Greenwood, British Columbia: A Historical Gem in South Central BC
Greenwood, British Columbia, a city with a rich history and a population of 702 as of the 2021 Census, is nestled in the heart of south central British Columbia. Despite its small size, Greenwood has retained its city status since its incorporation in 1897, surviving the closure of the area's industries and a subsequent population decline. Today, Greenwood Elementary School serves the town's young learners, while older students attend Boundary Central Secondary School in nearby Midway.
The History of Greenwood, British Columbia
The history of Greenwood, British Columbia, dates back to 1886 when several mining claims were staked in a narrow gulch ten miles north of the mouth of Boundary Creek. The ore found was high in copper, leading to more claims being staked in the area over the next decade. In 1895, a merchant named Robert Wood erected a log store and named the region Greenwood.
By 1896, Greenwood was a bustling city with three hotels, a general store, a livery stable, two assay offices, a mining broker, an opera house, and a dozen other establishments. The city was incorporated in 1897 and by 1899, the population had climbed to 3,000. The Columbia and Western Railway reached Greenwood from the east, further boosting the city's growth. However, a fire in 1899 gutted several businesses.
The BC Copper Company smelter began operation in 1901, servicing ore from the Mother Lode Mine and other mines in the area. Greenwood became the supply center for surrounding camps and the seat of government for the Boundary. By 1910, the boom had passed and Greenwood's population was 1,500. The demand for copper dropped after World War I, leading to the closure of the smelter and mines around Greenwood.
Greenwood, British Columbia: A City of Lost Mines
Close to Greenwood, British Columbia, is the location of Jolly Jack's Lost Mine. Local historian Bill Barlee wrote about this lost mine, the location of which was never found. The Greenwood local museum has written records of Jolly Jack. Another lost mine, Henry Morgan's, is thought to have been at the headwaters of Boundary Creek, although it has never been found. Local historian Garnet Basque has written about Morgan's lost mine.
Demographics of Greenwood, British Columbia
In the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Greenwood, British Columbia, had a population of 702 living in 375 of its 448 total private dwellings. This represented a change of 5.6% from its 2016 population of 665. With a land area of 2.42 km2 (0.93 sq mi), Greenwood had a population density of 290.1/km2 (751.3/sq mi) in 2021.
Arts and Culture in Greenwood, British Columbia
Greenwood, British Columbia, has been featured on the historical television series Gold Trails and Ghost Towns, Season 2, Episode 1. It was also one of the filming locations for the theatrical film Snow Falling on Cedars. In the 2019 Michael Christie novel Greenwood, the city was featured as a town named after the fictional logging magnate of Everett Greenwood.