Settling in Hardy

The first family to move to Hardy was Graham Medley and his wife Maria. Medley, a surveyor for Falconbridge Nickel Mines Limited, was preparing line maps for the construction of future establishments in the area. Soon to follow were the Wainwrights, the Bellses, the Crawfords, the Smiths, the McCullums, the Rhudes, the Asselstines, and the Mutches. In 1955, E.G. Jarvis moved his family to Hardy and took up residence in one of the new homes in Hardy Heights. By this point, two apartment blocks had been completed and plans were under way for the expansion of the town over Fraser Hill.

In 1953 or 1954, the A. Earl Hodge Store was opened in one of the two-bedroom houses and its first manager was Joe Dumont. Prior to the establishment of the grocery store, residents of Hardy were forced to travel to Levack in order to purchase needed supplies. "Uncle Earl", as Mr. Hodge was affectionately known, implemented an arrangement with the Falconbridge Nickel Mine that allowed mine workers to have the cost of their purchase at the store deducted from their next paycheque. This system was of great value to the townspeople, especially when on-hand funds were running short.

The Hardy Mine was in full operation by 1953 and the demand for houses began to skyrocket as more and more men sought employment at the mine. By 1955, the town was well-established and the mine was thriving. However, government officials refused to view the town of Hardy as little more than a mining camp and would not provide government assistance or approval for various intended projects. Even the local school board refused to establish a public school in the community for fear that the settlement would soon be abandoned. Despite the negative reactions to their community, the residents of Hardy pushed forward and managed to succeed in building necessary additions and expansions.


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