Personal Accounts and Memories of the Cheese Factory
The Cheese Factory – Personal Accounts
As the cheese factory was closed in 1917, there are almost no residents left in the town that remember too much about it. However, there are still a few stories floating around about the factory and more specifically about its dynamic cheese-maker Jack Ellsworth. The more detailed accounts I found came from Dutch Thompson’s interviews with Louis MacDonald who died in 2005.
When asked by Dutch Thompson if the cheese was good, Louis MacDonald replied; “Oh! Oh look it’s a whole milk cheese you get this processed cheese its (mumbles) it had a bite to it and the little holes with blue mold but oh boy lookat here. You could make a meal out of it. My mother died and my father and I were what you could call batchet (?) well you could take baked potatoes and mix up cheese which gave ya protein, you had a pretty balanced diet. And then of course there was a saying ‘Pie without cheese is like a kiss without a squeeze (Dutch laughs) Oh cheese was a standby”18
A ‘Cheesy’ Operation
This excerpt comes from an interview with Howie MacPhail
“I know they used to buy skim milk. Like, everybody used to separate milk. Milk cows and separate. A lot of people used to put their milk out. I don’t remember it but, I know they quit quite a few years before I remember. They used to go around and collect the cans in horse and wagons.
Yeah. I don’t know how long before I remember but I remember them all talking about it. There were platforms at the road and they set the milk up there so the guy would come along and pick it up. And, of course, they didn’t do it in the winter time because nobody milked cows in the wintertime in those days. They only did it in the summer time.
Anyway, yeah, they used to send that skim milk up and then they sold the cream too. That’s how they worked when they used to run the cheese factory there.”18