The other day a photo popped up online of a Silverwood’s Dairy wagon being pulled by a horse.
The horse-drawn deliveries stopped in 1962 and after that yellow trucks delivered the products.
Back in those days, in Corunna, we had many deliveries to our door — the milkman, breadman, oil-man, eggman and the insurance man.
My mother was in charge of all of these business people at the door, with three kids and a dog right behind her, trying to place a ‘special order.’ My Dad must take credit for helping pay the bills.
Empty milk bottles were placed at the back door to be replaced with fresh ones. There was money in the bottles and sometimes notes. Some bottles had a closed area at the top, which was cream. I can remember the milk was so cold and refreshing, and a glass of chocolate milk was even better.
Sometimes it was heated up for a delicious cup of hot chocolate. Besides milk, there was cream and butter and sometimes popsicles!
I remember Oscar, the breadman, carrying a large steel basket laden with a spread of sweets that would rot your teeth just looking at them. On display were Twinkies, Snowballs, brownies, glazed Donuts and my favourite, a pastry that resembled a hotdog bun filled with whipped cream and raspberry filling and dusted with icing sugar. Even the dog was drooling!
Mum would try and talk us out of whatever it was we wanted (one of everything please!), but not wanting the begging to continue, would say, “a package of those and one of those, and hmmm …one of those and yes, just put it on the bill.”
Another successful delivery for the breadman! We looked forward to his next visit.
We had an oil stove and that meant oil delivery each week. It was nice to see the delivery guy but he wasn’t bringing anything that interested us kids. At least we didn’t think so until cold nights made us grateful for the heat.
Mr. Allingham, the eggman, was a little gruff but still likeable, and we did enjoy our scrambled eggs with toast.
Mr. McDonald, the insurance man, was another visitor whose knock at the door meant a premium was due, but always a friendly chat afterwards.
It was also convenient to call and order groceries from McRae’s General Store or Corunna Market and ask for delivery.
The colourful characters and personalities who graced our doors with their home deliveries are a pleasure to recall. They were good-humored and most of the time had a smile on their faces.
I have to blame Oscar the breadman, however, for my sweet tooth!
Nadine Wark is a retired office administrator and freelance writer who resides in Sarnia