The Canadian Pacific Railway established Canmore in the fall of 1883 as a depot, a location to store and maintain locomotives and freight cars and house its crews. It was however, short-lived. The advent of more efficient locomotives meant that by 1898, the CPR no longer needed its facilities at Canmore. It closed the depot and moved its equipment and crews to Calgary and Lake Louise.
Luckily in 1884 a high quality coal was discovered at Canmore which gave it distinct advantage. It was the only location of semi-anthracite coal outside of Pennsylvania, which had a monopoly until the No. 1 Mine opened, offering Canmore great promise. Coal mining was a major factor in how the Bow Valley developed economically and physically.
Coal Mining started in 1887 and ended with the last mine closing July 13, 1979. Within one year most of the buildings had collapsed. Canmore, lucky once again, enter the1988 Winter Olympics.
Here are a few shots of some of the mining locations and portals. New and Old.
Mine site of Mine #2
Mine Buildings 1904
Mine Portal at Mine#2
Mine #2 Portal – along Three Sisters Drive – near the Cairns on the Bow
Old steam engine at Mine Portal #2 above.
Mine Portal # 3 on Stewart Creek Golf Course
Miners off shift at Mine Portal #3 above – 1978
Mine Portal # 4 – Behind the Portal condo’s on Armstrong Place and under Golf Course.