News from our rich agriculture history

The farm and rural history website is dedicated to celebrating and digitizing the last 150 years of success in the Canadian agriculture and food industry. The agriculture and food industries in Canada have a rich heritage of innovation, and have laid a foundation of excellence upon which we continue to grow. We celebrate Canada’s food and agriculture innovations on these pages.
Figures Versus Actual Conditions

Not infrequently we hear public speakers proclaiming the wonderful development of agriculture in this country, but it is evident that they fail to understand real conditions. A drive through the country and a visit to the homes of rural folk, the schools, churches and other institutions give the lie to any figures which statisticians can compile.

It is most significant now that after

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Keep that fifth column off the farm front

This cartoon appeared in a June 1, 1940 issue of the Canadian Countryman, and framed weeds as a dangerous fifth column threatening the war effort against the Axis powers.

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This artifact is a milk strainer, separator or “cream harvester”. The device’s function is to take raw milk and separate it’s cream and skimmed

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What Scotsburn Means in Nova Scotia Dairying

The word “Scotsburn” in Nova Scotia is the short for good creamery management and large production, while in the produce trade it is a synonym for butter of the highest quality. In 1912 Dr. Cumming took W.A. McKay from the little creamery that was fast becoming famous, and commissioned him to “Scotsburnize” Nova Scotia, and for almost eight years Mr. McKay has been

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lives lived

John Ruthven “Blondie” Wilson

AUGUST 23, 1892 - 1969

Ruthven, as he most commonly went by, was born in Glengarry County, Ontario, in 1892. His father, James Lockie Wilson, would go on to achieve agricultural prominence during Ruthven’s youth. James served as Secretary of the Ontario Vegetable Growers’, Horticultural and Plowmen’s Associations. The later employment James attained as the Ontario government’s Superintendent of Agricultural Societies provided Ruthven with excellent educational opportunities.

Ruthven graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from the University of Toronto in 1916. The


JUNE 22, 1883 - MARCH 18, 1969

John Bracken led an eventful life in the fields of agriculture and politics which included many high and low points. He was born June of 1883 near Ellisvale Ontario, but is most known for his time spent in the prairie provinces. Before moving west, Bracken attended the Ontario Agricultural College where he demonstrated great academic and athletic success.

Upon his graduation Bracken was offered a job in Manitoba as a seed control inspector at the Department of Agriculture which caused him to travel extensively through the prairies. He was exceedingly skilled at his job and his

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