Exploring Great Destinations in the Niagara Region, Ontario, Canada
the apothecary

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The Niagara Apothecary

The Niagara Apothecary is one of the oldest pharmacies in Canada. Restored as the Niagara Apothecary by the Ontario College of Pharmacy with help from the provincial and federal government the pharmacy was known for years as Field's Drug Store. Mr. E.W. Field, a descendant of an old Loyalist family passed away in 1965. He was the last person to operate the apothecary as a functioning pharmacy.

The structure was built around 1820. In the early 1830's the building was used as an office for Mr. E.C. Campbell, and lawyer and judge for the County Court. Additions were added to the back of the building however the foundation of the original structure that faced the front is made of a type of limestone not found in the Niagara area. It is believed the stones, possibly from the Kingston area were ballast in a lake schooner.

By 1866 the building was owned by Henry Pafford who was also the mayor of the town for many years. He was most likely the one responsible for the rear additions. Early advertisements make reference to the golden mortar, located on the front of the building. This was a standard method of identifying an apothecary at a time when not everyone was able to read. Many of the original contents of the building have survived and are on display.