PLACE NAMES: Salmon Rapids

On July 8, 1910, the Nelson Daily News carried the first in a series of ads for the “First sale of lots in the Salmon Rapids townsite.”

Ads in the Nelson Daily News during the summer of 1910 exalted the many advantages of Salmon Rapids

Ads in the Nelson Daily News during the summer of 1910 exalted the many advantages of Salmon Rapids

One hundred seventieth in an alphabetical series on West Kootenay/Boundary place names

On July 8, 1910, the Nelson Daily News carried the first in a series of ads placed by the Salmon River Valley Land Co. for the “First sale of lots in the Salmon Rapids townsite.”

The ad explained that the townsite was “at the junction of the South Fork with the Salmon river, eight miles south of Salmo, and five miles north of the Pend O’Reille [sic] river at the International boundary.”

The ad claimed Salmon Rapids was at the centre of what would become the “largest and most remunerative” fruit raising district in the province, that over 1.5 million feet of timber in the immediate vicinity would have to be cut at Salmon Rapids, and that the Idaho and Washington Northern railway would be extended there from Metaline.

“The townsite is level as a billiard table and the streets are all cleared,” the ad continued. “Here is a town in the making which will shortly rival Creston where lots have recently sold at ten times their original price.”

Lots were being offered starting at $75, but naturally “this opportunity will not last long.”

Two weeks later, it was announced that J.A. Nowell of St. Paul, Minn., who was “prominently interested” in the Salmon River Valley Land company, planned to build a sawmill at Salmon Rapids. This time its location was described as “on Nine Mile creek in the Pend Oreille valley, 10 miles below the town of Salmo.”

The mill began cutting in September with a capacity of 12,000 board feet per day, employing 12 men. It had a contract to supply 200,000 feet of planking for a new $10,000 government bridge at Salmo, expected to be “probably the longest bridge in the interior” at more than a half mile in length.

“Indications point to an influx of settlers into the Salmon river valley this fall,” said townsite agent Percy J. Gleazer (pictured at left). “Interest is being expressed in various quarters that is likely to mean settlement, and our campaign has not yet begun.”

Gleazer explained the townsite was carved from the land grant of the Nelson and Fort Sheppard Railway. The company owned 3,400 acres which it proposed to sell to orchardists.

“Our portion covers the whole valley of the Salmon river from a point two miles from the junction of the Salmon and Pend Oreille to a point about a mile north of the South Fork and there is a certain amount of good timber on it,” Gleazer said.

But after that, Salmon Rapids was never heard of again. It didn’t live long enough to earn its own entry in a civic directory, and no survey plan is known to exist. Given the contradictory locations indicated above, might it have actually been at the confluence of the Salmon and Pend d’Oreille rivers? In November 1910, J.D. Anderson surveyed this spot as Pend d’Oreille Orchards for the Pacific Exploration Company Ltd., and the following year laid out a notorious townsite at the same spot called Falls City.

According to The Associated History of Salmo and Ymir, after a few months, J.A. Nowell moved the sawmill onto 700 acres at Annie Rooney Creek, a tributary of Sheep Creek.

(Annie Rooney was “the female bandit of the Black Hills” of South Dakota, who “offered a refuge for the noted desperadoes” of the 1870s. There was also a popular 1889 song called Little Annie Rooney that inspired a 1925 silent movie starring Mary Pickford and a comic strip that ran from 1927 to 1966 about a plucky orphan. The creek was so named by 1933.)

Percy Gleazer, formerly a newspaperman at Ymir, served on Nelson city council in 1912. He ran for re-election the following year, but died on the eve of the election of diabetes, age 40. He was survived by a wife and son.

Previous installments in this series

Introduction

Ainsworth

Alamo

Anaconda

Annable, Apex, and Arrow Park

Annable, revisited

Appledale

Applegrove, Appleby, and Appledale revisited

Argenta and Arrowhead

Aylwin

Bakers, Birds, and Bosun Landing

Balfour

Bannock City, Basin City, and Bear Lake City

Beasley

Beaton

Bealby Point

Bealby Point (aka Florence Park) revisited

Belford and Blewett

Beaverdell and Billings

Birchbank and Birchdale

Blueberry and Bonnington

Boswell, Bosworth, Boulder Mill, and Broadwater

Brandon

Brilliant

Brooklyn, Brouse, and Burnt Flat

Burton

Camborne, Cariboo City, and Carrolls Landing

Carmi, Cedar Point, Circle City, and Clark’s Camp

Carson, Carstens, and Cascade City

Casino and Champion Creek

Castlegar, Part 1

Castlegar, Part 2

Castlegar, Part 3

Christina Lake

Christina City and Christian Valley

Clubb Landing and Coltern

Cody and Champion Creek revisited

Champion Creek revisited, again

Columbia

Columbia City, Columbia Gardens, and Columbia Park

Comaplix

Cooper Creek and Corra Linn

Crawford Bay and Comaplix revisited

Crescent Valley and Craigtown

Davenport

Dawson, Deadwood, and Deanshaven

Deer Park

East Arrow Park and Edgewood

Eholt

English Cove and English Point

Enterprise

Erie

Evans Creek and Evansport

Falls City

Farron

Fauquier

Ferguson

Ferguson, revisited

Fife

Forslund, Fosthall, and Fairview

Fort Shepherd vs. Fort Sheppard, Part 1

Fort Shepherd vs. Fort Sheppard, Part 2

Fort Sheppard, revisited

Fraser’s Landing and Franklin

Fredericton

Fruitvale and Fraine

Galena Bay

Genelle

Gerrard

Gilpin and Glade

Gladstone and Gerrard, revisited

Glendevon and Graham Landing

Gloster City

Goldfields and Gold Hill

Grand Forks, Part 1

Grand Forks, Part 2

Granite Siding and Granite City

Gray Creek, Part 1

Gray Creek, Part 2

Gray Creek, revisited

Green City

Greenwood

Halcyon Hot Springs

Hall Siding and Healy’s Landing

Harrop

Hartford Junction

Hills

Howser, Part 1

Howser, Part 2

Howser, Part 3

Howser, Part 4

Hudu Valley, Huntingtdon, and Healy’s Landing revisited

Inonoaklin Valley (aka Fire Valley)

Jersey, Johnsons Landing, and Jubilee Point

Kaslo, Part 1

Kaslo, Part 2

Kaslo, Part 3

Kaslo, Part 4

Kettle River, Part 1

Kettle River, Part 2

Kinnaird, Part 1

Kinnaird, Part 2

Kitto Landing

Koch Siding and Keen

Kokanee

Kootenay Bay, Kraft, and Krestova

Kuskonook, Part 1

Kuskonook, Part 2

Kuskonook (and Kuskanax), Part 3

Labarthe, Lafferty, and Longbeach

Lardeau, Part 1

Lardeau, Part 2

Lardeau, Part 3

Lardeau, Part 4

Lebahdo

Lemon Creek, Part 1

Lemon Creek, Part 2

Lemon Creek, Part 3

Makinsons Landing and Marblehead

McDonalds Landing, McGuigan, and Meadow Creek

Meadows, Melville, and Miles’ Ferry

Midway

Mineral City and Minton

Mirror Lake and Molly Gibson Landing

Montgomery and Monte Carlo, Part 1

Montgomery and Monte Carlo, Part 2

Montrose and Myncaster

Nakusp, Part 1

Nakusp, Part 2

Nashville

Needles

Nelson, Part 1

Nelson, Part 2

Nelson, Part 3

Nelson, Part 4

Nelson, Wash.

Nelway and New Galway

New Denver, Part 1

New Denver, Part 2

Niagara

Oasis and Oatescott

Ootischenia

Oro

Park Siding and Pass Creek

Passmore

Paterson

Paulson

Perry Siding

Phoenix

Pilot Bay

Pingston

Playmor Junction

Poplar and Porcupine

Porto Rico and Pottersville

Poupore, Powder Point, and Power’s Camp

Procter, Part 1

Procter, Part 2

Queens Bay, Rambler, and Raspberry

Remac and Renata

Retallack

Rhone and Rideau

Riondel

Ritaville, Riverside I, Riverside II, and Rivervale

Robson and Rock Creek

Rosebery and Ross Spur

Rossland, Part 1

Rossland, Part 2

St. Leon and Rosebery, revisited

Salmo

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