Today, when we need a quart or half-gallon of milk, we visit our local supermarket or convenience store. Many of our younger readers never saw a milkman deliver a quart of milk to their front door at 5 a.m.

I recently received a call from someone who was asking me where the Northampton Sanitary Dairy was located. The dairy was located at 940 Washington Ave., Northampton, behind the home of John Simcoe, the founder of the dairy.

I went back to 1940 and read Ray Wahl’s book, “The Town That Wants You.” 

Mr. Wahl was one of my teachers at Northampton Area High School. 

In 1940, he listed dairies and milk dealers. They were P.A. Bachman, George Csencsitz, Joseph Peters, Ray Hess, Howertown Dairy, John Knauss & Son, Joseph Lindenmoyer, Earl Moser, Northampton Sanitary Dairy, John Pail and Slyvanos Simmons. Milk dealers purchased their milk from local farmers or dairies and bottled the milk in their own bottles. 

Slyvanos Simmons, a local milk dealer, resided on Dewey Avenue in Northampton. A large building on the property served as a stable for his horse named Adam and a wagon. Each day, rain or snow, they brought glass bottles of milk to their customers.

Mr. Simmons was thrilled when a new Ford truck replaced the horse and wagon. His son, Clinton, who graduated from Northampton High School in 1928, would follow him in the dairy business. 

While in high school, Clinton worked at the A.D. Borger store at the northwest corner of Ninth and Main Street in Northampton. When you entered the store, you were greeted by the sign, “Always at your service,” and a large pickle barrel.

Walking to his Lincoln Avenue home, he saw the owner of the Northampton Sanitary Dairy, Mr. John Simcoe. The new dairy was in need of employees. When Simcoe asked what his high school major was, he replied that it was the commercial course. Mr. Simcoe was pleased and hired him as a prospective bookkeeper.

This would allow Mr. Simmons to have a lifetime career in the dairy industry. Samuel Newhard, Clinton’s classmate, was also hired to work in the office. Later, Clinton’s son Donald would also work at the dairy during his college years. 

Mr. Simcoe was also a farmer. He owned a large farm with a large dairy herd of registered Holstein cows in Lehigh County. Mr. Simcoe held annual picnics for their employees at the farm each year. 

Today, the former farm is the site of a beautiful golf course.

Next time we will be delivering milk to your doorstep.


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