Welland Canal 2nd River Lock c.1850
Reasons for Designation under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act
The River Lock at Port Robinson is one of seven locks that were constructed within the present day limits of the City of Thorold for use on the 2nd Welland Canal. This lock was constructed sometime in the latter part of 1849 to accommodate the traffic flowing from the 2nd Welland Canal into the upper Welland River.
Four lift locks were constructed within Thorold proper – Lock 22 at Townline Rd. (partially demolished and buried), Lock 23 just south of St.David’s Rd. on the former paper mill property on Front St. (buried), Lock 24 at Albert St. between the old and new Firehalls (buried), and Lock 25 located between Clairmont St./Sullivan Ave. and Lyndon St. in the Battle of Beaverdams Park (partially excavated).
Even as late as the 1860’s, the importance of the 2nd Canal River Lock at Port Robinson was upheld. According to British Military and Naval Records of June 2, 1862, the lock was considered one of the “most vulnerable” points along the Welland Canal should a war with the U.S.A. break out.
This lock has architectural, cultural and historical significance to our City. The Welland Canal and the remains of the former first, second and third Welland Canals continue to play an important role in defining the history of the Niagara Peninsula, particularly among the canal communities. Since Port Robinson owes its very existence to the Welland Canal, and the development of the Village in the 19th century to the proximity of the Second Canal River Lock, the historical importance of this structure cannot be ignored.