Biography of Frederick J. Koster
San Francisco, CA Biographies





FREDERICK JACOB KOSTER
Throughout his career Frederick J. Koster has been identified with industrial activities and in manufacturing circles of San Francisco, his native city, he has long figured prominently as president of the California Barrel Company, Ltd. He was born October 28, 1868, a son of John L. and Berta Lisette (Wagener) Koster, and supplemented his public school education by private instruction and study. In 1884, before he attained the age of sixteen, he entered the employ of the San Francisco establishment of the Coos Bay Stave & Lumber Company as an apprentice to learn the cooperage trade and made rapid headway, due to his conscientious application and capable performance of every task assigned him. In 1887 he became superintendent of the plant of the California Barrel Company, now the California Barrel Company, Ltd., and since 1905 has served as president of this large corporation, wisely administering its affairs. His life has been devoted to the building up of this business, and his company occupies an outstanding position in the United States in its line. The thing in which Mr. Koster takes the greatest pride is the close relationship that exists among his fellow workers, to whom he never refers as employes, and the spirit of comradeship and cooperation that pervades his business institution. This and the resultant spirit of service to the trade is what he considers his greatest asset.

Mr. Koster was married March 12, 1908, to Miss Ida Louise Field, a native of Wisconsin, and they have become the parents of four daughters, Jane, Ann, Lisette and Louise, all natives of California. They reside at 3383 Washington street, and Mr. Koster maintains his office on the fourteenth floor of the building at 100 Bush street.

He has voted with the republican party and has always positively refused to consider political office of any kind, although he has given freely of his time and energy to welfare and civic work. During the World war, he was chairman of the resources and conversion section of the War Industries Board for the states of California, Nevada and Arizona, and was chairman of the local committee in charge of the campaign for Armenian and Syrian relief, and a member of the European relief administration. He is now a member of the National Foreign Trade Council. He was a director of the Chamber of Commerce of the United States, chairman of its executive committee and chairman of its committee on American ideals. He served three terms as president of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, and was chairman of the Law and Order Committee during the serious strike situation in San Francisco in 1916 and until its discontinuance in 1919. He also served three terms as president of the Industrial Association of San Francisco. At present he is chairman of the San Francisco Endorsement Council, president of the California State Chamber of Commerce, and president of the California Grape Control Board, Ltd., which is striving to reestablish the distressed grape industry in the state of California. Socially he has connection with the Pacific Union, Bohemian, Olympic, San Francisco Commercial, Commonwealth and Woodside Country Clubs and the Meadow Club of Tamalpais. Through his own exertions Mr. Koster has risen to the top, winning gratifying success as well as the high esteem and good will of his fellowmen. Prompted by humanitarian instincts, he has steadily broadened his field of usefulness and his far reaching labors have been productive of much good.

From:
The History of San Francisco, California
Lewis Francis Byington, Supervising Editor
Oscar Lewis, Associate Editor
The S. J. Clark Publishing Company
Chicago-San Francisco 1931


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