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National Historic Cheesemaking Center: Borden's Condensed Milk Company
Photo supplied by the National Historic Cheesemaking Center
Borden's Condensed Milk Company was located on the far north end of 17th Avenue in Monroe. The founder of the company, Gail Borden, was granted patents in 1854 for unsweetened condensed milk and in 1856 for sweetened condensed milk and opened his first plant in Connecticut. The Monroe Borden's condensery operated from 1902 to 1927. The outbreak of the Civil War in 1861 increased the demand for condensed milk as a field ration and that demand continued through World War I. Food preservation in cans began in 1795 when the French government, led by Napoleon, offered a prize of 12,000 francs to anyone who could invent a method of preserving food for its Army and Navy. The above photograph was shared with the National Historic Cheesemaking Center by Dean Signer of Monroe. Questions or comments may be directed to Mary Ann Hanna at 608-325-4324 or emailed to