Sunday, April 2, 2017

Manitowoc Company

I recognize the name of Manitowoc as a manufacturer of submarines during World War II when I studied the swing bridges on the Sanitary and Ship Canal. Getting those submarines and other Navy war production down the canal required making the swing spans movable. Some sources said they added motors to the bridges while other sources say they just used boats and cables to move the spans. (Remember, the St. Lawrence Seaway was not opened until 1959.)

Manitowoc could not find a crane big enough to meet their ship building needs, so they engineered and built their own big cranes. [FacebookPosting] Since there was a market for big cranes, they changed their production output. I believe it was a Manitowoc crawler crane that was used to build the I-355 overpass over Ogden.

Before it made 28 submarines, Manitowoc was making other maritime equipment such as the big ferries used by the C&O's Pere Marquette. [Wikipedia]

For pictures of some of their bigger cranes, see Manitowoc's 31000 and Manitowoc's 4600 Stinger, 7000, 18000 and 21000.

Ben Stalvey posted
Blast from the past. From Manitowoc WI back in 1960. This slide might bring back memories for some of the locals. Checkout the Edward L Ryerson being constructed back in 1960. Look at the custom tip on the 4600. Looks to be a hammerhead tip even

Ben Stalvey posted
Where it all started here in Manitowoc WI
[I see another Abt Trunnion Bridge has been lost. According to Historic Aerials, it, and the swing bridge on the other side of the peninsula, were removed between 2010 and 2013. According to the 2005 SPV Map, this area was served by C&NW and what is left is owned by CN.] 
Ben Stalvey posted
Here is the are where Manitowoc Engineering Now known as Manitowoc Cranes was located.

Ben Stalvey commented on the above posting
How the area looked prior to when Manitowoc Cranes moved to the new South Works plant in Manitowoc WI.
Robert Nuke Thompson Probably early 1970's. The McMyler steam cranes have been replaced with a single gantry-mounted 3900, the electric bridge gantries have been moved to service the steel racks, and the floating drydock has been moved to Sturgeon Bay.
Manitowoc is moving the manufacturing of its crawler cranes to Shady Grove, PA. I have not been able to determine if anything else is manufactured in Wisconsin. Or if the town will be left with just paper-pushing (keyboard-pounding) jobs. Now the Wisconsin facility is for sale. The fact that the offer includes "corporate office space" makes one wonder about the retention of headquarters and engineering in Wisconsin. Unfortunately, it is a link to a closed group, but I want to save Ben's history and photos about the shipbuilding, which was moved to Sturgeon Bay WI in 1972. In 2008 the whole shipbuilding and marine division was sold off.

The peninsula is still used for heavy industry. One product is windmill towers and I have seen pictures of them being loaded on a barge. So they still take advantage of the peninsula's access to the Great Lakes.

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