It was one of those murky days as I made my way through the town of Dorset and noticing the S.S. Bigwin steamship moored at the town docks with not a soul around.
A little history – In 1910 James Kuhn a Pittsburgh, PA industrialist launched a steamship on Lake Muskoka named after his wife Ella Marie. They spent their summers on Belle Isle (recently destroyed) just north of Beaumaris on Lake Muskoka. After experiencing financial difficulty the Ella Marie was sold some 15 years later and relocated to the Lake of Bays where she served as the ferry boat for Bigwin Island for the next 45 years.
At 66ft in length and a registered 25 tons the S.S. Bigwin would carry guests such as Clark Gable, Louis Armstrong, Winston Churchill, Greta Garbo and many other famous people out to the world-class Bigwin Inn on Bigwin island. Around 1970 the Bigwin Inn went out of business and the steamship was left to rot in her slip. In 1991 the Dwight Fire Department floated her to a local dock and then hauled her onto a property in Port Cunnington where restoration started in 2002.
The S. S. Bigwin was relaunched again on July 10, 2010.
The Bigwin Floats Again