03 Reports in the Port Arthur News-Chronicle in 1937
Refer to introductory remarks in post 01 January Times in Longlac.
Tue Mar 2 – R. Gauthier and son Romeo left on Sunday for Nakina. / Harvey Tough of Tashota spent Sunday in Long Lac. / Miss Anne Allan of Little Long Lac Gold Mines spent Sunday with her parents. / Bill and Harvey Tough were Sunday visitors to Geraldton. / Arvi and Allan Pontynen spent Saturday in Geraldton with friends. / Frank Rupert of Hornepayne was relieving operation during the week-end. / R.R. Davis returned from Orillia on Thursday after spending the past two weeks with relatives. / Lou Roberts of Port Arthur spent Thursday in Long Lac. / BIRTHDAY PARTY A birthday party was held in Long Lac on Friday in honor of Walter Allan. Many friends were at the party. Games were introduced to the children, with Miss Trimble entertaining them. Lunch was served by Mrs. W. Allan. / T.J. Gaffney returned from Port Arthur on Wednesday. / Buster Caouette of Geraldton spend Monday in Long Lac with his parents. / Edward Joanis of Long Lac left on Sunday for Geraldton. / Constable Blair of Port Arthur spent Sunday in Long Lac while en route to Port Arthur. / Urpo Allan spent the week-end in Geraldton. / Donald MacMaster of Long Lac spent Saturday in Geraldton. / MACFARLANE GOLD MINE Diamond drilling operations at MacFarlane’s have been halted, due to the lack of dog teams. An airplane is transporting goods to the property.
Mon Mar 8 – extract – CANADIAN NATIONAL BARGAIN FARES
“Excursion Tickets on sale for 7.40 p.m. train from Longlac Fri. March 12 and 7.00 P.M. from Longlac Friday and Saturday, March 12 and 13; also from 7.30 A.M. from Jellicoe Sat. March 13.” . . . “Tickets sold by Agents or Train Conductors. Good to return not later than following Monday. See handbills.” . . .
“From To Port Arthur
CAPREOL . . . .$11.00
Tickets good in Coaches only. No Baggage Checked . . . Children 5 years and under 12 Half Fare . . .
Proportionately Low Fares from intermediate Points.”
Add 10 cents to fares to Fort William.
Mon Mar 8 – extract – TIMBER INDUSTRY QUESTION (editorial)
“An announcement of some weeks ago that the Ontario Government had entered into an agreement with a group of United States pulpwood users1 to give them rights in the Long Lac area in order that they might have material for their mills, located across the line, has stirred up considerable discussion since.” / The people of Ontario have been happy enough to receive orders for wood by the U.S. / “In this connection it was pointed out that a cord of export wood was worth $4 to $6 to the province but when manufactured here was worth $30 to $40.” / However, the Long Lac arrangement may have been against the interests of the province because this combination of U.S. pulpwood users have been contracting with timber operators of the Port Arthur district. The result will be considerable loss of business for local contractors.
Tue Mar 9 – T.J. Gaffney, manager of the Long Lac Hotel, left Thursday for Port Arthur on business. / Miss Betty McMahon left Sunday for Fort William. / John Taylor and Arvi Pontynen of Long Lac spent Friday in Geraldton. / Frank Rupert, of Hornepayne, was relieving operator during the week-end. / Robert Landrie, of Long Lac, flew in by plane to Port Arthur on Friday to spend a few days on business. / Rev. W. Bradbury, of Hornepayne, spent Monday in Long Lac, holding service in the Public School. / Jeff Gauthier, of Nakina, spent Sunday with relatives. / Mrs. J. Boisseneau and daughter, Velma, of Long Lac, spent Saturday in Geraldton. / Misses Ottie Wright, Mildred Taylor, Edith Taylor and Norma Alto spent Saturday in Geraldton with friends. / Duncan Finlayson returned from Port Arthur, Friday, after spending a few days with friends. / Buster Caouette, of Geraldton, spent Monday in Long Lac with his parents. / Mrs. Charles Johnson and family spent Saturday in Geraldton with her brother, Mr. Raunio. / Urpo Allan, of Long Lac, spent the week-end in Geraldton. / Mr. and Mrs. S.R. Tough, of Long Lac left for Toronto, Friday. / Jack Burns of Tashota goldfields, spent Sunday in Long Lac with friends. / W.J. Bruce, engineer of the Department of Lands and Forests, spent a few days in Long Lac on business. / W. Thomson, of Jellicoe, spent Sunday in Long Lac with friends. / Miss Irma Alto, of Long Lac, left Monday for Hornepayne to spend a few days with friends. / Bill Tough returned from Tashota, Monday, after spending the week-end with relatives. / Bill Lowery left Friday for Fort Frances, after spending six months in Long Lac working on mining properties.
Tue Mar 9 – Mrs. S.A. Taylor of Long Lac left on Monday for Hard Rock to visit friends. / T.J. Gaffney returned from Port Arthur on Tuesday after spending the past week with friends. / Mr. and Mrs. A. Caouette left for Montreal on Tuesday, to visit relatives for a week. / Philip Award of Long Lac left for Quebec City on Saturday to spend a few weeks on vacation. / Robert Landrie returned from a holiday to the Lakehead on Monday. / Bill Tough returned from Tashota on Monday. / Duncan Finlayson left on Tuesday for Toronto to attend a prospector’s meeting.
Wed Mar 10 – extract – MILL PROPOSED FOR NIPIGON DISTRICT GETS TIMBER RIGHTS2
R.O. Sweezey, of the Lake Sulphite Pulp and Paper Company had a mill based in Nipigon village3. He proposed a larger mill in a new townsite. In negotiations with the Hon. C.W. Cox4, Minister Without Portfolio, and the Hon. Peter Heenan, Minister of Lands and Forests, he alluded to Long Lac. / “[To Mr. Cox he remarked that] arrangements had been made to give export rights to an American concern, covering timber in the Long Lac area. Mr. Sweezey remarked to Mr. Cox that it was too bad to see all this wood going out of the country when it might as well be manufactured at home. / ‘What can we do about it? We can’t get anyone to manufacture it here and there is no use allowing it to go to waste,’ said Mr. Cox. / ‘Give me some of it and I will manufacture it,’ said Mr. Sweezey. / In short order Mr. Sweezey came up with the capital, and asked Mr. Heenan to look over the proposed timber concession. “He came and, after waiting a few days for favorable weather, was flown over the territory by Al Cheesman. He found what he wanted and the order-in-council giving his [Sweezey’s] company sufficient wood for their purpose went through almost immediately. ‘Mr. Cox in still working night and day on this thing so that it may be of greatest advantage to Port Arthur,’, said Mr. Sweezey.5” / “The mill . . . is to start on a rate of 200 tons per day, employing about 325 men at the plant, exclusive of those in the woods. It may later be increased to 400 tons, employing 600 men. Limits totalling 2,000 square miles in the Nipigon area have been allocated.”6
Thu Mar 18 – Mr. and Mrs. H.G. Tough of Tashota spent Monday in Long Lac with friends. / Bill Lloyd and Kenneth Pritchard of Tashota arrived in Long Lac on Monday to work on mining properties in the Suicide River area. / T.J. Gaffney and Master Gerard Slattery of Long Lac left Saturday for Port Arthur. / Mr. and Mrs. W. Allan and son, Walter, left Monday for Port Arthur to spend an indefinite period with friends. / Les Martin of Long Lac left on Friday for Geraldton. / Miss Marjorie Trimble of Long Lac spent Friday in Geraldton with friends. / Mr. and Mrs. C.R. Smith and son, Kenneth, spent Saturday in Geraldton with friends. / Victor Maron, chief ranger, left on a business trip to Geraldton. / Wilmot McFarlane returned from Haileybury on Friday, where he spent a few days with his relatives. / Constable Nelson of Toronto arrived in Long Lac on Monday to take Constable Blackwell’s place. The latter has been transferred to Toronto. / Mrs. C.W. Taylor of Kaginagami is spending a few days in Long Lac. / O.W. Jolly of Nezah arrived in Long Lac on Friday to spend a few days with friends. / Irene and Anna Hebert left on Friday for Port Arthur.
Wed Mar 24 – extract – TRAINS 79 AND 80 TO RUN DAILY
Improved passenger and freight train service will commence April 25. “Trains 79 and 80 will run daily between the Lakehead and Long Lac. No. 80 will leave Port Arthur at 1.35 a.m., making close connections with the Continental Limited at Long Lac, and Number 79 will arrive in Port Arthur from the East at 1.40 a.m., also having made connections with the Continental Limited at Long Lac. These trains will handle mail, express, baggage and sleeper passengers, as well as day coach passengers, and will make stops at all intermediate points.” A daily mixed service will run between Port Arthur, Jellicoe, and Long Lac until that date. “After [April 25], a speed freight will leave the Head of the Lakes at 7 p.m. daily except Sunday, and run through to Long Lac, making speed freight connections there . . . “
Wed Mar 24 – FIRST CROWS ARRIVE The first flock of crows was seen in Long Lac on Sunday, flying around the town, and cawing loudly. The crows arrived here much earlier than usual. On Wednesday the temperature dropped to 22 below zero, which is very unusual for this time of year. / Duncan Finlayson left on Thursday for the Lakehead, where he will resume work for Birchbay Gold Mines. / Urpo Allan and William Laponen were visitors in Geraldton on Monday. / Mr. and Mrs. T.J. Gaffney and family returned from the Lakehead on Monday. / Mr. and Mrs. W. Allan and son Walter spent a week in Port Arthur with friends. / Mrs. Daisy Grasser and family returned from Nakina on Monday after spending the past month with relatives. / Misses Theresa Caouette and Eileen Gervis returned home from Parry Sound to spend the Easter vacation with their parents. / Archie Hurner spent a few days in Port Arthur on a holiday. / S.A. Taylor and daughter Lorna spent Thursday in Geraldton with friends.
Wed Mar 31 – Miss Mildred Taylor, of Long Lac, spent the week in Tashota with friends. / Robert Howell, of Bankfield Gold Mines, spent Sunday in Long Lac with friends. / Miss Anne Allan was a visitor in Long Lac on Sunday with her parents. / Mrs. S.A. Taylor, of Long Lac, left Sunday for Port Arthur, to spend a few days with friends. / Miss Olive Tomlinson, of Winnipeg, arrived here on Friday to spend the Easter vacation with her parents. / Wally Jolly, “Scotty” Gould and Ernie Lefore, of Long Lac, spent Saturday in Geraldton. / Miss Laurie Cardinal of MacLeod-Cockshutt Gold Mines is spending a few days in Long Lac with Miss Tess [?] Caouette. / Jeff Gauthier, of Nakina, spent a few days in Long Lac with his parents. / Les Martin of Long Lac spent Good Friday in Geraldton. / Clement Nabigon of Bankfield spent the Easter week-end with Mr. and Mrs. J. Boisseneau. / Miss Marjorie Trimble, teacher, spent Friday in Geraldton with friends. / Buster Caouette of MacLeod Gold Mines spent Easter week-end with his parents. / Bill Lloyd of British American Mining Co. is spending a few days in Tashota with Harvey Tough. / EASTER DANCE An Easter dance was held in the Public school on Saturday. The dance was well attended. Prizes were distributed, to Mrs. Wallan for lucky door prize, and Mrs. C.R. Smith and Urpo Allan in the spot dance. The music was supplied by Les Martin. At 12 o’clock lunch was served by Miss Alto and Mrs. Smith. / Miss Bertha Gascon of Hardrock spent Thursday in Long Lac with friends. / Miss Maimie Weilio of Geraldton spent the week-end at the home of Mrs. J. Herbert. / T.J. Gaffney was a recent business visitor to Geraldton.
1 Pulpwood Supply Company (not named in the article) was the creature of four American pulpwood companies: Hammermill Paper Co., Meade Corp., Nekoosa-Edwards Co., and Kimberly-Clark Corp. The company was granted cutting rights to 2,574 square miles, up to the northern line of the CNR at Nakina. Robert W. Lyons of Kimberly-Clark Woodlands Department oversaw operations.
2 This article suggests that the competition posed by Pulpwood Supply Co. actually resulted in more business for local contractors in Port Arthur district by the creation of at least one new company, Lake Sulphite Pulp Company.
3 The existing mill in Nipigon village was Nipigon Corporation Limited. It was first established in 1922 by James Arthur Little as Nipigon Fibre and Paper Mills Ltd., a ground wood mill (not a paper mill). Logs were shipped by rail to the mill. In 1924, J.A. Little partnered with N. A. Timmins to form Nipigon Corporation Limited. Here is a serendipitous link to the N.A. Timmins Corporation mining property at Longlac. As it happens, Noah Anthony Timmins made his millions in Cobalt and Timmins (a community named after him) and subsequently became an investor and partner in sundry other enterprises. This helps explain why no expense was spared on extensive infrastructure during a few months in 1936.
4 Charles Winnans Cox worked as a timber contractor in Port Arthur district, becoming the most prominent timber operator in the early 1920s. In the Ontario provincial election of 1934, he ran as a Liberal, won handily, and was appointed in 1936 as Minister Without Portfolio. Also, in 1934, he was first elected Mayor of Port Arthur, and Charlie (as he was known by his friends and hordes of voters) served for 16 years in that office. His political and business connections served him well, and he achieved notoriety as one of the timber wolves named by J. P. Bertrand, a local historian. Bertrand wrote a lengthy manuscript titled Timber Wolves, copies of which were passed hand to hand in brown paper wrappers. This author, also a local historian, was one of the lucky recipients. Now the manuscript has been published as a book.
5 This article suggests how politicians and businessmen and people with deep pockets contributed to a series of scandals and exposes in the ‘20s and ‘30s about corruption in the Ontario forest industry. One merely has to read between the lines.
6 Robert Oliver Sweezey was an enterprising engineer and promotor operating out or Montreal. He acquired Nipigon Corporation Ltd., formed a new corporation called Lake Sulphite Pulp Company Ltd., and used them to leverage a timber concession in the Nipigon district. Here is an extract from an M.A. thesis by A.J. Hacquoil, submitted to Lakehead University. “In 1937, [Oscar] Styffe and other operators had been operating in the Jackpine River area for two years. However, in that year a new company, Lake Sulphite, was given 1,981 square miles of limits by the Department of Lands and Forests because the paper company’s investors had agreed to construct a mill at Nipigon [actually Red Rock] to produce bleached sulphite pulp . . . Styffe recalled that ‘I was told [by the government] that his particular territory was to be included in the area allotted to the Lake Sulphite Co. and that we had to get out.’” Styffe, although he had legally acquired the Jackpine River concession,was frozen out. As it happens, Styffe had a link to Longlac, having worked as a contractor on the Martin Falls Indian Reserve starting in 1929. He had shipped the logs by rail. In 1937 Lake Sulphite Pulp Co. constructed a mill and townsite on the northwest shore of Nipigon Bay. It was called Red Rock.
03a Clearing the site of the mill and community of Red Rock in 1937. Note the haze in the air. The inspiration for the founding of Red Rock may be indirectly ascribed to Pulpwood Supply Co. of Longlac. All photos by E.C. Everett, courtesy of Thunder Bay Public Library.
03b Some of the work crew at the site of the Lake Sulphite Pulp Co. in 1937. Bunkhouses in the background.
03c Burning the brush and cut trees at the mill site on May 19, 1937. Burnt Island in background. CNR tracks in foreground.
03d Constructing the CNR spur to the mill site in May 1937. Note the smoke from fires.