Museum Chat Live E108 – The Fallen Workers


E108 – The Fallen Workers

A staggering 137 men lost their lives as a result of accidents that occurred during the construction of the Welland Ship Canal. This number is shockingly high. To our knowledge, it is the largest loss of life in the history of Canadian government infrastructure projects.

We’re focusing this podcast episode on the memory of these workers by featuring the stories of three of the workers: Antonio Collini, Estafy Eliashevich, and John Hawthorne.

In addition to these graphic and tragic stories, we also detail all the work and various projects working to commemorate, memorialize, and honour the Fallen Workers. Check the footnotes to the episode below for more information.

Copyright St. Catharines Museum and Welland Canals Centre



1 – The Fallen Workers Memorial is set to open in 2017.


Visit the website of the Fallen Workers Memorial for more information and to donate.

2 – Make sure to check out our upcoming programs including Open Late and Books & Brews.

3 – Further information regarding our exhibitions including Heroes in Peace: Building the Welland Ship Canal. The exhibit is open through February 1, 2018.

4 – Further information and pre-orders for the Memorial Task Force publication Tragedy and Triumph: The Welland Ship Canal is available by calling the Museum’s Merritt’s Mercantile Gift Shop at 905-984-8880 or by email at

5 – Find some of the articles written about the 137 Fallen Workers in the St. Catharines Standard by searching ‘St. Catharines Standard Fallen Workers’. See an article about the big August 1, 1928 gate crash accident here.

6 – Information regarding the Memorial Task Force Cemetery Tours offered in August of 2017:

KP version Fallen Workers Cemetery Tours August 2017

7 – St. Catharines Standard Article detailing accident of Antonio Collini:

1927 07 26 Collini, Antonio - article (StCStd 1927 07 26 p1)

8 – St. Catharines Standard Article detailing the accident of Estafy Eliashevich

1915 01 22 Eliashevich, Estafy - Inquest (StCStd 1915 01 23).jpg

9 – St. Catharines Standard Article detailing the accident of John Hawthorne

1932 10 18 Hawthorne, John - article (StCStd 1932 10 18).jpg


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