Parks Canada

Parks Canada

June 27, 2009 11:00 ET

The Government of Canada Recognizes the National Historic Significance of the St. Lawrence Seaway

MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - June 27, 2009) - On behalf of the Honourable Jim Prentice, Canada's Environment Minister and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, Mr. Steven Blaney, Member of Parliament for Levis-Bellechasse, today unveiled a plaque commemorating the national historic significance of the St. Lawrence Seaway.

"I am particularly impressed with the grand scale of this engineering feat. Today, from the Prairies to the East Coast, businesses of all descriptions benefit from the St. Lawrence Seaway, one of the greatest waterways in the world," said Mr. Blaney.

Throughout Canadian history, water transportation has been central to the country's development. In 1951, Canada established the St. Lawrence Seaway Authority to construct, operate, and maintain an all-Canadian seaway and power project on the St. Lawrence River. After further negotiations, the American government agreed to participate and the construction project proceeded after a modest sod-turning ceremony in Cornwall, Ontario, on August 10, 1954. Queen Elizabeth II and President Dwight Eisenhower declared the project officially open on June 26, 1959.

"On the 50th anniversary of its opening, I am proud to welcome the St. Lawrence Seaway into the vast system of historic sites of Canada. This tribute underlines the national historic significance in our heritage of this engineering masterpiece that, in transforming shipping on the St. Lawrence River, changed international commerce," concluded Minister Prentice.

The Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, established in 1919, advises the Minister of the Environment on issues relating to sites, people, and events of national historic importance. The presentation of a commemorative plaque represents official recognition of their historic value to the country.

Also available on the Internet at under Media Room.

Contact Information

  • Parks Canada - Quebec
    Melissa Larose
    Communications Advisor