AER Graphic

Home ButtonIntro ButtonRoster ButtonTime Line ButtonTour ButtonToday ButtonSaving ButtonHeritage ButtonLinks ButtonChanges Button

AER Logo


Algoma Eastern Railway Timeline

 As you look over this time line, you can't help but notice how closely the railway and its biggest customer, Inco Ltd. are linked. 
Year AER Event AER Customer or Local Event Outside Event
1884   Mineral occurrences at the Elsie and Worthington mine sites located by Francis Charles Crean  

          Nov. 7



Mineral occurrence at the Crean Hill mine site located by Francis Charles Crean. 

The last spike is driven on the CPR transcontinental main line at Craigellachie B.C

1886   Creighton & Victoria mineral occurrences discovered by Henry Ranger  
1888 Manitoulin & North Shore Railway first incorporated.     
1892   Gertrude Mine mineral occurrence was discovered by William McVittie and George Jackson  
1899   Lake Superior Power Co. bought the Gertrude Mine and Elsie Mines and began construction of a smelter and converter at Gertrude.  Construction started on the The Algoma Central and Hudson Bay Railway.
1900  Mar. 


          Aug. 15

M&NS granted federal charter. 
Construction of M&NS begins in Sudbury



Regular service starts over the 3'0" gauge White Pass and Yukon Railway.




First stage completed from Sudbury to Gertrude Mine (13.5 miles) 
M&NS owned spur built south from McKerrow on CPR Webbwood subdivision to service new Spanish River Pulp & Paper Company mill site.  Spur is leased to the CPR. 


Elsie Mine Opens.  
First ore shipped from Creighton Mine.




  Construction of Spanish River Pulp & Paper Company mill at Espanola started. 
Gertrude Smelter completed. 
Elsie Mine closed.

          Oct. 24

Haight & Dickson Lumber Company Spur (Mile 10) built.  Same spur services North Star Mine  Lake Superior Corporation collapses (Gertrude & Elsie Mines close).


The National Transcontinental Railway Act is passed.

1905   . Spanish River Pulp and Paper Company mill at Espanola finished. 
Crean Hill Mine opened


Construction begins on the remainder of the main line. 
First new locomotive (No. 27) purchased
1910  Jul. 20 Construction completed to Crean Hill (Mile 22)    

          May 19

Construction reaches Espanola. 
M&NS name changed to Algoma Eastern Railway. 
M&NS locomotive No. 27 changed to AER No. 50.
191x Connection to Canadian Northern built.    

          Sep. 27 

AER Locomotive  No. 40 acquired.  
40 Ton Boxcars 351-375 acquired from Canadian Car & Foundry
AER Locomotive No. 51 acquired. 
Pier Work Contract for Little Current swing Bridge awarded to the Foundation Co.
Gertrude & Elsie sold to J.J. McFadden   



          May 01 

          Jun. 04 

          Sep. 15 


          Oct. 01 

AER passenger trains in Sudbury commence departing from downtown Canadian Northern Depot. 

AER Locomotive No. 52 acquired. 
Construction reaches Turner (Mile 86) 
First Passenger Service to Espanola 
Pier Work for Little Current Swing Bridge completed. 
Line to Goat Island (Turner) opened. 
Little Current Swing Bridge completed and track laid into Little Current (Mile 87.1) 
First train to Sudbury from Manitoulin Island


British American Nickel incorporated. 

1914 All line construction completed.    World War I begins.
1915 Inco Roast Yards at O'Donnell (Mile 17.5) opened    
1916 AER Locomotives Nos. 53 & 54 acquired.    
1917 Nickelton Station (Mile 4.2) Appears.     
1918  Jan. 

          Nov. 11

  Crean Hill Mine closes. 
Construction begins on British-American nickel smelter.


World War I ends.

1920   BANC smelter at Nickelton begins operation.  
1921 AER Locomotives Nos. 55 & 56 acquired.    


Only head on collision in AER history takes place north of Birch Island. 
AER passenger trains in Sudbury move to CPR station. 
BANC smelter closes. 
British-American Nickel declares bankruptcy. 
1927 Oct. 4-19 CPR traffic re-routed on AER until repairs to roadbed are completed. Worthington Mine collapses and is abandoned.  
1928 Little Current Coal Dock extended 400'.    
1929 CNR interchange rebuilt and moved from Mile 1 to Mile 2.8 
Two trestles north of O'onnell replaced with concrete culverts.
Espanola Paper Mill shuts down.  Loss of one train per day Ontario Law passed forbidding outdoor ore roasting.
1930 Jun. 01 



AER leased by CPR for 999 years. 
Sudbury shops and yard operations closed. 
CPR abandons sixteen miles between Turbine and Espanola.
1932 Algoma Eastern Terminals Head Office moved from Sault Ste Marie to Montreal    
1935 CPR abandons line from Turbine to O'Donnell    
1939  Sep. 3     World War II begins
194x Track abandoned from O'Donnel to Gertrude    
1943 Inco opens Lawson Quarry.    
1945     World War II Ends
1946 Nov. 28 Little Current Bridge opened to automobile traffic.    
195x Track abandoned from Gertrude to Creighton    
1956   INCO Iron Ore Recovery Plant at Copper Cliff commences operation.  
1958 Algoma Eastern Railway Corporation dissolved.  All undertakings invested in CPR.    
1963  Mar. 30 Last mixed train between Sudbury and Little Current.  Passenger service to Little Current ends.    
1991   INCO closes Iron Ore recovery plant.  Iron ore loading dock at Turner is abandoned.  
1996 Little Current Subdivision identified by CPR as candidate for abandonment.    
1997  Jul. 29 Huron Central begins operation on first 2.95 miles of Little Current     
1998 Nov. AER Heritage Group formed to save Little Current Spur.    
 As more information comes to light this timeline will be updated.

Home   Introduction  The AER Roster   Tour the AER
The AER Today Saving the Little Current Sub   The AER Heritage Group   Links  Changes