History

The Versluis brothers, Gerard and John arrived in Canada from their native Holland in 1952, with little more than they could carry. Leaving behind family, friends and a carpentry business that they had already started, they landed in Montreal where they were directed toward Niagara Falls. Although they knew no one there, had limited English experience and no accommodations or work lined up, they made their way and ended up in St. Catharines. There they found a church community, accommodations and a job in a carpentry shop. Building on these experiences they stepped out on their own once again in 1955 and formed the partnership Versluis Bros. Adapting the formal training they had in Holland to the new style of building in Canada, they started by building a home for an acquaintance and then doing finish carpentry, framing, renovating, almost anything in construction to survive. As with most new businesses the first years were tough and a bit scary but with the support of their wives, the brothers persevered, gaining experience and a solid understanding of residential construction in North America. Versluis Bros. became known for quality workmanship and integrity and they would build their niche primarily in the renovating and addition field. As was typical of Dutch immigrant families, there were lots of kids. Following a variety of paths in gaining experiences, training and deciding where they fit, this next generation is now fully involved in the daily affairs of the business. Gerard’s three sons John, Gary and Ron along with John’s sons, John Jr. Leo and Bill form today’s continuing company. Still operating out of the same location the boys get together virtually every morning to discuss the current projects, distribute work load and organize trucks. Gerard and john Sr., now enjoy a well deserved retirement and still come on out to the shop to check things out or just putter around a bit with their own projects, confidently knowing that the company they started more than 50 years ago is still in good hands.