Nicholsons 1840
Nicholson's Rapids; ca. 1840s
John Burrows, watercolour over pencil
(Library and Archives Canada, Acc. No. 1979-12-18)

This painting shows the two locks in the canal cut at Nicholsons. Near the head of the cut is the waste weir leading to the original channel of the Rideau River. A defensible lockmaster’s house is situated on the knoll above the locks. The bridge across the river was used to bring stone from Clowes’ Quarry to the locks during construction

About this Painting: This painting is part of a series of 23 watercolours showing all the lockstations. There are at least 4 different copies of each painting (done before the days of copiers, each one had to be painted individually). These unsigned watercolours are credited to either John Burrows or to William T. Clegg. Burrows was an Overseer of Works of the Rideau Canal from 1827 to 1848. Clegg was the Paymaster for the Rideau Canal (Clerk of Cheque) from 1827 to 1845. It is speculated that this series of watercolours may have been prepared to document the Rideau Canal for presentation to visiting officials. I think it most likely that John Burrows was the main artist, he was a surveyor and trained in art. But Clegg may have annotated the paintings, and perhaps had a hand in making copies of the originals. The paintings are undated, but features in some of the paintings (such as lockmaster houses) suggest the early 1840s.

Read about the history of this lockstation

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This page was last updated on: May 24, 2000
URL: http://www.rideau-info.com/canal/images/img-nicholsons1840.html
© Ken Watson