About Us

A popular eatery and café, Slocum and Ferris is one of the oldest businesses in Canada's oldest farmers market. It was founded in 1895 by George W. Slocum and John D. Ferris, who left Queens County, New Brunswick to become produce dealers in Saint John. Both were of Loyalist agricultural background, with the Ferris family coming from New York and the Slocums from New England. The partners maintained links with the farmers of the Saint John River Valley, who sent them produce downstream by riverboat. Slocum and Ferris did not buy the goods outright, but took a commission instead, calling themselves "commission merchants". In the second-floor office above the shop there is still a folio-size ledger from the 1910s recording the firm's transactions in fine cursive script.

By the mid 20th century, Slocum and Ferris had become a small grocery store, selling spices, canned goods and "fancy groceries" to complement the butchers, fishmongers and greengrocers who then dominated the City Market. In this period, the store began to sell dulse, the deep purple dried seaweed harvested on Grand Manan Island. Slocum's came under current ownership in 1989, and has since become a favourite Uptown lunch spot and caterer. It also keeps up its traditions as a retailer and provisioner, with a wide selection of local maple products, confections, teas and preserves. And, of course, dulse!

 

         John Ferris

John D. Ferris                                    George W. Slocum   
 
                  

 

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