History of the Co-op

 

The Municipal heritage site originally housed the Long Island Consumers Co-operative Store from 1957-2002.  Co-operative action was introduced in the early 1940’s by Jasper Rideout of Beaumont with the support from the commission of government.  Local fishermen became shareholders.  The first co-operative organization was the leading light credit society located in a building on this site.  This building was carefully dismantled, moved to Springdale, then reconstructed and presently serves as a local museum.

The Co-op History of the Co-opStore was managed for thirty-seven years by Roland Heath.  It was the main source of groceries, hardware, clothing, cod oil, gas and the odd special sweet.  In the early 1960’s the Co-op secured a permit to deal in the cod, salt bulk and lobster fishery.  A community fishing stage and bait depot was established at this time as well.

The building as it stands today has maintained most of its original architecture, including hardwood floors, support posts, beams, counters, and shelves.  The original main entrance faced the main road but was changed to its present location to accommodate road construction and hydro lines in the early 1990’s.

In 2007, the Co-op Store was designated as a heritage site.  With the generous contributions of artifacts from the residents of Long Island, the Municipal Heritage Site opened its doors to the public in 2009.  Now, the Long Island Heritage Centre houses this museum and a tea room.