For Posterity's Sake
A Royal Canadian Navy Historical Project
Norton Class Tug NORTON W31
Then W.A.C. No. 1
The Norton was launched on 29 Nov 1943 by Mrs. B.S. (Gwendolyn) Hastings at the Montreal Dry Dock, Montreal, QC. She was sailed by the builders to Quebec City for completion, then to Halifax for commissioning. She started service early in 1944 and was active from St. John's, NFLD to Quebec City, to Yarmouth, NS. Some excerpts from the files at the LAC: "only tug available to salvage work in Western North Atlantic", "Arrival Halifax Tug Norton with frigate Lanark in tow from Liverpool", "HMCS Beaver (armed Yacht) in two from Halifax", "HMCS Tug Norton towing battle class trawler HMCS Festubert to Sydney". These entries along with many others showed that the Norton was busy carrying out military duties during her life as an active Canadian Naval vessel towards the latter days of WWII, and, not without risk. In 1946, Norton was declared surplus to requirements and turned over to the War Assets Corp. She was sold on 22 Mar 1946 to the Marathon Paper Mills of Canada Ltd., Port Arthur, Ont. She was later sold to the Gravel and Lakes Services Ltd Co of Thunder Bay, ON and is still in service with them as of 2015.