Industrial History: Mr. Dana’s Tan-Works

15 November 1849 — a story from the Brockville Recorder & Advertiser:


Mr. Dana’s Tan-Works

In 1830, Mr. Beecher, of Herkimer County, U.S., engaged Mr. Dana (Alonzo B. Dana) as foreman of the tan-works now occupied by Mr. Isaac Beecher of this town, and up till 1833 the work continued under the superintendence of Mr. Dana.  In 1833, Mr. Dana and Mr. Beecher of Brockville, entered into partnership for a term of seven years, and under their joint management the work of manufacturing upper and harness leathers progressed rapidly.

The term of partnership having expired, Mr. Dana took possession of the premises a little further up the river than the site of Mr. Beecher’s and commenced business on his own account in 1840.  Previous to that time little or no sole leather was manufactured here, and Mr. Dana fitted up his new establishment with the necessary apparatus for the manufacture of this article.

Although Mr. Dana does not carry on the tanning business to the extent the works are capable of, yet between it and the shoe manufacture he employs from 16 to 18 hands in the various departments of his trade.

At present, however, he is preparing to carry into various alterations, connected with the tannery, which when completed, will enable him to enter with vigor, as he intends doing, into the business.

When the alterations contemplated are carried out, Mr. Dana intends employing an additional number of workmen, everyone of whom must be considered as adding to the prosperity of the town.

(further paragraphs continue on leather and its types — “Spanish” being imported because it has been removed with care after slaughtering.)

Dana's Tannery 2009

The Tannery of Alonzo B. Dana – built in 1840

15 Jessie St., Brockville, ON

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