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Database location #176
Public Location
Created by OAP (CONTACT)
This member has donated.
Creation Date: 1/1/2006
Last Photos Uploaded: 1/1/2006

A quartz rock street once led the way into High Falls. The houses were neatly lined up, the grasses were green and if you stood on the mountain above the townsite and gazed down, it was a remarkable site. The superintendant at the time ensured that homeowners kept their homes looking attractive. This was the town of High Falls.

High Falls began when the International Nickel Company required additional hydro for their facilities. High Falls, located six kilometres west of Turbine Station along the CPR line, proved an ideal location to provide natural-resource power generation. The Huronian Power Company, a subsidary of INCO, supplied electricity to all of the Canadian Copper Mines in the area including Crean Hill and Creighton.

In 1904 the Huronian Power Company began construction of a spur from Turbine and construction commenced on a dam. After completing the dam, a powerhouse was constructed. It would take $700,000 and two years effort before the construction was completed.

To house the workers at High Falls, a boarding hoouse was built along with two small buildings for the supervisors. A storehouse was also built which would store building supplies.

In 1918 an additional station, The Big Eddy, was added. With the additional station, more housing was necessary. A townsite with thirteen homes, larger storehouse and hydro, running water and sewers was built. The former boarding house underwent renovations during this time as well.

There were no roads leading into the town before 1938. In 1938 a road was constructed utilizing the former railway spur line. However even when the roads were built, residents had to leave their cars parked in a garage outside of the town. This was to avoid pollution and having cars appear parked all over.

Huronian also owned two rail lines, one ran from Turbine to Sault Ste. Marie, the other ran north to High Falls.

High Falls nearest neighbour was the farming community of Turbine. Turbine contained the railway station along the Algoma Eastern Railway (AER) and post office. It was also the location of the one room Turbine Public School which the children from High Falls travelled to for schooling. Each morning, the superintendant would see the children off as they made their way onto the horse and cutter.

When the Turbine school closed in the 1950's, High Falls built their own school.

The population began to decline in the 1960's when people began to retire and leave the town. The younger families opted to raise their children outside of High Falls. The last resident left in 1968. By 1970, Inco had closed the town site. In 1975, INCO began to remove the vacant homes.

Today only the power plant remains.

High Falls is located at the junction of the Spanish River with Agnew Lake at the westernmost boundary of Sudbury. To get there take Highway 17 past Lively and Naughton. Continue until you come to the town of Worthington and turn right onto highway 4. High Falls Rd is approximately 8 km west of Worthington on the Spanish River Road at Turbine. Just before the CPR crossing turn left on High Falls Road, and drive 6 km to the end of the road. Access to High Falls is only possible with a key to the gate.

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Historical Photos

High Falls generating plant shortly after construction

Ref: MK1025

High Falls generating plant shortly after construction

Ref: MK1024

High Falls townsite (1920)

Ref: MK1010

Generator (1904)

Ref: MK0829
First three images used with permission of Sari Huhtala/Sudbury Sun. Remaining photos courtesy of Sudbury Public Library

Summer 2007 photos from High Falls