Jenny Wren Stores was a Bay Area chain of grocery stores. It started in 1921 in San Francisco and expanded into the East Bay in 1926.
The chain went bankrupt 4 and was purchased by Mutual Stores in 1928, but the name stayed in use. The name disappeared when Mutual Stores was purchased by MacMarr Stores c.1930. MacMarr was purchased by Safeway in 1939.
In addition to the stores in the 1928 listing, c.1926 there were also stores at 3241, 5300, and 5915 Foothill Boulevard.
Jenny Wren refers to a female wren. "Jenny" refers to a female bird or donkey; wrens are considered to be active, fastidious, tidy birds. Given Jenny Wren Stores' tagline "Spotless Food Stores", the choice of a wren seems a fitting mascot. Indeed, a 1927 ad explains that wrens are neat, busy and friendly and that "[Patrons] find in the 52 Spotless Markets the utmost in cleanliness, a cheery, friendly atmosphere, and the opportunity to save money on the best of foods." 3
Jenny Wren Stores had their own brand of some items like butter, bread and coffee. There was also a Jenny Wren Co. based in Lawrence, Kansas, circa 1926, that produced Jenny Wren Ready-Mix Flour 1, but Jenny Wren Stores sold Globe A-1 brand flour. 2
Links and References
- Jenny Wren Ready-Mixed Flour Cookbook Michigan State University Libraries
- 5 Reasons We Sell Globe "A1" Flour Exclusively Oakland Tribune June 25, 1926
- Jenny Wren ad Oakland Tribune January 28, 1927
- Referee Sells Chain Stores Oakland Tribune January 5, 1928
- Jenny Wren Flour The Food Company Cookbooks blog