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


3 thoughts on “The Mammoth Cheese

  1. I have a big picture frame with 82 individual photographs of the Odd Fellows “Samaritan Lodge” from 1895 including James Mcintyre the poet along with many other common family names from the Ingersoll area if you are interested in carefully reproducing them for publication call me – Tim Lobzun

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