Ontario's Historical Plaques 

Discover Ontario's history as told through its plaques

2004 - Now in our 15th Year - 2019

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Magnetawan River Steam Navigation

Magnetawan River Steam Navigation

Photo by Alan L Brown - Posted May, 2005

Magnetawan River Steam Navigation

Photo by contributor Brian Bockus - Posted May, 2017

Plaque Location

The District of Parry Sound
The Village of Burk's Falls
At a boat launch in a park just west of the falls
on the south side of Highway 520
.3 km east of the Highway 11 overpass

Coordinates: N 45 37.096 W 79 24.794


Plaque Text

The first steamboat on the Magnetawan River was the 10 m "Pioneer", built in 1879 for service between Magnetawan and Burk's Falls, a distance of 32 km. In 1886 a lock was completed at Magnetawan enabling steamer service to be extended an additional 16 km to Ahmic Harbour. Other steamers came into service, notably the "Wenonah" (1886), "Glenrosa" (1891), "Wanita" (1896), "Glenada" (1904) and "Armour" (1906). These and others provided the only efficient means of transporting passengers and freight from this landing at the railhead in Burk's Falls to the scattered settlements along the river. However, the advent of the automobile doomed these colourful craft, the last of which, the "Mike", ceased operation about 1934.

Related Ontario plaques
Magnetawan Lock
The First Steamship on Lake Ontario
Steamboating in Muskoka 1866-1959
Steamboating on Lake Simcoe
Steamboating on the Upper Ottawa


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