Fonds MS 169;1996.015;1996.066 - R.H. MacDonald & Sons Ltd. fonds

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R.H. MacDonald & Sons Ltd. fonds

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CA VERN MS 169;1996.015;1996.066

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  • 1936-1958, 1976 (Creation)
    R.H. MacDonald and Sons Ltd.

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Physical description

22 cm of textual records

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Biographical history

R.H. MacDonald & Sons packing house was opened in 1933. Robert MacDonald had come to B.C. from his native Scotland in 1923. In the beginning he worked at the coast and as a carpenter on the sternwheeler SS Minto on the Arrow Lakes. After trying his luck in the Klondike gold rush of 1898, he returned to Nova Scotia to marry Stella Falconer. They moved back to the Yukon to operate a roadhouse on the trail between Whitehorse and Dawson City. By 1906, the couple had decided to move to Vancouver where Mr. MacDonald worked as a contractor. Feeling that a smaller community would be a better place to raise their six children, the couple moved to Vernon and purchased a fruit farm in the BX district. Mr. MacDonald became very active in fruit industry organizations. Until 1933 the family made their own boxes and packed their own fruit from their 85-acre orchard. Robert had never been able to show a profit selling fruit in other packing houses, so that year, he decided to build his own packing house. Approximately 35 to 40 women were employed packing and sorting. In 1945, a bigger packing house was built, with the family operating it until 1972 when it was sold to a group of growers from Kelowna. The business closed in 1991. The building still stands and is used for storage purposes. The MacDonald orchard was sold in 1947 and Robert MacDonald died in 1954.

Custodial history

Scope and content

Fonds consists of the financial records of the R.H. MacDonald & Sons Ltd. fruit and vegetable packing house from 1936-1958 and 1976. Includes 3 general accounts payable and receivable ledgers (1936-1941, 1941-1958, 1950-1956), customer and supplier account ledgers (ca.1938-1954), and a company appraisal (1976). The appraisal, which was produced for the company by Philip E. Locke, Real Estate Appraiser for Mountain Appraisals Ltd., includes monthly financial statements, correspondence, reports, photocopied photographs, site analyses, assessments, estimates of value, cost estimates and various maps and plans of the company's cold storage centre.

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BCAUL control number: VERN-140

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