|Municipality of Wawa|
Township of Michipicoten (pre-2007)
Wawa as seen across Wawa Lake
|• Mayor||Ron Rody|
|• Federal riding||Algoma—Manitoulin—Kapuskasing|
|• Prov. riding||Algoma—Manitoulin|
|• Land||416.21 km2 (160.70 sq mi)|
|Elevation||287 m (942 ft)|
|• Density||7.0/km2 (18/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC-5 (Eastern Standard Time (EST))|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-4 (Eastern Daylight Time (EDT))|
Wawa is a township in the Canadian province of Ontario, located within the Algoma District and associated with Wawa Lake. Formerly known as the township of Michipicoten, after a nearby river of that name, the township was officially renamed in 2007 for its largest and best-known community of Wawa.
The term township, in Canada, is generally the district or area associated with a town. The specific use of the term to describe political subdivisions has varied by country, usually to describe a local rural or semirural government within the country itself.
The provinces and territories of Canada are sub-national governments within the geographical areas of Canada under the authority of the Canadian Constitution. In the 1867 Canadian Confederation, three provinces of British North America—New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and the Province of Canada —were united to form a federated colony, becoming a sovereign nation in the next century. Over its history, Canada's international borders have changed several times, and the country has grown from the original four provinces to the current ten provinces and three territories. Together, the provinces and territories make up the world's second-largest country by area.
Ontario is one of the 13 provinces and territories of Canada. Located in Central Canada, it is Canada's most populous province accounting for 38.3 percent of the country's population, and is the second-largest province in total area. Ontario is fourth-largest jurisdiction in total area when the territories of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut are included. It is home to the nation's capital city, Ottawa, and the nation's most populous city, Toronto, which is also Ontario's provincial capital.
This area was first developed for fur trading. In the late 19th century, both gold and iron ore were found and mined, leading to the region's rise as the steel industry developed in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. From 1900-1918 the Helen Mine had the highest production of iron ore of any mine in Canada.
Sault Ste. Marie is a city on the St. Marys River in Ontario, Canada, close to the U.S.-Canada border. It is the seat of the Algoma District and the third largest city in Northern Ontario, after Sudbury and Thunder Bay.
The township includes the smaller communities of Michipicoten and Michipicoten River, which are small port settlements on the shore of Lake Superior. These names are derived from the Ojibwe term for the river.
A port is a maritime facility which may comprise one or more wharves where ships may dock to load and discharge passengers and cargo. Although usually situated on a sea coast or estuary, some ports, such as Hamburg, Manchester and Duluth, are many miles inland, with access to the sea via river or canal.
Lake Superior, the largest of the Great Lakes of North America, is also the world's largest freshwater lake by surface area, and the third largest freshwater lake by volume. The lake is shared by the Canadian province of Ontario to the north, the U.S. state of Minnesota to the west, and Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan to the south. The farthest north and west of the Great Lakes chain, Superior has the highest elevation of all five great lakes and drains into the St. Mary's River.
Ojibwe, also known as Ojibwa, Ojibway or Otchipwe, is an indigenous language of North America of the Algonquian language family. The language is characterized by a series of dialects that have local names and frequently local writing systems. There is no single dialect that is considered the most prestigious or most prominent, and no standard writing system that covers all dialects.
Fort Michipicoten was constructed at the mouth of the Michipicoten River. It was at the junction of the main fur trade route from Montreal westward and the route to James Bay via the Missinaibi River. The town developed five miles upriver from here.
The Michipicoten River is a river in the Algoma District of northern Ontario, Canada, which flows from Dog Lake and joins with the Magpie River to empty into Michipicoten Bay on Lake Superior near the town of Wawa. This river is 113 km (70 mi) in length and drains an area of about 5,200 km2 (2,000 sq mi).
The Missinaibi River is a river in northern Ontario, Canada, which flows northeast from Missinaibi Lake, north of Chapleau, and empties into the Moose River, which drains into James Bay. This river is 755 kilometres (469 mi) in length. It is one of the longest free-flowing and undeveloped rivers in Ontario.
French explorers reached the area by at least 1681, and militia built the post in either 1725 or 1727.By 1729, it was an outpost of Fort Kaministiquia in Vérendrye's Postes du Nord. The site was on the south bank of the river, opposite the mouth of the Magpie River. When the British conquered Canada in 1763, this post was abandoned.
Fort Kaministiquia, was a French fort located on the north shore of Lake Superior at Thunder Bay, Ontario at the mouth of the Kaministiquia River. It and Grand Portage to the west were the starting points of the canoe route from the Great Lakes to western Canada. See Canadian canoe routes (early). Details of the route can be found under Kaministiquia River.
Pierre Gaultier de Varennes, sieur de La Vérendrye was a French Canadian military officer, fur trader and explorer. In the 1730s, he and his four sons explored the area west of Lake Superior and established trading posts there. They were part of a process that added Western Canada to the original New France territory that was centered along the Saint Lawrence basin.
The Magpie River is a river in Algoma District, northeastern Ontario, Canada, The river empties into Michipicoten Bay on Lake Superior near the town of Wawa. The river drains an area of about 1,900 square kilometres (734 sq mi).
Four years later, it was re-opened on the same site by fur traders Alexander Henry the elder and Jean Baptiste Cadotte. The route from James Bay was explored by Edward Jarvis (1775) and Philip Turnor (1781). In 1783, it was taken over by the North West Company, based in Montreal. In 1797, the Hudson's Bay Company built a rival post on the north bank.
Alexander Henry 'The Elder' was one of the leading pioneers of the British-Canadian fur trade following the British Conquest of New France; a partner in the North West Company, and a founding member and vice-chairman of the Beaver Club. In 1763–64, he lived and hunted with Wawatam of the Ojibwa, who had adopted him as a brother.
Edward Jarvis was a Hudson's Bay Company chief factor.
Philip Turnor was a surveyor and cartographer for the Hudson's Bay Company.
With the union of the two companies in 1821, the Lake Superior trade was diverted from Montreal to Hudson Bay via Michipicoten. This lasted until 1863, when the arrival of steamboats and railways made it unnecessary. From 1827, the fort was the headquarters of the Superior Division, and several annual meetings were held here. It was a centre for fishing, boat-building and small-scale manufacture and repair. It also served as a base for missionaries and surveyors. It was closed in 1904 and gradually taken apart. By 1980 the site held little more than a grassy clearing, some foundation stones, and the remains of the dock.
Wawa's history is rich in mining, forestry, and the fur trade. Mining attempts began as early as the late 1660s.
William Teddy discovered gold on Wawa Lake in 1897. The population of Wawa village quickly grew with 1,700 claims staked in 1898. However, most gold production stopped by 1906. Beginning in 1914 with the completion of the Algoma Central Railway, gold production commenced again from 22 prospects.
In 1898, the town site at what is now called "the Mission" was registered as "Michipicoten City." In 1899, Wawa was surveyed and plotted as a town and registered as Wawa City. In the latter half of the 1950s, the town's name was temporarily changed to Jamestown in honour of Sir James Hamet Dunn, but it was later returned to Wawa at the request of the community's residents.
Gold production had slowed by 1906, but as mining technology improved, additional amounts began to be extracted from the area. Gold mining in the Wawa area prospered and receded several times in the 20th century, and it continues today. Notable producers include the Grace Mine (1902-1944), which produced 15,191 ounces, the Minto Mine (1929-1942), which produced 37,678 ounces, the Parkhill Mine (1902-1944), which produced 54,301 ounces, and the Renabie Mine (1920-1991), which produced 1.1 million ounces.
Iron ore extraction has also been an important industry in the area. The search for gold during the Michipicoten boom led to the unexpected discovery in 1897 of iron ore. Francis Hector Clergue, an American entrepreneur, immediately recognized the iron ore for its potential; he established a steel company at Sault Ste. Marie. Wawa was served by the Algoma Central Railway to ship ore for processing.
The first supply of ore extracted from the Helen Mine was shipped to Midland, Ontario, in July 1900; this was the "first boat shipment of Canadian iron ore to a Canadian port." The mine produced high-grade iron ore until 1903, when operations shut down due to financial difficulties encountered by Clergue and his company. By 1904, the mine had returned to full production capabilities and was mining one thousand tons of hematite ore a day. From 1900 to 1918, the Helen Mine had the largest production of any iron mine in Canada.
In 1909, a second hematite ore deposit was uncovered near the Magpie River, twelve miles north of the Helen Mine. The Algoma Steel Corporation, organized between 1904 and 1909 in Sault Ste. Marie, bought up the claims and operated both the Magpie and Helen mines for the next decade. The Helen Mine continued ore production until 1918, when the company felt the reserve of hematite ore was finally depleted. The same fate followed the Magpie Mine in 1921. The Census of Canada records that the population of the Michipicoten region in 1921 experienced a drop from 1,001 in 1911 to 101 just ten years later.
It was not until 1937, with the threat of war in Europe and the emergence of a profitable market for Canadian iron ore, that the Helen Mine was reopened. A sintering plant was constructed on the northern bank of the Magpie River, two miles west of the mine. It was used to treat the siderite ore before it was shipped to the blast furnaces at Algoma Steel in Sault Ste. Marie. The plant became the centre for a small community called Sinterville, composed of workers and their families.
The Helen Mine remained an open pit operation until 1950, from which point on all production came from underground mining. In 1960, the new George W. MacLeod Mine went into production adjacent to the Helen Mine. The ore was transported on an aerial tramline that consisted of over 280 steel three-ton buckets traveling underground and then emerging three-quarters of a mile west of the 2,066-foot vertical MacLeod Shaft. The tramline continued the remaining two miles to the sinter plant on overhead cables. This system was replaced in 1979 by the latest in underground mining technology, the highest-lift single-drive conveyor in the world.
During the summer of 1971, Wawa hosted an archaeological field camp known as the Wawa Drop-In Project or the Big Dig,for young hitchhikers traveling along Highway 17. The project was directed by Professor K.C.A. Dawson and supported by the federal government as part of its youth employment program. The results of this fieldwork at several important sites were never published. The records are currently held by the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Ottawa.
Throughout the 1990s, Wawa and the Algoma Ore Division continued to be challenged by international market problems that plagued both the gold and iron mining industries. In December 1997, Algoma Steel announced that it could no longer support the high cost of extracting low-grade iron at Algoma Ore Division. Although Wawa's mountain of iron ore had more to give, operations were shut down in June 1998, one hundred years after iron was first discovered in this remote corner of northern Algoma.
Wawa suffered a population decline after the closures of Helen Mine and the sinter plant. Its main industries have been forestry and tourism. In recent years, diamond prospecting and proposals to create a trap rock mine on the shore of Lake Superior have been developed; however, no mining activities of any kind have yet been established.
In October 2007 Weyerhauser, which operated an oriented strandboard mill 30 kilometres east of the town, announced an indefinite shutdown of its mill. The final production shift ran at the end of December 2007. Given low demand for wood products, the likelihood of the mill reopening was marginal at best. Since the shutdown, Wawa's economy has suffered a near complete collapse, as the closure resulted in over 135 lost jobs, and more residents left the area. This has had a spinoff effect on other businesses and on the town's population. It peaked at close to 5,600 in the 1990s but has since dropped to under 3,000, according to the 2011 Canadian census.
The collapse of the forestry industry in the first decade of the 2000s also adversely affected the neighbouring communities of Dubreuilville and White River. Wawa, the area's largest settlement, has faced difficulties in attracting new industry to the community and region.
|Canada census – Wawa, Ontario community profile|
|Population:||2,905 (-2.4% from 2011)||2,975 (-7.1% from 2006)||3,204 (-12.6% from 2001)|
|Land area:||416.21 km2 (160.70 sq mi)||417.78 km2 (161.31 sq mi)||417.78 km2 (161.31 sq mi)|
|Population density:||7.0/km2 (18/sq mi)||7.1/km2 (18/sq mi)||7.7/km2 (20/sq mi)|
|Median age:||46.6 (M: 45.9, F: 47.7)||40.6 (M: 40.1, F: 41.1)|
|Total private dwellings:||1,451||1,517||1,453|
|Median household income:||$66,752|
|Notes: "Michipicoten Community Profile" prior to 2009. – References: 2016 2011 2006 earlier|
Wawa is home to English and French language schools. The Algoma District School Board is responsible for offering English language instruction and operates Sir James Dunn Public School, offering kindergarten to Grade 8 classes, while Michipicoten High School offers Grades 9 to 12. The Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board provides French immersion language instruction for junior kindergarten to Grade 7 at St. Joseph French Immersion School. In the 2014-2015 school year St. Joseph School will expand its French immersion program to include Grade 8.
Exclusive French-language instruction is offered by two school boards. According to the 2011 Census, 19% of Wawa's population claimed French as their mother tongue. The Conseil scolaire du Grand Nord offers public school instruction at Ecole publique l'Escalade for students in kindergarten to Grade 8. The Conseil scolaire catholique du Nouvel-Ontario offers Catholic instruction at Ecole élementaire et secondaire catholique St-Joseph.
The community is known for its 8.5-metre (28-foot) metal statue of a Canada goose, which was built in 1960, and dedicated to the community in 1961. Wawa takes its name from the Ojibwe word for "wild goose", wewe. Wawa was defined as wild goose in The Song of Hiawatha. On July 5, 2010, Canada Post made a commemorative stamp of the Wawa Goose as part of its Roadside Attractions collection.On July 1, 2017 a new Wawa Goose was unveiled to replace the second aging goose.
The town is also known for snowmobiling and sport fishing. The Voyageur Hiking Trail passes through the town. One notable shopping location[ according to whom? ] is Young's General Store, home of the locally famous Pickle Barrel.
The municipal council is composed of one mayor and four councillors. The current mayor is Ron Rody. Councillors Tamara Liddle, Bill Chiasson, James Neufeld and Yvan Besner were elected on Oct. 27, 2014 for a four-year term. After James Neufeld resigned on April 27, 2015, Matthew Morrison was appointed to fill the vacant seat on August 10, 2015.In 2016, Councillor Tamara Liddle and her husband, Gerry Liddle were investigated and it was revealed that both Gerry Liddle and Councillor Tamara Liddle harassed CAO Chris Wray in an effort to obtain a personal benefit to avoid paying municipal taxes/avoid enforcement of their municipal tax arrears. Both were sanctioned by town council. After the 2018 municipal elections, Ron Rody was acclaimed as mayor and the following councillors were elected: Bill Chiasson, Mitch Hatfield, Robert Reece, and Pat Tait.
Highway 17, the main route of the Trans-Canada Highway, passes through the township, although the primary townsite is located on Highway 101, two kilometers east of the junction with Highway 17. Sault Ste. Marie is located 227 kilometers to the south. Lake Superior Provincial Park is located just south of the town.
In October 2012, the town was forced to declare a state of emergency after severe flooding washed out several roads within the municipality, including sections of both Highway 17 and Highway 101.
Wawa is located 24 kilometres west of Canadian National Railway's Hawk Junction station on the rail line from Sault Ste. Marie to Hearst. The line, formerly known as the Algoma Central Railway, provides tourist operations, as well as passenger and freight service to communities in northern Ontario.
A dial-in/demand response transit system has been available since February 2006. The service is provided by a single bus that can accommodate 12 passengers plus up to two wheelchairs.
Wawa has a humid continental climate (Köppen climate classification Dfb) that is significantly moderated by Lake Superior. Winters are cold and snowy with a January high of −7.7 °C (18.1 °F) and a low of −20.2 °C (−4.4 °F) and temperatures below −20 °C (−4.0 °F) occur 45 days per year. Snowfall totals are heavy, averaging over 319 centimetres (126 in) due to lake effect snow from Lake Superior as cold air from the northwest passes over the warmer lake. Summers are cool and mild due to cool, dry air masses from the northwest and the cooling of warm air from the south as it passes Lake Superior. As a result, temperatures above 30 °C (86.0 °F) are rare. August is the warmest month with a high of 20.8 °C (69.4 °F) and a low of 9.8 °C (49.6 °F), showing a slight seasonal lag. The average annual precipitation is 970 millimetres (38 in), which is relatively evenly distributed throughout the year though the months of July to October see a peak in precipitation.
|Climate data for Wawa Airport (1981−2010)|
|Record high humidex||6.7||12.3||20.1||30.6||37.1||39.0||37.1||38.9||34.9||28.3||19.7||18.5||39.0|
|Record high °C (°F)||6.8|
|Average high °C (°F)||−7.7|
|Daily mean °C (°F)||−14.0|
|Average low °C (°F)||−20.2|
|Record low °C (°F)||−40.9|
|Record low wind chill||−51.1||−44.6||−43.6||−30.1||−12.4||−2.8||0.0||0.0||−6.9||−13.1||−31.9||−46.1||−51.1|
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||55.7|
|Average rainfall mm (inches)||2.3|
|Average snowfall cm (inches)||72.1|
|Average precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm)||17.0||14.1||11.9||10.5||12.4||12.8||13.2||13.3||15.3||15.6||16.1||17.6||169.8|
|Average rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm)||1.4||1.2||3.6||7.0||12.0||12.8||13.2||13.3||15.2||13.8||7.7||2.9||104.2|
|Average snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm)||16.7||14.0||9.6||5.1||0.83||0.0||0.0||0.0||0.23||3.3||11.2||16.7||77.7|
|Source: Environment Canada|
Wawa is home to former NHL hockey players Chris Simon and Denny Lambert as well as comedian Pete Zedlacher.
Elliot Lake is a city in Algoma District, Ontario, Canada. It is north of Lake Huron, midway between the cities of Sudbury and Sault Ste. Marie in the Northern Ontario region. Once dubbed the "uranium capital of the world," Elliot Lake has since diversified to a hub for forest harvesting, mine reclamation expertise, exporting glass awards and telescoping equipment for mining. In addition, Elliot Lake is now known as a place for affordable retirement living, waterfront cottage lots and as a four-season destination.
Northern Ontario is a primary geographic and administrative region of the Canadian province of Ontario, the other primary region being Southern Ontario. Most of the core geographic region is located on part of the Superior Geological Province of the Canadian Shield, a vast rocky plateau located mainly north of Lake Huron, the French River, Lake Nipissing, and the Mattawa River. The statistical region extends south of the Mattawa River to include all of the District of Nipissing. The southern section of this district lies on part of the Grenville Geological Province of the Shield which occupies the transitional area between Northern and Southern Ontario. The extended federal and provincial administrative regions of Northern Ontario have their own boundaries even further south in the transitional area that vary according to their respective government policies and requirements. Ontario government departments and agencies such as the Growth Plan for Northern Ontario and the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation define Northern Ontario as all areas north of, and including, the districts of Parry Sound and Nipissing for political purposes, while the federal government, but not the provincial, also includes the district of Muskoka.
Algoma District is a district and census division in Northeastern Ontario in the Canadian province of Ontario.
The Agawa River is a river in Algoma District, Ontario, Canada which empties into Agawa Bay on Lake Superior at the community of Agawa Bay, south of Wawa, Ontario.
Algoma—Manitoulin—Kapuskasing is a federal electoral district in Ontario, Canada, that has been represented in the House of Commons of Canada since 2004. The area was represented by the riding of Algoma from 1867 to 1904 and from 1968 to 1996 and then by Algoma—Manitoulin from 1996 to 2004.
The Algoma Central Railway is a railway in Northern Ontario that operates between Sault Ste. Marie and Hearst. It formerly also had a branch line to Wawa, Ontario The area served by the railway is sparsely populated, with few roads. The railway is well known for its Agawa Canyon tour train and also provides passenger train service along its entire route to canoeists, snowmobilers, cottagers and tourists accessing this wilderness recreation region. The railway connects at its northernmost point with the Ontario Northland Railway and with CN's eastern division to the south. It also intersects with the Canadian Pacific Railway at Franz and with the Huron Central Railway at its southernmost point in the Sault.
Marathon is a town in the Canadian province of Ontario, located in Thunder Bay District, on the north shore of Lake Superior north of Pukaskwa National Park, in the heart of the Canadian Shield.
Sault Ste. Marie is a federal electoral district in Ontario, Canada, that has been represented in the House of Commons of Canada since 1968.
Unorganized North Algoma District is an unorganized area in northeastern Ontario, Canada, comprising all areas in Algoma District, north of the Sault Ste. Marie to Elliot Lake corridor, which are not part of an incorporated municipality or a First Nation. It covers 44,077.03 km2 (17,018.24 sq mi) of land, and had a population of 5739 in 2016.
The Diocese of Algoma is a diocese of the Ecclesiastical Province of Ontario of the Anglican Church of Canada. It comprises nearly 182,000 square kilometres of the Ontario districts of Algoma, Thunder Bay, Sudbury, Manitoulin, and parts of the districts of Nipissing and Timiskaming. The diocese forms a wide band stretching from just west of Thunder Bay on the northern shore of Lake Superior east to the border of Ontario and Quebec. Neighbouring Anglican dioceses are Rupert's Land to the west, Moosonee to the north, Ottawa to the east, and Ontario, Toronto, Huron to the south.
Michipicoten Island is an island in Ontario, Canada, in the northeastern part of Lake Superior, about 175 kilometres (109 mi) northwest of Sault Ste. Marie and 65 kilometres (40 mi) southwest of Wawa, Ontario. At its closest point to mainland Ontario, the island is located about 16 kilometres (9.9 mi) from the mainland. It falls within the boundaries of Thunder Bay District. The second largest island in Lake Superior, Michipicoten Island is 27 kilometres (17 mi) long and 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) wide at its widest point.
Summit Lake is a lake in the Magpie River system in Unorganized North Part of Algoma District, Ontario, Canada in the Lake Superior drainage basin. It is about 0.6 kilometres (0.4 mi) long and 0.2 kilometres (0.1 mi) wide, lies at an elevation of 376 metres (1,234 ft). There are no significant inflows, and the primary outflow is an unnamed creek to Bog Lake, which eventually flows via Josephine Creek and the Magpie River into Lake Superior. The lake is about 5 kilometres (3 mi) northwest of the community of Hawk Junction and 16 kilometres (10 mi) northeast of Wawa. The Algoma Central Railway branch line to Michipicoten makes a loop, between Hawk Junction and Magpie, south of the lake.
The Algoma Eastern Railway is a former Canadian railway operating in the province of Ontario. Today only a short section remains, used as an industrial spur.
The Northeast Arm Iron Range, also called the Temagami Iron Range, is an elongated area of iron ore in Nipissing District of Northeastern Ontario, Canada. It parallels the western side of Lake Temagami's Northeast Arm near the village of Temagami at its northern end. One of many small iron ranges in the Temagami area, the Northeast Arm Range consists of alternating bands of iron-rich and iron-poor sediments. It was discovered in the 1890s and has since seen sporadic mining and mineral exploration activities.
Michipicoten is a self discharging lake freighter owned and operated by Canadian shipping firm Lower Lakes Towing. Michipicoten primarily hauls taconite from Marquette, Michigan to the Algoma Steel Mill in Sault St. Marie, Ontario. It has a capacity of 22,300 tons, a speed of 12 knots (14 mph), and a length of 689 feet 6 inches (210.2 m). The vessel was initially named Elton Hoyt II when it entered service in 1952.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Wawa, Ontario .|