Main Street, Uranium City in the fog

Uranium City Past and Present

Welcome to the Uranium City History website, covering past and present.

Uranium City is located in the northernmost corner of Saskatchewan. Originally a Cold War town, Uranium City came to life in the early 1950s, rapidly growing to more than a dozen mines, some with townsites for their own, and reached a population of nearly 10,000. By the 1960s, Canadian uranium could no longer be used for military purposes, and Uranium City supplied ore Canada’s Candu Reactor, then just beginning to come online.

The sudden closure of its last mine, the mammoth Beaverlodge Mine owned and run by Eldorado Nuclear, in 1982, saw the towns’s population plunge from 4000 to less than 400. Since then Uranium City has survived as, variously, a regional hub, the site of ongoing exploration, and mine reclamation. Tourism also supplies some visitors who come to fish in the many lakes, hunt in season, and generally enjoy some of the most spectacular landscape in Canada, if not the world. Depending on the time of year, 50 – 80 residents remain.

This site is dedicated to the history and present of Uranium City and area, and history of the Canadian North generally. For a general Uranium City history, please visit our About Page.

Latest Posts

  • Uranium City Main Street, 1959

    Del Trobak’s Photographs Of Rix-Athabsca Mine and Uranium City 57-60

    click on any image to open lightbox These photographs come from Del Trobak. Most are included in his piece on living in Uranium City and working at the Rix Athabasca Mine from 1957 to 1960, but I couldn’t fit in all of them due to space. @copyright Del Trobak.

  • Shooting Our Way Back Home

       We circled Uranium City three times before landing, alternating two cameras between myself, David Segerts and Ole Gjerstad, a director and producer from Montreal. Dave, whose mother, stepfather and half-brother still lived in town, hadn’t been back in seven years and his face veered between elation and perplexity as he described seeing the town […]

  • McIntyre Powder Project

    From 1943 to approximately 1979, miners in gold and uranium mines were ‘treated’ before their shift with something called ‘McIntyre Powder aluminum powder’. Apparently miners at the Beaverlodge Mine were among those treated. From the website: The McIntyre Powder Project is a voluntary registry to document health issues (particularly neurological) in miners or other workers who […]

  • Dr. Colin Dafoe, Dogsled Doctor

    All photos from the collection of Brian Jeffrey Street, courtesy of the Dafoe family. TPW_ExcerptsDownload A few weeks ago, I received an email from Jeffrey Street, a writer based in Ottawa, offering to send me a chapter from his book ‘The Parachute Ward‘. Doctor Colin Scott Dafoe is best known for working with Josip Tito’s […]

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    Manpower Adjustment Report, circa 1982

    What a title. Again, courtesy of Brian Howell. Incredible amount of information on both – this report is 109 pages long and contains abbreviated histories of the Eldorado Company, Beaverlodge, and Uranium City as well as breakdowns of everything from the costs to ‘Reaction To Closure’ to compensation to the minutes of the Manpower Committee. […]

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    Eldorado Miner’s Study

    Courtesy of Brian Howell. The full title: Microsoft Word – RSP-0205 final report-a.doc UPDATED ANALYSIS OF THE ELDORADO URANIUM MINERS’ COHORT: PART I OF THE SASKATCHEWAN URANIUM MINERS’ COHORT STUDY published 2006 From the introduction: “This report presents the results of the statistical analysis of a cohort of 17,660 individuals known to have worked for […]

  • Rix Athabasca Headframe, 1959

    My Memories of Rix Athabasca Mines and Uranium City 1957 – ’60

    By Del Trobak Deckman dumping ore from a cart. All photos courtesy of Del Trobak. @copyright Del Trobak, except “a miner’s dream” @copyright Rio Tinto. ‘Rix Athabasca From the air courtesy of Edgar Oliver. I was born in East- Central Saskatchewan, and raised on a farm.  After graduating high school in 1956, I worked as […]

  • Uranium City #1 – in Cold Weather

    Temperatures in Uranium City dropped below -48.9C yesterday making it the coldest place in Canada (with Key Lake and Fort Chipewyan in close second and third, with -48.2 and -47.2 respectively), which was also a record for the Uranium City weather station. Last time I was up, in February 2003, it was somewhere very close […]

Uranium City Weather:

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Humidity: 63%

Conditions: overcast clouds

Humidity: 63%

Feels Like: -33.94°C

Latest Places

  • Gunnar Mines, early 1960s

    Gunnar Mines Part 1

  • Goldfields, Saskatchewan, circa mid -'30s

    Goldfields: The First Boom Town

  • Cover of Patricia Sandberg's Sun Dogs and Yellowcake

    Sun Dogs and Yellowcake, Extract from Chapter 8: 

  • Rix Athabasca Headframe, 1959

    My Memories of Rix Athabasca Mines and Uranium City 1957 – ’60

  • Dr. Colin Dafoe, Dogsled Doctor

Latest Photos

  1. My Father Charlie somers owned the UC bus lines. I was born in the hospital 1959. I have many fond…