Saturday, January 4, 2014

Talbot Times Tidbit - Markham, Bryden, Cook, Thompson, Beckett, Livingstone families of Crinian

(Family names: - Markham; Bryden; Cook; Thompson; Beckett; Livingstone)

Built by Mr. Thomas Markham, when he became owner of the cheese factory, it was across from the church – north of the present Gilbert Livingstone home. It was a typical country store – sold groceries, clothing, hardware, coal-oil, etc. It also contained a barber’s chair, with Mr. Dick Markham the barber. Other families operating the store in later years were – Wrights, Brydens and Cooks. There was a hall above the store where suppers (especially oyster suppers) and dances were held. The store closed its doors.

The cheese factory was north of the store and a cheese-curing shed stood behind it. No one is sure of the date it was built. The earliest recollection was of the Markham family coming from Ingersoll to manage the cheese factory. They brought with them a herd of pure-bred Holstein cattle. Most of the local cattle were Durham. At first the milk was gathered from farmers, who had a milk stand at the laneway beside the mailbox, later, each farmer delivered his own milk, and could refill his cans with whey, which was held in a tank beside the factory. The whey was fed through a pipe from the factory to a wooden tank. The hog farmers were especially pleased to get the whey for pig feed. But eventually the Markham’s put in a large cream separator and the whey was put through it, as it contained a small amount of butter fat. Dissatisfaction grew among the farmers. Then they ran the cheese factory themselves for a while – as a sort of co-operative. But soon the farmers began distrusting one another, and the operation ceased.
Two of the cheese makers were a Mr. Thompson and one Clarence Beckett.

Tweedsmuir histories – Aldborough Township, Crinan page 54-62, page 2 - "Courtesy of Elgin County Archives."

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