Santa Cruz County History - People

A Walk Through Time: Jacob Kron
by Janet Krassow and
by Randy Krassow

During the 19th century, the tanning of leather was a very prosperous industry and helped put Santa Cruz on the map. During this time, many tanneries came and went, but only one stood the test of time, the A.K. Salz Tannery on River Street along the San Lorenzo River. For most of its history, this local landmark was owned by Jacob Kron.

Photograph of Jacob Kron's Memorial
Jacob Kron's Memorial

Kron was born in Prussia in 1823 and migrated to America in 1855, settling in New Orleans. Three years later he came west and engaged in cattle business in Napa County. After a very successful tenure in Napa, the Kron family relocated to Santa Cruz where he bought a number of local leather working firms.

Among other businesses, Jacob Kron purchased a faltering tannery along the river and built it into a prosperous enterprise. It was his pet project which he ruled with an iron hand until his death on April 20, 1879.

He was buried at the Santa Cruz Memorial Park cemetery, and a large monument was set over his gravesite. It consists of a large erect figure gazing furtively across the river down onto the Kron Tannery.

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