House of Albert Dickerson, the Manager of the Marmora Cooperage Company and Stave Mill. This house was built between August and October of 1908. According to Grace Warren in 1967, "The Dickersons owned a flat tug to bring down logs to the Cooperage. Every Sunday one of the Dickersons brotherswould load the tug with children to take them for a long trip to the Crowe Lake.
Where was the mill situated?
It was built close to the river and north of the large Pearce Lumber Company at the Marmora Dam. The property is presently owned by Mr. and Mrs. J. Dickens of Belleville, but has changed hands a few times in the intervening years. The next owners were a German couple, Herb and Ethel Hyndman. With the help of their two children, they made bird baths and other ornamental articles from marble pieces obtained from pits on the adjacent farm of John Bonter.
75 MAIN STREET
213 Cordova Road
MARMORA COOPERAGE COMPANY AND THE STAVE MILL
Marmora Herald May 7, 1996
It may surprise people that in the late 1800-1900's the Marmora area was producing a large number of products, many of them for home consumption but some for a wider market. The little-known Marmora Cooperage Company, a subsidiary' of the Trenton Cooperage Company with headquarters in Brigden, operated from 1907 until about 1917 in what appears to have been a seasonal operation. It would appear from the newspaper items that the stave mill operated from 1907 to 1911, although it may have been later as it was not until August 10, 1916 that Mr. John Hayne asked to be relieved from all obligations in connection with the operating of the mill.
Sept. 13, 1917 The Trenton Cooperage Mills Limited have failed and made an assignment for the benefit of their creditors
The land was then apparently sold to Mr. Hayne for $60. Another attempt was made in January 1922 to buy the necessary logs and bolts to start the mill up again, but Mr. Hayne must have finally realized that a viable mill operation was not possible in Marmora.
Much of the information about the Marmora Cooperage Company has been unearthed by the sharp eyes and work of Gerald Belanger from early files of the Marmora Herald. The publisher at the time was Rendol Snell, who was also appointed the first clerk of the village, following his purchase of the Marmora Advocate from the original owner, Zed Lafontaine. A reading of newspaper items will give the reader some idea of the operation that produced wooden staves which were turned into barrels, kegs and cheese boxes.
The operation was not without its problems, one of which was the man who hanged himself in the mill.
Marmora Herald April 1, 1901 COMMITTED SUICIDE Alex. Larravae Found Hanging in Marmora Cooperage Company Camp
Mr. Alax Larravae, who has been a resident of the village for some time ended his life last week by hanging himself in the Marmora Cooperage Co.'s camp near Beaver Creek.Messrs. Thos. Culbertson and Floyd Gray drove back to the camp on Monday last to get a grindstone which had been left there. On entering the shanty they were horrified to find the body of a man hanging from the roof. They immediately drove back to town to notify Dr. MacKechnie, who is coroner for this district, but the doctor was out of town and did not get back until late, so did not visit the scene of the tragedy until the following morning, when he was accompanied by a large number of men from the village.
Apparently the affair had been deliberately planned, and as there was no suspicion of foul play, no inquest was held. Te remains were identified as those of Alex Laravae, who was emplyed by the Pearce Co. for two or three seasons. The body was brought to town and shipped from here to Toronto, where it will be used by the medical faculty for dissecting purposes.
Deceased was a Frenchman and came here from Trenton. He was about 50 years of age and is said to be a widower. No reason is known for his rash act.
Pearl McCaw Franko remembers:
"As I remember it my grandfather John Davidson was the mill manager and the house originally belonged to the mill. My grandparents later bought the house. We have so many memories of wonderful Christmases in that house. We often played at the mill jumping in the sawdust.
Wonderful house. The old wood stove with the heavy irons sitting on it. Apples stored in the pantry. Cows that had to be milked. Berries in the front yard. My youngest uncle Don lived there while working at Loveless' store delivering groceries. He died in the dentist' chair in Madoc I think at age 19."
Bill and Audrie Cox, my grandparents, lived here from around 1980 until my Grandpa passed January 1998. After a time my Grandma sold the house and moved into town.
About 1939, lumberman Bruce Airhart bought the property from Marmora Village for back taxes and used it to store equipment and stable his horses. This was following the closing down of lumbering operations at Glanmire and Beaver Creek, north of the Shannick settlement. After Mr. Airhart died in 1945, his son Doug looked after the family business while still working as an engineer in Belleville. His office is still standing close to Main Street a bit north of the stave mill manager's house, (shown above), which is now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Bill Cox. (Note: That was as of 1996. As of 2015, the house is owned by Mike Tobitz. Prior to Bill Cox, it was owned by Jerry Potts)
DICKENS, Iladell Evelyn "Dell" - The world has lost a kind and gentle women. Entered into rest at the E.J. McQuigge Lodge of Monday, June 08, 2015 in her 94th year. Daughter of the late George and Annie Airhart (nee Deacon). Dell was a direct descendant of some of the earliest settlers and lumbermen of Marmora and Lake Township of Hastings County. Beloved wife of the late John "Jack" Dickens. Loving mother of Frankie Cooper of Truro, Nova Scotia and Ron Dickens (Ann) of Belleville. Loving Nan of Devon Arnold (Scott) of Peterborough and Amy Dickens of Belleville. Dell will be sadly missed by her many cousins, nieces and nephews.
After the early death of Doug Airhart, the mill site became the property of his sister, Iladell, and her husband J. Dickens. In order to make space for the cottage they intended to build, the couple took down all the old buildings and burned them. Only the boiler was saved and moved to Marmora Municipal Park where it can be seen today, protected from the elements by a wood and wire shelter.
Iladell Dickens volunteered one bit of information that was later confirmed from an item in the Marmora Herald, dated September 19, 1907. She said that when she and her husband were clearing the land where the mill had been, they found the remains of a small building close to the siding off the spur line which was probably used during loading operations. The newspaper, articlereads: "John Hayne & Co. have commenced shipping staves and hoops, and work appears to be progressing favorably. They are now' constructing a railway siding for their own use..." The spur began at the Bonarlaw junction of theTrenton, Peterborough and Marmora Railway and Mining Company, along with what is now known as Cameron Street, north along the shoreline of Crowe River, then across country to Cordova Mines and the Belmont Gold Mine it was built to serve.
SUDDEN PASSING OF DONALD DAVIDSON July 24, 1952
Word of the sudden passing of Donald Davidson, of Marmora, son of Mr. and Mrs. John Davidson, Tuesday afternoon came as a shock to people of Marmora and district. He had gone to Madoc to have some teeth extracted and was in the dentist's chair in Dr. Fraser's office when his death occurred. It was decided to administer gas to help him stand the shock of having his teeth extracted and Dr. S. R. Beatty was called in to give the gas. Great care was taken to help keep the amount of gas used as small as possible, but suddenly it was noticed he had stopped breathing. Two doctors were called in and every effort was made to resuscitate him but without avail.
Donald was twenty years of age and was the youngest of a large family. Years ago he suffered with an attack of rheumatic fever and has had a heart condition ever since. He had lived nearly all his life in Marmora and had many friends. For two or three years he had been a clerk in Loveless' Groceteria, where he met many people and his friendly and cheerful disposition had made him popular with the customers. For some time he was a crucifer at St. Paul's Church and a member of the choir. For some years he was noted as a boy singer.
Besides his parents he is survived by six sisters and two brothers. They are (Dola) Mrs. George Marriott, Niagara Falls; (Margaret) Mrs. William Thompkins, Trenton; (Verna) Mrs. Cecil Neal, Marrnora; (Grace) Mrs. James McMurray, Marrnora; (Myrtle) Mrs. Clifford McCaw, Marrnora; Laura at home; Clayton, Coe Hill, and Samuel, Marrnora.
One sister predeceased him 13 years ago and one brother 21 years ago. The funeral is being held this afternoon, leaving his parents' residence and proceeding to St. Paul's Church where service will conducted by Canon J. M. Brown.li.e,Interment will take place in Fox's cemetery, Eldorado.
Unfortunately, this house burned down on June 19, 2016. Inquinte.ca wrote:
"Barbecuing too close to flammable liquids caused a fire that caused heavy damage to a home north of Marmora on Sunday. Marmora and Lake, Stirling-Rawdon and Havelock-Belmont-Methuen firefighters responded on Sunday evening to a fully-involved blaze at 213 Cordova Road that caused heavy damage.
Marmora and Lake Fire Chief Tony Brownson reports that while barbecuing outside the house, popping sounds were noticed coming from flammable materials, used in lamps, that were nearby; the fire then spread to the residence. He also reports damage in excess of $400,000.Firefighters were on the scene for several hours. The residents got out safely, and there were no injuries."