Ontario's Historical Plaques 


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Superior's First Shipyard

Superior's First Shipyard

Photo by contributor Allison and Dave Corbett - Posted September, 2005

Plaque Location

The District of Algoma
The City of Sault Ste. Marie
On Sand Road .25 km southeast of the intersection of
Point Aux Pins Drive and Sand Road

Coordinates: N 46 28.541 W 84 27.905

Map

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Plaque Text

The first decked vessel to sail Lake Superior was constructed near this site on Pointe aux Pins in 1734-35. It was used by Louis Denis, Sieur de la Ronde, during an unsuccessful attempt to establish copper mines on the southern shore of the lake. Alexander Henry, one of the leading fur traders during the early years of the British regime, built a barge of 13 tonnes in 1770 and in August, 1772, launched a sloop of 36 tonnes. These vessels transported supplies to a short-lived copper mine developed by Henry and his associates near Point Mamainse.

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Here are the visitors' comments for this page.

> Posted November 20, 2015
Forty years ago this month, the Edmund Fitzgerald sent its last signal to shore, to the US Coast Guard Station at Grand Marais, Michigan, some 50 km northwest of this point, before sinking with all 29 hands in Ontario waters. The building, now part of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, became a maritime museum that included a card noting the location where the signal was received, in the radio room, which then became a museum washroom. It read "You are now sitting...". At once hilarious and tragic, it is the only example of site-specific historical interpretation in a bathroom I have ever seen in the entire national park system. The ship, itself, now lies in Ontario waters, a grave site protected under the Ontario Heritage Act. -Wayne




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