Kawartha Lakes Public Library - Digital Collections
Looking Back: Milkmen
, p. 30

Hooper, John, Author
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Item Type:
Written: 5 August 1994
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Geographic Coverage:
  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 44.35012 Longitude: -78.73286
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Full Text

My wife just sent me over to the store to pick up some milk and it sent me to reminicin' about milk and the good old days.

Who of us will ever forget the days when we put the milk bottle out on the porch at night and rose early in the morning to find our milkman had been around in the early hours and had supplied whatever our order called for, be it a pint, quart or any combination thereof.

One had a choice back in those days - either leave cash in the empty milk bottle, or, if you so desired, you could purchase milk tickets from the milkman and leave a ticket (or tickets) according to the amount of milk one wanted in the empty bottle left on the porch.

In most cases customers chose to leave cash and rarely did we ever have to worry about thieves stealing the money (could we do that to-day if we still had milk delivery?). How well I remember my mother putting a nickel in the bottle in payment of a pint or ten cents for a quart. Deposit on the bottle was also five cents.

There is an old saying that the cream always rises to the top. Well nothing could be truer especially when you went out on a sub-zero morning and found the frozen cream had risen about three or four inches above the top of the bottle with the bottle cap sitting on the top. We used to break this portion off and lick it up only to run into Mother's wrath for it meant milk remained for tea, coffee or just a plain glass of the cow's white nectar.

One had a great choice of the dairy that we would patronize back in those days. There was Flavelle's - later to become known as the Lindsay Creamery - Hutton's Highland Dairy, Archer's, McMullen's, Charlie Lee's which was located on King Street and Mark's Dairy which was owned and operated by Norm Mark who also used to serve as a softball umpire. (More about Norm in a later column.)

Yep, those were the days when the kids loved to ride on the runners of the milk sleds in the winter months sometimes falling off and rolling in the snow along the side of the street.

We were just reminicin' about the good old times that once were that our grandchildren will never experience.

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Looking Back: Milkmen