Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Photos of C&NW Potato Yard and UP/C&NW Global One Yard

Billy Duffing posted several photos as comments on a post about Lincoln Yard. Because the photos cover the C&NW Potato Yard and the UP/C&NW Global One Yard, I'm recording them in a separate post.

Billy Duffing commented on Gary's post
This is where I worked since 1987 when it was Chicago Northwestern wood street yard (global 1)
I'll attach some black and white photo's we have hanging in our hall tomorrow.Billy Duffing In the movie "Hardball " with Keanu Reeves there's a scene where they're walking under the Damon viaduct that passed under the yard, and it's in a bunch of scenes from Chicago PD as the studio is across the street.
The following are the B&W photos that Billy posted as more comments on Gary's post.
[North is at the bottom.]



















Dennis DeBruler We are looking southeast across the spud yard. So that has to be CB&Q's coaling tower. This is the first photo I have seen of that tower.


Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Hot Metal Bridge over Monongahela River in Pittsburgh, PA

(Bridge Hunter; HAER; Historic Bridges, Hot Metal; Historic Bridges, Mon ConPGHbridges3D Satellite)

Out-of-service: May 1979. But the bridge remained because it was carrying 20 utility lines including water, steam, gas and power lines. [PA277B]

There are two truss bridges using shared piers. The Monongahela Connecting RR Bridge is on the upstream side and was reopened for road use in 2000. The Hot Metal Bridge was reopened for trail use in 2007. [PGHbridges] When the Mon Con was converted to street use, they removed a very wide shared truss on the north end. [Historic Bridges]
Bryan Rubican posted
The Monongahela Connecting Railroad Bridge and the Hot Metal Bridge, once part of the sprawling J&L Steel complex.
[The upstream side is on the right.]

Jones and Laughlin Steel continued to expand and thrive until it's peak during World War II. The company was taken over by LTV Steel in 1974, during a downturn in the Pittsburgh-area steel industry. By 1984 the entire former-J&L complex was closed. After several years of planning, the 130 acres of the South Side Works on the southern shore, and the forty acres on the northern shore where the Eliza furnaces once stood were completely cleared for new development, which continues to this day.
Eugene Schiavo LTV was open till 1999 and I was the last man there on south side. I watched them build the open hearth in 1949 and then watched them tear it down.
Debra Lucas-swensrud I Remember the Orange... All over EVERYTHING!!! [So I guess the Gary plants weren't the only ones that used to produce orange "smoke."]
Photo from HAER PA,2-PITBU,65C--6 from pa2798
In 1887, a railroad bridge was constructed to link the the two sides of the operation. The upstream side carried two tracks for the Monongahela Connecting Railroad. The downstream side carried a single track used to shuttle hot metal from the furnaces to the rolling mills. Previous to this direct connection, the metal had to be reheated before being worked....Because the bridges share piers and have similar truss designs, the pair are usually referred to simply as The Hot Metal Bridge. It is more accurate to give this name only to the downstream side. The floor of this side has metal plates lining the floor -- protecting the river traffic and the wooden ties from the molten metal and sparks spewing from the opening in the top of each ladle railroad car. [PGHbridges]
The hot metal bridge was added in 1899. [HAER]
Jones & Laughlin Steel Corporation began a program in 1960 to improve steel production. One of the areas was to replace the fleet of 80 ton submarine ladles with 165 ton ladles. This required considerable work on the Hot Metal Bridge in order for the Mon Con to handle the heavier and longer submarine ladles. The first phase was to reduce the dead load. This was accomplished by removing the heavy fire brick trough that made up the deck system and replacing it with a light steel plate covered with granulated slag. This was necessary to prevent any hot metal splashing into the river. This work was done under traffic by company forces. The second phrase was to strengthen the top chord truss members. This was done by drilling holes in the web of the truss members and bolting with high tensile bolts through reinforcing plates. Over 7,000 bolts were placed. The work was designed by Structural Associates of Pittsburgh and erected by company forces. [PA277C]

Monday, July 29, 2019

Arthur M Anderson is back in service after a 2.5 year layup

(Update: I discovered it has its own Facebook group.)

She sailed with the Edmund Fitzgerald "maintaining radio and radar contact with each other on their Lake Superior transit through a forecasted storm, taking the longer route following the Canadian shore. This route afforded more protection from the winds and waves for most of the trip versus the more direct route across the lake that would expose them to the full force of the storm." Consequently, she was the last ship to have sight, radio, and radar contact with the Fitzgerald. The next day she joined several other ships to look for her. "Other than the eventual recovery of the [two] severely damaged lifeboats, the extensive search resulted in only the recovery of various pieces of floating debris from the sinking." [BoatNerd]

Entering Duluth Piers for winter lay up, Jan. 15, 2017.  (Chris Mazzella) [BoatNerd]
Because of the economy, this old (1952), oil-fired, steam-turbine ship has remained in Duluth until this (2019) Summer.

David Schauer posted
Tomorrow (Thursday, 7/25/19) should be the day the Arthur M. Anderson enters revenue service once again as she heads for Two Harbors to load. Here the venerable laker rests at Fraser on Sunday, 7/21/19.
Jim Hoffman Looks like that grey stripe needs to be extended downwards and leveled out. Will be interesting to see how she looks when sailing light without cargo...
Chris Mazzella It was fixed
David Schauer posted
Arthur M. Anderson loading on the west side of Dock 6 in Duluth. Minntac pellets for Great Lakes Works. 8/2/19

Glenn Blaszkiewicz posted (source)
Sunset at Fraser Shipyards in Superior with the freshly painted "Arthur M. Anderson". 7/19/19

Michigan Film Photographer Karl Wertanen posted
Shortly after I wrapped up at the Algonac Art Fair Sunday, I was lucky enough to photograph the Arthur M Anderson (1952) as it passed by Algonac headed for Ashtabula Ohio.
The Anderson is famous for being the last ship to be in contact with SS Edmund Fitzgerald before Edmund Fitzgerald sank on 10 November 1975.
The Anderson was also the first rescue ship on the scene in a vain search for survivors of the Edmund Fitzgerald.
The vessel's namesake, Arthur Marvin Anderson, was director of U.S. Steel, a member of its finance committee and vice chairman of the J. P. Morgan and Co. at the time.
Shot with Mavic 2 Pro/Hasselblad L1D-20c Camera
Silver Jfr Bernie Cooper from Port Conneaut Ohio was captain that nite.

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fred xeje She is 767'x70'x36' and will hold 25,300 tons of cargo. Looking really fine.
Jack Corvette Those seas were that big...they rolled up his deck and he's got a list and the water stays up and it's gonna put his bow down underwater and then when she started down the screw just drove her to the bottom......-Captain Jesse Bernie Cooper [Cooper was the captain of the Anderson when the Fitzgerald went down.]

In the above video, she is leaving Duluth, MN, for her fist docking at Two Harbors, MN, to get a load of iron ore. I wonder if her first docking will add scrape marks to the new paint job.

In 1962 she did a couple of trips on the recently opened St. Lawrence Seaway to carry iron ore from Port Cartier, QC, to Gary, IN. A bow thruster was added in 1966 and a stern thruster was added in 1989. Her original length was 647'. In 1975 120' was added and she went from a 6x7x6 hatch configuration to a 6x12x6 configuration. The self-unloading equipment was added during the 1981/82 winter layup. Both major modifications were done at the Fraser Shipyard, Superior, WI. That shipyard also did the $4m refit starting on April 2, 2019, to return her to service. [BoatNerd]

9and10news has a video of it on the St. Mary's River for the first time in 2.5 years.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

MJ and BRC over CB&Q


MJ = Manufacturers' Junction Railway
BRC = Belt Railway Company of Chicago
CB&Q = Chicago, Burlington and Quincy

Forgotten Railways, Roads & Places posted
Immediately east of Cicero, IL, an abandoned transfer track from the #BNSFRacetrack. Image taken aboard a train. #abandonedrailway #urbex #history #chicago#illinois
Dennis DeBruler Looking south. The tracks still exist. But I can believe they have not been used recently.,-87.../data=!3m1!1e3
Forgotten Railways, Roads, and Places That imagery is from 2017. I actually watched them tear up this track. It's not to say BNSF won't rebuild this section, but as of now the track is gone.
Dennis DeBruler Forgotten Railways, Roads, and Places A "stale" satellite image. Thanks for the update.

Dennis DeBruler That Unilever Best Foods building in the background used to be a very common architectural style in Chicago for industrial buildings.
In this topo map it is clear that Manufaturers' Junction used to have a connection to the east end of CB&Q's Clyde (Cicero) Yard. Since MJ connected to BRC, there were connections between CB&Q and BRC in three of the four possible quadrants.
Dennis DeBruler commented on a post
There used to be (1929 Englewood Quadrant) a lot of industry and spurs in that area. The upper-left corner was Western Electrics Hawthorne Works.

Dennis DeBruler commented on a post
Some remnants of Manufacturers' Junction Railway, including the roundhouse, still exist in a satellite image. That railroad served the Hawthorne Works.,-87.../data=!3m1!1e3
During a commuter trip into town on Oct 21, 2016, I took photos to the south as I went through this crossing.
20161021 6513

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Aban/NS/N&W Cincinnati Junction Bridge over Scioto River near Portsmouth, OH

(Bridge Hunter, no Historic Bridges)
Historic Bridges has some of the bridges in Scioto County, but not this one.

(new window) Posted by Kevin Pike in Railroad Bridges Past and Present at 7/22/2019 0759.
"Norfolk Southern (ex N&W) inactive peavine line bridge crossing the Scioto River north of Portsmouth, Ohio. This line was taken out of service due to settlement issues with the bridge and the western approach."
Steven Ward Hard to believe that the mighty J class engines used to run about 100 MPH.
Kevin Pike Steven Ward still owned by NS between Portsmouth and Cincinnati, Ohio. It is leased on the west end from Cincinnati to just east of Peebles, Ohio to Cincinnati Eastern Terminal with light traffic and car storage. The washouts on the east end would have to fixed before anything could run on the half.
Steven Ward First of all, thank you for clearing that up for me on who owns that line. I heard it was sold off. Thank you for straightening that up for me. I saw trains parked on it in various spots. But wash outs? I didn't know there was any wash outs. Where at exactly? I heard the bridge shifted 5 feet.
Steven Ward NS got the former NYC main from Columbus, Springfield, Dayton, to Cincinnati line which at first ran a lot of trains on that line when Conrail was around. NS got that line in 97. Now sees maybe 13 trains per day. So NS may run trains up to Columbus then down to Cincinnati.

This bridge shows the importance of understanding a river's flood plain. Seven of the nine spans are over "dry land." But that was not enough because it looks like a washout of the embankment on the northwest side is part of the problem.
Screenshot at 3:59
Kevin Pike posted a couple of photos by Preston Whitt near Rushtown as comments. They show why railroads need to spend so much money on track maintenance. And the bridge suffers from shifting piers.


Thursday, July 25, 2019

Bonneville Lock and Dam on Columbia River

(USACESatellite, 222+ photos)

USACE Teacher's Guide
It has two locks and 2.5 fish ladders. But the guide wall of the new lock severely restricts the length of what can use the first lock. The first lock was part of the original 1938 construction. The larger lock was added in 1993 to match the size of the seven other locks on the 465 mile Columbia-Snake River Inland Waterway. A second powerhouse was added in 1981 on the north side. [USACE] The spillway is in the middle.
The 1938 lock is not even used for recreational boats. It has been closed. Even the new lock is small by Midwest standards. Specifically, the width is two barges rather than the three-barge width that we have on the Upper Mississippi, Ohio and Illinois rivers.
Bonneville Lock and Dam National Historic Landmark Brochure


Downloaded Fact Sheet

Downloaded Fact Sheet
WaterwaysJournal via Advanced-American
[An emergency lock closure on Sep 5, 2019. The sill developed a crack, and it had to be torn out and replaced with a new one. It was expected to reopen Sept. 30, 2019. It actually reopened Sep 27. [opb] ]

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

1958-1975 Edmund Fitzgerald and 1959 Steel Strike

The Arthur M. Anderson sailed with her in the storm of Nov. 10, 1975. But she disappeared so fast that having a "'buddy ship" did not help.

(Update: Remembering the Edmund Fitzgerald, from freighter to famous shipwreck in 30 photos)

Wisconsin Marine Historical Society posted eight images with the comment:
Sixty years ago today (7/21/59), the EDMUND FITZGERALD steamed into Milwaukee’s inner harbor. It was the only time in her 17-year career that the Mighty FITZ would visit her port of registry. A strike had halted steel production nationwide and idled the ore boats. Columbia Transportation, which managed the FITZGERALD, arranged for space at Milwaukee where she could ride out the strike. She remained in Milwaukee for three months as the strike dragged on. The FITZGERALD, along with her crew of 29, was lost during a storm on Lake Superior in November 1975.
Great Lakes Engineering Works of River Rouge, Michigan, built the EDMUND FITZGERALD for the Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company, which had its headquarters in Milwaukee. At 729 feet long with a 75-foot beam, she was the largest vessel on the Lakes when launched June 7, 1958. [The 1896 Poe Lock was just 800'x80'x29.5' until it was rebuilt in 1968 as 1200'x110'x32'] More than 10,000 people lined the Detroit River to watch her slide sideways into the water. But things did not go smoothly. It took three tries to break the champagne bottle. Then there was a half-hour delay as workers struggled to release keel blocks. Finally, the newborn giant crashed hard into a pier on the opposite side of the launching basin after sliding down the ways. All that was forgotten by September 24 when the FITZGERALD departed Silver Bay, Minnesota, with her first cargo: 20,000 tons of taconite pellets.
Edmund Fitzgerald joined Northwestern Mutual in 1932 as a part-time employee. He ascended to the presidency in 1947 and was elected chairman of the board in 1958. During his tenure, the company added lake boats to its investment portfolio. While the company owned the boat named for its chairman, it entered into a 25-year agreement with Oglebay Norton’s Columbia Transportation Division to manage the vessel.
As the FITZGERALD began its first full season hauling iron ore, trouble was brewing in the steel industry. American steel companies were reporting healthy profits and the workers wanted to share in the prosperity. After watching autoworkers win hefty pay increases and lucrative benefits, steelworkers became more aggressive. With the steel contract set to expire on July 1, 1959, workers demanded a large pay increase and substantially better benefits. The steel industry, concerned with foreign competition, sought to control its labor costs. With no new contract, workers walked out on July 15. Nearly every steel mill in the country was shut down.
Vessel managers were soon scrambling to find space for boats, many loaded with ore, which were no longer needed. “An armada of ore ships” quickly replaced naval vessels in Milwaukee’s harbor. 15 navy ships had taken part in Operation Inland Seas, Milwaukee’s celebration marking the opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway. U.S. Steel, Columbia Transport, and Wilson Marine Transit all sent idled ore carriers to Milwaukee.
The FITZGERALD arrived on July 21, 1959. Meeting at the harbor that day were four Edmund Fitzgeralds. First, there was Edmund Fitzgerald, chairman of Northwestern Mutual. Next was his son, Edmund B. Then came his three-year old grandson, Edmund G. And finally, there was the baby: a 729-foot lake boat named after the senior Fitzgerald.
Since 1881 agents for Northwestern Mutual have gathered in Milwaukee each year. This event is designed to bring agents together with employees from headquarters. The 79th annual convention was a three-day affair from July 20 through July 22, 1959. On the final day, agents and employees were allowed to tour the company’s mammoth ore carrier.
The following day, Thursday, July 23, the FITZGERALD was opened for public inspection from 9:00 am to 7:00 pm. Even though access to Jones Island was limited “by street, sewer and other construction projects,” and despite heavy rain that afternoon, more than 11,500 Milwaukeeans toured the Mighty FITZ. She was opened to the public again on Friday because of strong interest.
Unfortunately, visitors were not allowed in the pilothouse “because of the delicate, expensive equipment installed there.” But they did get to see the two staterooms just below the bridge for guests, carried by invitation only, and the connecting lounge “with a window wall looking over the cargo hatches to the stern.”
After the excitement of her first three days in Milwaukee, the FITZGERALD’s port of registry, things slowed down. She remained tied up at Jones Island waiting for an end to the steel strike. However, there would be no quick resolution.
Claiming that national security was compromised, President Eisenhower requested an injunction ordering strikers back to work for 80 days under provisions of the Taft-Hartley Act. When the injunction was granted on October 21, union officials immediately sought to have the Act declared unconstitutional.
On October 26, Kaiser Steel broke ranks and reached an independent settlement. Three days later, anticipating an end to the nationwide strike, the FITZGERALD left Milwaukee and headed for the ore docks.
On November 7, the Supreme Court upheld Taft-Hartley. After almost four months, steel mills slowly began coming back to life. So too did the ore boats. The two sides finally reached an agreement ending the strike in January 1960. Workers received a minimal pay increase.
Although it was over, the strike would have a lasting impact on the steel industry. Forced to find alternatives during the shutdown, American manufacturers learned to work with foreign steel. In many cases they found it to be less expensive than American steel even after factoring in transportation costs.
In 1957, the United States exported 5.3 million tons of steel while importing only 1.1 million tons. Two years later, imported steel exceeded exports by 2.7 million tons. This dramatic change can be attributed to the steel strike. Unfortunately, the United States continued importing more steel than it exported in the following years.
Never again would the EDMUND FITZGERALD visit her homeport of Milwaukee. For 17 years she hauled iron ore, often from the chutes at Superior, Wisconsin, to the unloaders at Toledo, Ohio. Overwhelmed by a storm on Lake Superior, the Mighty FITZ and her 29-man crew perished November 10, 1975.
Domestic steel continued its gradual decline. American steelmakers accounted for almost 47 percent of steel produced worldwide in 1950. Ten years later, that percentage had dropped to just under 26. Today, the United States produces less than six percent of the world’s steel.
Port Milwaukee benefits from imported steel. Coil, structural, and plate steel arrives primarily from Europe. 179,000 metric tons of steel passed through the port in 2017. This represented about 9.3 percent of the 1.93 million metric tons handled at Milwaukee’s public docks that year.
In March 2018, President Trump announced a 25 percent tariff on imported steel. According to the Department of Commerce, steel imports nationwide decreased eleven percent. Port Milwaukee has not disclosed its steel tonnage for 2018. So far in 2019, ten (unofficial) vessels have delivered European steel.
Edmund Fitzgerald had a Lakes connection: his father was president of Milwaukee Dry Dock, and his grandfather was a ship captain. Mr. Fitzgerald was also instrumental in organizing the Wisconsin Marine Historical Society, and served as its first president.
Recognizing the importance of the St. Lawrence Seaway to the city, Milwaukee hosted a weeklong celebration to mark its opening. Called Operation Inland Seas, the program started June 26, 1959, and included an amphibious landing by the U.S. Navy on the city’s lakefront. Edmund Fitzgerald was chairman of the St. Lawrence Seaway Celebration Committee.
In 2019 Northwestern Mutual is hosting its 139th annual meeting of agents. The five-day affair from July 20 through July 24 will bring more than 10,000 people from across the country to Milwaukee.
PHOTO CREDITS: Unless otherwise noted, Great Lakes Marine Collection of the Milwaukee Public Library and Wisconsin Marine Historical Society.
Help keep history alive. Join the Wisconsin Marine Historical Society.
For information email us at or call 414-286-3074.










David Brown posted
Edmund Firzgerald. I believe I took this photo in Duluth. We were loading taconite just down from her.
Shawn Keith Do you know when you took the photo?
David Brown Shawn Keith I believe August 1975.
Kent Rengo Nice! Definitely Duluth MN. At the DM&IR ore docks.
David Brown Kent Rengo thanks for the confirmation... Memories fade.
Phillip Wolbert nice lighting. Even have the draft gauge deployed.
Nick Gurr She looks fatigued even then.
John Chidester Nick Gurr looks fatigued ????
Nick Gurr John Chidester It is known as fact they often overloaded that vessel many times beyond the engineering limits, and a number of major structural repairs had been done prior to the tragic sinking to keep her afloat making money.. It was not fit for that storm with that load and long time metal fatigue. That is the view of many in the know at the time.
John Chidester Nick Gurr so happy to hear all the “facts” from all the “experts”. Thanks for sharing.
Bob Haworth She looks pretty usual to me. Typical boat. I'd like to see documentation showing that she had been overloaded several times.
Brian Bernard The Fitzgerald wasn't "overloaded" than any other ship of that era, if by overloaded you mean changes to her loadline assignment. But all the ships built in the 1950s had changes to their loadlines. And that change was based on data gathered by hull stress gauges and even wave buoys launched from the Edward L. Ryerson in the mid to late 1960s. Several other vessels, Shenango II, Seaway Queen, Ontario Power were similarly instrumented in the 1960s as part of a study done by the USCG, Transport Canada, ABS and SNAME.
Nick Gurr True, but her hull had been serviced due to previous fatigue damage and stress damage. She should not have sunk knowing what we know now. There are still lots of theories unproven .
John Chidester Nick Gurr every vessel goes through that type of service. It’s a normal cycle for them. These ships work hard year in and year out. They wear.

Eric Pieper posted an image
[Evidently the Wisconsin Maritime Museum has a diorama of how it settled on the bottom of the lake.]

Luke Gilmore posted two photos with the comment: "I was digitizing some photos (in slide form) that my grandfather took in 1960 and found a couple pics of the Edmund Fitzgerald."
Stephanie Kay Suranyi Sue Gilmore November 10, 1975.
Dave Hamel Stephanie Kay Suranyi I remember that day like it was yesterday. Living on an island in Lake Erie it was the windiest day I could remember. The winds blew so hard that the water level of the lake dropped dramatically and we had alot more beach front real estate that day. I will never forget it. I was 13 at the time.
[A storm that effected both Superior and Erie would be a monster!]]
Rachel Lamming Hillary Corjos wow these are gems. There are very few photos of the Fitz that aren't already in circulation.

Mike Arlan shared


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(new windowWhen launched in 1958 it was the largest ship to sail on the Great Lakes. (I quite watching at 1:30.)

More about the strike:
Andrew Haenisch posted
Milwaukee Harbor Monday July 2, 1956
"Twelve ore boats that are expected to sit out the steel strike in the Kinnickinnic mooring basin at Jones Island were anchored outside of Milwaukee harbor Monday morning. The second vessel to enter the harbor was the Norman B. Ream (left). It eased by the Ravnefjell, a Norwegian cargo ship. Eight other ore boats are expected to come to the harbor to await the end of the steel strike. All boats that arrived Monday where loaded".

  • Journal Staff

  • Original press photo