Posted by: cherylyoung | July 23, 2012
Would you travel to BC for a good bowl of Borscht and some warm hometown hospitality?
An attractive Sunshine Valley town on the Crow’s Nest
Highway, Grand Forks is named for its location near the
convergence of the Kettle and Granby Rivers.
The town is overlooked by Observation Mountain to the
north and the aptly named Rattlesnake Mountain to
Kootenai Indians made their home in the Grand Forks
Valley and Christina Lake area long before the
settlement of European fur traders in 1865, as
evidenced by pictographs and artifacts discovered.
The settlement was incorporated as the city of Grand
Forks in 1897, during which era rapid growth was
experienced when rich strikes of copper were
discovered at Phoenix and Deadwood.
The Granby Smelter, which opened in the year 1900, was
the largest non-ferrous copper smelter in the
Grand Forks was born during an age of optimism, when
all great things were considered possible!
Grand Forks was an important railway centre with
5 railways, including two continental lines.
Discovery of gold and silver in the North Fork Valley
contributed to the wealth of the area, and the Union
Mine came into being.
Mining prosperity reigned for twenty years, augmented
by the developing agriculture and fruit-growing industry.
However, the decline of the copper market in 1919
forced the closure of the Phoenix Mines and the
dismantling of the smelter, dealing a crippling below to
the entire district.
There was little growth in the area until new industries
such as seed growing, logging and sawmill operations
all combined to return prosperity to the community.
Grand Forks is the home of descendants of many of
British Columbia’s Doukhobors, a pacifist group of
political refugee emigrants from Russia that emigrated
to Canada in 1899 and settled in the Grand Forks
Valley in 1909.
The pride and rich culture of the Doukhobors is prevalent
in the valley, and Russian is still taught in schools.
Today, Grand Forks is one of the fastest growing towns
in the Kootenays.
Location: Grand Forks is located on Highway 3 in
south central BC, 32 miles (52 km) east of Greenwood
and 12 miles (19 km) west of Christina Lake.
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