The earliest settlement in the Petawawa area was inhabited by the Algonquin First Nation. The name of Petawawa originates from a local Algonquin language word, biidaawewe, meaning “where one hears a noise like this”. The spelling of the name of the town was Petewawa until at least 1916. There are no sources showing when the official name was changed from Petewawa to Petawawa, but photographs after 1916 with the former spelling have not been found. While the records of the official name change are non-existent, it has been speculated that the influx of immigration to the area changed the pronunciation of the word from its native roots to a more European pronunciation. Over time this may have changed the spelling of the Town’s name into the present day format.
In the late 19th century, the area was surveyed and settled by emigres from Scotland, Ireland and Germany. The land was unsuitable for crops, but the heavily forested surroundings were useful for logging. The Canadian military acquired land in the area in 1905, which later became Canadian Forces Base Petawawa. During this period it was used as an internment camp for German POWs during World War II. Later, it became home to the Canadian Airborne Regiment before it was disbanded in 1995. Today, it is one of Canada’s largest ground forces bases with members deployed throughout the world on various missions supporting the United Nations in peacekeeping or the War on Terror.
Petawawa was incorporated as a township in 1865. An Internment camp was set up at the Militia Camp in Petawawa from December 1914 to May 1916.
In 1961, the urban area of Petawawa was incorporated as a separate village. On July 1, 1997, the village and township re-amalgamated to form the Town of Petawawa.
Other Useful Links
Pembroke Daily Observer Newspaper http://www.thedailyobserver.ca/
Pembroke Public Library http://www.pembrokelibrary.ca/
Ottawa River Power Corporation http://www.orpowercorp.com/
Establishing New Utility Service http://www.ppines.com/index.aspx?NID=1044
Health Care Connect
Health Care Connect helps assist Ontarians in finding a family doctor. People who are without a family doctor are referred to medical professionals such as nurse practitioners who are accepting new patients within the community. Register by phone at 1-800-445-1822
Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP)
http://www.health.gov.on.ca/en/public/programs/ohip/ or call their info line at 1-866-532-3161
Renfrew County and District Health Unit http://www.rcdhu.com/
Hospitals & Medical Clinics
Pembroke Regional Hospital http://www.pemreghos.org/
Pembroke Lakeside Medical Walk-In Clinic https://plus.google.com/112111446931965803916/about?hl=en