increased, more room was needed so the company acquired the offices and warehouses of the former Johnson & Robbins Company on Main Street.

A mail order department was established in 1913. In 1916 Mr. Hart purchased Mr. Wells interest in the business, and Mr. Hart's three older sons became associated with the firm.

Over the years, Hart's Seeds grew, acquiring several seed companies in the process. In 1922, the fifty-year-old business of E. M. Lyman & Son of Springfield Massachusetts was purchased and moved to Wethersfield. During that same year, the youngest of Mr. Hart's four sons joined the company. In 1924 the package seed business of Robert M. Reeves & Company of New York City was bought.

Other seed businesses acquired included the Budd D. Hawkins Seed Company of Reading Vermont in 1952, the S. D. Woodruff & Son Company of Orange, Connecticut in 1958, and the packet seed business of T. W. Wood & Sons of Richmond Virginia in 1962.

The wood frame buildings of the Hart Seed Company were destroyed by a fire in 1943, and were replaced with a brick office-warehouse complex at the same location on Main Street in historic Old Wethersfield, Connecticut.

Today, the company is owned and operated by members of the third, fourth, and fifth generations of the Hart family. The Hart's oversee the production and distribution of packet seeds, bulk vegetable and flower seed, lawn seed, fertilizers and other landscape products to independent dealers, farmers, golf courses, and landscape professionals throughout the Northeastern United States.

Old Wethersfield, Connecticut is a charming, historic Connecticut River town founded in 1634.  Along Main Street are homes more than 200 years old, as well as the white-steepled Congregational Church that George Washington occasionally attended.  This area is richly endowed with deep, fertile soil, a legacy from the glaciers and the annual flooding of the Connecticut River.  As a result of this agricultural treasure, Wethersfield became in its early history a seed producing area.

"Here is the finest ride in America.  A gentleman told me that there is not such another street in America as this one in Wethersfield . . . We went up the steeple of Wethersfield Meeting House from whence is the most grand and beautiful prospect in the world."

From John Adam's Diary, August 15, 1774


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Sources: The Chas. C. Hart Seed Company

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