Contact: Shari Hahn
Willard Historical Memories book, more commonly known as Spominska
The Gorman Co-operative Dairy Company was built 1917-18 on land donated by Frank Lesar Sr. Mr. Frank Hribar Sr. and Mr. Frank Lesar, Sr. held office at that time. A Mr. Knopps was hired to make cheese (who also ran his own factory in Tioga). In 1920 Joe Jordan took over making the cheese until 1922. 1923-25 George Meyers (from Loyal) was cheesemaker. 1926-28, Walter Yaeger. 1929-36 cheesemaker was Otto Meinholdt (Greenwood). 1936-40, Vincent Ruzic took over. Cheesemaker from 1940-48 was George Rouen (Athens), and hired Frank Volovsek when he needed extra help. Bud Schlinsong was hired in 1949 and stayed until 1950. In 1951, Bud Schultz (Arpin) took over until he died in a car accident. Frank Volovsek took over with the help of Louis Landini Jr until another cheesemaker could be hired. 1954-57, Mike Denzine ran the factory. The factory closed in 1957.
Location is on Gorman Rd, just south of the intersection of Twenty-six Rd.
Dolores Malnar Zukowski of Thorp says that her paternal grandparents, George and Mary Malnar, operated a farm on what is now North Gorman Avenue. The milk was sent to the Gorman Cooperative Dairy. Matt Malnar, father of Dolores and son of George and Mary, wrote in his autobiography: "In 1921 we had quite a depression Cheese was 8 cents a pound and milk 60 cents a hundred. It was rather hard. I remember on one occasion when the cheese was not up to standard and instead of getting a check for same (cheese) we got the cheese back. So we had to eat it and no money was paid to patrons for that particular batch. Beginning in 1922 until 1929, the time of the Wall Street crash, times were fairly good and the dairy market for products very stable."
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