Last Steam Powered Saw Mill In Canada

Discussion in 'Logging, Mining and Industrial Railroads' started by TrainClown, Jun 30, 2003.

  1. TrainClown

    TrainClown Member

    I just happened to be watching "Great Train Stories", a program we get here in Canada on the History channel, and when it was over, an episode of "History Lands" came on. It was all about the McLean Saw Mill just out side of Port Albernie on Vancouver Island. It was built in the 1920s with all old equipment for the time. Most of it dates back to 1880. It was a family run mill. There was only one way in and out, and that was by there own 1929 Baldwin logging train on tracks they layed themselves. That is untill a road was built in 1958. In 1965, due to hard times getting raw trees, Mr. McLean one day just said "That's it!" and put a pad lock on the gate and the place was a ghost town for 28 years.

    In 1993 the McLean family donated all the equipment, vertually untouched in all that time, to the City of Port Albernie Heritage Society, and now after years of restorations on the foundations and the machinery, it is back up and running again.

    You can go to Port Albernie and take the train for a 35 min. ride out to see the old mill and the rustic conditions the crew lived in, and a demonstration of the mill in action.

    Here is a link so you can at least see some photos of the place, and to warm your heart, that a steam powered saw mill is still around and working.

  2. rocko59

    rocko59 New Member

    Another steam powered mill in BC

    Heres a few pics of Pringle's mill in Westwold BC, 1/2 hr SE of Kamloops . They fire it up after Thanksgiving weekend every year & there's more stuff too. So many things to see.

    Attached Files:

  3. TrainClown

    TrainClown Member

    That's terrific! I love those traction engines. I go out to the Western Canada Transportation Museum for there annual steam powered threshing machine demonstration. Such fun. The best one I went to was in Duncan on Vancouver Island. They had a great group of steam there, but the most interesting was the stationary gasoline engines. Giant fly wheels, water encased cylinders and a tube that drips for a carburetor. A big 85 RPM. :D TrainClown ;)
  4. Glen Haasdyk

    Glen Haasdyk Active Member

    Great pics of Westwold. I've driven by there so many times but now it's something I'll probably stop and see!
  5. silver

    silver Member

    Very interesting. Neat story.

    What is the loader in the picture, if you know? Is it origional and restored or replica?

    It would be great if they had parking that was a little bit away from the buildings. All of the late model cars kind of are a distraction in the images.

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