“Norseman Capital of The World”® Red Lake is a small, Northwestern Ontario community whose history includes early native aboriginal habitation, fur trading, transportation and gold mining Archaeological discoveries provide evidence of the earliest activities here and the records of the great fur trading companies give a glimpse into the period of the first interaction in the area between Europeans and First Nations peoples. Early mineral exploration in the area culminated on July 25, 1925, in a major gold find which would instigate Canada's last gold rush, formally create the community of Red Lake and put it into headlines around the world. One of the consequences was that Red Lake became associated with aviation in a big way. Mining promoter Jack Hammell leased 7 aircraft from the Ontario Government to get supplies into Red Lake before "freeze up". It was the first time that aircraft had been used in the development of mining, as noted by historian J.J. Richthammer in his history of the district.
By 1936, the discovery of more mines in the area created great demands for the movement of freight by waterways, tractor trains and airplanes. Howey Bay, the site of the current Floatplane Festival, was recognized as the busiest airport in the world. Among the aircraft making more than 100 take-offs and landings daily were most early aircraft types, including Junkers giant "Flying Boxcar".
The Noorduyn , first flown in 1935, made its way to Red Lake along with the others and gained a reputation for hard work. No one can document when Red Lake was first called "The Capital of the World", but it was probably in the 50's and 60's when most of today's airworthy s passed through Red Lake one way or another.
The title became official in 1992 when the town's Waterfront Development Committee registered it as an Official Mark of the Township of Red Lake.