When the Middleville Folks Went to Jackfish — Ontario Ghost Town

When the Middleville Folks Went to Jackfish — Ontario Ghost Town



Aggie Yuill’s photo album–by Middleville,Ontario historian Laurie Yuill

I found two photos in the photos from Aggie Yuill’s photo album supplied to me by Middleville,Ontario historian Laurie Yuill. I had no idea where this place but the photos were dated 1914. so I began to dig and found out it was not only a shipping port but also a summer destination for tourists connected by the CPR Railroad. In fact, there were even 6 daily passenger trains to Thunder Bay, and back until the 1960’s.


Photo –Aggie Yuill’s photo album– Photo from Middleville Historian Laurie Yuill 1914


Jackfish, Ontario: Memories of a Ghost Town

Nichol Family Collection — Looks like the same spot as Aggie Yuill’s Photo 1914


The Lakeview Hotel at Jackfish, built at the end of the 19th century, remained a popular stopping place during the summer for a number of years. The hotel burned down in 1960. By September, 1963 two families remained in Jackfish and they moved out of the town a month later. Hence,the town site was totally abandoned by 1963. Now, the village is overgrown with just remnants its history remaining.  At one time, trains used to be an all day occurrence at Jackfish.


maxresdefault (6).jpgNow this is all that is left…


At the Jackfish railway tunnel, you can see and appreciate how much of the line was chiselled into the rocky shoreusing the technology of the 1880s. Read more here.. CLICK PADDLE BY A PIECE OF CANADIAN HISTORY


“Jackfish, Ontario, is a real ghost town. When I visit, I imagine the wind whistling through the bulkheads of the old coal freighters that once plied Lake Superior to get there. The town came and left, it seems, on the rails, and my family history is tied to those tracks, still active, and the town, now mostly disappeared.

The history of Jackfish as a bustling community stretches from the 1880s to the arrival of the diesel engine in the late 1940s when Jackfish lost its stopover role. Diesel engines did not need to stop for coal and water on their long run along the rugged north shore.

 A new technology – engines powered by diesel fuel – ended those boat arrivals permanently in 1948. By the early 1950s, there was no need for the train to stop for coal at all and soon thereafter even the passenger stops at the local station ended. By 1964, the permanent residents had left town and a seasonal population continued for a time.

Jackfish continues to be listed in travel guides as an authentic ghost town. Consequently, the site remains a destination for the curious and the passionate. To get there from our Thunder Bay home, we drive three hours east on Highway 17 and through Terrace Bay. About 25 kilometres later (15.5 miles), past the large highway hill that runs up from Jackfish Lake, the village’s namesake, a gravel road heads down to Lake Superior. At the end of this road, an overgrown yet passable bush trail takes us right into Jackfish. This is the recommended route. I can remember my father and a group of men pitching in to carve this road out of the bush.” Read more here.. Jackfish, Ontario: Memories of a Lake Superior Ghost Town


Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)


The Ghost Towns of Eastern Ontario

Halls Mills Ghost Town- Another W. H. Wylie Connection

The Gillies Home in the Ghost Town of Herron’s Mills

Did you Know Old Burnside has a Ghostly Horse?

Photographer Finds Money in a Local Abandoned Home

Gold in Dem Dar Hills of Lanark

Have you Ever Heard about Doran? Here Come da’ Judge!

About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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