Swanson, Claude Augustus, 1862-1939, American politician, b. Pittsylvania co., Va. He practiced law in Chatham, Va., and after serving (1893-1905) in the U.S. House of Representatives he was (1906-10) governor of Virginia. In the U.S. Senate (1910-33), Swanson became recognized as one of the foremost authorities on naval and foreign affairs in the United States; he was a delegate to the London Naval Conference in 1931 and the Geneva Disarmament Conference in 1932. As U.S. Secretary of the Navy (1933-39), Swanson directed a vast naval expansion program.
Swanson, Gloria, 1899-1983, American movie actress, b. Chicago. Swanson began her film career in 1913, displaying an elegant comedic style in a series of films for director Cecil B. DeMille. Financed by Joseph Kennedy, she produced her own films from 1920 until 1929, including Sadie Thompson (1928) and Queen Kelly (1928). Although she made an easy transition to sound movies, she retired in 1934. She made a celebrated return in Sunset Boulevard (1950), portraying an aging, half-mad, silent movie queen. She made only three more films, but enjoyed continued success on television. Swanson appeared on Broadway in a revival of Twentieth Century (1952) and in Butterflies Are Free (1971).
Swanson, Howard, 1909-78, American composer, b. Atlanta. He studied at the Cleveland Institute of Music and in Paris with Nadia Boulanger. Among his compositions are three symphonies, Night Music for chamber orchestra, a Short Symphony, and songs, five of which are settings of poems by Langston Hughes.

Swanson is a brand of TV dinners, broths, and canned poultry made for the North American market. The TV dinner business is currently owned by Pinnacle Foods, while the broth business is currently owned by the Campbell Soup Company. Current TV dinner products sold under the brand include Swanson's Classics TV dinners and pot pies, and the current broth lineup includes chicken broth and beef broth.

The brand is named after Carl A. Swanson, a Swedish immigrant who moved to Omaha, Nebraska, in 1896. Around the turn of the century, Swanson formed a partnership with John Hjerpe and Frank Ellison called the Jerpe (sic) Commission Company which was eventually incorporated in 1905. The company focused on butter production and poultry. In 1928 over a decade after Ellison's death, Swanson bought out Hjerpe's interest.

During World War II Jerpe was one of the largest suppliers of poultry and eggs to the military. After the war ended, Jerpe was renamed C.A. Swanson & Sons. After Carl Swanson's death in 1949, his sons Gilbert and Clarke took over the company. The brothers introduced a frozen chicken pot pie a year later. Then in 1952, Swanson & Sons introduced their TV brand TV dinner, quickly selling 5,000 units in its first year. A year later the company had sold over 10,000,000 TV dinners. A year later, the company dropped its successful butter and margarine business to concentrate on a poultry-based line of canned and frozen products. In April 1955, Swanson's 4,000 employees and 20 plants were acquired by the Campbell Soup Company.

For the majority of it's run, Swanson sponsored the game show, The Name's the Same, with Robert Q. Lewis, alternating sponsorship with, first Bendix Home Appliance division of Avco; and then Johnson's Wax.

In a few 1980s and 1990s commercials for the TV dinner, the announcer was Mason Adams.

By the 1970s, the Swanson's brand trailed other frozen dinner brands such as Stouffer's and Lean Cuisine. Campbell Soup spun off Swanson's TV dinner business with several other brands, including the Vlasic brand of pickles on March 30, 1998 to a new company called Vlasic Foods International, whose name has been changed to Pinnacle Foods in 2001.

One of Carl A. Swanson's great-grandsons is the conservative pundit Tucker Carlson.


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