HISTORY OF THE GOODISON THRESHER COMPANY

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Hugh Chisholm
Here is a picture of my engine and myself. It is a John Goodison. These last models were built in 1926. Style No. 2606. 10x10 cyl. I am in the Western Ontario Steam Threshing Reunion held here at Corunna, eight miles south of Sarnia. We had a good show, m

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.

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