Richard R. Bean

Richard R. Bean. One of the largest manufacturing enterprises in Grand Rapids is the Putnam Candy Company whose products are sold throughout the United States and in Canada. That this company is nationally known is due in large measure to the ability and initiative of Richard R. Bean who has been general manager of the business for nearly thirty years. He was born in Yorkshire England, receiving a public and private school education in is native country. In 1885 he immigrated to the United States and settled at Grand Rapids where he entered the employ of the Old National Bank, remaining with that institution four years. He then bought stock in the Judson Wholesale Grocery Company, and during the following eight years worked as office manager of that concern. At the expiration of that time, he severed his connections with the Judson Company. Feeling the need of a rest from the cares of business, he went to California and at the end of a year returned to Grand Rapids. In 1895 he accepted a position with the Putman Candy Company as general manager, a position which he still retains. The company was organized in 1865 as a retail firm by Benjamin W. and Joseph D. Putnam. Two years later the brothers began the manufacture of candy, being associated in this enterprise with A. E. and H. C. Brooks. The arrangement continued until 1885, the business continually growing and becoming well known throughout the state. In that year, the Brooks interests were sold out, and the concern was incorporated with B. W. Putnam as president. The concern had grown to considerable proportions by 1902, and in that year, the Putnam's relinquished their interests to the National Candy Company, of which the concern is still a subsidiary. At the time the Putnam Candy Company was sold to the National Candy Company, Mr. Bean was made a director of the latter corporation and was retained as the manager of the Putnam Candy Company. Under his efficient management, the company has continued to grow rapidly until today the retail trade of Michigan buy from Putnams and jobbers of the United States, Canada, and even foreign countries are customers of the Grand Rapids concern. Mr. Bean, more than any other individual, is responsible for the growth of the company, and that it is one of the most substantial business enterprises in Grand Rapids is shown by the huge volume of business which it handles. Mr. Bean himself, while he is rather quiet and retiring, is a man of forceful personality, and his managerial ability has won his recognition as one of the ablest executives in Grand Rapids. Mr. Bean was president of the National Confectionersí Association of the United States for the years 1922 and 1923. He is also a director of the Clinton Corn Syrup Refining Company of Clinton, Iowa. He is a public spirited citizen of his adopted city, and every moment for civic welfare is accorded his heartiest support. He married Alice L. McCoy, a woman of refinement, personal charm and strength of character.

Transcriber: Nancy Myers
Created: 21 February 2005