Bakery & Kitchen

The dominant feature of the Bakery was the huge bake-oven. In it, enormous quantities of bread were baked, not only for serving in the Great Hall but also at the "Cantine", where voyageurs were treated to a loaf of bread on arrival at Fort William. Bread and biscuit were also prepared for the return voyage to Montreal or the interior.

Some idea of the productive capacity of the bake-oven may be had from the figures for 1821.  From June 16 to August 9, over twenty thousand pounds (9000 kg) of flour were used to produce bread and biscuit.

Attached to the Great Hall by a covered passage was a building containing the kitchen and the bakehouse.

On the Kitchen side, meals served in the Great Hall were prepared and cooked in an enormous fireplace.

A cook brought from Montreal was in charge of food preparation, sometimes just for the summer season, but other times to winter for a period of three years. Other persons listed as servants or domestiques came to Fort William for the summer. While their exact duties were not designated, they most likely included helping in the kitchen and dining room and attending to the gentlemen's personal needs such as cleaning their rooms and their clothing.

Included in 1821 inventory for the kitchen are "forms" for cakes and tarts, flesh forks, a gridiron, tin kettles of various sizes, fish kettles and pans, a dutch oven, mills for coffee and pepper, a roasting machine and hooks and chains for kettles.