The Era of the Railroad Steamer – S.S. Keewatin may move again

7436492726_96e9821a3d_oThe S.S. Keewatin returns “Home” to Port McNicoll Ontario on June 23, 2012.

I’m putting this post up as something came across my radar from one of the many railfan message boards I peruse, the last of the Canadian Pacific Railway’s Great Lakes Steamers, the S.S. Keewatin, which was returned to her home port of Port McNicoll in 2012 and has been under restoration as a museum ever since is about to become homeless as the developer which paid to bring her back from Michigan has sold the land they were attempting to develop around her, and the new owner doesn’t want to include her in their plans.  I was able to be in attendance for what at the time was thought to be her last voyage returning to Ontario, but it appears a move may be in the cards again, with potential destinations of Midland, Owen Sound and Collingwood being considered.

Why is this railroad related? One, she is a Canadian Pacific Railway steamship. Two, she provided a link across the lakes between Port McNicoll and Fort William (now part of Thunder Bay) for the railroad, hauling passengers and freight. And three, the Toronto Railway Museum received the coach Nova Scotia through the generosity of Skyline Investments, the same firm that brought the Keewatin home and purchased the railcars from the Ossawippi express for the development including the Keewatin.

The article from the Owen Sound Sun Times is at the link below for those who want more information:

Hopefully this important piece of Canada’s Rail/Maritime Heritage will quickly find a new home and the group restoring her and operating her as a museum can continue to do so. More pictures I took of the day she returned home can be found on my Flickr.

The S.S. Keewatin is swung around to her berth in Port McNicoll on June 23, 2012. At the time this was thought to be her last voyage returning to her home port to be turned into a museum.

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