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SHOPS AND STORES

The Cooper Shop Merry's Drug and Variety
Millinery Shop Carl Beals' Store
Beaver Fruit Co-Operative

THE COOPER SHOP

In 1932 Mr. William Illsley established a cooper shop in North Williamston for the production of apple barrels. The principal materials used for this product were birch, maple and alder trees which he obtained on his wood lot. Using clamps and a steel hook, the staves were held in position about the bottom of the barrel while six hoops were placed around them. A groove was made in the top of the staves so the "head" would fit on tightly. Finally, the barrels were scorched inside by being placed over a round stove. These handmade barrels were sold to local farmers. At first they were delivered by horse and wagon but in 1934 Mr. Illsley bought a truck. Mr. Illsley's cooper shop closed in 1946 as a result of the increased use of bushel boxes in packing apples. There were many other small cooper shops in the Lawrencetown area.

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MERRY'S DRUG AND VARIETY STORE

Located on the main street, this building is over one hundred years old. Mr. Herb Whitman took over the general store doing business here in 1900 from his father Mr. John Whitman. Later Mr. Frank Johnson and Mr. Henry Foster purchased this building and in 1950 it was bought by Mr. William Webber and operated as a variety store. In 1956 Eugene Merry purchased the building and renovated the interior to provide for the town's only pharmacy.

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MILLINERY SHOP

The building which is Doctor Frank Morse's garage was once used as a hat shop. Mrs. Minnie Stultz purchased this shop around 1927 from Mrs. H. Whitman and ran the business until 1939. She made women's hats and sold ladies' fashions.

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CARL BEALS' STORE

At the corner of Highway One and the Lawrencetown Lane stands a building that was erected by Edward Whitman, Senior in the 1800s. From the outset the first level of the structure housed businesses while the second floor was living quarters. Shortly after confederation in 1867 this building was used for several years as a store by Pickle and Mills, the Annapolis lumber merchants. At various times it has been used as a cobbler shop, a restaurant and in the 1900s it was a hardware and general store. It was continuously owned by the Whitman family until 1945 when Mr. Carl Beals purchased the building and began his grocery business.

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THE BEAVER FRUIT CO-OPERATIVE

The building operated by the Beaver Fruit Cooperative was built in 1901 by J. Elvin Shaffner and for twenty-nine years was known as "Shaffner's Limited". It was owned by K.G. Eisner in the 1930's. Mr. Eisner sold out to the Beaver Fruit Company which began in 1926 with its head office located in Clarence. The company had a controlling interest in three other such enterprises: one in Clarence east, The Brooklyn Fruit Company and the Lawrencetown Central Fruit Company. Among the leaders of the company were Mr. Clarence Thompson, Brooklyn; Mr. E.A. Marshall, Clarence; Mr. V.B. Leonard, Clarence; Mr. R. Shaffner, Williamston; Mr. H. Foster, Williamston; Mr.F.L. Wilson, Clarence; Mr. E.P. Woodworth, Lawrencetown; Mr. J.W. Sproule, Clarence and Mr. J.L. Stoddart, Lawrencetown. The first manager was E. Stuart Elliott who served for about thirty years. In 1946 the Beaver Fruit Company moved its office to Lawrencetown and the same year it changed from a limited stock company to a co-operative business enterprise. Coincidental with a move to Lawrencetown the Company established a feed mill; by 1976 this mill was distributing over 6,500 tons of grain to farmers throughout Annapolis County. The co-operative has always carried hardware supplies but in 1956 an addition was built to the store to create floor space for a hardware department. The Beaver Fruit Co-operative began to deal in petroleum products in 1967. It sells diesel, regular, stove and home-heating fuels. The two delivery trucks are radio- equipped for efficient service.