Lives Lived Archive

Dr. Margaret Strang Savage
1901 - 1970
Born in 1901 in Huron County, Margaret Strang was the third woman to graduate from the University of Western Ontario with a degree in medicine in 1929. She was the only female to graduate from the university that year. She completed her internship at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Hamilton, Ontario. Upon collecting her degree Dr. Strang moved to Dixonville, Alberta to set up her medical practice. She was the only doctor in the area and in her own words she could travel as far as she liked...
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Harvey Farrington
MARCH 29, 1809 - DECEMBER 8, 1878
Harvey Farrington holds the momentous distinction of establishing one of the central pillars of the Canadian dairy industry - commercial cheesemaking. Although farmers have been making cheese for as long as history records, the industrial production of cheese is an innovation of the nineteenth century. Harvey Farrington was responsible for laying the foundations of this valuable export industry in Canada, although he was not born here. Harvey Farrington was born on March 29, 1809 in...
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W.A. Dryden
MAY 29, 1881 - NOVEMBER 18, 1949
William Arthur Dryden was born on May 29, 1881 at Maple Shade Farm in the township of Whitby, Ontario. As the third of four generations of Dryden’s that inhabited lot 20, concession 7, W.A. (or ‘Bill’ as he was known to his friends and neighbours) brought international distinction to Maple Shade Farm in the breeding of cattle and sheep. In addition to his work in cementing the legacy of Maple Shade, Dryden also maintained a professional career that saw him take on major...
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William Newman
JANUARY 12, 1873 - OCTOBER 1953
William Newman was a Canadian farmer and politician whose career centered on the dairy industry. Newman was born on a farm in Edwardsburg Township, Grenville County, on January 12, 1873. Throughout his whole life he demonstrated a dedication to agriculture, which often led him to turn aside from his educational path in his early years. He left high school at age nine to help his father on the dairy farm, as his father was debilitated by epilepsy. Newman gained his first experience in the...
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Charles A. Zavitz
1863 - 1942
Little is known of Charles A. Zavitz’s early life save for his birth in Coldstream Ontario, 1863. By the 1880s however he had left Middlesex County for the Ontario Agricultural College in Guelph, Ontario. In 1887 the University of Toronto agreed to issue Bachelor of Science in Agriculture degrees to a select and competent class of O.A.C. diploma graduates. One of only five inaugural graduates Zavitz quickly secured employment at the school as the assistant superintendent of...
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George C. Creelman
MAY 9, 1869 - APRIL 18, 1929
George C. Creelman’s life was dedicated to his two greatest passions: higher education and agriculture. As president of the Ontario Agricultural College (O.A.C.), Creelman helped to establish the place of agricultural science as a legitimate and practical discipline, and earned international renown for himself and his school. In spite of his later contributions to agriculture, George Creelman was not born on a farm. The son of a music teacher, George was born in 1869 in Collingwood,...
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Sir Charles E. Saunders
FEBRUARY 2, 1867 - JULY 25, 1937
Western Canada may owe part of its current wheat-growing success to Sir Charles Edward Saunders. Saunders developed the “Marquis” hard red spring wheat variety that was planted in the spring of 1910. Ten years after it was first planted, 90% of the 17 million acres of wheat crops planted in Canada (and much of the United States) was Marquis. Sir Charles E. Saunders was a plant breeder working for the Government of Canada Experimental Farm Services. His Marquis wheat matured...
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J. P. Griffin
J. P. Griffin was the manager and secretary of the Ontario Milk Producers’ Association. He was at the head of a movement to get cheese factories in Ontario organized and affiliated with the Association in 1929. His main objective, as stated at the annual meeting of the Ontario Milk Producer’s Association in 1929, was to keep dairy producing a profitable business, which hinged on the cheese sector, the “key” to the whole industry in terms of keeping exports high....
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Celebrating 150 Years of Canadian Agriculture