This page is photographic record of the town of Ingersoll, Ontario, Canada



Christmas in Ingersoll circa 1955

Merry Christmas Ingersoll 1955 copy


The Flood of 1894

In May of 1894, there was a sudden melting accompanied by warm rains. The Harris Creek, which flows through central Ingersoll became badly flooded and three dams on this stream gave way.  As water rushed through a conduit on King Street East, it washed away the foundation of the brick building on the eastside of the stream on the north side of King Street. This building was part of the brick block formerly known as the Jarvis Block, but at the time of the flood, it was known as the Campbell Block.  When the floodwaters washed out the foundation of the building adjoining the stream, the brick wall fell into the water, which caused the floors of the building to slope to the stream. The building was occupied by James McIntyre. Coffins, rough boxes and much furniture fell into the rough waters and were carried down to the Thames River. The river was high at this time, and many boats were tied up to the trees along the shore. Young men got in the boats and took after the furniture and coffins. Much of the merchandise was pulled on shore at Paton’s Sighting, three miles west of Ingersoll. Upholstered chairs were seen floating down river as far as Dorchester. Water flowed over King Street and down Water Street a foot deep.

above, excerpt from Ingersoll: our heritage by Harry Whitwell

The Flood of 1937

The Flood of ’37 was the highest ever recorded on the Thames River, and was the most destructive of life and property. Five deaths were attributed to the flood, an estimated 1,100 homes were ruined, and property damage ran to $3,000,000. Nearly six inches of rain fell on Southwestern Ontario in five days.

above, excerpts from the Ingersoll Tribune, April 29, 1937

The Mammoth Cheese

above, The Ingersoll Mammoth Cheese during its tour in Saratoga, New York in 1866.  James Harris is standing right of the wagon and on the left are Charles Chadwick and Hiram and Lydia Ranney [just visible over her husband’s shoulder]


To promote a cheese market in England and Europe a mammoth cheese was manufactured in 1866 at the Ingersoll Cheese Factory Company’s establishment one mile south of the town. Mr. Harris, Mr. Ranney and Mr. Galloway worked on this project with their cheese makers Robert Facey, Miles Harris and Warren Schell. The cheese was first made at each of the three factories, then moved to the James Harris factory. There it was cut up and put through a curd mill and ground into small pieces so that it could be evenly and properly salted to ensure perfect curing. It was then put into a large hoop manufactured by the Noxon Company of Ingersoll and so constructed that the immense weight of three and a half tons could be turned over, once a week. It took 35 tons of milk to produce a cheese six feet, ten Inches in diameter, three feet in height and about 21 feet in circumference, Six horses were needed to haul this huge cheese on a special wagon on August 23rd, 1866 to the Ingersoll railway station. It went first to the New York State Fair at Saratoga. Then it was loaded on a ship and sailed for England to be on display at the London Exhibition. It was eventually sold to a cheese merchant in Liverpool. This cheese achieved Its purpose, it was the forerunner of Canada’s export cheese trade. As a direct result of seeing this cheese at the London Exhibition, Albert and Enoch Tattersoll and Thurston Hargreaves moved their families to the new country.

above excerpt from, The Axe & the Wheel : a history of West Oxford Township


above, a replica of the Mammoth Cheese made by The Ingersoll Cheese Co., for Ingersoll’s Centennial celebration in 1952

Thames River

above, a postcard depicting the Thames at Ingersoll


above, a postcard depicting the Thames River at Ingersoll


above, a postcard depicting the Thames River


above, a postcard depicting a Thames River tributary



Westward it winds past each town

Growing broader as it flows down

Onward it glides, never weary,

Meandering so soft and cheery.


The sunbeams on the water glance,

Skipping about in slivery dance,

From morn till eve the cattle feed

‘Neath lofty elms along the mead.


And on its banks, in warrior pride,

The brave Tecumseh fought and died,

Peace and prosperity now reigns

Along the fertile vale of Thames.


Now soon the waters meet and pair

With the wavelets of St. Clair;

As maids when wed do lose their names,

No longer is it called the Thames.

James McIntyre


from Musings on the Banks of Canadian Thames


Lawn Bowling

Taken at the lawn bowling green on Ann Street, pictured from left to right are: B. B. McCarty, Dr. L. W. Staples, W. R. Vale, J. R. Mayberry, William Churchouse, Hal MacBain, Fred Whaley, Charlie Cook, Jimmy Wade, John Weir and Tom Hutchison.  In front are William McKay and John Graves.



Jack Johnston, Noted Pugilist, Visits Ingersoll

On a summer night some time ago, there was a ripple of excitement among sports lovers of the town when the news spread that Jack Johnston, and his chauffeur, were guests at the McCarty House [Hotel], where they remained for the night. There was quite a rush on the part of those who were interested in ring celebrities and many who were in conversation with the World champion found him genial and unassuming with humour characteristic of his race. He was a huge man, standing six feet, one inch, with his weight in his prime ranging from 205 to 220 pounds. It has been recalled that at that time, Johnston was the owner of a then so-called high powered automobile, and that in making his trip east across South-Western Ontario he was fined in a number of places after facing charges of speeding. The accompanying picture taken on the night of his arrival in front the McCarty House [located on the west side of Thames Street, 1 lot north of the Grand Truck Railway tracks], includes at the front, Johnston and his chauffeur; the late Asa McCarty, proprietor of the hotel, and his late son, Nelson (Dandy) McCarty in the doorway.

above is believed to be from the Ingersoll Chronicle circa 1910



above, The Ingersoll Meteor Cycling Club, circa 1895, pictured on Frances Street

above, an excerpt from the Ingersoll Chronicle, May 23, 1895

above, from the Ingersoll Chronicle, May 5, 1894, depicting the bicycles for sale at F. Bowman & Co.  The 1890s saw a peak in the cycling craze and consumers were buying bicycles in record numbers — even though the cost of a typical bicycle represented one third of an average worker’s annual salary.



above, 1912 Ingersoll Ladies Hockey Team

Back Row: E. Hill (right defense), A. Bearss (left defense), E. McKee (goal)

Front Row: V. Jones (left wing), E. Clark (rover), A. Jones (centre), M. Taylor (right wing)


above, an Ingersoll Hockey team, circ 1950

Back Row: Mr. J. C. Herbert, ? , A. Pearson, E. Paddon, K. Campbell, W. Rodgers, M. Craig, R. Burrows

Front Row: H. Jones, A. Hargan, T. Johnson, A. Routledge, R. Beck


above, Considered by some to be one of the best junior hockey teams Ingersoll ever had, in 1907, taken down at Smith’s Pond, their practice place. From left to right: Gordon Hay, cover point; Bev Gayfer, rover; Bud Kelly, left wing; George Gregory, centre; Charlie Woolson, right wing; George Beck, point; and Earl Noe, goal. This team went to the semi-finals, playing off with London, and losing. Each player received a gold watch. Ingersoll Tribune April 27, 1950


above, an Ingersoll Hockey Team

Back Row: T. Wilson, T. Harris, M. Clark, W. Cook, C. L. Boles

Front Row: J. Payne, C. Cragg, A. Thornton, K. Henderson, B. Cole


above, an Ingersoll hockey team, 1914




above, Ingersoll Baseball Champions, 1940

Back Row: Lefty Cade, Connie Ring, Hogan McKay [coach], Laurie Sommer [secretary], Cleworth Witty, Ted Shaddock

Front Row: Joe Story, Ron Bigham, Keith Mabee, Jim Warden, Don Shelton, Dave Daniels




above, Ingersoll District Collegiate Football

Back Row: D. Thurtell, L. Ranger, M. Haycock, L. Moon

Middle Row: C. L. Bole, C. Wilson, T. Johnson, J. McSherry, W. Cooper, A. Pearson, J. Butler, B. Owen, Mr. Guthrie

Front Row: T. Patry, W. Bayton, T. Mayberry, H. Yule, R. Glasser, L. Cole, D. Wolstenholme, H. Bowman, R. Swallow

Holding Ball: D. Hargraves


above, The Salford Stars Football Team, 1902

Back Row: W. Foster, F. Quinn, S. Mitchell

Centre Row: H. Land, D. Poole, G. Poole [president]; J. Poole, Ed Todd

Front Row: H. G. Mayberry, Ross Mayberry, Fred Poole, R. Warren


above, St. Charles Condensing Co. Football Team, City Champions, 1909

Standing at rear: W. Tilt [manager of the St. Charles Condensing Co.]; E. Noe [secretary-treasurer of the St. Charles Condensing Co.]

Back Row: R. B. Hutt, T. Fitzmorris, H. Land

Middle Row: C. Clark, J. Milne [Captain], L. Henderson, J. Cray, A. french

Front Row: C. Woolson, C. Smith, J. Clark, A. Clark, F. Houghton, E. Ellery


above, Ingersoll Collegiate Football Team, 1939

Back Row: M. Walker, J. Smith, W. Anglin, J. Eidt, M. MacKay

Third Row: C. Eidt, R. Hall, B. Borland, H. Furlong, N. Kurtzman

Second Row: L. Staples, W. Stone, H. Adair, D. Bower

First Row: C. Wilson [Coach], L. Cade, C. Fuller, D. Stone, J. C. Herbert [Coach]

Seated: D. Shelton, J. Grieve


above, Ellis Furniture Factory Football Team, 1912

Back Row: A. Stadelbauer [goal]; J. Martin [secretary treasurer]; S. Sherlock [manager]; C. Woolson [left back]; T. Hurford [spare]

Middle Row: J. Roberts [O. S. right]; W. English [right half back and Captain]; E. Cronk [centre half back]; B. Galloway [left half back]

Front Row: G. Target [I. S. right]; E. Chaney [centre forward]; F. Houghton [I. S. left]; F. Shelton [O. S. left]; G. Ellis [right back]



above, Dufferin Lacrosse Club, Ingersoll – 1889

The photograph shows the Dufferin Lacrosse Club, when they were Southern District champions in 1889.

From left to right.

BACK ROW: O. E. Robinson, vice president; C. Hollands, centre; J. Lowrie, defence field; W. Coulter, inside home; B. E. Swaizie, secretary treasurer

MIDDLE ROW: R. S. Malone, point; W. A. Smith, outside home; J. Vance, home field and president; F. Gayfer, defence field; J. McGachie, goal; A. Malone, c. point and captain

FRONT ROW: S. Gibson, defence field; J. Wight, home field; J. O. Matheson, home field. Ingersoll Tribune, April 7, 1949

The Ingersoll Machine & Tool Company

above, the employees of Ingersoll Machine & Tool Company, September 23, 1929

  1. Beulah Sandick
  2. Percy Desmond
  3. Harry MacDonald
  4. Bill Randall
  5. Fred M. Smith
  6. Ralph ‘Babe’ Bowman
  7. Jack Boynton
  8. Jimmy Spaven
  9. Melvin Sharpe
  10. Art Nunn
  11. George Harry Allen
  12. Bob Wilson
  13. ?, Hipperson
  14. E. A. Wilson
  15. Harry Whitwell
  16. Ernie Webber
  17. Gordon Warden
  18. Alf Catling
  19. Earl ‘Snooky’ Wisson
  20. Fred Catling
  21. Doris Bagnall
  22. Charlie Sharpe
  23. Russ Stringer
  24. Percy Groom
  25. James ‘Scotty’ Sannachan
  26. Wilf Allen
  27. George Waterman
  28. Jack Laurenceson
  29. Harold Wilson
  30. Charles Dykeman
  31. Tom Johnston
  32. ? ‘Pops’ Olmstead
  33. Charlie Pavey
  34. Hugh Priddle


The Ingersoll Machine and Tool Company

In 1913, a small factory was erected on the site of the present factory on King St., W., at the town’s limits. This small plant was erected by a company for the manufacture of a brand of soap called “Fun to Wash” soap. This company did not exist long and brooms were then made in the building, fore the plant was purchased by Messrs. E. A. Wilson and Chas. Shortt in 1914. In 1915, a company was formed and named Ingersoll Machine and Tool.  The size of the factory was extended to have a floor space of 8,000 sq. ft. This was a two storey building of solid white brick walls with steel. The plant, at various times, made additions until it has reached a floor capacity of over 80,000 sq. ft. Nagle and Mill, Ingersoll contractors, were the early builders of a large part of the factory. Starting with 30 employees, the business of this company steadily increased until the employees numbered 350. This company enjoys an international wide trade. It specialized in the manufacture of steering gear assemblies for many makes of automobiles and boats. At various times it specialized in car starters, steering gears, millimetre shells, truck axel parts, house trailer parts and machine parts. Mr. Shortt did not remain long with the company, but Mr. Wilson continued as president until 1952. When he retired, his son Harold became president and when Harold retired, is son Ernest became the general manager. In 1965, the company bought 3 acres of land from the town and added another 8700 sq. ft.

above excerpt from Ingersoll: our heritage by Harry Whitwell


above, employees of the Ingersoll Machine Company depicted during a fundraising campaign in an effort to raise money for war bonds, 1917


above, the employees of the Ingersoll Machine & Tool Company, circa 1952

# in Photo Employee
1 Fewster, Ross
2 Warden, Jack
3 Clothier, William
4 Boynton, Jack
5 Wilson, E. A.
6 Warden, Gordon
7 Wilson, Harold
8 Murray, Helen
9 Tribe, Jean Reith
10 Smith, Kaye Fordham
11 Murray, Helen
12 Tallant, Marg
13 Howe, Veronica
14 Desmond, Percy
15 Stringer, Russell
16 Dykeman, Charles K.
17 Finlay, Ross
18 Henderson, Kenneth
19 Johnston, Tom
20 Spaven, James R.
21 Reith, William
22 Bowman, Ralph ‘Babe’
23 Thompson, John
24 Caldwell, David ‘Sooty’
25 McCombe, Louis
26 Elliott, Harold
27 Petrie, Bruce
28 Boniface, Robert
31 Clark, George ‘Gordy’
32? Witcombe, William
33 Appleby, Walter
34 Atkinson, Ralph
35 Sanichan, James ‘Scotty’
36 Bryan, Ronald
37 Neave, Fred
38 Wiszniowski, Phillip
39 Ball, Tim
40 MacNab, Allan
41 Minogue, William
42 Shelton, Thomas
43 Shelton, Arthur
44 Anderson, Jacques
45 MacMillan, John ‘Rat’
46 Pallisher, Rene
47 King, Aubrey ‘Abe’
48 Chaisson, Gilbert
49 Wilkes, Arthur
50 Sloat, Murray
51 Hipperson, William
52 Smith, Samuel
53 Williams, Fred
55 Camm, Ray
56 Guilford, Charles
57 Crown, Wilfred ‘Wimpy’
58 Jansen, William
60 Carter, Merrill
61 Bartram, John
61 Gibbs, James
63 Harkes, Harold
64 Crane, Cecil
65 Luno, Ernest or Parker, John?
65 Parker, John or Luno, Ernest?
66 Marr, Wallace
67 Syketa, Peter
68 Thornton, Melvin
69 Smith, Ernst
70 Kolodij, John
71 Anstee, Reginald
72 English, Percy
74 Anderson, William
75 Sloat, John
76 Henderson, Fred
79 Webb, Clark
80 Plewes, Fred
81 Latford, George ‘Red’
82 Nunn, Arthur
83 Simpson, Mark
84 Harker, Clifford
85 Dunlop, Edgar
86 Cade, Llewellyn ‘Lefty’
87 Boniface, Fred
88 Fraser, Robert
89 Bowman, Hugh or Priddle, Hugh?
89 Priddle, Hugh or Bowman, Hugh?
90 Durston, Carmen
91 Leonard, Fred
92 Allan, Ronald
93 MacMillan, Jim
94 Kepinski, Tadeusz
95 Bruce, Morris
97 Sharpe, James
98 Koch, John
99 McGinnis, Ronald
100 Baskett, Thomas
101 King, Fred
102 Curtis, John
103 Goncharenko, Alex
104 MacMillan, John
107 Hills, Gordon
109 McMillan, W. G. [Jack]
110 Rodwell, W.
111 Wessenger, S.
112 Miller, Horace
113 Halter, Joseph
114 Land, Roy ‘Goose’
115 McKee, Jack
116 Langford, Percy
117 Dill, John
119 Priddle, John ‘Jack’
124 White, Joseph
125 Henderson, William
128 Brasi, John
129 Keenan, Charles
131 Smith, Charles
133 Johnston, J. ‘Dutch’
134 Petrie, Donald
135 Mahoney, Harry
137 Layton, William
138 Coles, Roy
139 Morgan, Daniel
140 Clement, George
141 Davis, Walter
143 Mura, Steve
145 VanKoughnett, Roy
146 Witcombe, John
149 Walker, Ron
150 Hutson, George
151 Fitzpatrick, James
153 Scott, James
153 Stacey, Ernst?
154 Cudney, Leonard
155 Hick, Clayton
157 Marr, Emerson
158 Pearson, Garnet
161 Swartz, John
162 Horley, Donald
164 Empey, John
174 Bidwell, Floyd
175 Whitwell, Harry
177 Sharpe, Melvin
179 Foster, Charles
180 Campbell, Charles
181 Pye, Lawrence
183 Korzewicz, Mikolaj [Mike]
187 Bruce, Harvey
190 Smith, Joseph
193 VanderVaart, John
194 McPherson, Ian [Bill]
195 McLeod, Norman
196 Christie, Murray
197 Layton, Raymond
198 Payne, Alfred
199 Coombe, James
206 Moore, Joseph
207 Payne, William
208 Smith, Fred M.
209 Irwin, George
210 Nancekivell, David
214 Kerr, James
217 McMillan, Rod
218 MacMillan, Roy
219 Juett, F.
220 Archer, K.
221 Morris, John
223 Nash, William
225 Smith, Ralph
229 Finucan, Thomas
231 Morris, Roy
238 Fitzmorris, Doug
239 Travis, Delmer
245 Bodwell, Fred or Matheson, Ed?
245 Matheson, Ed or Bodwell, Fred or ?
251 Foster, William
254 Sharpe, Earl
256 Buchanan, Charles
257 McBay, Donald
260 McKee, William
261 Woodbine, Thomas
273 Pavey, Tom
274 Boynton, Herbert
281 Allen, Wilfred
283 Catling, Alfred
284 Hutcheson, S.
285 Swartz, Earl
289 Durston, Arthur
291 Stirling, Samuel
292 Wisson, Earl ‘Snooky’
298 Wisson, Robert
299 Pryzkling, Joseph
300 Thompson, John


The Great Ingersoll Pond Hoax of 1857

In May of 1857, Ingersoll was the scene of one of the biggest hoaxes in the life of the young village. Partlo’s Pond (Memorial Park) was the scene of muchactivity.  Day and night, men could be seen, some armed with shotguns, patrolling the pond. It was said their vigil was caused by a monster in the pond. At times, the quiet surface of water could be seen in violent turmoil as though some unseen force was stirring up a witch’s cauldron. For a brief period, the pond would be very still, only to be repeated in some other part. This gave the impression of something, a creature, moving under the water, but not revealing itself. Hence, the mystery of Partlo’s Pond.  In a matter of course, imagination and superstition filled the hearts of the people of Ingersoll who saw all the commotion. In fact, the matter spread over the whole countryside. This turmoil kept up   for months, almost everyone claimed to have seen the monster. Events became so interesting that several leading newspapers from several towns vied for the privilege of witnessing the capture or destruction of the mysterious monster.  It was decided that a public holiday would be appropriate, so a day was set aside to drain the pond and see what the monster was like. May 24, 1857 was the day set aside for the mystery and was looked forward to by thousands of people.  As the day drew near, strangers flocked to the village. Representatives of Canadian museums and a professor from a scientific institution in the United States came. The professor was prepared with literature and drawings of all known prehistoric creatures. He stayed at the Royal Exchange Hotel. He claimed the churning of the water was not the action of the supposed creature, but caused by the prey of the monster when attacked and devoured.  On the day before the draining of the pond, May 23, 1857, it seemed as if Ingersoll would burst at the seams. The professor and the press were given a special site in which to view the event. There were many field glasses and telescopes in the crowd lining around the pond. As the gates were opened, certain men stood ready should a live capture not be possible. A heavy raft with plenty of rope, piked poles and anything deemed necessary was made ready.  Finally the gates were slowly opened. The water slowly receded. The people became nervous and many of the women fainted from the expectation of what they would see. The gates were finally opened wide and the rush of water resembled a miniature waterfall. It was some time before the lowering of the pond water was diminished. Binoculars and telescopes were trained on the scene. The raft, armed by two young men got under way. At length, the water subsided, then an object came into view.  The professor had spotted it through his binoculars and declared it to be a hairy creature. The boys on the raft also saw the creature and steered their raft toward it. When they were close enough, they plunged the pike into it. One of them was getting the noose ready on the heavy rope, lost his balance and fell into the water. However, he hurriedly scrambled back on the raft, then with the help of his friend, succeeded in getting the noose over the monster. After some difficulty, they towed their victim toward shore. It was soon evident, the boys on the raft needed help and willing hands were ready to lend assistance. A heavy team was backed to the water’s edge and a heavy logging chain attached to the object and pulled from the water.  The professor took one look at it and turned deathly pale. A man nearby exclaimed “tis’ a hoax”. The hide of a two-year-old cow, stuffed with straw and filled with bricks to keep it under water emerged. “It is more than a hoax”, the professor exploded. “It is an outrage on the people here and in half of America”.  The representatives of the press sent here from great distances and expense agreed that this was an outrage by a contemptible Canadian town.  The professor wanted to lodge a protest and immediately embarked in a tirade of outrage and insults. Said the professor, “I intend to gather enough of my fellow scientists and compel you to make amends”. The councillor told the professor, “If you don’t take the first train out of our town, l will have you locked up”. Just as they had finished talking, the team of horses drove past, dragging the monster behind them. The professor took one look and walked away.  The explanation for all this excitement went like this: When the late John Stuart began making oatmeal in the mill, known as Stuart’s Mill, on Canterbury Street, opposite Centre Street, a certain amount of oat hulls and oat dust was swept out of the rear door. This went into the stream, which leads to the village pond. In the pond, these sweepings congealed in lumps, which formed a gas and rose to the surface causing large bubbles and disturbances in various places. This led to some of our local practical jokers to turn the event into a feature May 24th celebration.

The above is an excerpt from Ingersoll Tribune Centennial Edition by Byron G. Jenvey


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