Although traces of gold in the Porcupine district had been discovered earlier, serious prospecting began 1906 and culminated in the rush of 1909. South Porcupine was located on the south shore of Porcupine Lake, along a branch line of the Temiskaming and Northern Ontario Railway, then under construction. This position, along with the town's accessibility to a major producer, Dome mine, gave it an initial advantage over neighbouring prospecting communities.
On 11 July 1911, however, the town was destroyed by fire. Noah Timmins, owner of the Hollinger mine, established a new town site, also on the railway, that was closer to his own property. Though rebuilt, South Porcupine lost its advantage and thereafter Timmins emerged as the chief urban centre. South Porcupine became a part of Timmins in 1973.