Mohawk Ironworkers is a new 13-part half hour documentary series that celebrates the steely determination of the Mohawk ironworkers of Kahnawake, Akwesasne and Six Nations said to be “the best ironworkers on the planet.”
Using a mixture of dramatic HD “high steel” footage, on the job and home-life reality shooting and archival material, each half hour episode presents a fascinating visual and moving story of the ironworkers and their families – as they face the realities of one of the most dangerous jobs on the planet.

Rivet Rampage

This single-player game for PC puts you in the role of a Mohawk Ironworker. You are tasked with building one of the most iconic buildings in history, the Empire State Building, and Montreal’s infamous Mercier Bridge. Follow the foreman’s orders and avoid flying birds, hot rivets and whirlnados. Each building site contains multiple levels where you take on real-life ironworker tasks like climbing structures, erecting platforms and finding tools. Explore each worksite for more points and hidden Mohawk Ironworker virtual trading cards.




Episode 1: The World Trade Center and 9/11

Director: Courtney Montour

The NYC World Trade Center is ingrained in Mohawk ironwork history. Mohawks helped build the iconic Twin Towers. Peter J. Stacey, Randy Horne and Bill Sears reflect back on their life-changing work on the Towers, and the devastation of 9/11. John McGowan and Preston Horn are a new generation of ironworkers rebuilding the site with One World and Three World Trade Centers.


Episode 2: 9/11 Aftermath

Director: Courtney Montour

When the NYC Twin Towers were destroyed on 9/11, Mohawk ironworkers helped clear the wreckage of the iconic Towers their fathers built. But no one was prepared for the health risks of the Ground Zero cleanup. The cleanup cost Jaysen Mayo his health and career, and Brad Bonaparte, his life. After 9/11, Mohawks, like John McGowan, continue to honour their relationship with the World Trade Center by building One World Trade Center, the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere.


Episode 3: The Ultimate Ironworker

Director: Jeff Dorn

The Akwesasne Ironworkers Festival is a chance for ironworkers across North America to showcase their skills and hopefully win the “Ultimate Ironworker” award. It is also a time to honour outstanding ironworkers of the past and present. Mike Swamp guides a tour through the festival and its competitions that recreate tasks done throughout history by ironworkers on the job.


Episode 4: Training For Steel

Director: Margaret Horn

Legend has it that ironwork is in the blood of Mohawks, something that is passed down from generation to generation. Today, aspiring ironworkers must go off to school and get certified through a rigorous training process. Kahnawake Mohawks travel to Montreal for the only English-language apprenticeship program in the area. Akwesasne has a training program right in the community, run under the watchful eye of veteran ironworker William Cook.


Episode 5: Albert Stalk: Living Legend

Director: Jeff Dorn

Kahnawake’s own Albert Stalk began as most ironworkers do, by picking up the trade from his father, but he would soon become world renowned for his daring feats. He earned the nickname “Eiffel Al” for being the first person to ever climb Paris’ Eiffel Tower without safety gear. A modeling career, an ill-fated commercial for running shoes, and an iconic game show appearance followed the stunt.


Episode 6: Booming Out To NYC

Director: Paul Rickard

New York City became the most popular area to “boom out” for Mohawk Ironworkers in the 1920s, where they helped build the skyline and some of the most famous structures in history. Learn about “Little Caughnawaga,” the name given to Brooklyn, a second home to Mohawk ironworkers still to this day. Thomas Jock II and Gordie King make the weekly trip to NYC together to provide for their families back home.

Episode 7: The Hill Brothers: Keeping It in The Family

Director: Michelle Smith

The Hill Brothers, Mike, Gary and Rodney, have over 80 years of ironworking experience between them. Family is key in the ironwork business, with the brothers following in their father’s footsteps, and their families supporting them every day on the job, and off. After facing a career ending injury, Rodney spends his days recovering, with the help of his brothers.


Episode 8: A Bridge to Remember

Director: Jeff Dorn

The Seaway International Bridge, a US-Canada border crossing connecting Akwesasne to Cornwall was maintained by Mohawks, and is now being dismantled by Mohawks. The crew mourns the loss of their superintendent, and legendary ironworker, Angus Adams who passed away suddenly during the job. But Angus’ legacy remains an inspiration to all who knew him. High winds and strong river currents create some dangerous and unexpected challenges for the ironworkers.


Episode 9: Health, Home, & Heritage

Director: Michelle Smith

Ironwork is one of the most dangerous and physically demanding jobs in the world, so the health and safety of the workers are paramount to the job’s success. Hayden Hemlock, an ironworker for over 40 years, retired after facing an injury. Now, Hayden spends his days healing his body, as well as the world around him, using traditional Mohawk teachings and medicines. Foreman Geggs Martin left behind the ironworker “work hard, play hard” lifestyle for smoothies, marathons and his family.


Episode 10: Skywalkers of Six Nations

Director: Paul M. Rickard

Six Nations of the Grand River is the largest First Nations reserve in Canada, so it is home to a lot of ironworkers, and ironworking lore. Historian Rick Hill recounts the history of Mohawk ironworkers, from the construction of longhouses, to the “boom out” to New York City. Today, two generations of ironworkers work together to build the future. Marshall Cayuga works alongside his sons, and Gerry Burning mentors trainees to be the ironworkers of the future.


Episode 11: Booming Out West

Director: Paul Rickard

Leaving home to follow the work has long been an ironwork tradition known as “booming out.” A team of Mohawks booms out thousands of miles away from home, to a Saskatchewan potash mine where they construct rigs rivaling the size of major skyscrapers. The paydays for the job are great, but the cost of working so far from their families may be even greater.


Episode 12: John Squires: Making a Connection

Director: Michelle Smith

John Squires has been in the business for over 40 years as a connector, and there are no signs of stopping him any time soon. As a veteran ironworker, John is indispensable on a job site, offering his years of wisdom to the next generation.


Episode 13: Women of Steel

Director: Courtney Montour

Female Mohawk ironworkers are shattering stereotypes that the trade is solely a “man’s job.” Tiffany Johnson is ready to prove she isn’t afraid of heights or some heavy lifting on her first day of the Akwesasne apprenticeship-training program. Retired ironworker Janice Albany reflects on her days of overseeing an all-women painting gang on the Mercier Bridge. And Lu Ann Styres from Six Nations is determined to hold the title of being the oldest female ironworker.

Production Team

Mushkeg Media

Mushkeg Productions Inc. is an Indigenous production company specializing in films and videos about the Indigenous experience, films that deal with contemporary issues facing Canada’s First Nations, their environment, activities, traditions and their struggle for economic and political autonomy. The company is headed by Paul M. Rickard, independent Cree filmmaker and cameraman. Paul’s partner is veteran producer and director George Hargrave. Mohawk Ironworkers is their fourth series for APTN.

Paul Rickard

Director / Producer

Paul Rickard is an Omuskego Cree from Moose Factory in Northern Ontario. For the past 25 years, he has been working as a producer, director and cameraman in collaboration with independent production companies and organizations such as Nutaaq Media Inc., Wawatay Native Communications Society, CBC North and the National Film Board of Canada. Paul directed the award winning NFB film “Okimah”, and worked on numerous other documentaries through his own production company Mushkeg Media Inc. that includes “Finding Our Talk: A Journey into Aboriginal Languages”, “Little Caughnawaga: To Brookyln and Back”, “Kanien’keha:ka: Living the Language”, “Aboriginal Architecture, Living Architecture” and “Ring of Fire”.

Courtney Montour


Courtney Montour is Mohawk from Kahnawake. She works in the documentary film and digital media fields exploring issues of Indigenous identity. Her first feature documentary Sex Spirit Strength (2015), premiered on APTN and won two awards at the 2016 Yorkton Film Festival, including Best of Fest. She has also directed episodes for several documentary series including Mohawk Ironworkers (2016), Working It Out Together (2016), and Dream Big (2015). She currently coordinates McGill University’s Indigenous Field Studies course, held in Kahnawake.

George Hargrave


George has been an independent producer and director for over 25 years. He went to the North Pole in 1987 and has been an admirer of all thing northern ever since. He and his production partner Paul Rickard launched Mushkeg Media to tell stories about the north and the people who live there. They have made documentaries about language, culture, architecture, beer people, chocolate, power dams, education, sexual abuse, health, history, and now Mohawk Ironworkers. Rivet Rampage is their first video game.

Michelle Smith


Michelle Smith is a Métis filmmaker, media artist and educator. She uses diverse media to explore issues around indigenous identity, cultural continuity and decolonizing practices. Her documentary work includes Working it Out Together 3 (2016) and the Aboriginal language series Finding our Talk (2010); feature docs determiNATION songs (2009) and Turbulent Waters (2004), experimental film Buried Traces (2010), and writer of It was a Woman (2013). Digital media projects include www.OtaNdaYanaan.net, an interactive documentary celebrating Métis language and culture and work-in-progress Niska, a video game about the Cree goose hunt. She teaches Communications at Dawson and John Abbott Colleges in Montreal, and coordinates the Dawson College Journeys program for Indigenous students.

Margaret Horn

Associate Producer/Director

Margaret Horn is Mohawk from Kahnawake, Bear Clan. She was executive producer for documentaries, Our Nation’s Elders Speak and Diabetes & Aging, Keepers of the Earth: Women and HIV/AIDS, an exercise video Spirit in Motion (shown on APTN) and Coming Full Circle teaching health workers gentle exercises for the elderly. In 2006 she produced a six-minute Spirit of the Land video to promote tourism in Canada that was premiered before 1200 international tourism operators at RendezVous Canada. She is semi-retired and spends time between Kahnawake and the Adirondacks – the traditional homeland of her nation.

Jeff Dorn


Jeff Dorn has been making Documentaries for over 25 years.  The images and stories he has collected have won numerous accolades and awards.  Jeff’s core value is to the truth of a story and how sharing social political narrative of a subject’s reality can spark discussion with the hope of enforcing a positive change.  An interesting coffee table discussion often holds the key to a solid tale. Listening to a subject’s story is essential to great films and Dorn’s work has embodied this notion creating compassionate thought provoking films.

Elie Charest

Game Developer

A veteran developer, Elie Charest has over twenty years of experience as a game designer, narrative designer, writer and game programmer. He has worked on over a dozen published games, many based on successful film and television IPs, including Scooby-Doo, the Power Rangers and Rango. From game consoles to mobile devices to immersive Augmented Reality experiences, Elie Charest keeps exploring new realms of interactive entertainment. He is the main designer and programmer behind Rivet Rampage, which is his first 2D platformer as well as his first WebGL game.

Eric LeMoyne


Eric was thrilled to handle both the music composing and sound mixing duties for this series reprising his roles for Mushkeg’s series Finding Our Talk. Recent projects in music include CBC’s documentary feature Newfoundland at Armageddon; DocZone’s Deluged by Data; NatGeo’s hit series Scam City as well as the most recent installment of Danish movie series My Sister’s Kids. Notable among mixing projects are ongoing 3D-animated series ICI-Laflaque; Explora’s On s’aime en chien.




Visit Our Other Projects

Mushkeg Media

It Was a Woman

Ring of Fire

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