Quest in Roots:
Brookdale Manitoba History

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In the early settlement days, surplus livestock were usually purchased by "drovers". "Drovers" were travelling buyers or sellers who travelled the countryside buying a few head here and a few there, and herding them to a more central location. This could be either cattle or horses.

With the coming of the railroad in 1902, a small livestock yard and loading platform were constructed at Brookdale. Farmers could assemble and ship a carload of livestock to the terminal market in Winnipeg.

Shipping days naturally had to coincide with regular train runs. Farmers could consign their livestock (cattle or pigs) to a commission agent at the terminal market, or if they just had a few head to ship, somebody would usually organize a shipment from several farmers on a commission plus freight basis.

When the livestock arrived inWinnipeg, they were not sold by auction as is now the case, but the buyers came around to the pens and offered bids. If the seller was satisfied with the bid, a deal was made on that basis.

In the fall of 1929, Bob Mitchell hauled the first truckload of livestock to Winnipeg. Sons Billand Norm took over the trucking business in 1946. Billcarried on until 1978 when Brookdale Transfer was sold to Barry Simpson. From 1980to present the Brookdale Transfer is owned and operated by Donald Simpson.

With the opening of a livestock market in Brandon, many farmers trucked their livestock themselves, to the Auction Mart.


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