Harlan Clark, 1922–2009
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Harlan Clark, 1922–2009

Harlan Clark was one of those small, quiet, essential Toronto institutions. He and his wife Norine started a Port Perry chicken farm in 1946; one year later they began selling eggs at St. Lawrence Market. According to a profile of the couple in the Toronto Star last year, one or both have them have been at the market every single Saturday since. That’s sixty-two years’ worth of providing us with sustenance, and not just of the physical variety. The Clarks were known for selling some of the freshest eggs in the city, from some of the most carefully tended chickens, and their smiles every Saturday conveyed the essence of thoughtful, local farming long before it was trendy to care about such things. Mr. Clark passed away unexpectedly yesterday, at the age of eighty-seven. Even by near-strangers, the ones who wandered by the market stall on an occasional weekend morning, Mr. Clark will be missed.