A museum exhibit title in early 20th century font.
A heraldic crest with a farm plow, a sunrise over mountains, maple leaves at the sides.
A black and white portrait of a man with a loose bowtie in an elliptical frame of yellow and green.

HOW JOSEPH FLEURY & HIS SONS SHAPED INDUSTRY, POLITICS & COMMUNITY IN AURORA

This exhibit follows the path of the Fleury plow – and the family, men and women who produced it over the first half of Aurora’s history – from before Confederation to the Second World War. So important to the growth and development of the Town, a stylized version of a Fleury plow was incorporated into the official crest of Aurora, most likely adopted in the 1920s.
 
The eighty year story of the Aurora Agricultural Works – later J. Fleury’s Sons – highlights innovation, stiff competition, and success in domestic and international markets.
Some themes of the story will be familiar – trade and tariffs, education and training, community service and volunteerism, Canada within the British Empire, war and remembrance.
Well before pensions, the story shines light on the spirit of self-help, respect, loyalty and resilience shared among workers, foremen and owners, and by the people of Aurora generally. They were determined to develop Aurora as one of the most prosperous and beautiful towns in Ontario.
When you look at the implements, think high tech. In the mid-19th century, the invention of iron and steel implements was a revolution. This new technology greatly eased the work of farmers; they, in turn, provided a huge market for pioneer manufacturers such as Joseph Fleury. Under Joseph (and for a few years his local competitor, George Wilkinson), farm machinery designed, forged and built in Aurora was part of this revolution and brought prosperity to the town. “Famous Fleury’s” put Aurora on the map in Ontario, across Canada and in countries around the world, as far away as Tasmania.
The question is: what does the “Plow in the Crest” mean today?
Joseph Fleury’s great grandchildren – Ann, Bill, and David Fleury – are delighted that this collaboration with the Aurora Museum & Archives brings family, foundry and the early Town of Aurora back vividly to life in a way not seen before.

A Respectful Family Business

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