Living Here - History - Elevators

Wheat has been the King on the prairies since it was first planted here by the pioneers. The first wheat a homesteader grew was taken to a mill and made into flour to feed his family. When he had more acres under cultivation, he grew wheat to sell or trade for the necessities of life. The early settlers found this difficult, as wheat had to be taken to the mill or railroad. The closest was Portage la Prairie, a journey of fifty miles on difficult roads. The railroad, coming to this district in 1886, changed all this and grain warehouses were built along side the tracks in McLachlan, Spiers, and Alexander. Grain was delivered in bag, weighed and emptied into bins or loaded in boxcars by hand.
 
In 1889 a small elevator was built but it burnt down and was replaced by a steam engine elevator from Northern Elevator Company who ran it until 1917 but was torn down in the 30's.
 
In 1891 the Farmers Elevator Company was formed and they built an elevator in the town of Treherne. There were several mistakes in the construction that caused considerable problems later on. After a few years of operation, the elevator burnt down but the local farmers got together and built a bigger elevator in the same spot. This elevator was driven by steam engine, had 75,000 bushel capacity, with twin grain cleaners and two legs to elevate grain. It also had weigh scales and wagon dumping platforms.
 
In 1903 the Dominion Elevator was built and in 1910 the Manitoba Government got into the grain industry by purchasing this elevator. Later on the government decided that they weren't interested in the grain business and the grain elevator stood idle until 1926 when it was purchased by U.G.G.
 
In 1900 the Ogilvie Elevator no. 60 was built but was torn down and rebuilt to newer standards. In 1960 Manitoba Pool purchased it.
 
In 1904, the Colonial Elevator Company constructed an elevator at the extreme west end of town. In May, 1910 the elevator burnt to the ground. It was also rumored at the time that the elevator was losing money.
 
The farmers of Manitoba organized the Manitoba Wheat Pool in 1924. In 1928 they built an elevator at Treherne with 43,000 bushel capacity, the necessary weighing and cleaning machinery installed. It had an electric motor in the office and one was placed on the top of the elevator to run the leg. In 1967 this elevator was fully renovated with a new cement foundation, large platforms, and scales with automatic weighing and stamping systems. It also had a vacuum system. The elevator was purchased and dismantled in 1972.