Thursday, January 26, 2012

What use to be: Canada Barrels and Kegs

 In 1872 Karl Mueller founded Mueller Cooperage who manufactured barrels and kegs for the beverage/spirits and food industry. They operated out of a frame building at Regina and Erb street in Waterloo, Ontario. A brick plant was built in 1906 on Shantz Avenue (later Canbar Avenue, no longer exists) with Karl's son, John Charles taking over. In 1914 the company was incorporated as Charles Mueller Cooperage.
 Exerior of the original Mueller Cooperage building on Regina Street at Erb after it was expanded in 1903.

The business was sold to the Seagram family in 1920 and underwent the name change to Canada Barrels and Kegs. In 1960 a division was created to produce Crestliner fibreglass boats under licence to the US owners of Crestliner. Boat production ceased in 1975. The company was registered as Canbar in 1973, and eventually moved to Breslau, Ontario(still in operation). The factory was demolished in 1999.
Aerial view of factory grounds Erb Street and Shantz Avenue 1930.
Photograph of employees of Canada Barrel and Kegs Limited taken in front of the office 1939.
View of the main plant on Shantz Avenue. Note the Seagram's Distillery buildings in the background 1942.
View of the company's "stave yards". Note the railroad cars and tracks in the background and the view of Silver Lake in Waterloo Park.
Barrel staves piled on trucks before going in to be dried in large kilns.
Employee using a heading saw to cut wood for the barrels.
Employee Kress in the first step in forming a barrel, fitting staves into a circular metal form to assume the rough shape of the finished product.
Two employees of the cooperage working on different processes of creating the barrels. The Man on the left is Emiel Moser operating the machine that shapes the ends of the barrel staves and cuts the croze, or groove, in which the barrel head will fit. The man on the right is Elmer Moser and he is brushing out the interior of the barrel to remove all traces of sawdust and resin.

Wilfrid Hurgott sanding a barrel to a smooth finish.
Employee Norman Lorentz rounding barrel heads on a machine so they fit the barrel tightly.
 Employee Earl Kelner heading up a barrel.
  Employees repairing barrels, man on right flagging between the stave joints.
                                        Wine Barrel                                                   Fish Barrel
                Gumwood, Glucose, Syrup or Molasses Barrel                   Scotch Herring Barrel
         Ten gallon white oak keg used as a wine barrel                     45 Gallon Whiskey Barrel
Photograph of Lloyd Maier rolling out the barrels from the warehouse and a truck loaded with barrels.

 Photos and info taken from Waterloo Public Library


Beavis said...

bung hole!

Chris Adamiak said...

Dude that picture with Earl Kelner, he's almost rocking the jughead look! Love the pictures Man. Barrel making is such an amazing process! It was on How its made, wicked segment! A little more mechanized, but still some what hands on.

Brian Marshall said...

Haha yeah he is rocking quite the cap.

Ryan said...

I have always been intrigued by the barrel making process. Such an artisanal craft! I hope there are some folks out there keeping the handmade traditional alive. Thanks for the photos and descriptions.