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Did you know that the City of Brantford is a port? At one time you could travel comfortably from downtown Brantford to Buffalo on a paddlewheel steamer in twenty-four hours. Boats, scows, and paddlewheel steamers once plied the Grand River between Brantford and Lake Erie, expanding trade and economic development.

Join Jack Jackowetz to learn the story of the Grand River Navigation Company and the locks, dams, and canal it built to facilitate navigation along the Grand River.

Lecture Video

Further Reading and Resources


  • Hill, B.E. (1994). The Grand River Navigation Company. Brantford, ON: Brant Historical Society


About the Instructor

Jack Jackowetz was born and raised in the City of Brantford. His interest in the history of the City and the County began with his father’s stories about growing up in Brantford. Jackowetz is an artist focusing on our built heritage. Jackowetz began writing a history column for BScene, a local arts and entertainment paper. Studying history helps him learn about the origin and discover the soul of the Brantford community. Jackowetz graduated from Wilfrid Laurier University with a degree in Business Administration.

About Lifelong Learning at Home

Lifelong Learning at Home is a free weekly series featuring pre-recorded lectures from some well-known Laurier faculty and community experts. Visit the Lifelong Learning at Home section to explore other lectures and to find out more about this limited series offered by the Laurier Association for Lifelong Learning.

Lifelong Learning at Home was created to connect people through lifelong learning during this time of unprecedented challenges. Many Laurier students are experiencing significant financial difficulties as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you are in a position to do so, you can help us support our students by donating to Laurier's COVID-19 Emergency Fund, which provides emergency financial support, health and wellness support and teaching and learning support during this challenging time.