James Marker inventor of Cheezies dies at 90 in his Belleville home
James Marker who invented Cheezies was with W.T. Hawkins the company that makes Cheezies since 1948. He died at his home in Bellevile where the Hawkins plant is located.
Marker worked in the confectionery business in Chicago. Hawkins after whom the company is named left the U.S. with Marker to start their own snack business in Canada. After a fire destroyed their original factory in Tweed Ontario, the company relocated to Belleville.
Marker developed the Cheezie by shaping cornmeal cooked in vegetable shortening and then coating it with aged cheddar cheese. There are now many competing brands based on the same basic principle. However the original Hawkins Cheezies are still quite popular in Canada.
The director of finance for the company Tony McGarvey said that Marker kept working right up until his death! No doubt if he had stopped working he would have died much sooner! For more see this article.