It was a dull and dreary day here in northern Ontario, so John and I drove south to Hwy. 17 and then headed west toward Algoma Mills. Our destination?
Bootlegger's Bay on Lake Huron.
This beautiful little bay earned its name during Prohibition. Back in the 1920s, Algoma Mills was a booming port town. Ships travelling through the North Channel would stop, along with their crews. At least one entrepreneur realized there was money to be made, and soon the little bay became a perfect place to deliver not only numerous cases of liquor but evade the revenue collectors who manned the main docks as well.
Also in Algoma Mills is a boat launch, covered picnic area, and this homage to the Canadian Pacific Railway.
The sign explains that "In 1882, Canadian Pacific bought 200 acres of land in Algoma Mills which they anticipated would become not only a shipping port with terminals, railway years, grain elevators and freight sheds but also an exquisite new tourism site. Algoma Mills was to be a rail passenger terminus where people were transferred to steamers to be carried west to Port Arthur and from there on to Western Canada. In 1883, a 300-room elaborate wooden chateau-style hotel was designed and construction of the stone foundation began. In the winter of 1884, a political decision was made to extend the railway through the Lakehead and the hotel construction was abandoned and the Banff Springs Hotel was built instead. You can still see the remains of this stone foundation on either side of Vivian Blvd. on the point of land east of this site. Hundreds of tonnes of stones were piled in heaps for construction of the hotel's foundations and some can still be seen if you look carefully as you drive east on Highway 538."
Close by is this homage to the CPR, including two steel railroad workers.
This is a view of Lake Huron (looking west) just past the railway crew...
And further along this narrow road is this wonderful patch of blackberries. There wasn't enough for a pie, but John assures me there's ample bushes near home that's loaded with 'em so that's our next destination.
Happy Labour Day, eh?!
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