Canada’s first great manufacturing enterprise; The story of Massey Harris
- In 2003, the condo market in Toronto took off. Low interest rates, high demand and a strong
economy made it possible for many to purchase condos.
Massey’s entrepreneurial roots ( 1802-67)
- Daniel Massey Sr. immigrated into Canada from the states and went into farming.
- The population at that time was growing quickly, and there was an increasing demand for
virgin pine and other woods.
- What he did was rent a land, cleared it from trees and sold the wood, made it suitable for
farming, and then sold it off to others. This was really in demand since recent immigrants
needed a place and
a farm to start off, he provided them with that. He repeated the process often to his good
- He was clear sighted enough to know that change was coming, that the market for his trees
was declining as was the number of land buyers.
- He decided to start investing in trade and started importing a machine that would help
in farms from the states. He then went into producing farm tools and importing.
- Crop failures, economic hardship, and famine in Europe led to an influx of impoverished
immigrants to the new world in the 1840’s seeking relief and a better life.
- He established the Newcastle foundry and machine manufacturing company. He
bought licences to produce American designed machines to sell to Canada and
- His son took over, started modernizing and improving the factory and its operations.
They started to design and produce their own machines.
- At that time, railways started to connect major and minor cities ( 1850’s)
- Farming was becoming more attractive due to some trade agreements with the US
and Brittan, farmers had more capital and started to buy more machines. - Although immigration levels stayed high, there was a decrease in available man power,
and so farmers saw a need for labor equipment. The decrease in man power was due to
rail construction and to the fact that Canada is too big, they started spreading out more.
- Competition became both national and international.
Reciprocity treaty of 1854
- Treaty between upper Canada and the states regarding a mutual list of goods that they
would trade between themselves tariffs free.
- This treaty helped reduces Harts timber and input costs.
- At that time, hart was also able to benefit from protectionism from Britain where he bought
British steel and iron for cheaper than US competitors.
- The civil war resulted in higher prices for wheat which resulted in many switching to
farming. Therefore, there was again an increase in demand for Harts machines.
- He did a sales catalogue that featured his products. He did promotional campaigns. He