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Basin Depot     (Dispersed Rural Community)    
Currently Exists     

Other Names (also known as):
Former Name(s):

Location
Geographic*: Guthrie Township, Nipissing District
Municipal:

The Basin started as a group of timber shanties in 1847. By 1890 there were ten buildings, including an "office" of the McLachlin Lumber Company, and a house which served as a stopping place for lumbermen heading to the local lumber camps. Also at that time there was a blacksmith shop and a number of storage buildings. In 1892 a small cabin was built, which served for a time as a hospital for victims of "black diphtheria". The bodies of six of these men lie in a nearby grave site. The small cabin is still standing. Later, in the 1930s there was a ranger cabin built to the north and west of the house, but long after the house and old Basin Depot had been demolished. A wooden garage was built across from the ranger cabin. The garage is in disrepair and has fallen in; the ranger cabin was removed in the late 1960s. In the 1940s or thereabouts another lumber camp was built at Basin Depot, but on the other side of the creek from the older buildings. This was removed in the 1960s. The Ottawa Chapter of the Ontario Archaeological Society has done work here, and will return to do more work in October 2009.

A dispersed rural community extending both directions along the Basin Road. People from as far as eleven miles updtream claimed to be associated with Basin Depot. This included the McIntyre family which lived near the current hydro-line, and the McGuey family which lived on a farm eight miles upstream then moved to the flats just west of the south end of Basin Lake. The McIntyre family moved out of Algonquin Park about 1909; the McGuey's were bought out in 1914 when Algonquin Park expanded eastward to include Guthrie Township. Also associated with Basin Depot were the O'Hare family, the McDonald family, and the Garvey family. All the families mentioned left Algonquin Park in 1914, as all were squatters, with no title to their land.

Source(s) of Information:

  • MacKay, Roderick, 1996, Spirits of the Little Bonnechere, Friends of Bonnechere Parks, Pembroke; also check the "Land of the Spirits" web site in the Virtual Museum of Canada.
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