George Little House - National Historic Site of Canada
In the spring of 1905, George Little left the hustle and bustle of the Yukon Gold Rush and snowshoed over the Kitimat Trail to the shores of the Skeena River. As he gazed over the magical vista he envisioned a life of opportunity. When the government opened the land for sale George staked his claim on acres including the site, which Terrace stands today. He established a homestead and sawmill in response to the needs of the new railway and donated nine acres of land so a new railway station could be built, transforming Terrace into a busy commercial hub. George married Clara Beste in 1912 and together they raised a family of five children. Nearly one year before his death in 1955, George rode the first Canadian National Railway train to make the Terrace – Kitimat run over the route he first snowshoed nearly half a century earlier.
Several years ago, the City of Terrace restored George Little’s home to its original state and moved its location to the bottom of Kalum Street. The building that was once home to our city's founder, now welcomes train passengers as the VIA Rail Station. Here you’ll also find local handicrafts, cultural artifacts, and antiques. On Sundays in the summer be sure to peruse the Flea Market full of eclectic finds and hidden treasures.
George Little Park and Spirit Square
At the heart of the community is Terrace’s landmark park, preserved in the memory of the town’s founder, George Little. This central gathering place celebrates its 100th year in 2011. With lots of room to move and play, you can throw a Frisbee or take in a workout at the Green Gym; the outdoor fitness training centre while the kids test their skills in the miniature skate park or frolic in the playground. Majestic mountains envelop this park making it a welcoming spot for anything from small family picnics to large community gatherings centering around the newly constructed Spirit Square and outdoor stage. George Little Park is also the site of the Public Library, Art Gallery, as well as, the Farmer’s Market, which takes place on Saturdays from May to October.
Heritage Park Museum
When people think of Terrace's history the word “mutiny” is likely not top of mind. Yet during the Second World War the soldiers of the 15th Brigade were part of one of the most serious breaches of discipline in the history of the Canadian military. Word leaked out that Prime Minister Mackenzie King had decided to enforce conscription and so a demonstration in our city streets ensued. More details on the famous mutiny can be found at Heritage Park Museum along with many other interesting stories from Terrace’s past.
Upon entering this beautifully restored village, you’ll truly feel as if you’ve stepped back into time. With eight historical log buildings to explore, you’ll find fascinating artifacts that offer a rare glimpse into the life of pioneers in the early 1900’s. Imagine the early settlers making coffee on the wood stoves, using the crosscut saws to clear land and ploughs to plant their first crops.
The Old Bridge - National Historic Site of Canada
The Old Bridge is an historical feat of engineering that once boasted the title as the longest, single lane, wood decked, curved bridge in North America. Constructed to allow people and vehicles to easily cross the Skeena River, the rock outcroppings under the bridge became a formidable obstacle for the sternwheelers. As such, ringbolts were anchored in the rocks to help the riverboats navigate their way safely through the canyon on their journey upstream. These ringbolts are still visible in the rocks at the west end of the bridge.
The Kwinitsa Foreman’s Residence and Grand Trunk Pathway
Explore the only residential building of the Canadian National Railway known to survive the area. The Kwinitsa Foreman’s Residence was home to a succession of foremen who worked at the Kwinitsa station (71.5 km west of Terrace) and supported the rail line between Terrace and Prince Rupert. In summertime indulge in a cool treat while enjoying the mountain vista from the adjoining patio.
You can also take a stroll along The Grand Trunk Pathway, taken from the name of the first railroad to forge across the north. Ideal for walking, jogging, cycling or rollerblading, this 1.6 km paved walkway runs parallel to Hwy 16 and features a series of interpretive signs that provide interesting details on historical events and monuments. Locals call it ‘The Millennium Trail’ as it officially opened in 2000.
The Kitsumgallum Cemetery
Here rests many of our pioneer ancestors including George Little and his family. The Kitsumgallum Cemetery is located at the top of the first hill on Kalum Lake Drive. Next to the cemetery you’ll find an original trail that looks out across the valley.
East of Terrace along Hwy 16 stands the Usk Chapel, a charming little replica of a church that was destroyed in the great 1936 flood. While you're there be sure to take a ride on the Usk Ferry, a rare reaction powered ferry that travels across the Skeena River to the rural community of Usk. Its history dates back to 1912 with the building of the right-of-way for the Canadian Pacific Railway.