The next small white concrete building on the north side of the road was “Ralph’s Dairy Bar”. Before the days franchised ice cream stores, this was the place to go for a hand scoped ice cream cone. Unfortunately I cannot find mush information about Ralph’s Dairy. They were one of the dairies that did do home delivery of milk in bottles to families living in Brockville. And as mentioned before on a hot Sunday afternoon this was the place to go for an ice cream treat. Ralph’s was open during the 1950’s and early ’60’s

The original Ralph’s Dairy Bar (photo #1)


Advertisement from 1957 (photo #2)


Ralph's Dairy Bar (2)
Ralph’s Dairy Bar, now a home (photo #3)


Freshness Seal fro the top of a milk bottle (photo #4)


Ralph's Dairy Bar (1)
Ralph’s Dairy as it looked in 2016. (photo #5)

2 thoughts on “Ralph’s Dairy Bar

  1. Wilfred Lawson Ralph was born on July 13, 1896 in Oak Leaf, Leeds County. He went to business college in Brockville in 1915-16. His first job was working for the White Packing Co. His salary was $7/week and he paid $6/week room and board. His father bought him a milk route, horse, wagon and milk cans in 1917 for $100 to start a dairy. At that time the milk was delivered and sold to customers from a pouring can into their own containers. He sold fifty quarts the first day at 3 cents/pint and 5 cents/quart. Glass bottle containers started in about 1921. At first these were all washed in a wash boiler. Wilfred bought this farm (which is about one mile east of the Ralph homestead) and started W.L. Ralph’s Dairy which was the largest dairy in Brockville. The dairy started making ice cream and opened the Sunnidell Ice Cream Bar. His original barn burned January 23, 1951. He sold the business in 1957 but remained on the farm. He was a member of the Brockville Lions Club; President of the Lawn Bowling Club; a member of the Brockville Curling Club; a member of the Lone Star Hunting Club in Madawaska Area and a member of Trinity Anglican Church, Brockville. He married Vivian Inez McDougall on September 6, 1922. Vivian was born March 3, 1902 and died Oct. 15, 1954. Wildred died June 26, 1981. He and Vivian are both buried at the Oakland Cemetery in Brockville.

  2. When I was a child in the 1950s Ralph’s Dairy made daily milk deliveries (in half pint bottles, chocolate and white both available)to Riverview School on Sharp’s Lane. We would give our milk money to our teacher. The principal, Lila Seguire, would phone in the day’s milk order, and it arrived in wood and wire cases in time for lunch.

    I grew up on the south side of #2 Highway on the western part of River Acres, just across the cedar hedge from the ‘Big House’ at River Acres. Mum would put out the washed empty milk bottles on the doorstep with the money in a glass with a note about what she wanted. The Ralph’s Dairy milk man, Mr. Paul on that route, would deliver the milk, leave any change necessary, and take the empties away with him. In my early years around 1951-52 Mr. Paul’s conveyance was a horse drawn milk wagon.

    The wagon would stop at the Saunders’s house next door to us on the west. Mr. Paul would leave the wagon and horse on the side of the road. Mr. Paul would tend to the Saunders milk requirements and then cut across on the lawns to get to our house. As soon as the horse saw Mr. Paul walking to our house, the horse would proceed along the shoulder of the road, and stop at the top of our driveway to wait for. R. Paul. We were sad to see the horse replaced with a truck.

    Mr. Saunders was the manager of the Woolworth’s store in Brockville. The old one on the south side of King Street that had hardwood floors and low display cases.

    The most special treat of my childhood summers was my Dad driving us down to Ralph’s for a chocolate ripple ice cream cone.

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