296 North Mitton St. Sarmia, Ontaria, Canada
The following is a brief history of the Goodison Thresher Co., Ltd., Sarnia as related by one who was 'born on its doorstep'.
The company started in a small town called Strathroy by the Craig Brothers who moved to Sarnia around 1882. They ran the company for a few years then they went broke. Mr. John Goodison at that time was one of their agents.
Mr. Goodison was a farmer from Caradoc. He sold his farm and with his two sons, Ed and Will, took over the plant then known as the Tunnel City Implement Works. They built plows, reapers, mowers and threshers. In about three or four years they just about went broke so they formed a company which the Bank financed and from then on they went ahead.
They went out of the Implement business and built threshers, one that was designed by a Mr. McCloskey, which was a Single Deck-Crank. In 1892 McCloskey changed this model to a Double Deck-Crank and called it the 'New McCloskey'.
At this time Mr. Goodison was agent for the Waterbus Steam Engines. In about 1896 he bought out the plant run by a Mr. N. C. Peterson and started to build engines for himself. The engine which Mr. Peterson built was a rear mount and Mr. Goodison changed it to a side mount. They were both plain and traction.
The first blower that was built was a flat Stacker driven by bevel gear but it was soon changed to a Side Stacker; the first feeder was the Hawkeye feeder which was a good feeder in its time. Then came the Ruth, then the Rich, then the Keineke which were all good self feeders. He also built one of the first Straw Cutters that was built in the back of a separator for cutting straw. It was called the Stewart and did a very good job cutting the straw and blowing it back in the barns.
Mr. Goodison built up a wonderful business from about 25 men to 250 men but he did not live to enjoy the fruits of his labors. He died about 1917. His son W. T. Goodison took over the business. The other son, Edward, died about two years before his father.
W. T. Goodison died about 1928 leaving the plant to his wife, son John E. Goodison Jr., and daughter Margaret. Goodison's have stopped building threshing machines and are sole agents for the Oliver Plow Co. with a new plant in Weston, a suburb of Toronto.
There is only one of the Good is or is left, the grand daughter Margaret. The grandson John E. Goodison Jr. died in Toronto in 1955.