C&O Nursery History
In 1906 Andy Gossman quit his job as a school
teacher in Minnesota, invested his savings in
apple tree rootstock, packed a few essential possessions and
headed west to follow his dream.
Andy knew that the climate in Eastern Washington
was similar to apple producing regions of the east
coast, and he had a pretty good hunch that apple
trees would flourish in the west. He was right.
Andy planted his first nursery near the confluence of
the Columbia & Okanogan Rivers, and
thus the company name – C&O – was born. In
1907 Andy persuaded his nephew Bert Snyder to
leave Iowa and move west to join him. Andy’s
pharmacology degree and Bert’s college education were a winning combination. Within a few
years C&O relocated to Wenatchee, the hub of
Washington’s apple industry.
Word spread quickly about the superior trees
available from C&O. Andy and Bert developed
a nursery catalog, and Andy applied his scientific
background to the development of new varieties of
apples. In 1923 Andy and Bert propagated a new
variety, the Richared Delicious. Millions of Richared
Delicious have been grown and distributed throughout
the world. In 1934 C&O received a patent for the
Shotwell – a variety of Red Delicious. In 1951
the company was awarded the Wilder Medal,
the highest award in horticulture, for their
efforts in variety innovation.
|Andy and Bert’s entrepreneurial endeavors have become a lasting legacy. Family
members involved in C & O’s success include: Bert’s sons John, Bob and Gene; and
the current 3rd generation family members of Jack, Dick, Todd and Gary; and 4th
generation Snyders - Shad, Adam and Ty.