The recent death of Bill Fedorkow, 94, underscores the passing of time and fruit-growing history of the Niagara Peninsula. During the years of 1954 to 1991, he was the field superintendent of the Canadian Canners plant in St. Davids, Ontario. He was offered promotions, but turned them down in favour of his clients who became lifelong friends. At the plant’s peak, it processed 30,000 tons of fresh peaches and an equal amount of canned peaches. In Fedorkow’s words, “It was heavy labour.”
Fortuitously, his words live on today in the form of an audio tape and video scrapbook in which he recalls the halcyon days of the 1950s and 1960s.The Niagara-on-the-Lake Museum is preserving the stories of the men and women who worked hard in the tender fruit industry.
As Fedorkow noted, this era has passed and today, there is no fruit cannery east of the Rocky Mountains. For his account, link here: https://bit.ly/2HPOcjl
Thanks to his daughter, Lou Fedorkow, for raising awareness of the power of audio interviews. She says, “I am hoping to build support among the grower community in making contributions of more content - particularly visual as it makes stories so much more compelling - along with modest financial contributions to the Museum.”
This is a low-cost template for preserving horticultural history – anywhere in Canada.