Manitoba

Sherridon historic hotel fire under investigation

A fire that destroyed a historic hotel in Sherridon, Man., over the weekend is being treated as suspicious, say RCMP.
The Hotel Cambrian was engulfed in flames by the time fire crews arrived early Saturday morning. RCMP say they are treating the blaze as suspicious. (Bonnie Hatch)

A fire that destroyed a historic hotel in northern Manitoba over the weekend is being treated as suspicious, say RCMP.

The Hotel Cambrian in Sherridon, Man., was engulfed in flames by the time RCMP and local fire crews were called at around 6:30 a.m. CT on Saturday.

RCMP are treating the fire as suspicious because the building was unoccupied at the time and there was no power connected to it, Sgt. Line Karpish told CBC News.

No one was hurt in the fire. Police did not have a damage estimate as of Sunday.

The provincial fire commissioner's office is helping police with the investigation.

Sherridon is located 93 kilometres by road north of Cranberry Portage, Man., and more than 700 kilometres north of Brandon.

Dates back to 1920s

The four-storey Hotel Cambrian dates back to the 1920s, when the community of Sherridon was created at the site of a northern mining operation.

The hotel remained after the rest of the original community was shipped to Lynn Lake in the early 1950s, says John Leclair, an amateur historian from Cranberry Portage.

"The whole town disappeared, was just shipped 180 miles. But the Cambrian Hotel, of course, being a four-storey hotel, was far too large," he told CBC News.

"I mean, they shipped the whole town up: banks, schools, houses, everything."

Leclair said he toured the Hotel Cambrian in the 1990s with his friend, Walter Shmon, who owned the building at the time.

"Walter showed me places where, like, so-and-so got shot here in 1938," he said.

"It was like it hadn't been touched since 1930. The beds were still vintage; [there was] all the original linoleum."

The hotel fell into disrepair over the past decade, after Shmon fell ill and passed away, Leclair said.

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