Logging Days & Les Raftsmen on the Ottawa

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These two concrete structures sit in the middle of the Ottawa River west of the Chaudiere Falls dam. They are on very small stoney islands, most likely man-made.

Years ago, I vaguely recall that there were some small houses/work shacks out in the river for logging crews to use. I can recall they had sloped roofs. I was wondering if these are the walls of the buildings (ie, they were concrete buildings) or if these are the remaining foundations, and the wooden buildings used to be on top of them. This goes back to the log-boom days when the river was used to transport logs downstream. My far-back memories include seeing big-prowed logging boats on the river, used to push or nudge logs into place. Of course, my imagination may be overactive, and these are just anchor posts for the former log booms or worse yet, hydro-electric pylons. Remember the money that used to have a picture of the log booms, back when money valued people working?

One of the modern features I like about the Chaudiere dam is the log boom made of steel pipes that are, I presume, to retard the movement of canoeists and others over the falls. Don’t want people clogging up the electricity turbines, do we? But the steel booms have a secondary role as reminders of the historic wooden log booms that once were so common on the river.

I would love to find some pictures of these little work shacks when they were still there, and would like to know if others find them of interest. Perhaps the shacks could be reconstructed on the islands, historic sites, reminders of the past. If we cannot have the buildings back, perhaps a plaque along the bike paths would be appropriate.

One thought on “Logging Days & Les Raftsmen on the Ottawa

  1. “Outside west of the ring dam are small islands with what looks like overturned concrete huts on them. They were used to anchor log booms which guided the timber cribs down to the crib slide. This web of booms and dams was very complex. “

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