The Algoma Central Railway Station at Searchmont is a two-storey wood railway station, built in 1902. It is located in the unincorporated area of Searchmont. The formal recognition is confined to the railway station building itself.
HERITAGE VALUE: Constructed during the initial phase of development of the Algoma Central Railway (ACR), the Searchmont station represents the vital role of the ACR in the economic development and settlement of northern Ontario. The ACR was a part of a series of mining, lumbering and tourism initiatives promoted by industrialist F.H. Clergue. The railway was fundamental to Searchmont’s development; both benefited from the post-World War II development of tourism in the area.
The station retains its relationship with its site, including: the tracks; a utility shed; an outdoor privy; and the natural surroundings. The station serves as a prominent gateway to and symbol of the region.
Sources: Heritage Character Statement, Algoma Central Railway Station, Searchmont, Ontario, September 1995; Heritage Research Associates Inc., Railway Station Report 252, Algoma Central Railway Station, Searchmont, Ontario.
CHARACTER-DEFINING ELEMENTS - Character-defining elements of the Algoma Central Railway Station at Searchmont include: -its domestic form and scale, consisting of a two-storey, rectangular block, with a polygonal operator’s bay at the northeast corner, and capped by a gabled roof with a transverse gable terminating in a tower over the projecting bay; -the large platform canopy, supported on triangulated eave brackets; -the polygonal operator’s bay, extending to form a two-storey tower; -the arrangement of openings established by 1944 renovations; -surviving original window units and exterior finishes (obscured beneath aluminium siding); -the surviving original interior layout, including: the agent’s office; the subsidiary office; and parts of the waiting room; -surviving original finishes and fittings, including: boarded walls; wainscoting; doors; light fixtures; and wooden benches; -its use of hardwood, Searchmont’s major product, as an architectural material.
Searchmont is a community with a local services board in the Canadian province of Ontario. The services board covers the unincorporated townships of Deroche, Gaudette, Hodgins and Shields in the Algoma District northeast of Sault Ste. Marie. It includes the communities of Searchmont, Northland and Glendale.
The town of Searchmont received its name in honor of T.C. Search, the treasurer of the consolidated Lake Superior Company. Searchmont was once a bustling community built around the forestry industry. The local sawmill was the livelihood of most of the residents. When the mill closed in the early 1990s, much of the population moved away.
The Searchmont Community Centre recently was renovated in 2002 with the aid of a SuperBuild grant provided by the Ontario government. Part of the newly renovated Searchmont Community Centre has been named after Walter Senko, a recently deceased school teacher in the area.
Searchmont Fire Hall and Community Centre 2003 The town of Searchmont is serviced with respect to Fire Response and Emergency First Response services by the Searchmont Community Volunteer Fire Department. The original Searchmont Fire Brigade was formed in 1976 with a grant of $15,000 from the Isolated Communities Assistance Fund along with $8,000 raised by the community. The brigade was able to purchase a pumper truck, 2 portable fire pumps, protection clothing and breathing apparatus at that time. The current SCVFD hosts an annual Fireman's Ball each spring as a local fundraiser and to provide an opportunity for the community to recognize the individual volunteer efforts provided.