"Foundations" tells, in the authentic voice of the man who lived them, tales of the colourful men who worked for and with Bermingham Construction in the years from its founding in 1897 to the beginning of the Second World War.Bermingham Construction remained under family control for 120 years and even after having been sold, the family is still playing a leadership role. The book includes accounts of building the Crows Nest Pass for the CPR, the construction of the Sault Ste Marie locks, the feats of courage during the Second World War, and the incredible ingenuity that led to finally protecting Goderich and its harbour with a breakwater that could withstand Lake Huron's fury.
Of interest to Canadian Military Engineers are stories of Colonel C.J. "Spike" Bermingham. Spike's career with the Royal Canadian Engineers started at RMC, his father's alma mater. He was Camp Engineer at Camp Borden when the war started and placed in charge of building quarters for 20,000 men in seven weeks. Understandably, the project went over budget and he was called to Ottawa to explain. His explanations must have been convincing because he was promoted and became the first commanding officer of the 1st Field Squadron in Camp Borden in October 1940, and on promotion became Commander Royal Canadian Engineers (CRE) in the Division. be the end of the war he was directing all RCE contribution to the advance into Germany as Commander 1st Canadian Army Group Royal Engineers (CAGRA).
For more details, there are a number of reviews:
- From the Hamilton Spectator: Jeff Mahoney: Building strength - The Bermingham family in book form
- From eVeritas: Review of “Foundations” – 3 products of RMC by Mike Kennedy
- From the Publisher, Lulu Books: Foundations
Volume II, History of the Corps of Royal Canadian Engineers contains many entries on Col. Bermingham's military career.