Peter McIntosh, circa 1890
The tasty deliciousness of Tillamook Cheese can be attributed to the talents of the many cheesemakers throughout the 102 years of TCCA. But there is one man in particular who got us started on the right path. That would be Peter McIntosh.
Peter was born in Ontario where he learned the trade of cheesemaker. He was interested in the cheesemaking process since he was a boy. He said he “just grew into the knowledge of the cheddar process of making cheese.”
But how did he get from there to here? In a 1933 interview, Peter said “These Tillamook folks (that would be T.S. Townsend and Harry Ogden) wanted me to come over and get them stated right in the cheese end of their enterprise, so…I went over.” And aren’t we happy he did so?
While many people were making cheese on their homesteads with their extra milk, and a few were trying to figure out how to make cheese (We appreciate their efforts, too.), Peter was the first who was a trained cheesemaker. By 1902 he had acquired seven creameries across the county and was making over 1 million pounds of cheese a year. His influence on the cheese industry not only in Tillamook but the whole Pacific Northwest earned him the nickname of Cheese King of the Coast.