Thomas Amos Dawes, about 1870
60. Dawes family

Thomas Amos Dawes (1829-1908) was the fifth child of the brewery’s founder, Thomas Dawes (about 1785-1863). On the death of his brother James Powley, in 1879, Thomas Amos and two of his nephews assumed management of the family business under the name Dawes & Co. Brewery.


A modern industrial concern
The land Thomas Dawes bought (26th to 29th Avenues) was not far from the mouth of the canal, at 21st Avenue. Under the management of Thomas’s sons James Powley I (1818-1879) and Thomas Amos (1829-1908) and their sons and grandsons, the originally artisanal brewery became a modern industrial concern and the first of its kind in Canada while remaining a strictly family business for four generations.

Until 1922, the brewery was the mainstay of the Lachine community. Many of the local fields were devoted to growing barley and hops, and the pastures were filled with black Percherons. These horses, which were used to transport barrels of beer, were the inspiration for the famous Black Horse brand.