“Some of the men had come down and a camp had been made across from where I was teaching; they had made a camp there. And I think they just slept there. I’m not sure – maybe they didn’t, but their trucks were all there, it was the guys working on the Seaway.
Of course, when you’re 17 it was kind of fun! You’re looking to see all these good looking young fellows going back. And I can remember at that time girls did not… weren’t forward at any time.
But one day this good looking fellow come in and, oh, he was, I don’t know, about the size of, tall as Max, just real, good looking fellow. And just talked and he was kind of bored, too, so … In the long run, I took my car and my parents let me and I drove him to the drive-in in Cornwall which was something you don’t usually do!
But that was… it was fun.”
Interiew excerpts, Rosemary Rutley, Lost Villages Historical Society Schoolhouse, Long Sault, Ontario. August 22, 2013
When you were 17 it was kind of fun. Lots of good looking young fellows were there for the Seaway construction.
Some people did fight back, but it did no good.
Farran’s Point was the place to be on a Saturday night.
We didn’t think things we’re good or bad. Just took it as it was coming.
Video Excerpt: Rosemary Rutley, Lost Villages Historical Society Schoolhouse, Long Sault, Ontario. August 22, 2013
In this video clip Rosemary Rutley remembers the influx of young men who came to work on the construction of the Seaway, how they had a work camp near to where she taught and the fun of going to the drive-in in Cornwall.
The construction of the St Lawrence Seaway wrought many social and cultural changes in the valley. The influx of workers from across Canada and around the world changed the social dynamics of the entire valley on both sides of the river.
Rosemary Rutley grew up in Woodlands, Ontario.
Rosemary is Past-President and remains an active member of the Lost Villages Historical Society.
She now lives in Ingleside, Ontario.