The Town That Moved

Lynn Lake’s story begins 120 miles south of the present town site, where Sherridon was established around a rich body of copper ore by Sherritt Gordon Mines Ltd. in the 1920s. As the ore started running out, the company began looking for another ore body and by 1945 Sherritt had laid claim to one of the world’s richest nickel strikes. Eventually a site was chosen between two lakes and surveyors were commissioned to plan the town, complete with residential areas, churches, an arena, a clubhouse, roads and lanes.

But the challenge for Sherritt Gordon Mines had just begun, for the prospect of establishing a new mine in an isolated area with no road or rail line to access the new site required a 165 mile winter road to be constructed from Sherridon. Moreover, town planners realized that it would cost less to move existing buildings from Sherridon, which would have otherwise been abandoned.

Eldon Brown, President of Sherritt Gordon Mines, summarized the feelings of the company and the people with this statement: “Sherridon won’t become a ghost town; we’ll take the ghost with us.”

Over the next three years during the 1950s 50,000 tons of buildings and equipment that constituted the town of Sherridon were transported by tractors in 70-75 hour trips to what would be called Lynn Lake. Had the road been built at any other time of the year the muskeg along the route would have swallowed anything attempting to cross it.

The town was named Lynn Lake after Sherritt Gordon’s Chief Engineer, Lynn Smith. DVDs chronicling the journey (Beyond the Steel & Pushing Back the Frontier) are available for purchase.

Today, Lynn Lake is a gold mining town whose hardy people offer a welcoming hand to any visitor or new resident. Come celebrate our history.  The rich and colorful history of Lynn Lake is proudly displayed daily throughout the summer at the Lynn Lake Mining Museum, including an actual house in tow behind a Linn Tractor.