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Timmins history: Boards of Trade merge into the Timmins Chamber of Commerce

With the new board of the Timmins Chamber of Commerce settling into office, this week’s examination of Timmins history looks back at the Chamber.

Museum director-curator Karen Bachmann says beginning in 1912, there were boards of trade in Timmins, South Porcupine and Porcupine to give merchants and business owners a stake in how the communities developed.  They ran parallel to municipal councils, dealing with similar or the same issues.

“Things like timetables for the trains – we don’t like them,” says Bachmann, “the postmaster should be open more; we need to fix some of the roads; all of these kinds of things. So these two organizations kind of run simultaneously.”

The boards of trade and came together to create the Timmins Chamber of Commerce in 1949.

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Bachmann says there are several initiatives to which the Chamber can lay claim.

“The airport is one. There was a lot of work done by the Chamber of Commerce on the development of the airport, making sure that it was here in Timmins as opposed to Porquis Junction, where it was thought to be as the best spot for an airport for this area.”

The airport opened in 1955.

The museum itself traces its origins to the Chamber.  From the 1930s onward, it collected material. It was handed over in 1972 to the group that started the museum, which opened in ’75.

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