Grand Forks

Feature Type:City - A populated place with legally defined boundaries, incorporated as a city municipality under the provincial Municipal Act.
Status:
Name Authority: BC Geographical Names Office
Relative Location: At junction of Kettle and Granby Rivers, W of Trail, Similkameen Division Yale Land District
Latitude-Longitude: 49°01'52''N, 118°26'21''W at the approximate location of the Municipal Hall.
Datum: NAD83
NTS Map: 82E/1

Origin Notes and History:

Grand Forks was incorporated as a City 14 April 1897; the adjacent settlement of Columbia was incorporated as a City 4 May 1899. According to "An Act to amalgamate the cities of Grand Forks and Columbia" (Chapter 29, BC Statutes 1902), the 2 cities were amalgamated under the name of Grand Forks. Grand Forks (City) confirmed 6 October 1955 on 82/SW.

Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office

....originally known as "Grande Prairie", and the area so-labelled on the Royal Engineers March 1862 preliminary map of the International Boundary. [Note that a post office with that name had been open for a decade near Monte Lake, precluding the establishment of a post office named Grande Prairie here.] Grand Forks Post Office was opened 1 January 1895. See also the municipality's own website.

Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office

"This is the fork of the Kettle River and its northern tributary, the Granby River. A butte, 500 feet high and known as Observation Mountain lies in the Forks, just north of town. However "Grand" seems rather an exaggeration." (Rupert W. Haggen, BCLS, Origin of Place Names in Boundary District, 1945 manuscript, file H.1.45.)

Source: included with note