At one point, the Amherst Sterling Dairy ran the largest milk delivery operation in Western New York.
Adam Cornelius sold the dairy to the Weckerle Family in 1936, four years after George and Henry Weckerle sold their family milk operation to the Dairyman’s League.
Based at Main and Kensington, the operation had grown when this photo was taken around 1946.
When Sterling Amherst merged with Dairylea in 1971, the home delivery operations maintained by Sterling served 35,000 customers in Erie and Niagara counties, but all production operations moved from the plant at 3939 Main St. to the old Jones-Rich Dairy at 70 E. Ferry St. in Buffalo.
The old Sterling building seen in the photo still stands at Main and Kensington.
These days, Ilio DiPaolo’s a South Park Ave. landmark which fills two blocks with its Ringside Lounge and adjacent parking. A generation or two ago– it was the restaurant which stood in that parking lot which was the landmark.
Dairy Island was both the name of a restaurant
and the milk brand produced by the Arcade Farms Co-op. The $150,000 facility
was billed as a “modern milk plant and dairy bar” when it opened in
“We hope that Dairy
Island will serve as a wholesome recreation spot for Blasdell and vicinity
among young people,” said William Sadler, plant manager at the grand
opening. Sadler was a Hamburg Town Councilman and later an Assemblyman.
In Albany, Sadler worked on
the legislation which made the production of fortified skim milk legal, which
Dairy Island marketed as “a boon to dieters.”
In 1951, management of the Dairy Island
restaurant was taken over by the owners of the Colonial Kitchen chain, which
had restaurants on Buffalo St. in Hamburg, Seneca St. at Buffum in South
Buffalo, and the original location on Ridge Rd. in Lackawanna.
When the Dairy Island restaurant was closed and converted
to dairy production use in 1954, a Colonial Kitchen restaurant opened across
South Park Ave. in its place.
In the mid-1960s, the Arcade Farms Co-op merged
with the Upstate Milk Co-op which took over the building, which was eventually
purchased by Sorrento Cheese. The Dairy Island building was torn down in 1989
when Ilio DiPaolo bought the building to make space for a parking lot for his
newly expanded banquet room.
All decked out here for Christmas 1937, Kart’s Dairy was at 2990 Main Street, “about 500 feet north of Hertel,” just south of where the NFTA’s LaSalle Park and Ride MetroRail station now stands.
Buffalo News archives
The year this photo was taken, “The White House of Buffalo Dairies” was one of 36 dairies listed as operating in the City of Buffalo.
Buffalo Stories archive/Steve Cichon collection
Founded in 1926, Kart’s Dairy was the city’s fifth largest dairy producer when it was bought out by the city’s largest—Jones-Rich—in 1962. Kart’s 30 delivery trucks and $2.6 million in milk sales were moved to Rich’s headquarters on East Ferry Street at the time of the sale.
The building remains, fenced in and a shadow of its former self on Main Street.