My old friend, Ted Saville and I, started to reminisce during Victoria Public School's Centennial Celebrations and during our conversation he said, "guess what I saw not so long ago Jack; it was a truck with the name "John Crimmons & Sons" painted on the side although it was very faint to the eyes" he said.
"Oh", I replied, "That was the old flatbed truck he had".
"Well it used to be an old flatbed but the new owner had a box put on it and had it not been for the faint lettering I wouldn't have known it was Crimmons' truck" he said.
Crimmons was one of four soft drink manufacturing firms in Lindsay years ago and was located on the north-east corner of Crandal and John Sts. where John, along with his wife and sons Abby and Earl, operated their little bottling plant turning out soft drinks. Crimmons bottled drinks such as "Whistle" which was available in Orange flavor in addition to Cream Soda in both clear and pink colors and another orange drink called "Kist".
Lindsay's largest bottling works, however, was owned and operated by Wilbert Nicholls and was located on Caroline St. just a few feet north of Queen St. I often went down the back lane behind the terraces on Queen St. to watch in amazement at the bottles being filled and a Mrs. Sholer hand labels them; this being a tedious task. Nicholls' banner drink was "Victoria Dry Ginger Ale" but he also produced drinks such as "Stubby" available in Grapefruit as well as Lemon and Lime flavors and, of course, Orange Crush which was bottled in a brown-ribbed bottle with a painting of a little man squeezing an orange.
Another bottling plant was located at the rear of 67 King St. in a small brick building which still stands there and was run by a family named Martin who bottled a drink known as "Webb's Stone Ginger Beer"; the container being a bottle resembling a gray & brown crock and had a spider and it's web adorning the bottle. (It isn't difficult for one to see the connotation there.)
There was one other plant known as "Begg's" and according to Guy Mills they were located at Kent and Sussex Sts. This bottler introduced a quart-sized bottle of pop called "Kik Cola" and while the smaller bottles of pop were selling at five cents for six to ten ounces, Beggs put his quart size bottle on the market for the large sum of eight cents! What a buy that was compared to 25 cents for other quart-sized drinks. "Eventually", said Mills, "Nicholls bought Beggs out and moved the operation over to his Caroline St. plant".
It is understood that drinks such as Coca Cola, Pepsi Cola and Canada Dry flavors were manufactured in, and transported from, bottling works in Peterborough.