Smithers, BC, incorporated as a town in 1967, population 5404 (2011c), 5217 (2006c). The Town of Smithers is located on the Bulkley River in central British Columbia, on Highway 16, 334 km west of PRINCE GEORGE and 371 km east of PRINCE RUPERT. The town was named after Sir Alfred Waldron Smithers, a director of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway (now part of CN), when a divisional point was established there in 1913. The original inhabitants were the Wet'suwet'en, belonging to the CARRIER people, who were largely dependent on the salmon runs. Settlement was sparse in the area until after the railway was completed.
Smithers became the first incorporated village in BC in 1921 and changed its status to a town in 1967. It has become the regional centre for the Bulkley Valley. Growth has been a result of a thriving forest industry. Other major industries in the town are government services and the railway. Outdoor recreation is also expanding. Nearby is Hudson Bay Mountain with its accessible glacier. The town itself has adopted an alpine theme. Northwest Community College has a campus and its School of Exploration and Mining here.