Back in Time

25 YEARS AGO: The Chamber of Commerce met with MLA Bud Smith about Slocan’s closing Camp Two sawmill


Centennial committee chairman Ed Buck officially dedicated the new Centennial Hall in Clearwater at a ceremony attended by 30 or so people.

Mrs. Alyea of Clearwater won the Christmas Light-up contest. In the commercial section, the first prize went to the Clearwater Dormitory, Mr. and Mrs. Eley.


A column by Belle McGregor recalled her experiences with an outhouse during her first years in Clearwater, after moving from the Coast. Some amused city friends sent a heater to prevent frost from forming on the seat, she said. However, the benefits were strictly “one-sided.”

A house fire, believed to have started near the chimney, took the life of an East Blackpool woman.

A Little Fort man drowned after his boat overturned on Christmas Eve.


Clearwater Forestry Camp was a valued community asset, according to camp manager Neil McCuish. The minimum security prison near Wells Gray Park had 20 to 25 inmates. They contributed many hours helping the Parks Branch and Forest Service, working at the Clearwater cemetery, firefighting, and shoveling snow at the Sportsplex. Buildings at the camp were more than 20 years old, and McCuish was optimistic that the old camp would be replaced by a new facility with a capacity of 60 inmates near Bear Creek.

Trade licenses and dog licenses were no longer available through the Clearwater RCMP office. The licenses were to be available through the Government Agent in Kamloops until a local business or person was commissioned to sell them.


Tamara Dawn Ingalls, daughter of Blue River’s Marcia and Garth Ingalls, was the first baby of 1983 at Dr. Helmcken Memorial Hospital. She was born at 5:04 a.m. on New Year’s Day. Mavis Parker of the Hospital Auxiliary presented her with a shawl made by Mrs. Calder of Ponderosa Lodge in Kamloops, who had knitted shawls for the first baby of the year since the hospital opened in 1972.

Clearwater Ski Hill had received a fair amount of snow during the first half of the week but was still closed. It was expected to open the following weekend.


Members of Clearwater Chamber of Commerce met with MLA Bud Smith to pressure him into taking action concerning Slocan’s decision to close Camp Two sawmill. CSS principal Jim London asked Smith about a rumor that Slocan hoped to transfer its TFL to its sawmill in Quesnel.

The heritage sub-committee of Clearwater and District Chamber of Commerce started work on plans to develop a Pioneer Village. Between 15 and 20 buildings from the turn of the century to the early 1920s were to be reconstructed.


A Vavenby resident had a narrow escape from death when a passing CNR train tore the front off his truck, swung it around, and tore off the back. The accident occurred at a private crossing in Birch Island.

Racers from all over B.C. attended a natural luge clinic in Blue River, according to organizer Wolfgang Schrottner. The week culminated in the B.C. Cup.


Winter arrived in the North Thompson with a vengeance on Dec. 28 when a weather system dumped 10 inches (25 cm) of snow in 24 hours.

Despite dire predictions caused by a rough economic climate, both Clearwater and District Food Bank and Christmas Amalgamated saw average usage over the holiday season. Roughly 115 hampers went out to needy individuals and families, reported food bank president Jeanette Stockton.

Local birders spotted 29 bird species during the Christmas Bird Count, seven more than the year before, said organizer Helen Knight.


Temperatures were mild for 14 hardy souls as they took part in the 10th annual Little Fort Polar Bear Dip on Jan. 1. A large and cheerful crowd produced a record haul for the Barriere and District Food Bank.

READ MORE: Polar Bear Dip is no more, but we still remember (Mar. 7, 2017)

North Thompson Community Skills Center received a commitment for $20,000 from the Pacific Salmon Foundation to build a salmon viewing platform next to Raft River.


Vancouver Foundation approved a $230,000 grant for a project in Clearwater to be called From Front Door to Grocery Store: Getting Seniors Where They Want To Be. District of Clearwater had worked with UNBC to develop the grant application.

A letter to the editor from Laura Soles, wife of Dr. John Soles, commented on remarks by former Clearwater physician Dr. Bob Woollard that being the spouse of a rural doctor was the worst job in the world. “I consider it a privilege to be the spouse of a rural doctor,” she wrote.


Property assessments in District of Clearwater changed plus or minus 10 per cent from the year before, according to BC Assessment. Those in Barriere went up from zero to 15 per cent.

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