Pinewood and Dawson

Does Pinewood exist?  Staring at the maps I always wondered, but I now know.

Pinewood, Ontario, on Highway 11

Sometimes I think this website really is a tour of the municipal offices of Highway 11, and not their towns. (Photo: User P199 at Wiki Commons.)

Thanks to emails from Richard and Katie, I’ve been informed that Pinewood is a hamlet of about 30 houses 18 kilometres east of Rainy River.

Although the town used to support farming and the railway, when the trains stopped stopping it seems Pinewood went the way of many small towns in northern Ontario.

There doesn’t seem to be many services in town – the old hotel and shops have closed. Pinewood has quite a large baseball diamond which sees quite active use in the summer. The town has a post office (in a resident’s home, no less), a cemetery and a playground. Nearby, the community of Dawson continues farming.

35 thoughts on “Pinewood and Dawson

  1. My sister, Anne-Marie Dallaire , was teaching in Pinewood (French School) in 1962 …Anyone remember ?
    Quel était le nom de cette école ?

  2. On my way this coming summer to visit my Grand parents grave site. visting my deep deep roots
    cheers and hi to the Uncle Don’s McGee’s children in Fort Frances and area

  3. Hi, My mom, used to talk of working in a store in Pinewood as a girl. Her name was Lydia Laverdure she married Gus Martin. H negative.

  4. My Great Grand Father and Great Grand Mother are buried in the Catholic cemetery in Pinewood (Thomes and Mary Ann Pollard). Can anyone email me a picture of their graves? My Dad grew up on a farm in North Banch and some of my Cousins still live there. I have cousins all over west Ontario, in Fort Frances, Emo and other towns. It’s a great place to grow up, but otherwise to cold for me (I do remember the -35 / -40 below F in Novembers / December / January / February / March Winters and the Mesquitos / black flies in the Summer).

  5. Hi,
    My name is Wendy and 3 weeks ago I posted a short message on here in hopes that someone would reply to me, nothing as of yet, so I figured I’d give it another go. I am searching for anyone that may have known my grandmother. Blanche married Harold Morrison (1958-1964) and they had a farm in Pinewood, unfortunately my mother lost contact with Blanche in mid 70s and I would be so appreciative if anyone with any knowledge of her could message me as I very much want to get some insight into what became of her. I am her only grandchild.

    • Hi Wendy,
      I met and visited with your grandmother many times when I was a young girl. She married Harold Morrison, who was my grandfather’s (Gordon Morrison) brother. Harold (or Pavey, as he was called by all the great nieces and nephews), never married until late in life when he married Blanche. As I recall, Blanche had at least two children from a previous marriage. My mother and dad took us kids to visit Pavey and Blanche quite often because my mother had always been very fond of Pavey. I remember the farm in Pinewood and drinking tea or coffee in the kitchen with the grown-ups. I especially remember that your grandmother bred, raised and trained Border Collies. During one particular visit one summer, I remember that a very large hog that Pavey had sold to a farmer down the road, came back. The hog was huge! (of course, I was only 6 or 7 at the time and everything was huge!) Your grandmother put her dog, “Meg”, onto that hog and Meg herded and drove that hog all the way back down the road to the other farmer’s farm. I was simply amazed at how well trained Meg was! I believe I still have some photographs and Pavey and Blanche and would be happy to scan them in and send them to you by email. If so, send your email address to me at
      I hope others can also share memories of your grandmother!

    • Hi Wendy
      I knew your grandmother, as she married my Uncle Harold. I remember her dogs, as no one could get into the house without her permission. Also, she would often get mad at Uncle Ken when he and I would practice shooting a rifle and she said it would scare the chickens and they would not lay eggs!

      We became much closer to her after Uncle Harold passed away and she moved to Rainy River. We’d often stop in a bring her a hotdish of some sort. I forgot what her favourate was.

      Eventually, both her and my late wife had derminal illness, so they would often debate who the killer was for the Bonnet child that was in the news around that time. Blanch found out first and my wife about a year or so later. I did the Obit for both her and Harold.
      She had two sons that I knew, Glen and Morris. Morris I think got killed in a hunting accident crossing over a fence when the gun went off. I loss track of Glen after his mother passed as he didn’t need rides from Rainy River to Winnipeg. Maybe I have the names switched.

      Both Harold and Blanch wanted their ashes scattered over the back 40 of their farm. I did Harold’s but had a problem since his fully intact hip bone would not scatter like the ashes, I thought of breaking it into bits, but could not bring myself to do that to Uncle Harold’s hip bone, which even had the socket intact!

      Although Aunt Blanch wanted her’s scattered, Glen ( or maybe it was Morris) took her ashes to Winnipeg. I was hoping they could be together in the end.

      That’s about it Wendy, I just notices I’m a bit late on this but hopefully you’ll get it

      Bill Morrison

      • Thank you for sharing Bill, very much appreciated. I have tried a few times to post this message in September but it just would not go through.
        I would to chat even if through email.

        Thank you,


  6. My grandfather was Sol Decaire. He was the owner of the John Deere dealership in Pinewood, Ontario. My brother Marcel and older sisters Michele and Danielle and I spent many summer in Pinewood in our youth. We are looking for pictures of grandpa`s dealership. Grandpa gave me the award he received from John Deere when he sold the dealership. My Mom, Christine Fouillard(nee Decaire) is still alive and remembers well her youth in Pinewood before she married and moved to St. Lazare, Manitoba.

    • 201 Dove Avenue

      I remeber Sol! as I grew up in Pinewood. He had 2 wooden legs wth holes in them so he’d scare us kids by sticking his fingers in his legs!

      Also, when he got a new car, he have someone take off the muffler so when he shifted he could tell how fast the motor was running by the sound since he had no preception of how far his feet were on the pettals . I heard he had some kind of hoist above his bed to get in and out, but not sure of that.
      Bill Morrison

  7. Mom and I are looking for more information for a project a friend is doing about the Cheese factory in Pinewood, the Calisano and I believe the Barrie family owned and operated it.

  8. I am looking for relatives ho moved to Pinewood around 1890 Alma Johnsson She had a daughter named Mary and Maries Petersson She had adress PR.1 Pinewood Ont. She wap alive 1962 i know. Anyone who knows about the family?

  9. My Great Grandfather, Peter Bassett, owned a farm “near Pinewood”. He came to Rainy River district in about 1903 and died in 1934. I’m trying to locate the exact location of his farm. Can anyone help?

  10. hello to all who send a message i am rita jolicoeur i live in pinewood till 1961 then l got married and move to minn l been in the falls since then rita
    International Falls, MN

  11. Does anyone remember me? Everyone called me Bobo. My real name doesn’t matter because I don’t believe anyone knew it. I used to live in Pinewood for a long time. Now I live in Toronto.

    • Somehow I accidentely stumbled on to this page, then noticing that most people were from this area of Pinewood. I have been searching for any knowledge of my gran Blanche Morrison of Pinewood. Does anyone out there remember this lady, if so please reply to me.
      Thank you

      • Yes I remember Blanche. She was married to my Uncle Harold. Just after her and Harold got married she gave my family a puppy. Later they sold the farm and moved into my grandparents house.

  12. Does anyone remember what kind of cheese was made in Pinewood? My family sold milk to the cheese factory. We moved away in 1951. Nice to see people who share memories of the town of my youth.

  13. I was one of five MNR summer student timber cruisers who stayed at the Pinewood Hotel in the summer of 1970.
    I remember Peanuts (he walked with crutches)and his wife and daughter whose names escape me – and also an old guy who was referred to as X.On one occasion they invited us to their home by the river for dinner after which they drove us to Baudette Minnesota to see the movie Easy Rider.
    I get very nostalgic thinking about those days – especially when I hear the song “You, me and Mexico” that seemed to be on the radio incessantly that summer of long ago.

  14. My Parents were the late Hugh And Sally Morrison we lived in pinewood and we knew everyone mentioned here.Some of our best memories are still there . A big hello to anyone who knows our Family Roberta ,Colleen ,Doug ,Judy ,Mike, Patrick, Holly.You can find us in the phone book in st albert alberta Patrick Morrison.
    St Alberts, AB

    • Your mother, Sally, was my favourite and most remembered teacher of all time. I am now 70. Sally & Hugh were friends of my parents Jake & Hildure Lindal when she taught at McCrossan Tovell Elementory. They moved to Pinewood from the teacher’s cottage and we got a new teacher. Spent much time with Bobbi, Doug and Colleen. Sounds like the family grew much bigger. Lovely to touch base with you. Audrey (Lindal) Strong

  15. I well remember the hotel in Pinewood owned by Peanut Jodoin. My dad, Jake Lindal, would like to stop off at his favourite watering hole and stay there until closing on the way home from his other favourite watering hole in Rainy River. My siblings and I enjoyed our time in Pinewood running around the town until the bar closed, back in the day when there was no worries of being picked up by strangers. My parents would usually meet up there with by my favourite aunt and uncle and cousins. Evelyn Jodoin taught me how to tap dance.
    White Rock, BC

  16. My father grew up in Fort Frances, but spent summers in Pinewood on the farm of Mike and Polly Ward. I have Mike Ward\’s watch and it is the type of watch given to railroad employees. Did Mike work on the railroad?

  17. Pinewood has lots of good memorys for me, my grandparents owned property on the juntion of the Pinewood River and Rainy River. After they past away in the mid sixty my father took ownership of the property. It became our summer home till I left home in the late seventys.

  18. Back in the day…my grandparents ran a camp in Nestor Falls that employed several Pinewood residents, notably the Tatro family over a couple generations as well as a character by the name of Sonny Rouseau. We used to have the old organ from the church but lost that to fire a few years back. Lots of memories of the blue house on Front St.
    Lockport, IL

  19. Hi
    I know the town well. This is were I was born and raised . On the south half of section 18 in the town ship of Patula. We went to school at No 8 Morley School. We would use Horses to go to school. In 1949 we left the farm and moved in the town of Pinewood , at this time the town had a population of 500 +. It had Pentidcton lumber ,Peat moss run by Briggs, five grocery stores,Gerhart had a post buying and peeling and shipping.J.B Desaulniers had a sawmill in partner With his brothe Albert. A massey Harris and John deer dealer ship. Sol Decaire had ths john deere and J/n Sanche had the Massey , he also had the R/R mail rout to Arbour Vita. Pulp wood was constantly being loaded on box carbox car. Home Hotel was own By Peanut”Jodoin”. A good place to wet your whistle, or get your face pushed back if you were looking for a fight. It had a curling rink, dance hall . After I left in 1954 and joind the Arm forces the town went down hill, mainly due to poor politition. In any case when I visit the town it’s in the Cemetery were it is best to go most of the people that I knew are permanent resident and pushing up Daisy.Calisano and a cheese factory along the Rainy River.Not to mention all the nice czrring people to be but just memories

    • Jules,
      I wonder if you remember the Boucher family, and in particular, my father Peter Boucher? He lived in Pinewood until he joined the army in the 40s. Upon his discharge, he moved back to Pinewood until he married my mother, Betty Morrison (also of Pinewood). They eventually moved to Fort Frances.

      • Hi Linda I was just reading all of these comments of Uncle Pavy and Blanche. One of our cousins on the Morrison side is working on family history and asking about Papa, Gordon Morrison. Papa I think was born 1906 deceased October 31, 1977 but we cannot find any records to pass along. Mom (Marlene) passed away many years ago as well as Dad, Bill Terhune. Papa’s name apparently wasn’t Gordon Legally so not sure of his actual first and middle names. Do you remember anything? As well, I remember driving out to the farm in Pinewood many times with Papa as I was the oldest Grandchild so I still remember those times. Mom kept in touch with your Mom right up until she passed. Remembering all the good times. I hope you are well. warmest regards, Leslie Terhune Nadeau.

    • Jules if you knew Jean Baptistery Desaulniers you probably know Moise and Valeda Desaulniers. There property is still in the family. My father Omer grew up there with his brothers Henry and Larry. I spent many summers visiting relatives like the Arpin’s and Tetreault’s and having fun.

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