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Start of the Feeder Canal. (Welland)

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If you've never seen the Feeder Canal before, some introduction might help. The feeder canal is a 40 km channel dug in 1829 to bring water from the Grand River to the Welland Canal. It was also enlarged in the 1840's and used as a shipping canal until the early 1900's.

Amazingly the canal is almost entirely preserved and can still be seen if you're willing to drive the entire 40 km route. The amount of preservation does vary however. Places like Dunville and Welland have filled in small sections, while Wainfleet township decided to restore the canal to its original condition.

History

To make sense of it all I've provided a map of the Feeder Canal and detailed four historic sites; Welland, Wainfleet, Stromness and Dunville that you can see along the way. Directions and a small photo-tour are also available.

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Welland: Luckily a nice map of the Junction Lock exists from the 1800's that shows how the two canals connected. The two maps show the same area and scale. (click to enlarge)
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Junction Lock
1800's
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Junction Lock
today
Wainfleet: Wainfleet hasn't changed much over the years. What's noteworthy is the raceway that was built just west of town. The raceway traveled northeast to the Welland River and provided water power for mills and other industries in town. Today it's been rerouted a bit but is still used for local drainage.(click to enlarge)
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Wainfleet 1800's
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Wainfleet today
Stromness: The following map is a recreation of what Stromness looked like based on existing features and an existing map of the Mill. The turning basing was once center of town so more features may have existed. (click to enlarge)
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Stromness 1800's
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Stromness today
Dunville: Dunville filled in the feeder canal and extended the existing street system. Mill St. has been extended to Main St. and made into one street. Bridge St meanwhile marks the point where a bridge crossed the west end of the guard lock. The mills, now cleaned up, resided between Main and Maple St. (click to enlarge)
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Dunville 1800's
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Dunville today

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