Construction of the Temiskaming and Northern Ontario Railway began in 1902, following a survey requested by the Ontario government for a railway from North Bay to Lake Temiskaming. The impetus for the railway was to develop the “new Ontario” of the north and exploit natural resources, especially mineral wealth in the Cobalt area.
The railway was expanded in subsequent years, finally reaching James Bay at Moosonee in 1932, and is primarily responsible for the development of northeastern Ontario. In 1946, the railway’s name was changed to Ontario Northland Railway, ostensibly because the line was often confused with another railway of the same initials: Texas and New Orleans Railroad!
This brochure from the Archives of Ontario’s library collection was produced by the Government of Ontario under former Premier James P. Whitney to promote “the Great Northland of Ontario for prosperity and [for] all those who seek employment and healthfulness.” It advertises access to the clay belt for farmers, the mineral lands for prospectors, pulpwood for lumberjacks, and lakes and islands for those seeking outdoor sporting and leisure activities.