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City Halls Exhibit

City Archives

The City of Thunder Bay has not one history, but three. Having been created by the amalgamation of the twin cities of Fort William and Port Arthur in 1969, Thunder Bay's past is inextricably linked with the parallel but separate pasts of its constituents. Central to these histories is a cornerstone of municipal government and community: the City Hall.

While exploring the City Halls Web exhibit, you'll discover a lot about Thunder Bay's history through three stories that link together to characterize what Thunder Bay represents: harmony, ingenuity, rich culture, and the value of community.


Public Utilities Commission Building, Port Arthur Port Arthur City Hall
Old City Hall, Fort William Fort William City Hall
Thunder Bay City Hall Thunder Bay City Hall


About The Exhibit

The Port Arthur, Fort William and Thunder Bay City Hall exhibits and the Time Capsule display were made possible by the City of Thunder Bay Summer Student Employment Program.

Special thanks must be given to:

City of Thunder Bay Archives series used for research include Port Arthur City Clerk's Files, Fort William City Clerk's Files, Thunder Bay City Clerk's Files, Aerial Photographs, Thunder Bay City Clerk's Photographs, and Thunder Bay Planning Department Photographs. 

Other reference sources used in this exhibit are:

  • Beaulieu, M. "In Public's demand: Entertainment in Fort William's First Town Hall, 1892-1903." Papers and Records XXXI(2003): 3-20.
  • Cleveland, Jacquie. "McGillivray Square." August 1982: 1-12.
  • Ed. Epp, A. E. and T. J. Tronrud. Thunder Bay: From Rivalry to Unity. Thunder Bay: The Thunder Bay Historical Museum Society Inc., 1995.
  • Mauro, J. M. The Golden Gateway of the Great Northwest: A History of Thunder Bay. Thunder Bay: Lehto Printers Limited, 1981.
  • Scollie, F.B. Thunder Bay Mayors & Councillors 1873-1945. Thunder Bay: The Thunder Bay Historical Museum Society Inc., 2000.

To learn more about this subject, as well as any other historical information on Thunder Bay that interests you, please visit or contact the City of Thunder Bay Archives.


Address: City Archives
235 Vickers Street N
P.O. Box 800
Thunder Bay ON P7C 5K4
Tel: (807) 625-2270
Fax: (807) 622-4212
Manager: Matt Szybalski, Corporate Records Manager and City Archivist
Tel: (807) 625-3390