Quinte, On. real estate agent: August 2012

Barley Days in Prince Edward County

little bluffThe latter half of the nineteenth century, specifically 1860 - 1890 was a very prosperous time for Prince Edward County, an era now called the barley days.

Barley grown in the County had always been favoured by American brewers in New York who believed that it was of a superior quality to any other barley grown on the continent. One third of all farmland in the County was used for growing barley, and at its peak, the County was shipping 50,000 bushels a day to the port of Oswego in New York.little bluff When the civil war developed south of the border in 1861, the price of barley shot up to $2.40 a bushel. It remained a very profitable business until the Americans introduced very high tariffs in the 1890's which pretty much killed the demand.

The remains of one of the granaries used to store this barley can still be seen in the Little Bluff Conservation Area in Prince Edward County. It's a bit of a steep descent to get there, but there's a rope down the pathway to assist people curious enough to go down and have a look. It's worth it.

little bluffThis wasn't the first time American politics influenced the County. The County had in fact been initially settled during the American revolution by people who had remained loyal to the Crown in the southern colonies. The initial wave was 500 families, but continued throughout the war and even after it had ended. By the 1850's the population of Prince Edward County was 20,000 people, the same as it is today.

Nor was this the last time American politics had a big influence on the County either. The prohibition era was a huge boon to the local economy as it became home to a flourishing rum running and smuggling trade. Main Duck Island, 12 miles off the coast of P.E.C. was a notorious place, almost entirely devoted to the trade. At the moment it's in the possession of Parks Canada, but in the past it has been owned privately, including once by John Foster Dulles, the secretary of state of the U.S.A. when Eisenhower was the president. 

People in Prince Edward County are proud of the heritage, and there's a local brewery called Barley Days Brewery who produce a very fine beer that's available in local establishments as well as the beer store. If you happen to see it, give it a try, you won't regret it. It's my pint of choice whenever it's available.

Comment balloon 2 commentsMalcolm Johnston • August 30 2012 03:16PM
Barley Days in Prince Edward County
share
The latter half of the nineteenth century, specifically 1860 - 1890 was a very prosperous time for Prince Edward County, an era now called the barley days Barley grown in the County had always been favoured by American brewers in New York… more
The Little Bluff Conservation Area in Prince Edward County
share
Little Bluff Conservation Area is one of those hidden gems in Prince Edward County. It's down at the southern end of the County where things are very quiet and people (other than the near-by residents) rarely go. I have been there over a dozen… more
Hanna Park in Trenton.
share
Hanna Park is a 42 acre park right in the heart of Trenton that has many uses. The entrance is conveniently located at the corner of Film Street and Cresswell Drive. Smaller kids will enjoy the large play structure and swings, while the… more
Quinte Open Houses Sunday August 26 2012
share
The weekend is off to a good start, I have finished my Saturday open houses. Both of them went very well and there was a fairly good turnout. They were the busiest open houses I've had in a while. I think people are starting to get back to business… more
Quinte Open Houses Saturday August 25th 2012.
share
It's going to be another busy weekend for open houses in the Quinte area. We are quickly running out of summer, but there's still a few nice weekends left. I'm hoping that the weather will be nice and people will want to get out and about. I… more
The Best of Intentions.
share
Every once in a while I will stumble across a news article that makes my day. This particular article from U. S. A. Today certainly made me chuckle so I thought I had to share it with everybody (who reads my blog). Apparently the fresco of… more
6 Bedroom Home in Brighton, Ontario $235, 900
share
In law suite in this 6 bedroom charmer Overview Maps Photos … more
Proctor Park Conservation Area, Brighton Ontario
share
The Proctor Park Conservation area is another one of those great places maintained by the good people at the Lower Trent Conservation Authority. The park is within walking distance of the town of Brighton Ontario, and serves quite a… more
An Olympic Letter - Real Inspiration
share
The Olympics are finally over, and other than a couple of bright spots, it was a fairly mundane Olympics from a Canadian perspective. Canada won its share of medals, but only one gold. One of the medals that Canada lost out on was the 4x100… more
Bloomfield, Prince Edward County, Ontario
share
Bloomfield is close to the geographical centre of Prince Edward County. This interesting little town of about 700 odd souls is located at the intersection of highway 33 (from Trenton) and Highway 62 (from Belleville). Unless folks are familiar with… more