The Gzowski Cups

The Gzowski Cups

The competitive spirit is a quality that has never been found lacking in the Canadian engineer. National level competitions date back to 1885 when Colonel (later Sir) Casimir Stanislaus Gzowski donated the first recorded Canadian Engineer trophies, two silver cups for annual competition among companies of engineers of the Canadian Militia. Originally, the Gzowski Cups were awarded as first and second prizes based on the execution of a significant sized task. The cups were withdrawn from competition on the outbreak of WW I and not competed for again until 1949, when they were awarded to the best engineer unit in each of the East and West Militia summer camps. In October 1998 the Gzowski No. 1 Cup was assigned to the Land Forces Atlantic Area Engineer’s Evaluation, while Growski No. 2 Cup was designated for the Land Forces Central Area Engineer’s Evaluation.

In 1999 the Gzowski #1 Cup was awarded to 56 Field Engineering Squadron (FES). A ‘keeper’ plaque was presented to the unit during their 50th anniversary celebrations. The Area Engineer’s evaluation was based on assessment of 45 FES and 56 FES while performing engineering tasks in a tactical advance.

The Gzowski Cups have been awarded as follows:

The Gzowski Cups - Winners
Year Gzowski 1 Gzowski 2
1999 56 Field Engineer Squadron  
1994 56 Field Engineer Squadron 44 Field Engineer Squadron
1993 56 Field Engineer Squadron 33 Field Engineer Squadron
1992 56 Field Engineer Squadron 45 Field Engineer Squadron
1991 56 Field Engineer Squadron 45 Field Engineer Squadron
1990 56 Field Engineer Squadron 45 Field Engineer Squadron
1989 56 Field Engineer Squadron 3 Field Engineer Regiment
1988 3 Field Engineer Squadron 56 Field Engineer Squadron
1987 3 Field Engineer Squadron
6 Field Engineer Squadron
10e Escadron de Génie du Canada
1986 10e Escadron de Génie du Canada 3 Field Engineer Squadron
6 Field Engineer Squadron
1964   48 Field Squadron
1959 17 Field Squadron 15 Field Squadron
1958 12 Field Squadron 56 Field Squadron
1957 17 Field Squadron 1 (Brighton) Field Squadron
1956 22 Field Squadron 1 (Brighton) Field Squadron
1955 17 Field Squadron 48 Field Squadron
1954 33 Field Park Squadron 30 Field Park Squadron
1953 21 Field Squadron 56 Independent Field Squadron
1952 31 Field Park Squadron 56 Independent Field Squadron
1951 6 Field Engineer Regiment 2 Field Engineer Regiment
1950 9 Field Engineer Regiment 56 Independent Field Squadron
1949 7 Field Engineer Regiment 3 Field Squadron
1913 1st Field Troop 3 Field Company
1912 1st Field Troop 3 Field Company
1890 Brighton Company of Engineers Charlottetown Engineer Company
1889 Charlottetown Engineer Company Brighton Company of Engineers
1888 Brighton Company of Engineers  
1887 Brighton Company of Engineers Charlottetown Engineer Company
1886 Brighton Company of Engineers Charlottetown Engineer Company
1885 Charlottetown Engineer Company Brighton Company of Engineers

 

  • Sir Kazimierz Stanislaus Gzowski, KCMG

    Gzowski was born in Saint Petersburg to a noble Polish father who served with the Russian military. In 1830, he emigrated with his family to the United States after the Polish revolt against Russia. He knew no English, but began to study law and was admitted to practice. His father was an engineer, and as this became his primary interest, Kazimierz became involved in railway construction in the United States. Eventually, he was hired as an engineer to help in the construction of the New York and Erie Railway.

    In 1841 he moved to Canada to work on the Welland Canal, and also helped finish the building of Yonge Street and other projects, for the Department of Public Works in southern Ontario. He settled in London. He then formed his own company that built the Grand Trunk Railway from Toronto to Sarnia (1853-57) and the International Bridge across the Niagara River at Fort Erie.

    Keenly concerned over the defence of Canada, Gzowski fought for the strengthening of the Canadian militia and served in it as lieutenant-colonel and colonel. He took an active interest in military affairs and in 1872 was appointed "Staff Officer of the Militia of Canada" as a lieutenant colonel and Staff Officer to the Engineer Force of the Dominion two years later. In 1879, he was promoted to colonel and appointed Honorary Aide-de-Camp to Queen Victoria. He was knighted in 1890.

    Among his other accomplishments, Colonel Gzowski was the first chairman of the Niagara Parks Commission (1885-93), was a founder of the Canadian Society of Civil Engineers in 1887, and served as Administrator of Ontario (1896-97).

     

    Sir Casimir Gzowski is remembered in a park in Toronto bearing his name and by a plaque at the International Bridge across the Niagara River at Fort Erie.