Kirkland Lake, Ont, incorporated as a town in 1972, population 8133 (2011c), 8248 (2006c). The Town of Kirkland Lake is located 241 km northwest of North Bay. Named after a secretary in the Ontario Department of Mines, Winnifred Kirkland, the lake around which the town grew has been filled with the tailings of the GOLD
mines that brought the town to prominence. Sir Harry OAKES
was not the first prospector into the district in the summer of 1911, but he and others such as Bill Wright and the Tough brothers were responsible for discovering and developing the gold mines (Lake Shore, Wright Hargreaves, Kirkland Minerals) that were the basis for the town's growth and prosperity during the 1920s and 1930s.
The population reached a peak of nearly 25 000 at the outbreak of WWII. Since then, downward fluctuations in gold mining have deflated the town's fortunes, although the decline was ameliorated in the 1960s and 1970s by the growth of iron ore mining and tourism. A resurgence of gold mining occurred in the 1980s with the discovery of new goldfields in Harker (Holloway Townships) and the sinking of Lac Minerals (Macassa Div) No 3 single-lift shaft to a depth of more than 2200 m.
S.A. Pain, Three Miles of Gold: The Story of Kirkland Lake (1960).