Marathon & District Historical Society and Museum

Town of Marathon

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Time Line TimeLine

 The Timeline was taken from rough notes found in the museum.  Dates are currently being looked at for accuracy.  Please contact us with any errors.

1870
 Surveying for the Railroad underway
Lake Superior, Fort Albany and Long Lake Railroad depicted on early maps

1880s
 CPR construction. 12,000 men, 5000 horses and no police force. “Peninsula” (now Marathon) was constructed as a “whistle stop” watering station for the steam locomotives. Water tower was built on a hill to fill the on-board tanks. Peninsula remained in action until mid 1940s

Peninsula Harbour 1884

1917
 May 9th, Great Lakes Paper Company acquires the timber concession on the Big Pic River

1931

Ontario Highway Construction Company assembles Camp 12 at Angler Ontario. It is one of the employment projects in the 1930's to provide work for the unemployed. It was to construct sections of the TransCanada Highway. The road bed can be seen along the existing Hwy. 17 west of Marathon.

1936

Marathon took steps to investigate Canadian woods operations to secure spruce pulpwood cutting rights in the Province of Ontario, Canada. The General Timber Company Limited removed the first timber from Canadian Limits in the spring of 1936.

1937

Marathon, through the General Timber Company Limited, secured allotment of 2,509 square miles of timberland located along the Pic River in Ontario. The contract provided for the building of a bleached sulphate pulp mill in Canada.
 General Timber Company, the Canadian Branch of Marathon Paper Mills, begins logging on the lower limits of the Big Pic Timber Concession

 

1937
 W.E.Mair surveys Jellicoe Cove, (Peninsula Harbour).
 D.C. Everest plans for a Sulphate Mill in Canada

1938

Marathon acquired the General Timber Company Limited, Port Arthur, Canada. General Timber had a concession of 2,509 square miles of spruce, balsam and other timber located in Ontario. Two objectives in obtaining Canadian cutting rights were to secure a long time supply of spruce wood for the Rothschild pulp mill and also to secure a cheap and continous supply of high grade wood from which to secure the highest grade of bleached sulphate pulp possible to produce from a pulp mill to be built within the Province of Ontario on Lake Superior. This district is noted for its purity of water and is so situated that it insured cheap transportation costs to the Rothschild, Menasha, and Ashland plants and will provide a high grade bleached sulphate pulp for the Central West Pulp market on a comparatively low delivered cost.


 Rafts of Pulp Wood stored in Peninsula Harbour for towing to Ashland Wisconsin. General Timber tugs Handy Andy and MPM accompany rafts as tenders

Handy Andy in Ashlaand Wisconsin 1937

 

 1940

July 1940 orders were given to construct 2 new Prisoners of War camps, one at Neys the other at Angler, both had the capacity of 600 prisoners. These camps opened in July of 1941

1943

On May 18, 1943 the name of General Timber Company Limited was changed to Marathon Paper Mills of Canada Limited.

June marked the first visit of the Foundation Company Engineering group.

  

May 18, 1944

Construction commenced on the townsite at Ontario, called Peninsula, later Everest and finally Marathon.

June 7, 1944 Contract was let for the construction of the plant and construction got underway in July of 1944.

May Construction workers living in tents
Aug 26, 3RD Street was carved out of the wilderness to become Whitman Court
Prisoners of War working at the sawmill at Camp 35 on the Pic River

1945
 Town temporarily called “Everest”
Spring melt caused the foundation of mill to sink into ground (because of beach sand). Construction was halted and foundation torn down. Blasting of Peninsula Mountain began for better footing hold. Population explosion after the war brought veterans and their families to new lives. Increase in CPR employees.
Marathon population about 2500.
Approximately 1300 men employed at the mill.

1946
 Train station opened in Marathon replacing the one at Peninsula.
April 23 first pulp wood up the jack ladder
Sept 20 First digester cooked
Chapples Store opened October
First bale of pulp off the line  at 10:30 PM, Oct 15. Bales are 500lbs each.
New mill building completed. Sulphate pulp shipped via railway cars to US market
Marathon Police Department and Fire Station building erected (on Stevens Ave, below Everest Hotel)
Strand Theatre construction commenced July 20
Recreation Hall construction commenced July 20

1947
 Public Library opened in Rec. Hall building on Winton St. 1000 books donated by residents to start it up.
The Strand Theatre opened June
Rec Hall officially opened

1948
 Outdoor pool built by volunteers
Bus service begins. Takes workers to and from mill, public to hospital and Chapples
Groups formed:Ballet and Tap; Marathon Guides and Brownies; Downhill Ski Club; Marathon Scouts and Cubs; Marathon Figure Skating Club.
First skating on outdoor rink

1949
 Street lights installed November 6th,

1951
 Peninsula Golf Course construction commences

1953
 August 10, the highway is opened between Marathonn and Terrace Bay

1954
Police Station Built
Marathon High School construction started

1955

July 6, 1955 New Post Office is Opened

1957
The Town is connected to the Ontario Hydro electric grid
 School built on Stevens Ave.

1958
Marathon's streets are paved.

Glenn F Douglas 5743

1960
 Knights of Columbus begins
at 10:30 AM, September 17 the highway between Marathon and Sault Ste. Marie was opened

1970
 Marathon becomes a Township – replacing Improvement District of Marathon

1980
 Population 2300

1982

July 17, 1982 CFNO became live atfer testing for three days. "93.1" Voice of North Superior, goes live.

 

1983
 American Can. Canada sold to James River Corp.
Pukaskwa National Park officially opened
Last major River Drive
24 hour helicopter approved for Marathon Hospital

1984
 Hemlo Gold explorations discover gold veins east of Marathon. Construction of three new mines begins.
First flight to Marathon – Austin Airways
Marathon's first overseas ship of the season docks here for bales of pulp
Del Earle Park opens, named after founder.
Marathon Centre Mall begins construction

1985
 Marathon Plaza Mall opens
September 6th Teck-Corona mines officially opened.
May 29th  Teck-Corona pours gold at Hemlo Gold Mines

1987
 Water Tower dismantled – underground reservoir built
Catholic School board begins construction of Holy Saviour School/École St. Sauveur
Confederation College sets up office 1987 Crimestoppers started

1988
 Marathon builds ski slopes and Visitor Information Centre
New High School and Public Schools built

1985-1990s
 Population of Marathon expands to nearly 6000 – miners, pulp mill workers and CPR employees.

2000
 Population 4700

2009
 Last bale of Pulp produced Feb 28, 2009
Total production for the mill site  8,964,836 BADMT
Marathon Pulp Mill shuts down, jobs are lost

2013
 Population 4400

2014
 Demolition of the Marathon Mill commences, completion set for 2015
Marathon Curling Club closes it's doors

2016
 D & H Foods closes
​Dec 16 Everest Hotel burns to the ground
Trinity Anglican Church closes and is sold

2017
 Demolition and Stabilization of the Pulp Mill site schedules to be completed by June.

Town of Marathon

 




 2019

November,  Mill effluent site cleanup complete.

Construction camp  for Vallard construction begins on the Stevens Avenue School propety

 2020

 March 20 Toronto Dominion removes ATM from the former TD bank Lobby.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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