Though it might be hard to envision our communitry without the stately train station or high climbing water tower, archeological evidence shows that this area has been inhabited for thousands of years by First Nations people. Even the name of our town reflects our deep ties to the past as the name Sioux Lookout comes from a 18th century story about a group of Ojibway who used the mountain as a lookout against advancing Sioux warriors.
Our area entered recorded history in 1784 when the explorer, Edward Umfreville was selected to find a northern route from Fort William to the Red River Settlement and Lake Winnipeg as the previous route ran too closely alongside the American border. His route took him directly through the Sioux Lookout area. His route can be traced in his journal as going from English River Falls through Minitaki Lake and Abram Lake.
The strategic spot on Sioux Mountain of the Ojibway people was utilized again by surveyors in the early 1900's where they erected the first cabin in the area. Soon after, the railway came through town in 1909 as a divisional point of the Lake Superior Junction Railway and the Grand Trunk Railway. The town was initially called Graham but was incorporated in 1912, and became Sioux Lookout.
This selection of artefacts and photographs from before the town was incorporated hints at the underlying history of our community. Through these we pay homage to those that were here before us and helped shape Sioux Lookout into the northern gem it is today.