The LA VÉRENDRYES built Ft St-Charles on the NW arm of the lake in 1732. Incorporated as Rat Portage by Manitoba in 1882 during a boundary dispute with Ontario, and subsequently by Ontario in 1892, the current site was renamed Kenora in 1905. The name derives from Keewatin, Norman and Rat Portage, interdependent communities clustered where the lake spills into the Winnipeg R.
Kenora's scenic location on a major international waterway determined its growth patterns. A prehistoric dependence on caribou, fish and WILD RICE continued through the FUR TRADE era. By 1836 the Hudson's Bay Company had established a post within the former town limits.
Construction on the Canadian Pacific Railway beginning in 1879 brought lumbering, steamships, gold mining, fisheries, hydroelectric development and flour milling. Seaplanes and the TRANS-CANADA HWY (1953) swelled summer traffic. Kenora's economy is based on a pulp and paper mill, tourism, CP Rail and government offices. Neighbouring reserves affirm a significant OJIBWA presence. Nearby Manitoba and the US exert a strong social, economic and political influence.
Author ELINOR BARR
Links to Other Sites
The official website for the City of Kenora, Ontario.
Four Directions Teachings
Elders and traditional teachers representing the Blackfoot, Cree, Ojibwe, Mohawk, and Mi’kmaq share teachings about their history and culture. Animated graphics visualize each of the oral teachings. This website also provides biographies of participants, transcripts, and an extensive array of learning resources for students and their teachers. In English with French subtitles.
Lake of the Woods Museum
The website for the the Lake of the Woods Museum in Kenora, Ontario. The museum’s collections and exhibits feature First Nations and pioneer artifacts, natural history, minerals, textiles, pictorial and archival material related to the history of the Lake of the Woods and the surrounding area.
Stories from Ontario's Movie Theatres
Raise the curtain on this illustrated history of Ontario’s movie theatres. From the Archives of Ontario website.