Daniel J. Morkeberg

Daniel J. Morkeberg

AUGUST 2, 1870 - JANUARY 28, 1963

Born in Denmark on August 2nd 1870, Daniel J. Morkeberg was an extremely influential man in the Canadian dairy industry. Prior to his contribution to dairy in Canada, Mr. Morkeberg served in the Danish Royal Guard as a young man and was even afforded the opportunity to meet the man who would later become King Christian X of Denmark, who had been serving as a cadet at the time.

A voyage to North America landed Mr. Morkeberg in Montana in 1892, where he spent much of his time working in creameries, until the appeal of the gold rush took him north. On his way to the Klondike in 1898 his travels were interrupted in Red Deer, Alberta. He was so drawn to the area that he eventually chose it as his place to settle down some years later. While living in Red Deer Mr. Morkeberg met Dr. Marker, the Supervisor of Dairying for the Canadian Government, who convinced him to work in the Edmonton creamery before moving to supervise the creamery in Tindastoll in 1899.

October of 1899 brought the beginning of the South African war which resulted in increased demand of oats for the horses used in the war campaign. Mr. Morkeberg was given the job of inspecting the products sent to South Africa, so he charged his brother with supervising the creamery before moving to Calgary to do his part in the war. In Calgary is where Mr. Morkeberg met and married his wife and in 1902 at the end of the war they moved back to Tindastoll where Mr. Morkeberg resumed his responsibilities with the creamery. His dedication to his work eventually led to Mr. Morkeberg controlling five creameries in the surrounding area, at which many improvements in butter quality occurred which led to the grand popularity of Alberta butter.

Beyond working in and improving Alberta creameries in 1917 Mr. Morkeberg ran for office in the Legislative Assembly of Alberta as a part of the Liberal caucus. While holding his government position Mr. Morkeberg assisted in drafting and revising the Alberta Dairymen’s Act. He is also credited with the organization of the Alberta’s Dairymen’s Association as well as heading it as president after it’s conception in 1919 and several following years. At the end of his term in the government Mr. Morkeberg ran for re-election in the two following elections but was defeated both times.

Mr. Morkeberg was recognized by many in the dairy industry for his contributions and intelligence. He was inducted into the Agricultural Hall of Fame of the Province of Alberta on March 11th, 1959. He lived a prosperous and eventful life, passing in January of 1963 at the age of 92.

Celebrating 150 Years of Canadian Agriculture