The McCall Furniture Factory in St. Williams, was one of the largest producers of furniture in Norfolk County. Daniel McCall founded what would become a family firm in the 1860’s and worked in partnership with both William McBurney and later John Mason. For a time, the business was known as McCall, McBurney & Company and also McCall’s Planing Mill.
John L. Barber was the youngest of five sons and three daughters, children of John Sr. and Elizabeth Barber. He was born in Townsend and spent most of his life in the area. At an early age he went to Simcoe and learned the trade of cabinet making. Around 1829, he married Abigail Shaw and settled in Waterford. The J.L. Barber firm, also known as the Waterford Furniture Factory, was established soon after and operated for nearly 40 years. The factory produced a wide arrange of finished pieces as well as providing undertaking services.
One of Norfolk County’s more contemporary and perhaps most recognizable furniture manufacturers was James William Judd who, in 1968, officially launched Judd Gunstocks Limited in Waterford, Townsend Township. Judd Gunstock started on “the road to success” by producing what were described as the finest hand-crafted gunstocks in the country. The company distributed to major firearm manufactures throughout Canada and the United States.
Archibald Reid is credited with making some of the most beautiful and finely crafted furniture in Norfolk County. He learned his trade in Scotland, immigrating to Canada and setting up a cabinet making shop and undertaking business in the village of Vittoria around 1847.
The following represents documented individual makers and factories in business between 1840 and 1965. While not complete, it is the most comprehensive list currently available. The date indicates the year the maker/factory was recorded as being in operation and not the year established. If you have information about a maker from Norfolk County not listed, please email the Waterford Heritage & Agricultural Museum with details.