Thunder Bay History - Early Exploration

Historic Fort William Thunder Bay's history dates as far back as the Paleo-Indian civilization over 11,000 years ago. Even back then being located in the middle of the continent and at mouth of the Great Lakes was a key ingredient in its success as a thriving communtiy. It was an ideal area for a meeting ground and trade site.

Europeans first arrived on the scene in the 17th century and immediately established many fur trading outposts. They named this place "Baie de Tonnerre", or Thunder Bay. It was in 1798 that the North West Company built Fort William along the Kaministiquia River. Rapidly this became a lively community of Scottish traders, French voyageurs and Native trappers.

More history of Thunder Bay

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