The Historical Journey of Gore Bay, Ontario
Gore Bay, Ontario, a town on Manitoulin Island, was officially established on April 7, 1890. Nestled on the bay of Lake Huron's North Channel, Gore Bay is one of the two incorporated towns of Manitoulin District, serving as the administrative and government seat. The town's formation was a result of the Treaty of 1862, which opened Manitoulin Island for white settlement. The name "Gore Bay" is believed to be derived from the gore-shaped harbour, although other theories suggest it could be named after Sir Francis Gore, Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada, or the steamer Gore.
The Emergence of Gore Bay, Ontario
Following the Treaty of 1862, small towns began to emerge from the wilderness, and hotels were developed to provide lodgings for prospective land purchasers. This led to the formation of Gore Bay. Regular boat travel from Sault Ste. Marie, Collingwood, and Owen Sound established regular ports of call on Manitoulin Island, specifically Gore Bay, leading to a prospering hotel industry. The hotels in Gore Bay welcomed a diverse range of visitors, including commercial travellers, fishermen, doctors, lumbermen, and tourists. Three hotels served Gore Bay for many years: The Atlantic Hotel, The Campbell House, and The Ocean House and Pacific Hotel.
The Water-Connected Community Life in Gore Bay, Ontario
Community life in Gore Bay has always been closely connected to water. Before roads were built, water was the only means available for travellers to get to the port of Gore Bay by boat. Boats would arrive and leave town with goods until the late 1950s, meaning the population was also quite low in the town's early years.
Demographics of Gore Bay, Ontario
According to the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Gore Bay had a population of 808 living in 382 of its 421 total private dwellings, a change of -6.8% from its 2016 population of 867. With a land area of 5.14 km2 (1.98 sq mi), it had a population density of 157.2/km2 (407.1/sq mi) in 2021.
Industrial Development in Gore Bay, Ontario
Gore Bay is home to craft brewer Split Rail Brewing and Manitoulin Transport, one of Canada's largest trucking companies. The first Gore Bay Highschool, which went up to grade 13, now houses the Manitoulin Lodge Nursing home, the only nursing home in Gore Bay. There is no longer any high school in Gore Bay; students get bussed to surrounding communities like M'Chigeeng First Nation/West Bay.
Tourist Attractions in Gore Bay, Ontario
Gore Bay offers a variety of tourist attractions. The Gore Bay Museum, housed in what used to be the courthouse, a land office, and a home for the jailer, is a must-visit. Other attractions include the East Bluff Lookout, The Queens Hotel/Inn, and All Saints Anglican Church, the oldest building in Gore Bay.
Climate of Gore Bay, Ontario
Gore Bay experiences a humid continental climate (Dfb). The highest temperature ever recorded in Gore Bay was 37.8 °C (100 °F) on 13 July 1936. The coldest temperature ever recorded was −38.9 °C (−38 °F) on 15 February 1943.
Transportation in Gore Bay, Ontario
The amount of water surrounding Manitoulin district rules three main ways of accessing Gore Bay's township. Highway 540A and Highway 540B are the main roads in the township. Gore Bay-Manitoulin Airport, located in the town, is one of two airports on Manitoulin Island. The airport is a general aviation facility. Ferry service aboard the Chi-Chi Maun from Tobermory in Southern Ontario is available from late May through October.