That’s the question many visitors ask when they see the old rusted out scow (barge) stuck in the rocks above the Canadian Horseshoe Falls. Here’s the abbreviated story.

On August 6th 1918, 97 years ago this dumping scow broke loose from its towing tug about 1.6 kilometres (one mile) upriver with two men aboard. The men almost immediately opened the bottom dumping doors and within minutes water flooded in and grounded the scow in the shallow rapids. They were rescued unharmed the next day by a breeches buoy on a line shot out from the roof of the adjacent Toronto Powerhouse.

The plant is still here in 2015 but has been abandoned for many years and sits empty. No one seems to know what to do with the lovely structure.

If you look at the scow from the air you will see it in now part of a man-made island and unlikely to ever be dislodged.