Monday, January 22, 2018

Edward L. Ryerson, a Great Lakes Steamer

I came across links for this boat twice within hours of each other. As is my policy, when I see a topic twice in a short period of time, I consider that an omen to write about the topic. It did set several milestones in shipping history: "The Ryerson was the last American-flagged new ship built on the Great Lakes until the launch of the Stewart J. Cort in 1972.  She was the last U.S. laker to be built as a steamer, the last to be built without a self-unloader, the last lake boat to be constructed at the Manitowoc, WI shipyards, and the last and only to be built with such aesthetically pleasing lines." [BoatNerd]

I found that BoatNerd page when I was researching the introduction of self-unloaders. About four hours later, I saw this posting. See Old Lakers for some other "bridge on the bow" boats that I have seen.

Wisconsin Maritime Museum posted six photos with the comment:
January 21, 1960: The EDWARD L. RYERSON was launched into the ice-filled river at Manitowoc Shipbuilding Company. She marked the end of a shipbuilding era as the last freighter built in Manitowoc, Wisconsin. The Ryerson was also the last U.S.-flagged laker built as a steamer and the last to be built as a straight-decker (without a self-unloading boom). Built for Inland Steel, she was constructed specifically to carry iron ore pellets.
The Ryerson is beloved by many for her unique streamlined design and distinctive steam whistles. She has been laid up periodically over the years due to downturns in the steel market, but she has amazingly managed to avoid the scrapper's torch. The Edward L. Ryerson has been in long-term layup in Superior, Wisconsin since 2009.

1
The bulk carrier EDWARD L. RYERSON, nicknamed "Fast Eddie," doing her sea trials on Lake Michigan in August 1960.

2
The hull of the bulk carrier EDWARD L. RYERSON ready to be launched at Manitowoc Shipbuilding Company on January 21, 1960.

3
The EDWARD L. RYERSON splashing into the Manitowoc River at 12:00 pm on January 21, 1960. The local newspaper reported "“The hull of the ship rode majestically down the launching way as the ropes were cut. It hit the water with a resounding roar and the ice jammed river swelled into a mountainous wave, grinding ice cakes together with the sound of breaking glass.”

4
Cover of launching luncheon program for the EDWARD L. RYERSON.

5
Inside of launching program for the EDWARD L. RYERSON.

6
Launching schedule for EDWARD L. RYERSON at Manitowoc Shipbuilding Company on January 21, 1960.
Notice the capacity of around 26,000 tons. If I'm remembering correctly, modern 1000-foot Lakers can carry 70,000. Maybe someone can convert the cargo hold into casino rooms.

Update:
Jeff Rueckert posted three photos with the comment: "Flash Back ! Edward L Ryerson in Manitowoc."

1

2

3
Chuck Bornemann Amazed she ever got out of Manty
Satellite
Skip Heckel posted the question: "Anybody know where the Ryerson is moored?"
Skip Heckel Ben Stalvey I was talking with a friend, Jim Derusha, whose Dad owned Marinette Marine back in the day, he said they had to cut some of the land back because the RYERSON was too long to make it around a bend.
Ben Stalvey Skip Heckel very true it is called the Ryerson bend.
Gen SterenbergGen and 2 others manage the membership, moderators, settings, and posts for Great Lakes Ship Watchers. I found a cool website with great Ryerson info including 2 MP3 files with salutes at the end. http://dlund.20m.com/photo6.html
Ben Stalvey Been sitting in the same place for years

It was not only the last ship launched at Manitowoc, WI, at 730' it was the longest laker at that time. It was also fast, 19mph; thus its nickname of Fast Eddie. [DuluthHarborCam]
(new window) If you about to quit because of boredom, at least skip to 7:21 for a few seconds. And 8:05 is worth a look.


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