Once a thriving textiles centre — known in its heyday as “North America’s Manchester” — Almonte is now primarily a commuter town, with the majority of our citizens working in the city.
Almonte straddles the banks of Canada’s Mississippi River,which flows east into the Ottawa River. The Mississippi drops 65 feet as it passes through Almonte in a series of dramatic waterfalls and rapids; this powerful torrent was what first attracted millers and other industrialists to the area early in the 19th century.
Almonte is in Lanark County in the heart of “The Ottawa Valley”, a loosely-defined region encompassing rural areas to the east and west of Ottawa, following the course of the Ottawa River.
The Valley is a unique and lovely place, still closely in touch with its Irish and Scottish roots. The prosperity that typified much of the 19th century throughout the Valley is apparent in the many large Victorian homes and limestone public buildings, especially in Almonte — large sections of the town remain essentially unchanged from a hundred years ago or more.
Almonte is also notable for being the boyhood home of Dr. James Naismith, the inventor of basketball. For an extensive biography of him you can visit the Naismith Museum & Hall of Fame.