To get from Lake William to Lake Thomas canoes and small boats must portage across what is now known as Rocky Lake Rd. However, when the Canal was operating there was a Draw Bridge at this location which could be raised or lowered allowing boats to pass between the Lakes and also enabling wagons to pass over the waterway. It is important to point out that during the Canal era the water levels of the two Lakes were the same so that there was very little flow of water. Thus boats could easily pass from one Lake to the other.
One of the earliest industries in this area was a Furniture Factory which was powered by a waterfall coming from Millers Lake. Later it was the discovery of gold in 1860 which resulted in a very important industry. Here the Canal played a very significant role. During the development of the mine materials were transported via the Canal from Dartmouth to Waverley and once the mine began operating some of the ore was transported to Dartmouth where there was also a refinery.
In order to raise the level of Lake Thomas to equal the level of Lake William a dam was built at the north end just to the south of Fletcher Lake. Frequent adjustments were required to ensure the proper water levels were maintained. The Lock Keeper who would be responsible for the transport of vessels as well as the water levels was Michael King who lived just to the south of Grand Lake. He was responsible for the section of the Canal from the south end of Lake William to the upper reaches of the Shubencadie River.