Back in Time

Historical Perspective

  • Sep. 23, 2019 8:16 a.m.


The first issue of the North Thompson Times featured a story about a visit by Lieutenant Governor and Mrs. Pearkes to Clearwater. His Honor mentioned that, with the terrific potential of the valley, the people must be ready for its rapid expansion.

A large turnout elected Mac MacDiarmid as president of the Central North Thompson Chamber of Commerce.

Businessman Mr. Fletcher wanted assistance from the Chamber. His proposed $100,000 development at the corner of Wells Gray Road was being held up by the Department of Highways, which wanted all commercial development off of the highway.


Hope was still high that well known Roman Catholic priest Father Emil Sasges would be found alive and well. The young pilot was missing in his small plane in the rugged mountains north of Clearwater.

Two Prince George men were lucky to be alive after their rubber boat overturned after they attempted to ride down the Clearwater River from Clearwater Lake to the Murtle River junction. The stretch had never been boated and contained several waterfalls. An air and ground search found them unharmed the following day but without shoes or clothing, except for short pants. They had no previous knowledge of the river and had used a tourist map as a guide.

A 68-year-old retired CN conductor spent an exhausting two nights lost approximately 12 miles west of Blue River. The man had been hunting with three companions. He used up the last of his ammunition and his matches were wet.


TNRD announced that a new public dump was to open on Wells Gray Park Road by the end of September. Burning of garbage would not be permitted. The Birch Island dump was to be covered regularly with earth fill. Application was underway for a dumpsite in the Vavenby area.

Back in Time


Kay and Bill Taylor of Little Fort celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. They had met on the Canadian Pacific liner Empress of Russia en route to the Orient when Mr. Taylor was chief purser. Kay’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Pare, had homesteaded in Little Fort in 1911.


A request by parents from Valhalla subdivision to review bussing in their area was not supported by School District 26 trustees. If the board allowed them to change the bus schedule, then others would want to do so as well, said trustee Dave Miller.


The final public input meeting for the Kamloops Land and Resource Management Plan (LRMP) was held at Wells Gray Inn. About 60 to 70 people attended the three-hour, walkthrough information session, said process coordinator Kevin Kriese.

John Marlow and Bea Thalmeine received Certificates of Recognition for the work they did as Emergency Social Services workers during the Leo Wildfire the previous month.


Clearwater Improvement District was ready to start filling its new 300,000-gallon water reservoir, located at the junction of Clearwater Valley Road and Archibald Road.

Construction began on a septage disposal lagoon at the Clearwater landfill. The pit would be used to dispose of material pumped from septic tanks. A lagoon at Blue River was to be completed by spring.

Clearwater Pharmasave held a gala re-opening at a new location in Brookfield Mall.

Wrestling B.C named Dr. Bob Mackenzie volunteer of the year. One of his former students, Jay Pickering, was male juvenile wrestler of the year.

Taxi service returned to the Clearwater area as Gord Wilgosh opened his North Thompson Taxi. The community had been without a taxi for about two years. An arrangement with B.C. Transit allowed seniors to take the taxi for just $2 after completing some paperwork.


The official name of TNRD Area B (Blue River-Avola) was now Thompson Headwaters, said director Steve Quinn. Both the North Thompson and South Thompson rivers had their origins in Area B, he pointed out.

The Red Cross needed volunteers to help with its medical equipment loan at Dr. Helmcken Memorial Hospital. “It’s an amazing program,” said Celine Calfa, Red Cross service area manager.


Students from Blue

River School proudly showed off the gold certificate they received for being the highest fundraising school per capita for Jump Rope for Heart in B.C. and the Yukon.

Fun was had as the first annual Clearwater Canoe Regatta was held at Dutch Lake. A total of 275 people registered and an estimated 400 took part. Some of the events were Wheely-Fine mini-triathlon, grease pole and float your boat contest. It was an outstanding success, reported organizer Shelley Sim.

Jean Nelson and Drake Smith completed their bike challenge in one hour 15 minutes, meeting just south

of Little Fort. Nearly $900 was raised for the Hospice Society.


Beautiful weather marked the annual Canoe Regatta at Dutch Lake. The event included dry-land competitions at Rotary Sports Park during its first day. Phyllis Bucknell won the Golden Girl award. Teams supported by Kinder Morgan were searching for archaeological evidence near the confluence of the Clearwater and North Thompson rivers. The purpose was to locate and assess any site that might be affected by the proposed twinning of the Transmountain pipeline.


After 36 years the Sikh temple in Clearwater closed its doors after the death of one of their senior members.

A dutch camper was reported as missing after failing to return to his campsite from a run to Helmcken Falls. A search by both RCMP and the Wells Gray Search and Rescue had to be postponed due to poor visibility however the man was later found safe but cold and wandering in the fields outside the Wells Gray Guest Ranch.

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