James Ewin (L) and Shawn Pollard (R) presenting the steam whistle and pictures to the public. (Nakusp Rail Society Facebook photo)

SS Bonnington steam whistle comes home to Nakusp

Shawn Pollard has donated the ship’s steam whistle to the Nakusp Rail Society on behalf his father

The steam whistle from the SS Bonnington has finally come home.

Shawn Pollard has donated the iconic whistle on behalf of his father, Derek Pollard, to the Nakusp Rail Society (NPR).

The steam-powered sternwheeler was built in a shipyard around Nakusp and was the largest ship to ever sail the Arrow Lakes between 1911 and the early 1930s. The ship also played a critical role in the development of the Arrow Lakes by transporting people, gold, silver and goods to various communities that still weren’t connected by road yet.

In the 1950s, the aging sternwheeler was partially dismantled, and later sank to the bottom of the Arrow Lakes.

Derek, described as a “picker before there were pickers” by his son, managed to acquire the steam whistle and a “Notice to Passengers” artifact displaying the equipment from the famous ship. After Derek’s passing, he asked Shawn to have the artifacts returned to Nakusp.

NPR chairperson Tracy Fetters still recalls the moment she found out the steam whistle would be donated to the society.

“Nakusp residents Andrea and Michael Myhall were down at the Nakusp Visitor’s Centre and ran into Shawn. They got into a conversation and when Shawn mentioned to Andrea about his family’s collection of Canadian Pacific Railway artifacts, she reached out to me and put me in touch with Shawn,” said Fetters.

A small formal event was held at the Nakusp rail site for the hand-over. Photos were taken of Shawn and Derek’s son-in-law, James Ewin, as they proudly held up all of the ship’s memorabilia that had been stored away and forgotten about for so long.

Fetters will now present the artifacts to the Nakusp Archives Centre (NAC) in the hopes they will be permanently displayed.

“Within the space, they have different items of the different steam ships that plied the Arrow Lakes reservoir over the years,” said Pollard.

“It would be rather fitting that it would go in with them.”

The artifacts will be presented on Oct. 4 at the NPR’s annual general meeting.

Local History

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alvin Caron
Trail Retiree Curling: Skips take the day off

It was the thirds day to shine at Trail Retiree Curling

Night time view of Area B. Photo: RDKB.com
Conservation plan underway for Rivervale water

The plan is to reduce water demand and streetlight energy consumption by 20 per cent in four years

The bobsled race has traditionally been a staple event at the carnival. File photo
Upcoming Rossland Winter Carnival cancelled due to COVID-19 crisis

This is the first time the carnival won’t be held in decades

With travel across the border still uncertain, Trail Youth Baseball’s all-star U18 Orioles applied to join the BC Minor Baseball’s College Prep League next season. Photo: Jim Bailey.
18U Orioles All-stars to play in BC college prep league

Border closure restricts American Legion option, 18U Orioles to join BC Minor Baseball next season

(L-R) Kazia Hopp, Colby Mackintosh, Hunter Guidon and Russdale Carungui installed the solar panels. Photo: Nakusp Secondary School
Students install 280 solar panels at two SD 10 schools

The panels will help the schools save on their electrical costs

Over the years, Janice Blackie-Goodine’s home in Summerland has featured elaborate Halloween displays and decorations each October. (File photo)
QUIZ: How much do you really know about Halloween?

Oct. 31 is a night of frights. How much do you know about Halloween customs and traditions?

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

This house at 414 Royal Ave. became notorious for its residents’ and visitors’ penchant for attracting police. It was also the site of a gruesome torture in August 2018. It was demolished in 2019. KTW
6-year sentence for Kamloops man who helped carve ‘rat’ into flesh of fellow gang member

Ricky Dennis was one of three men involved in the August 2018 attack

Cpl. Nathan Berze, media officer for the Mission RCMP, giving an update on the investigation at 11:30 a.m., Oct. 30. Patrick Penner photo.
VIDEO: Prisoner convicted of first-degree murder still at large from Mission Institution

When 10 p.m. count was conducted, staff discovered Roderick Muchikekwanape had disappeared

Among the pumpkin carvings created this year by Rick Chong of Abbotsford is this tribute to fallen officer Cont. Allan Young.
Abbotsford pumpkin carver’s creations include fallen police officer

Rick Chong carves and displays 30 pumpkins every year

An online fundraising campaign in support of the six-year-old boy, Edgar Colby, who was hit by a car on Range Road Oct. 25 has raised more than $62,000 in a day. (Submitted)
$62K raised in 1 day for boy in coma at BC Children’s after being hit by vehicle in Yukon

The boy’s aunt says the family is “very grateful” for the support they’ve received from the community

Health care employees take extensive precautions when working with people infected or suspected of having COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
WorkSafeBC disallows majority of COVID-19 job injury claims

Health care, social services employees filing the most claims

Most Read