The auction closed on
Wednesday, April 24 at 8:00 PM

S.S. Slocan Paddlewheeler on Slocan Lake, West Kootenays


ca. 1950
mixed media on watercolour paper
5.5 x 7.5 ins (14 x 9 cms)
Notes: unsigned and undated.
Sold unframed, but housed in an archival mat and backing board.
Good condition, watercolour paper shows some age.



S.S. Slocan 1897-1905/1905-1928 (157.7 x 27.5 x 6.7 feet) The Slocan was built at Rosebery to provide a connecting service with trains on the CPR’s trackage between Nakusp on the Arrow Lakes and Rosebery on Slocan Lake with the branch line built between the southern end of Slocan Lake and the railway between Nelson and Robson. This route bypassed the Narrows of the Columbia River and ensured year round service between Nelson, Rossland and Trail and the Crowsnest Route and the mainline at Revelstoke. The Slocan was rebuilt with a new hull in 1905.

Great Northern Railway
The Great Northern Railway became the CPR’s biggest competitor around the turn of the century. Similar to the CPR, the Great Northern had a cross continental railway that needed new business to sustain the established infrastructure. The GNR began to invest in the Kootenay Lake region with the Nelson and Fort Sheppard Railway (which linked the sternwheelers to Nelson and the rail line south to Washington State at Marcus), the Kaslo and Slocan Railway, the International Navigation & Trading Company and the Bedlington and Nelson Railway (which connected the sternwheelers on Kootenay Lake to the landing at Kuskonook and the rail line to Spokane ,Washington.) In 1899, the GNR formed the Kootenay Railway and Navigation Company to oversee its interests in the area. As mining interests decreased in the region, the fortunes of the GNR also decreased and eventually the company withdrew from the Lake but not the rail lines.

Kootenay Railway and Navigation Company 
The Kootenay Railway and Navigation Company was formed in 1899 to take over the Great Northern Railway’s interests in the region – the Kaslo & Slocan Railway and the International Navigation & Trading Company and Bedlington and Nelson Railway and the Kaslo and Lardo-Duncan Railway. The company did not make much money, and was liquidated in 1911. In 1900, the KR&N built SS Kaslo at its shipyard at Mirror Lake and was the most impressive ship on Kootenay Lake at the time. The ill-fated company was kept busy, competing with the CPR for business until the retirement of the company boats due to old age and in the case of the SS Kaslo – irreparable damage to the ship.

September 5, 2017


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