The first group to occupy the neighbourhood of Cranberry were the Tla'amin people who called the area χaʔaji (Xah ah jee) after the wild cranberries which grew on the periphery of Cranberry Lake. Traditionally, Cranberry Lake is a spiritual place in Tla'amin culture. Prior to the arrival of settlers and the consequent confinement of First Nations people to reserves, Tla'amin people used Cranberry Lake for spiritual retreats and cedar baths, as well as a place for harvesting the nutritious berries. The knowledge of Cranberry Lake as a spiritual place comes from the Tla'amin legend of the Ihohs. The Ihohs, meaning double headed serpent in the ʔayʔajuθəm language, is a creature which lived in an underground cave system below Cranberry. According to the legend, Cranberry lake was formed when the Ihohs created a dam on a creek leading into Mowat Bay, causing the basin to flood.
Tla'amin people had traplines all around Powell Lake. Mowat Bay was said to be a village site before the lake was dammed. Not only for the Tla'amin people, it is said that the Homalco and Klahoose people used to come and stay with the Tla'amin.
Early settlers to the region also found the cranberries a welcome addition to their diet as they waited on deliveries of food and other supplies brought by boat from Seattle and Vancouver. What is now known as the community of Cranberry Lake is located in an area approximately 200 acres in size located a mile south east of Powell River. In 1910 virgin forest still dominated the landscape, but wth the arrival George Smarge, Magnus P. Olson and George McFall who filed a 52 acre mineral claim on the western side of the lake, Cranberry was on its way to becoming one of the early Districts in Powell River.
Cranberry was the first suburb of Powell River (now known as Townsite) as it was within easy walking distance of the mill. In 1915, Mowat and Wasser built a shingle mill with Edwin Profit serving as supervisor until it closed in 1919.
Longtime Cranberry residents Clara and Andy Anderson
Cranberry Orchard, the Butterys, and the "pest house"