Hougen Group


Maurice Haycock, former head of the Geological Survey of Canada, painter, musician, 1981.

Dr. Maurice Haycock

Dr. Maurice Haycock wasn’t a Yukoner, but he could have been. I first met him in 1964 when he accompanied his friend A.Y. Jackson to Whitehorse on one of their many northern painting expeditions together.

At the time, Mr. Jackson, the most famous Group of Seven painter, was approaching his 80th year. He needed the help of his friend and fellow artist, Maurice Haycock, who was 18 years younger. I met Jackson and Haycock in the Stratford Motel as they were preparing for a trip to Lake Lebarge to do, as Haycock always said, “some sketching.”

I was interviewing Jackson for local radio, and recall that I didn’t ask many questions. The famous artist was well prepared to discuss his life-long painting association with the north. He talked for about an hour.

Maurice Haycock, I learned when I accompanied him to Lake Laberge with A.Y. Jackson, was a trained geologist who fell in love with the north when he spent a year in Pangnirtung on Baffin Island in 1926.

He had gone there to assist in mapping the interior of the arctic island for the Geological Survey of Canada.

He lived with the Inuit, learned the language, journeyed by dog team and, when he returned south, he earned a Ph.D. in Economic Geology at Princeton University.

The inspiration for Haycock’s painting career came from the Arctic landscapes, and through a chance meeting with A.Y. Jackson, who was painting the north in 1927 while travelling on the government ship, the Beothic.

Following a visit to Great Bear Lake in 1949 with Jackson, he travelled and painted extensively across the north, virtually every year until his death in 1988.

To many in the art world, he became the eighth member of the Group of Seven. His paintings tell a story of geological vastness and beauty, of peace, challenge and exploration.

Dr. Maurice Haycock was more than a painter. He was a trained mineralogist, geologist, photographer, musician, and historian. He was, when I knew him in Ottawa in the 1980s, a virtual encyclopedia of both northern science and folklore.


I had many occasions to talk with him and glean his knowledge about the north that he so willingly gave for radio programs. One day at his home, he showed me sketches that he had recently made in the Yukon.


At the time, he was turning the sketches into full-blown oil paintings. Though the sketches were crude and quickly done, I could identify many of the Yukon scenes.

A few years previous, Rolf and Margaret Hougen had invited him to come to the Yukon to paint whatever he wanted. Haycock’s work had come to the attention of Marg Hougen, who had bought one of his paintings during the trip with A.Y. Jackson in 1964.

This time, Rolf wanted Dr. Haycock to paint the rest of the Yukon and provided a motor home in Inuvik so that he could drive down the Dempster Highway, painting and sketching. The Haycocks spent several days in Dawson City, Carmacks and Fort Selkirk.

They drove the Canol Road painting all the way. Rolf Hougen remembers that Dr. Haycock did about one hundred paintings, one of which appeared on the cover of the NorthwesTel phone book in 1986.

It is called “The Peel River Valley and the Ogilvie Range from the Dempster Highway.”

Maurice Haycock died on December 23, 1988, at the age of 88 years, in Ottawa, where he is remembered as the Artist of the Arctic.

A CKRW Yukon Nugget by Les McLaughlin

DC3 Weather Vane

My first airplane flight came in 1954 when I flew from Whitehorse to Dawson City where I would spend the summer holidays with my brother who was the Canadian Pacific airlines agent in the gold rush city.

Was the aircraft used on that flight the DC3 which now serves as the most unique weather vane in the world? Maybe. I’ll bet Bob Cameron knows!

Locals may be so used to the Canadian Pacific aircraft which sits on a pedestal at the airport that they barely notice it anymore. But next time you drive by, have a closer look at history.

On December 17th 1935, the first DC 3 took its maiden flight and marked the first time that airline operators could make money simply by carrying passengers. Between 1935 and 1947 the Douglas Aircraft Company built over ten thousand DC3. Today there are still almost a 1,000 in flying condition.

The Douglas aircraft at the Whitehorse airport was built in 1942 and spent the rest of World War two in the camouflage colours of the US air force flying in India as part of the India-China Wing of Air Transport Command.

Back then it was called a C47, but when the war ended, the plane was sold to Grant McConachie’s newly established Canadian Pacific Airlines. The plane was converted to a civilian DC 3 and issued the Canadian registration number CF-CPY.

The plane flew southern routes in Canada until CPA upgraded their mainliners to bigger aircraft in the mid ‘50s. Then it came to the Yukon for service on the Dawson-Mayo-Whitehorse route. In 1960 the plane was sold to Connelly Dawson Airways and for the next six years she hauled supplies into the northern Yukon including oil exploration camps in Eagle Plains.


In 1966, the plane was purchased by Great Northern Airways based in Whitehorse and did a lot of bush flying until her last flight in November 1970. Finally, it was donated to the Yukon Flying club which in 1977 came up with an eye-catching idea.


The plane would be restored to its original Canadian Pacific Airline colours for permanent display at the Whitehorse Airport. The unveiling took place in 1981 after four years of meticulous work by volunteers.

Pivoting on its base, the aircraft always points into the wind. And it is so precise that it will rotate with only a minor breeze.

In 1998, after nearly eighteen years on the stand, the plane was removed for a second restoration. It took three years and almost fifteen hundred hours of volunteer labour before CF-CPY was ready to be reinstalled on the original pedestal on September 16, 2001.

It is likely to be flying on the pedestal for the next twenty years or so with her brilliant white, black and red colour scheme of Canadian Pacific Airlines - 1950s vintage.

A CKRW Yukon Nugget by Les McLaughlin


L to R Niki & Bill Weigand, Lillias Farley, Niki Harrison, Jeanne Maddison, Marg Hougen, Maurice Haycock, Ted Harrison, Hank Maddison, Jlo & Jim Whyard, 1981.

Maurice & Kay Haycock

A gathering in the Hougen home in honour of Maurice & Kay Haycock. L to R Niki & Bill Weigand, Lilias Farley, Niki Harrison, Jeanne Maddison, Marg Hougen, Maurice Haycock, Ted Harrison, Hank Maddison, Flo & Jim Whyard.

L to R: Maureen, Greta, Karen, Margaret, Gran Hougen, Rolf, Craig, Kelly & Erik, 1981.

Christmas Greetings

This 1981 Christmas photo shows L to R: Maureen, Greta, Karen, Margaret, Gran Hougen, Rolf, Craig, Kelly & Erik in front of the fireplace in the Hougen home on Rogers Street, Whitehorse. Grandfather Berent Hougen died in 1977.



Rolf and Margaret Hougen's dining room walls are lined with liqueur bottles that he has collected from over 65 countries around the world. In his office at Hougen's Department Store, among other things, is a tusk and a jaw bone from a mastodon 22,000 years old, which came from the Klondike Goldfields in Dawson City. Up on a shelf is an antique radio and gramophone. The tall, blonde Canadian born Norwegian grew up in Whitehorse, which some now refer to as Hougenville, and he admits that at least two or three businesses will be offered to him this year. He is the entrepreneur of the north, but unlike others who came to this fascinating land, with its anticipatory sense of adventure, Hougen has always planned to stay. He likes it. And 1981 may be the year that the first Canadian multi-channel package will be offered to remote areas across Canada.

The package initiated by Hougen and called Cancom, will be heard by the CRTC in February. It involves the leasing of four transponders from Anik A-3 (Telesat) to carry the programs of CHAN-TV Vancouver, CITV Edmonton, CHCH Hamilton, and the TVA network in Quebec. The partnership involves Dr, Charles Allard, chairman of Allarco Broadcasting Co. Ltd., Philippe de Gaspe Beaubien, head of Telemedia Communications Ltee., J Stuart MacKay, president of Selkirk Communications Ltd. and J Raymond Peters, president of British Columbia Broadcasting Co. Ltd. in Vancouver.

Salmon cooked the traditional way over a camp fire, 1981.

Board of Directors, Finning

On Oct 19 the Board of Directors held their meeting in Port Hardy, Vancouver Island, to celebrate the opening of a new Finning facility. They were hosted by the local Indian band, which served salmon cooked the traditional way over a camp fire. See Photo.

Arts Building at Dalhousie University, 1981.

Karen Hougen, Dalhousie University

Karen Hougen in front of the Arts Building at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

L to R Dr. Charles Allard owner of CITV; Stuart McKay president of CHCH; Rolf Hougen chairman & CEO of Cancom, Bob Short, president of Cancom, Ray Peters, Pres BCTV & Phillipe de Gaspe Beabien, President of Telemedia of Montreal, 1981.

Canadian Radio Television Commission

April 14 - Rolf Hougen chairman received word today that the Canadian Radio Television Commission (CRTC) has approved the Cancom application to deliver four television signals - BCTV of Vancouver; CHCH of Hamilton; CITV of Edmonton and TCTV Montreal French Service to remote & underserved regions of Canada. The CRTC also approved Cancom carrying CHON FM radio signals. Seen in the photo is: L to R Dr. Charles Allard owner of CITV; Stuart McKay president of CHCH; Rolf Hougen chairman & CEO of Cancom, Bob Short, president of Cancom, Ray Peters, Pres BCTV & Phillipe de Gaspe Beabien, President of Telemedia of Montreal. Photo April 22, 1981

Consul. General & Mme Paul Bazin visited Whitehorse, 1981.

Consul. General and Mme Paul Bazin

Consul. General & Mme Paul Bazin visited Whitehorse. They attended the Frantic Follies, went underground at the Whitehorse Copper Mine, took a tour on the M.V. Schwatka, toured Whitehorse with Rene Alford & Mrs. Alstrom, visited Ted & Niki Harrison and were hosted by Marg & Rolf for wine & cheese. Seen here is M Bazin removing the garter at the Frantic Follies.

Cominco Inc built a lead zinc mill on a barge in Trois Riviere, Quebec, 1981.

Cominco Incorporated

Cominco Inc built a lead zinc mill on a barge in Trois Riviere, Quebec and towed this 160 foot, 1452 ton barge the 3500 miles in 40 days to its destination on Little Corwallis Island in the High Arctic. The mill will process the ore year round. The concentrate will be shipped to world markets in a short 6 week season in August & September. Rolf Hougen attended.

The Whitehorse Star Reports in 1981

January 6, 1981 A meteor shower seen in the Yukon in the beginning of the new year turns out to be a falling Russian rocket
January 6, 1981 Jack and Wilma Brewster of Haines Junction are named Mr. and Mrs. Yukon for 1981.
January 12, 1981 A group of Whitehorse residents plan to apply for a licence to operate a stereo-FM radio station.
January 13, 1981 An interim CTV service is announced to become available for communities that do not have CTV. Full range service is announced for later that year. One contender is Orbitel Communications in which Rolf Hougen is involved.
January 15, 1981 The Mayo Indian Band opens their own school. Although the school follows the B.C. curriculum, children are also taught extras such as how to make and use snowshoes, set traps and survive in the bush.
February 2, 1981 Justice Minister Doug Graham resignes from his job after discovering he is under investigation by the RCMP in connection with the Barry Bellchambers land fraud case. Graham is the fourth minister to resign since the Conservatives took office in November 1978.
February 2, 1981 The governments of the Yukon and the NWT will have working seats at future first ministers' conferences on the Canadian Constitution following passage of an amendment to Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau's package by former northern affairs minister Jake Epp.
February 16, 1981 The Northern Affairs Minister visits Whitehorse to announce among others a $5 million capital loan to White Pass
February 18, 1981 76-year-old Fred Caley of Dawson City is the 4th person to be given the Dawson Museum and Historical Society's Yukon Heritage Award for his significant contribution to preserve Yukon history and culture.
February 23, 1981 The Whitehorse Indian Band votes 96 per cent in favor of moving their village to a site on the east side of the Yukon River.
February 23, 1981 Vic and Katie Johnson receive the Commissioner's Award for their 27 years of caring for more than 200 foster children
March 6, 1981 The new Reagan administration cuts back the (financial) support for the Alaska Highway natural gas pipeline. The target date for the start-up is now been delayed for another year from 1985 to 1986.
March 10, 1981 A site in Takhini is chosen as the preferred location for the Yukon College.
March 18, 1981 The North American cross country ski championships open in Whitehorse
March 25, 1981 Conservative MLA Jack Hibberd resigns from his job as renewable resource minister
March 26, 1981 Francis Joseph Henning, the 1st Atlin-born boy, dies at the age of 81.
March 30, 1981 The world's largest weathervane is raised in front of Whitehorse airport.
April 2, 1981 The Farrago - the music festival in Faro - is cancelled due to Cyprus Anvil's tight budget.
April 3, 1981 Long-time Yukon miner Pete Brady dies at the age of 91.
April 3, 1981 A "Yukon embassy" is established in Ottawa.
April 6, 1981 Jean Munro, minister of Indian Affairs and Norther Development, opens regional offices in Whitehorse and Yellowknife.
April 7, 1981 Don Sumanik, the key figure in bringing the World Cup ski races to Whitehorse, is named Kiwanis citizen of the year.
April 10, 1981 A Dawson placer company commissions the world's biggest sluice box, which moves 1,000 cubic metres of gravel at a time.
April 13, 1981
 →  July 6, 1981
MLA Tony Penikett is appointed the leader of the Yukon New Democratic Party by acclamation (April 13, 1981). Later in the year he is elected national party president (July 6, 1981).
April 14, 1981 CanCom is given permission to put four southern television stations on satellite for northern and remote communities.
May 8, 1981 Frederick Regional Boss, the last hereditary chief of the Lake Laberge Indian band, dies at the age of 81.
May 15, 1981 The six-month strike at the Canada Tungsten Mine at Tungsten, NWT, is over.
May 27, 1981
 →  July 28, 1981
63 per cent of the shares of Cyprus Anvil Mining Corp are bought by Hudons's Bay Oil and Has Company Ltd (May 27, 1981). The sale means Dome Petroleum will indirectly control Anvil since it owns 53 per cent of Hudbay. The sale was made necessary when Anvil's U.S. parent could not get approval from the Canadian government to own the mine.
May 28, 1981 Frank Coulter, the Yukon's oldest man, passes away at the age of 104.
May 29, 1981 CKRW announces to apply for satellite licence to be available across Canada.
June 6, 1981 Roland ("Jack") Hulland, for whom the Porter Creek school is named, dies at the age of 85. Hulland came to Whitehorse in 1930 to be the principal of the town's only public school. Later, Hulland had become YTG superintendent of education.
June 15, 1981 After 7 years of restauration, the SS Klondike is officially re-opened on Canada Day as a national historic site.
July 14, 1981 A FM radio demonstration station (which will later be CHON-FM) is set up by the Yukon Indian Centre.
July 15, 1981 Two new channels begin after WHTV got Ottawa's permission to broadcast the new Cancom service on a test basis.
August 20, 1981 Marsh Lake residents battle flooding and the highest water levels in 10 years.
August 26, 1981 Victoria Faulkner dies at the age of 84.
September 9, 1981 The YTG says it will keep the North Canol Road open for the winter and charge mining companies which will use it.
September 10, 1981 Yukon MP Erik Nielsen is named house leader for the Federal Conservative caucus.
September 11, 1981 Hollywood Star Dan Aykroyd visits Whitehorse for a week, looking for ideas for a new movie.
October 29, 1981 United Keno Hill Mines Ltd. announces that the troubled Venus gold-silver mine project, 16km south of Carcross, has been cancelled due to low market prices and increased operating costs.
November 4, 1981 Yukon MP Erik Nielsen is made an honorary member of the House of Commons protective services.
November 6, 1981 Prime Minister Trudeau and nine provinces agree on a constitution deleting the clause guaranteeing aboriginal rights.
November 25, 1981 A $170,000 plan is signed by YTG and the city for the beautification of Main Street
November 27, 1981 Yukon MP Erik Nielsen tries to introduce an amendment that would allow the territories to evolve into provinces, without consent of other provinces. Nielsen's amendment is supported by the Conservative and the NDP, but the Liberals defeat it in the final vote.
December 11, 1981 Yukon Indians will have a perpetual right to run traplines and to catch fish for food. That is the main point of land-claim agreements-in-principle on fishing and trapping.
December 17, 1981 Yukon commissioner Doug Bell cut the ribbon to celebrate the opening of the Guild Hall.
December 18, 1981 Flo Whyard won the mayor's seat in the new city council.
January 15, 1982 Mining production, the key element in the Yukon economy, was down 37% in '81.