Soap and Candle Factory

  • Samuel Walford Sr and his family arrived in the Bolton area in 1834.1
  • Samuel Sr bought a small farm property a short distance west of the community on Lot 10, Con 4, ALBION where they erected a log cabin.2
  • Samuel Sr gained experience in soap and candle making along with his son Samuel A. Walford, (Sam Jr) in Rochester NY from 1839 to 1841
  • In Rochester, they encountered the younger George Bolton (nephew of Bolton’s founder and miller), exiled after the Mackenzie Rebellion, who urged Sam Jr to buy 10 acres of land in Bolton from him
  • Samuel Sr returned to Bolton in 1841, built a small frame house on this newly purchased land and started making soap and candles
  • Sam Jr got married that year, returning to Bolton the following year during an economic downturn in the US north-east
  • He brought with him raw materials with the plan of assisting his father in the business but was encouraged to accept the job of teacher in Bolton’s first School under government supervision
  • Sam Jr taught for 2 years, then worked for the next 5 years at Freeland & Taylor’s soap and candle factory in Toronto
  • He returned to Bolton in 1849, built a house on his property and took over the business from his father who became postmaster
  • Samuel A. Walford left a remarkable autobiography which can be found in the full text archives of this site

And the building?

  • Sam Walford Jr’s house still stands at 43 Queen Street South at Willow

    Samuel A. Walford House built circa 1849. The roof was updated to Dutch Colonial Revival style after 1901. It was further altered in the 1980s.
Extract from 1854 T.C. Prosser Map showing the Soap and Candle Factory on Queen Street South, south of King Street.
  1. Samuel A. Walford Autobiography, reprinted in ‘Story of Albion’, by Esther Hayes, pages 307 – 311
  2. The log cabin was eventually moved to a cottage property, east of Burks Falls