Canada Beer
Canada's famous brewers.
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An accidental poisoning.
A Titanic tragedy.
A headline-making abduction.
Canada’s most famous brewers, Labatt and Molson, have brought the world some mug-rattling family stories throughout history. Ancestry.ca has unearthed the scandalous proof. View the original documents that show the incredible details.
A Short Company History
Irish immigrant John Kinder Labatt and a partner purchased a brewery in 1847. By 1853 Labatt was the soleproprietor and later named it John Labatt’s Brewery. John Labatt Jr. took over the business when John Sr. died in 1866.
See John S. Labatt's Canada
Border Crossing Record

See John Labatt, Jr. in the Canada Census
A Mystery-Shrouded Death
Sophia Labatt, wife of then Labatt owner John Labatt Jr., died in 1906. Her cause of death according to her death record was “poisoned by mistake.” Horribly inadequate, these words leave us to wonder exactly what kind of poisoning mistake was made — and by whom.
See Sophie Labatt's Death Record
A Week of Captivity
In 1934, John S. Labatt, grandson of founder John K. Labatt, was kidnapped. The story garnered widespread newspaper coverage. Fortunately the abductors released John unharmed after a week of captivity.
See the article in the Lethbridge Herald.
See the article in the Ironwood Daily Globe.
The Company's Beginnings
One of Canada’s oldest breweries, Molson has been a family business for six generations. John Molson founded his brewery in 1786. Beyond brewing, the Molson family has been involved with banking and the railroad.
Titanic Tragedy
Harry Markland Molson, great-grandson of John Molson, perished when the Titanic sank on April 15, 1912. Legend says he was last seen removing his shoes to swim toward a boat he saw in the distance. He never made it and his name appeared on newspaper lists of important people who died in the disaster.
See the article in the Syracuse Herald.
See the article in the Indianapolis Star.
WWI Memorial
Percival Talbot Molson, another of John Molson’s great-grandsons, is the namesake of McGill University’s Percival Molson Stadium. A former McGill sports star who donated money to build the stadium, Percival died while serving in WWI.
See the military record.
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Find the fascinating facts that make your legacy as great as any beer family’s. Ancestry.ca is home to Canada’s largest online collection of family history information. You could easily discover original documents uncovering the secrets and mysteries of your family’s story.