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Fisherville | Fort Steele, British Columbia

Historic or Prehistoric Place, Historic Site

Visitors can take a step back to 1864 when this area was a bustling flurry of activity. Gold was found in Wild Horse Creek during that time and thousands of people journeyed here hoping to find the mother lode. Fisherville once boasted six general stores, four saloons, numerous restaurants and hundreds of gold miners’ shacks and tents. All that remains today are remnants of old graveyards and mining activities. The original name of Wild Horse Creek was 'Stud Horse Creek.' According to local historian Naomi Miller, the government officials of the day felt the words of 'stud horse' were too 'unseemly' to be written on a map.

Remnants of a Chinese cabin near Wild Horse Creek. – Fort Steele Heritage Town Archives, FS 5.0444

Driving Directions from Nearest Town or Landmark

From Fort Steele Heritage Town on Highway 93/95, turn east onto Wardner-Fort Steele Road, then north onto Wildhorse Creek Mining Road. The Wildhorse Creek Mining Road starts on the left-hand side just as the Wardner-Fort Steele Road begins its decent toward Wildhorse Creek. There are a few suggested parking areas and suggested hiking routes.

Just a short distance from Fort Steele Heritage Town is the route of the last miles of the Dewdney Trail, the first all-Canadian route across southern British Columbia, completed in 1865. At its end is the site of Fisherville, one of the first towns in the East Kootenay. Fisherville was named after Jack Fisher, a leader of one of the first groups of miners in the area. By 1865, there were up to 5,000 miners at Wild Horse Creek and Fisherville was booming. When it was discovered that the gravel bench which the town was built on was rich in gold, the buildings were demolished by the miners in a wild quest for the gold. The town was moved further up the hill.

Historical Time Period for Site