Hazelton, British Columbia

Hazelton
The Corporation of the Village of Hazelton[1]
Village of Hazelton Municipal Office
Village of Hazelton Municipal Office
Hazelton, British Columbia is located in British Columbia
Hazelton, British Columbia
Location of Hazelton in British Columbia
Hazelton, British Columbia is located in Canada
Hazelton, British Columbia
Hazelton, British Columbia (Canada)
Coordinates: 55°15′21″N 127°40′32″W / 55.25583°N 127.67556°W / 55.25583; -127.67556Coordinates: 55°15′21″N 127°40′32″W / 55.25583°N 127.67556°W / 55.25583; -127.67556
CountryCanada
ProvinceBritish Columbia
Regional districtKitimat–Stikine
Government
 • TypeMunicipal corporation
 • MayorDennis Sterritt
Area
 • Total2.80 km2 (1.08 sq mi)
Elevation
305 m (1,001 ft)
Population
 (2016)
 • Total313
 • Density110/km2 (290/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC−08:00 (PST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−07:00 (PDT)
HighwaysHwy 62
WebsiteOfficial website

Hazelton is a village located at the junction of the Bulkley and Skeena Rivers in northern British Columbia, Canada. It was founded in 1866 and in 2011 had a population of 305. The nearby larger community of New Hazelton is the northernmost point of the Yellowhead Highway, a major interprovincial highway which runs from Prince Rupert, British Columbia, to Portage la Prairie, Manitoba.

The Hazelton area comprises two municipalities (the Village of Hazelton and District of New Hazelton), three unincorporated settlements (South Hazelton, Two Mile and the Kispiox Valley), four First Nations’ villages: three of which are of the Gitxsan people (Gitanmaax, Glen Vowell and Kispiox) and A Wetʼsuwetʼen people, the Hagwilget.

First Nations history[]

The Hazeltons are home to the Gitxsan and Wet'suwet'en First Nations.

Old Hazelton and Two Mile[]

Hazelton Hospital 1911

Hazelton is one of the oldest settlements in northern British Columbia; its European settlement dates back to 1866 when the Collins Overland telegraph went through.[4] Hazelton was the original gateway and staging area for the Omineca Gold Rush of 1869-73. It also had the only proper hospital for hundreds of miles in any direction. Another, less appreciated, distinctions was in having dozens of roaming, foraging and howling sled dogs, as nearly everyone had their own team and many were allowed to run free. Transportation options got better in 1891 when the Hudson's Bay Company’s sternwheeler Caledonia arrived from Port Essington. As the head of navigation on the Skeena, Hazelton played host to more than a dozen sternwheelers throughout the next twenty-two years.

Two Mile, a community two miles out of Hazelton, during the gold rush and rail construction had a stopping house and a prosperous red-light district. It currently houses 85% of the population in town.

Soon after 1868 Thomas Hankin, father of Constance Cox marked out a town site at confluence of the Skeena River and the Bulkley River. He named it Hazelton because of the large number of hazelnuts ripening at the time.[5]: 109 

New Hazelton and South Hazelton[]

The Bulkley River (left) flowing into the Skeena River (right) near 'Ksan
Omineca Street

The 1903 announcement that the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway would come through near Hazelton, caused a flurry of excitement and hundreds of settlers poured into the district, buying whatever land they could. Everyone was certain there was a fortune to be made and Hazelton was widely advertised as the "Spokane of Canada". What made Hazelton even more attractive was her mines, the Silver Standard, and the Rocher de Boule. In 1911, two rival townsites, Robert Kelly’s New Hazelton and the Grand Trunk Pacific’s South Hazelton, both came into existence and competed to sell the most lots. Thus, the original Hazelton was called "Old" and together they became known as the "Three Hazeltons". Where the railway station would be built was an issue for many years until both South and New Hazelton received one.

The first car in Hazelton 1911[]

First car in Hazelton

The first car, a Flanders 20, arrived in Hazelton on the evening of October 4, 1911. It came from Seattle. The railway from Prince Rupert would not be completed until 1912, so it was brought in overland from Seattle. None of the people in town believed that story, as it was nearly impossible to walk into Hazelton overland in 1911, much less drive. The next day everyone went to go see the car where it was parked in front of the Hazelton Hotel and questioned the owner, PE Sands, on how he had accomplished the feat. At a banquet held in his honour later that evening, Sands revealed his secret. He had brought along a mechanic and they had often had to disassemble the car and load it onto mules. Clearly they'd had enough of doing that by the time they reached Hazelton. They packed the car up on a sternwheeler and went to Skeena Crossing (Gitsegukla), where the car was loaded on the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway for the trip to Prince Rupert. There the car was loaded on a coastal steamer for the trip back to Seattle. At a banquet given in Seattle by the Pacific Highway Association in November, he was presented with the Challoner & Mitchell trophy, a solid 14 ct. gold medallion in the shape of a small wheel, now owned by the Village of Hazelton. The automobile is now on display at the Kittitas County Historical Museum in Ellensburg, Washington.

Climate[]

Hazelton has a humid continental climate (Köppen climate classification Dfb).[6] Winters are cold but are milder than what the latitude may suggest, owing to Pacific air masses. The average temperature in January is −8.9 °C (16.0 °F) and from December to February, there are an average of 32 days where the maximum temperature reaches or surpasses freezing.[7] However, Arctic air masses can push temperatures below −30.0 °C (−22.0 °F), occurring on average three days per year.[7] The average annual snowfall is 185 cm (72.8 in). Summers are warm, with a July daytime high of 23.3 °C (73.9 °F) although night time temperatures are cool, with a July low of 9.1 °C (48.4 °F). In an average summer, there are seven days where the temperature exceeds 30 °C (86.0 °F).[7] The average annual precipitation is 614 mm (24 in), with March and April being the driest months and October through January being the wetter months.[7] The record high was 36.7 °C (98.1 °F) on August 20, 1977 and the record low was −40.5 °C (−40.9 °F) on January 8, 1991.[7]

Climate data for Hazelton
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 8.9
(48.0)
11.0
(51.8)
17.0
(62.6)
26.7
(80.1)
32.5
(90.5)
34.5
(94.1)
36.0
(96.8)
36.7
(98.1)
32.2
(90.0)
21.5
(70.7)
12.5
(54.5)
8.0
(46.4)
36.7
(98.1)
Average high °C (°F) −5.4
(22.3)
0.1
(32.2)
6.7
(44.1)
13.2
(55.8)
17.5
(63.5)
21.0
(69.8)
23.3
(73.9)
23.0
(73.4)
17.2
(63.0)
9.6
(49.3)
0.6
(33.1)
−4.2
(24.4)
10.2
(50.4)
Daily mean °C (°F) −8.9
(16.0)
−4.5
(23.9)
0.9
(33.6)
6.2
(43.2)
10.5
(50.9)
13.8
(56.8)
16.3
(61.3)
15.9
(60.6)
11.5
(52.7)
5.5
(41.9)
−2.2
(28.0)
−7.1
(19.2)
4.8
(40.6)
Average low °C (°F) −12.3
(9.9)
−9.2
(15.4)
−4.9
(23.2)
−0.8
(30.6)
3.4
(38.1)
6.7
(44.1)
9.1
(48.4)
8.7
(47.7)
5.8
(42.4)
1.3
(34.3)
−5.1
(22.8)
−10.0
(14.0)
−0.6
(30.9)
Record low °C (°F) −40.5
(−40.9)
−35.0
(−31.0)
−30.0
(−22.0)
−11.1
(12.0)
−5.0
(23.0)
−1.1
(30.0)
0.0
(32.0)
−0.5
(31.1)
−4.0
(24.8)
−22.0
(−7.6)
−32.5
(−26.5)
−39.0
(−38.2)
−40.5
(−40.9)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 69.2
(2.72)
37.2
(1.46)
24.2
(0.95)
27.2
(1.07)
41.9
(1.65)
52.6
(2.07)
48.9
(1.93)
49.0
(1.93)
60.9
(2.40)
74.7
(2.94)
64.6
(2.54)
63.7
(2.51)
613.9
(24.17)
Average rainfall mm (inches) 11.7
(0.46)
13.4
(0.53)
13.2
(0.52)
24.9
(0.98)
41.9
(1.65)
52.6
(2.07)
48.9
(1.93)
49.0
(1.93)
60.9
(2.40)
71.9
(2.83)
29.4
(1.16)
11.5
(0.45)
429.1
(16.89)
Average snowfall cm (inches) 57.5
(22.6)
23.8
(9.4)
11.0
(4.3)
2.3
(0.9)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
2.8
(1.1)
35.1
(13.8)
52.2
(20.6)
184.7
(72.7)
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 14.9 11.1 9.8 11.2 14.2 14.1 13.5 13.4 16.1 18.2 16.0 14.5 167.0
Average rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 3.7 4.5 6.5 10.7 14.2 14.1 13.5 13.4 16.1 17.8 8.4 3.4 126.3
Average snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 12.3 7.7 4.4 0.75 0 0 0 0 0 0.92 9.5 12.7 48.2
Source: Environment Canada[7]

Demographics[]

In the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Hazelton had a population of 257 living in 113 of its 125 total private dwellings, a change of -17.9% from its 2016 population of 313. With a land area of 2.89 km2 (1.12 sq mi), it had a population density of 88.9/km2 (230.3/sq mi) in 2021.[8]

Notable people[]

Cataline's Mule Train at Hazelton

Attractions[]

Special events[]

Book references[]

Musical references[]

See also[]

Notes[]

  1. ^ "British Columbia Regional Districts, Municipalities, Corporate Name, Date of Incorporation and Postal Address" (XLS). British Columbia Ministry of Communities, Sport and Cultural Development. Retrieved November 2, 2014.
  2. ^ Village of Hazelton. "Village council". Archived from the original on 2008-05-16. Retrieved 2008-06-16.
  3. ^ Statistics Canada (2006). "Hazelton Community Profile". 2006 Census. Retrieved 2008-06-16.
  4. ^ OurBC.com. "Hazelton". Retrieved 2007-08-13.
  5. ^ Akrigg, G.P.V.; Akrigg, Helen B. (1986), British Columbia Place Names (3rd, 1997 ed.), Vancouver: UBC Press, ISBN 0-7748-0636-2
  6. ^ Kottek, M.; J. Grieser; C. Beck; B. Rudolf; F. Rubel (2006). "World Map of the Köppen-Geiger climate classification updated" (PDF). Meteorol. Z. 15 (3): 259–263. doi:10.1127/0941-2948/2006/0130. Retrieved December 22, 2012.
  7. ^ a b c d e f "Canadian Climate Normals 1971-2000". Environment Canada. Retrieved December 22, 2012.
  8. ^ "Population and dwelling counts: Canada, provinces and territories, and census subdivisions (municipalities), British Columbia". Statistics Canada. February 9, 2022. Retrieved February 20, 2022.

External links[]