Dating from 1927, now a Quebec historic monument
Dating from 1927, the work of engineers from Canadien Pacifique / Canadian Pacific , the Gare de Témiscaming / Témiscaming Station — no longer used for its original purpose — is distinguished by a number of significant — even ornate — features.
A particularly conspicuous ornate feature is a Neoclassical broken scroll pediment at the rue Humphrey elevation (1).
The building, executed in red brick with significant stone elements, with overhanging eves, is now both an historic monument and a museum. The Musée de la Gare / Station Museum has particular strengths in the history of immigration to the area. Periodically the facility also sponsors temporary exhibitions (2).
The station dates from a time when Riordon Pulp and Paper was consolidating its lumber business in the locality, having attracted settlers and their families to the jobs created in the area. Interestingly, there was also some recorded hostility from clerical circles to the location of the station at the recently founded Témiscaming, but the exigencies of business and labour won out against clerical arguments (3) that the facility and railroad should be routed further afield for the convenience of rurally based Francophone settlers, attracted to the area under the sponsorship of Roman Catholic clergy.
I have supplied a photo, below, of the Gare de Témiscaming / Témiscaming Station shown not long after it was built.
The building suffered extensive fire damage in 1994; it was subsequently restored.
Témiscaming lies on the northern bank of the Rivière des Outaouais / Ottawa River. The Gare de Témiscaming / Témiscaming Station is situated at 15, rue Humphrey, Témiscaming, in the Abitibi-Témiscaming region of Quebec. The building is located close to a stream known as the Ruisseau Gordon.
December 1, 2020
(1) See also (in French: ) https://www.historicplaces.ca/en/rep-reg/place-lieu.aspx?id=6987
(2) See also (in French) : https://www.museedelagare.com/fr/accueil/
(3) These arguments opposing the location of the station at rue Humphrey site in Témiscaming centred around a prominent clergyman, abbé Fugère. The wider context of these efforts were rooted in 19th century entreprises to attract settlers to western Quebec, some of which were clerically influenced. Among the circles which sponsored such settlements was included the Société de Colonization du Lac Témiscamingue. The 19th century Montreal newspaper La Minerve was also noted for its support for Francophone settlement of western Quebec.
Also worth seeing
In Témiscaming itself, a set of ornate, Venetian fountains was erected over 80 years ago by a prominent local businessman, Norwegian-Canadian C B Thorne, at the intersection of chemin Kipawa and rue Outlook; a lookout point by rue du Belvédère has fine forest views.
How to get there: Air Canada flies from Toronto Pearson Airport to North Bay Airport, where car rental is available. From North Bay, take Highway 63 north to Thorne and Témiscaming (distance 67 km). For Lake Témiscaming and Fort Témiscaming from the town, take Highway 101 north ('Route 101 '). Please check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information.
MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.
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