Comments and Memories About the Carleton Place Findlay Company

Comments and Memories About the Carleton Place Findlay Company





Photo- Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum


Karen Dorman My grandfather Ben Stanzel worked there in shipping until he retired at age 72.
Terry Latham Can recall the sound as you walked by on High St. Every few windows it would change.

Dan Williams My dad Biddy Williams worked there for years along with the future Mayor’s father Cliff Flynn. Dad was secretary of the union I believe. Other memories include the Findlay’s picnics in the park by the canoe club including free hot dogs and ice cream.

Chris Gordon Drum line practice on the foundry floor (Revelliers, or as they were then, the Junior Trumpeters).  My mum worked in the office, my grandfather, Sid Stanfield, worked in the foundry.

Margaret Greer There are still steps down to the river. You can see they are just up from the person sitting on the cement wall. Our Mom use to take us down there after dinner on a hot summer’s day for a cool swim before bed.


Findlays photo- David Findlay-


Llew Lloyd The ” Findlay Boathouse ” in the rear of the picture was the favourite swimming spot during my Mom’s childhood .

Gary Box When was the building taken down?

Bill Brunton I moved to CP in April 1972 and I remember it was in the process of being torn down then.

Gary Box Thanks Bill, I wasn’t sure I had seen it in the 50’s and 60’s…….but I must have, since we had a cottage on the Lake in the from the 1920’s to 1996 and did our shopping in CP. Mind you I was pretty young then and now I’m pretty old.


Michael Doyle My sister and I would deliver sandwiches to my Dad for his lunch. He worked there as a pattern-maker until he left for Montreal in 1939, at the start of the war, to work for Canadian Vickers in Montreal, which had been awarded a contract to build the PBY Flying Boat. Canadian Vickers, a sub of Vickers in England (and subsequently Canadair), was a boat builder and inasmuch as there was no aircraft manufacturer in Canada at the time large enough to handle the contract, they gave it to a boat builder.



Photo- Michael Doyle


Doug B. McCarten We used to swim from the concrete steps as well….got caught skinny dipping at night more than once!  I guess my Mom knew where to look lol


Glenda Mahoney Skinny dipping of course. Was that not what the stairs  were for?

Llew Lloyd Bryon Wallace and I have referred to it as ” fat dipping ” for quite a few years now .

Doug B. McCarten Llew Lloyd that congers up a completely different image hahahaha

Doug B. McCarten The moulding shop was at the river end of the building…..

Kurt Bigras Poured iron in the moulding shop built stoves in the electrical and painted space heaters Willard Lagree was my foreman great guy




Findlays photo- David Findlay-

Doug B. McCarten Spent my time in the moulding shop, electrical, enamel room, japanning room, stock room taking parts to the line…. certainly taught me a very good lesson though! I learned that I needed to go back to school because that was not the life I had envisioned….Great motivation! I loved the people though!

Norma Ford My Dad, Hilton Dorman worked as a moulder for 35 years with Findlay’s. My husband also worked on the shake-out and then as a moulder in Findlay’s Foundry. I had several Uncles and a brother who learned their trade – tool & dye maker at Findlay’s. Findlay’s Foundry was a family business for sure not just for the Findlay Family but for so many other families in Carleton Place. It was an institution. I can remember the smell of the foundry to this day and it is a very good smell.

Doug B. McCarten I agree wholeheartedly, tough tough work in the moulding shop!

Linda Gallipeau-Johnston Geez Norma – your family sure did it’s time!!! The summer must have been crazy.

Mike Flint We swam to that spot many times..

Steven Flint Ya. We Did! Then strawberry milkshakes from Granny

Janis Nixon My Grampa worked there.

Bill Brown Grandfather Harvey Campbell worked in the moulding shop and my father worked there for a short time from 1969 until it closed

James R. McIsaac Used to have band practice there in the winter….

Amanda Armstrong Brandon Armstrong ‘s grandfather John Hobbs worked there

Sherri Iona I walked by it every day on my way to and from school. I remember their whistle.


Screenshot 2018-06-18 at 10.jpg

The Demolition of Findlays photo- David Findlay-

Cathy Paul Dulmage When I was little my Dad worked there and after I heard the whistle I would go up to the end of the sidewalk to meet him.

Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown My Mom worked there from 1961 to 1965. My Grandpa Ernie Buffam worked there for 40 years, I believe in the Molding Shop.

Bill Crawford My Grandfather was a moulder for many years. My Mum & Dad worked in the electrical dept. for several years as well. The whistle was a constant reminder of the time of day in CP.

Krista Gladish Penson My dad Max Gladish was purchasing agent. I remember as a very young child waiting for him at the High St entrance

Chris Gordon I remember your dad. My Mum Rose Marie (now Amott, then Gordon) worked for him.

Tom Edwards My dad John Edwards worked with Max, Gerry Tinslay, Moff Blaine, Flo Mace and Keith Morris in the office there as well. Remember we used to go to Appleton to visit Andy Gladish now and again and we would drive him into Carleton Place.

Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown And also my Mom.

Tom Edwards Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown I didn’t know that Jo-Anne.



Findlays photo- David Findlay-


Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown Tom Edwards she be the quiet one like myself-1961-1965 approx

Tom Edwards Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown Dad was there from the time the Dairy closed in Almonte til Findlays closed. Likely about 1965-72.

Tom Edwards LOL I don’t think quiet would be the description either Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown. LOL



Photo Bill Russell


Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown My grandpa Buffam was there over 40 years until it closed.

Tom Edwards My grandfather Carney O’Connor worked there forever Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown too. He worked in the plant in the moulding shop. He always talked about Sonny Ferguson who worked there with him. I remember they all bought the Irish Sweepstakes tickets. LOL.

Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown Tom Edwards aww Sonny Ferguson was a great man. My aunt was married to his brother.

Donna Mcfarlane Dad Bill Mccauley got his moulding trade at Davidsons in Ottawa and came to Findlays in 1939 had to quit in 1951 due to health.. went back in 1955 to another shop not sure if it was Enamel shop and was there til they closed

Llew Lloyd Tom Edwards I worked in the enamel shop one summer with Sonny Ferguson . What a character .

Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown Llew Lloyd that’s an understatement! Teresa Ferguson pass on the memories to Chris!



Photo from the Ottawa Citizen 1972 thanks to the kindness of Marion Giles McNeely

Don McNeely and Gordon Lowe



Bill Crawford Sonny & my dad Doug wired our new house on Dufferin St. in 1959/60. I’m not sure if either of them knew what they were doing, but the place never burned down, so they must have done something right! Mum called it “the house that beer built”.

Llew Lloyd Jo-Anne Dowdall-Brown i just realized my interaction with Sonny was from the year before when Brian Ford and I I worked for Cecil Robertson in the oil department and Sonny was the head of the electrical shop . The next summer I worked in the enamel shop and Jack Ferguson was one of the sprayers . He was a laugh as well . I met lots of great people there .

Tom Edwards Bill Crawford I have received many tuning ups from Maude Crawford over the years. Doug used to just laugh whenever she got going. She was best friends with my Aunt Hilda Ferguson.She was a great lady. She took me into her backyard one day and she showed me all the different plants she had. She had about 75 different types of plants and shrubs. 😍😍😍😍

Neil Larmour I played countless hours of hockey there after the factory was gone. As I’m sure 90% if people from town did

Sylvia Giles My Grandpa Gordon (Mom’s Dad)worked there in late 40’s into 50’s he worked in the mould shop and made tools for the foundry!! I think he made 5 cents an hour

Penny Trafford Posting for Garry Gibson. This is a bottle opener his Grandfather Eddie Gibson made in the mold shop. He always carried it in his pocket. Eddie worked for Findlay’s for 35 years. It was passed to Doug Gibson after his death and Doug carried it in his pocket for years, and now belongs to Garry.

34382835_10155948499121896_3134424968926855168_n (1).jpg


Barry Trafford Penny. Your Uncle Walter worked at Findlay’s also. I think I might of been five. Remember waiting for dad to come home on the steps of our house every night. Would get the odd treat for waiting. Not sure of the year Aunt Reta would know.

Glenda Mahoney My Dad worked there for years. He made so many great friends. Findlays was a big part of our lives.



Screenshot 2018-06-17 at 17.jpg

Findlays Limited – Enamel Shop from D. Findlay click here.

Dipping ground coat in enamel shop.

Donna Mcfarlane They were like a family.. when we were burnt out in 1954 and dad was hospitalized for some time due to burns… they took up a collection and paid for the hospital stay… even though dad was not working at the time… he had to quit moulding due to his lungs.. After the fire findlays contacted dad to see if he was interested in working in another area away from the moulding shop.. he was there from 55 til they left cp

Llew Lloyd My grandfather , my mother, and all four of her brothers worked at Findlay’s for various terms . My father worked there before the war and for a short time after he returned from overseas . I worked there for two summers .

Bill Brunton Why were those steps there anyway? In that picture there isn’t one. Was there a Wharf there at some time for something unrelated to Findlays .

Bill Brunton In that picture there isn’t a dock. I meant.

Joann Voyce Lived just up the road on High St opposite the loading dock. Moved there in 1948 and the steps were there then and no dock then

Doug B. McCarten I don’t ever remember anything there just the steps….

Dan Williams I remember them dumping the snow there in winter. Salt and all!

Doug B. McCarten Yup, me too!



Photo Tom Edwards–Karen Lloyd said: Lil McLaren in the striped blouse



Doug B. McCarten I can still call to mind the fragrance as I walked by, a combination of grease and sweat from the pressing room where sheet metal was formed into parts, the smell of the enamel in the dipping room and the acrid fragrance from the moulding room as the metal was poured into the moulds and as they cooled….. Because we lived just down the street, I also recall the soot like particulate that fell on my Dad’s car (cause I had to wash it lol)! The smoke 💨 stack was literally smoking at certain times. Back in the day before we ever thought about environmental issues or pollution in general.
Man, what a time, everything was so much simpler then….



Llew Lloyd In the summer of 1968 Brian Ford and I worked the evening shift in the oil department . Cecil Robertson was the shop foreman . The next summer I went to see Cecil for a job , but he was full up .He told me that Jack Bittle was looking for help in the enamel shop . Just as I was leaving Cecil asked me if I had a pair of cowboy boots . When I answered yes , he said , ” wear them Jack likes tall people ” . That summer, thanks to Cecil’s advice and Ken Blackburn’s boots, I worked with another group of great guys .

Dan Williams Good one!

Doug B. McCarten Jack Bittle was a terrific guy! Perhaps because I was tall lol! I really loved working for Jack in the Enamel room! Would always ask after me long after I had left Findlays!

Llew Lloyd I have fond memories of Jack Bittle , Doug Gravelle , Vic Tinslay , Cal Drader , Jack Ferguson and Wayne Williams mom whose first name I can’t remember . There was a Sadler who went on to become a custodian at Caldwell school, a McDermid a Ramsbottom and a MacLellan there as well .


The inner remains of Findlay’s- Photo from the Delmer Dunlop Collection at Archives Lanark

Doug B. McCarten Jack Bittle was a terrific guy! Perhaps because I was tall lol! I really loved working for Jack in the Enamel room! Would always ask after me long after I had left Findlays!

Llew Lloyd I have fond memories of Jack Bittle , Doug Gravelle , Vic Tinslay , Cal Drader , Jack Ferguson and Wayne Williams mom whose first name I can’t remember . There was a Sadler who went on to become a custodian at Caldwell school, a McDermid a Ramsbottom and a MacLellan there as well .

Doug B. McCarten Llew Lloyd thanks so much for the above list all of whom did their best to help me along….. I guess I have been gone too long…..thanks for the reminder!

Doug B. McCarten Llew Lloyd do you remember who it was who ran the japanning room who had lost a finger at work? I can see his face but no name so far! Another great guy who was a long time employee at the plant!

Llew Lloyd Doug B. McCarten Not sure you mean by the japanning room , but if that was where all the raw metal was dipped in various vats , the Sadler whose first name I can’t remember worked there . The men I remember from the oil department are Cecil Robertson , Ab Lynch , a Julian and a McNeely . Cecil Devlin was the night watchman .

Doug B. McCarten Yes, it was just off the enamel room. Dip tanks for sure….japanning is a dip process by hand in a black lacquer type liquid…. the fellow I remember lost his finger when it got caught in the cogs of a wheel attached to another piece of equipment…

Wendy LeBlanc My dad, Ken Robertson, worked in the electric stove department from after WWII until the last part of the 1950s. I have a letter sent to Dad overseas offering him work at Findlay’s when he returned to Canada. It was heavy, dirty work but Dad never seemed to mind. The reason he left the Foundry was he had passed the exam to work at the Post Office where, although the salary was less at the time, there was also less chance of a strike that could lead to a financial disaster for our family.

I worked there for the summer of 1965 following Grade 13. I did day work ( as opposed to piece work the men on the line did) with the women in the electric and gas department. The women worked as hard as the men, always worried that they might possibly run behind with the components the men needed on the line. Everyone I worked with during that summer always gave a 100% effort, and I will never forget their dedication to providing for their families.

Margaret Greer I am enjoying reading how Findlay’s played a part in the lives of Carleton Place people especially our generation.We lived right across the street and although Doug McCarten said there was a smell and some sort of soot we didn’t seem to experience it.

Llew Lloyd The morning , noon and 5 o’clock foundry whistle was a big part of those years .

Joan Stoddart If you missed the whistle Stoddart’s hounds would let you know it had happened


Stuart McIntosh I worked in the oil department, enamel shop and moved raw steel and also used the spray booths for piece work. Remembering Mr. Julian. Sonny Ferguson and one of the Lowe lads. Steel cage elevator moving finished stoves to top floor, spot welders, dip tanks, hand- cuffed operators(saved losing fingers) and racing down large wooden stairs at quittin time.
My mother and 2 sisters kept house for the wonderful Findlay family

Toby Randell All that remained by the time I grew up was the cement slabs where buildings once stood and the town would put ice rinks on. Dozens of kids ranging in age from 7/8 up to 18/19 would play shinny. I can remember spending hours and hours on those rinks. It was a great learning experience and I have lasting friendships with people I played with to this day.

Jayne Graham That was the best rink! Sherene Baird and I would skate there at night… me with my Karen Magnusson skates!

Llew Lloyd Bob Rintoul is credited for his work on that rink .

Gwen Spencer Swam there in my early years Changed in the building behind.
Rhonda McRae Landriault My Dad worked at Findlays till they closed..David McRae

Kurt Bigras I quit a week early to try and get work at another foundry no go

Steven Anderson Lived a block away. Remember as a wee lad the demolition. Played on it and remember seeing open stair openings. Then they were sealed up. Played hockey on the site years later!

Elisabeth Hick sadly a young man lost his life when a wall collapsed on him during the demolition

Debbie Garraway I believe it was Clarke Rothwell

Llew Lloyd This accident occurred at the Sewage Treatment Plant .

David McNeely I remember walking by Findlay’s in the winter on way to school and seeing bottles of milk sitting on the window sills to keep cold.You could also take bundles of old newspapers in and get paid.

Bill Brunton I forgot about that huge pile of twisted Steel and cement that was there for what seemed like a long time. We moved to 209 Moffatt Street in 1972 and the building was still there then but not for long after. It was pretty impressive when You think how much space it took up.


Debra White
Hi yes my dad Wilmer white worked at findleys and than stayed on when it went to Leigh instruments and than to spar airspace. I would meet my dad for lunch in the spring and summer and we would go to the park and in the winter I would wait for him after work. I would play in the snow beside the for at the far entrance and when it was very cold I would go in and sit on the bench by the water fountain and the doors where they paint this was one of my child memories I will always cherish cause it was about my dad and I.


Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  23 Jul 1974, Tue,  First Edition,  Page 2




Notes About J.K. Findlay

Memories of Findlays 1972 – “They’re Proud, Independent, and Resigned to the Loss of their Jobs”

Looking for Names- Findlay Foundry

The Inner Remains of the Findlay Foundry

From the Belly of the Findlay Plant….

Someday my Prince Will Buy Me a Cinderella Stove

Findlay’s 101 and a Personal Confession

Where Did you Learn to Swear in Carleton Place?

Funky Soul Stew was Once Cooking in Carleton Place


Cooking with Findlay’s — Christine Armstrong’s Inheritance and Maple Syrup Recipe

Commercial Centre Planned for Findlay Site

Walter and John Armour and A Findlay Stove

The Findlay Foundry Ltd. Closes—- The Video



About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

7 responses »

  1. Hi yes my dad Wilmer white worked at findleys and than stayed on when it went to Leigh instruments and than to spar airspace. I would meet my dad for lunch in the spring and summer and we would go to the park and in the winter I would wait for him after work. I would play in the snow beside the for at the far entrance and when it was very cold I would go in and sit on the bench by the water fountain and the doors where they paint this was one of my child memories I will always cherish cause it was about my dad and I.


  2. I had a summer job reclaiming bricks from the demolished factory. This involved chipping off the old mortar with a hammer and stacking them in piles for sale. Many of these recycled bricks were used on the facade of the newly built home on High Street designed and owned by Stirling Weedmark.


  3. My grandfather Ernie Trotman worked at the foundry. He passed away in January 1974, he developed Emphysema after years working around Asbestos


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