The Gunflint Cross is a memorial to one of the men of helped construct the PAD&W and who tragically lost his life.
In the fall of 1892, work was progressing on the line along the western shore of Gunflint Lake. The year had been a very difficult one for construction, with the crews having to blast many rock cuts and build many trestles. On October 8th, a crew was blasting a rock cut approximately 1.5 miles west of Leeblain. The men set a number of charges to blow the rock, but not all of them went off. They returned after a period of time to inspect the situation and unfortunately the remaining explosives detonated, instantly killing Joseph Montegia (his name is spelled incorrectly in the article below). He was buried in St. Andrew’s Cemetery in Port Arthur and left behind his wife of two years, Anna.
To commemorate his death, his friends carved a cross in the rock cut near where he died. This moving tribute still adorns the side of the rock cut all these years later, a silent and moving monument to all the men who laboured to build the railway.
Link to the 1911 map.
There are a few videos of the Gunflint Cross from 1997 to the present in the YouTube playlist below.