Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Duluth+Superior Ship Loading Docks

When I learned that Wyoming Powder Basin coal was shipped to power plants on the St. Clair River via Lakers, I was not sure where the coal dock was in the Duluth+Superior harbor area. This picture and its caption answers my question.

(Update: Superior, WI, had docks for Great Northern, Northern Pacific, and C&NW Railroads.
Some grain elevators in Superior, WI.   Information concerning Rice's Point has been moved to here.)

David Schauer posted
This was during a three-week USWA strike in 1956. Note all of the Pittsburgh Steamship Division boats in temporary layup at the DM&IR Duluth docks. There is an active laker unloading coal at the Boston dock on the far left, possibly the Cliffs Mather? Basgen Photography
Carl Dahl: Even the crane ship Clifford Hood was there in lay up. [Third boat from the right.]
Michael Lackore: That is indeed the William G. Mather unloading to the far left.
I can't identify them all but I can get a few of a the Pittsburgh boats. The Clarke, Callaway and the Anderson are moored closest to the shore of Dock 6 ( right side ore dock) not neccessarily in that order. Off the starboard stern of the Eastern-most one of those three is the Cifford F. Hood with the dual cranes on deck. At the Eastern side of dock 6 at the end, facing outward, is the William E. Corey. On the opposite side of the dock, sporting the dual, spar-deck houses in the John W. Gates. The Gate's sisters, The James J. Hill, Issac Ellwood, and William Edenborn, all sporting their singular spar-deck houses, are there too. Lastly, the most visable of the two boats moored at the end of the West side of Dock 5, is the Henry C. Frick.
Rick Schroeder: If we proposed each ship averaged 650' long, that's over 3 miles of freighter!
Fred Overeem: During that strike many freighters were layedup in Muskegon lake. My friend an I had a boat that we used to visit crew members.

David Schauer shared
John R Decator: I remember the 56 strike, although I thought it was longer than 3 weeks. My dad was Chief Engineer on the Harvey that season. My mom drove in convoy with three other families from Marine City, Michigan, to spend time with our dads. Took the moms three days of driving. My dad rented a trailer on a lake outside Duluth, and we fished and swam with him.
James Torgeson: John R Decator The ‘59 strike was a long one.

David Schauer posted
A flashback to 1959 from the Basgen files of the Col. James M. Schoonmaker at DM&IR Dock 6. An unidentified Great Lakes Towing tug is assisting. Basgen Photography

James Torgeson shared
The Str. Col. James M. Schoonmaker of the Shenango Furnace fleet loads ore in Duluth in 1959. She survives as a museum ship on the Maumee River in Toledo, OH.

David Schauer posted
Nice late afternoon light illuminates the Great Lakes Trader (and Joyce) arriving at CN to load pellets for Cleveland while across the bay the PRT finishes up loading coal for St. Clair. June 11, 2017.

Al Miller updated
This week’s banner photo shows Arthur M. Anderson arriving at CN 6 in Duluth to unload limestone, with the Cason J. Callaway loading at the gravity chutes. It was shot July 10, 2010, by Chris Mazzella. He posted it here last winter.

This video taught me that the vertical things in the front part of the dock are conveyors instead of chutes.
The mighty Anderson loading up in Duluth in heavy rain for another run south to the Gary Steel Works in Gary, IN.

Robby Gragg posted
As seen from on top of a bluff above Duluth, MN, the IC 6251 departs the dock with ore empties.

Dan Mackey posted
With Jerry’s post from Superior, WI the other day it reminded me of an old map of the Twin Ports Principal Docks. This is from Greenwood’s Great Lakes 1966 edition. Sorry for the low quality of the image but I’ll do my best to explain the elevators and locations.
In 1966 there were 5 grain Elevators on the Duluth Side of the harbor, of those 3 are still around in 2020.
14. General Mills- still there
17. Cargill-still there. Greatly expanded
19. Capital-wood portion burned down in 1978. Concrete portion-Was AGP, new owner recently.
21. Occidental-torn down 1998
22. Peavey-torn down 1998
On the Superior side of the harbor there were 8 elevators of which 5 are left in 2020.
40. Great Northern S & X- still there, I think it’s General Mills these days.
41. Globe Elevator- wooden. Been in the salvage process for many years. Main house is gone. Wooden annexes one is half done the other still stands.
43 & 44. Farmers Union 1 & 2. Still there. Became GTA, now Cenex Harvest States.
51. Osborne McMillan Elevator O- wooden, torn down in the early 1980’s.
52. Osborne McMillan Elevator M- still there, now Hansen Mueller complex including the old King Midas flour Mill from Jerry’s post
58. Itasca Elevator. I believe it was a Cargill Elevator. Torn down in the 1960’s.
59. Continental Grain- still there, was Peavey Connors Point, then Concourse Grain and I lost track after that.
The Blue Highlighted Elevator was the King Midas Flour Mill, it didn’t get a map location number because it wasn’t served by ships, which is the purpose of this map.
Dennis DeBruler commented on Dan's post
To help orient myself:

The coal loading dock with the grain elevators in the background.

Sue Bob Kruse posted
Walter J McCarthy Jr at Midwest Energy loading coal.
Dennis DeBruler I wondered what the name of the loading company was. Neither Google nor Bing label it on their maps.,-92.../data=!3m1!1e3

DRE Designs - Great Lakes Marine Products posted
Here's a cool shot from Captain Bob and the Paul R Tregurtha! This was when they were loading in Superior the other day... they are actually almost back here now.. they left yesterday morning and are due to arrive here in the Soo this afternoon.. I'm hoping to catch them out at Pointe Louise so hopefully I'll be able to!
The PRT is on her way to St Clair with another load of coal and probably Monroe to deliver the second half of their load then they'll return here again
A big thank you to Captain for these great perspectives! We'll see you soon!
Art Pietscher: I always watch for any of the boats bring anything to DTE in Monroe but unless you're in a boat it's tough to get a decent picture there. You have about a 15 minute window of them pulling into the mouth of the river or you've got about a half hour window to watch them backing out of the channel and out into deep water. Very neat to watch them back out. The Port of Monroe is hoping to install a viewing platform someday but for not you go to the State Park and try to catch them arriving o leaving.

The CN/Duluth, Missabe & Iron Range ore loading dock with ore storage piles. (Update: Dock 5 describes the now abandoned dock that is next to the active Dock 6.)

Wayne Ciampaglia posted
Illinois Central SD on Duluth ore dock 5-25-14

David Schauer posted
Hatfield loading taconite pellets on the east side of Dock 6 Duluth during an unseasonable cold snap in December 1972. Missabe Railroad Historical Society Collection
Richard Wicklund posted
From the Skyline Drive in Duluth, overlooking the Missabe ore Docks on June 9, 1973. Three Tin Stackers, left to right: Robert C. Stanley, peaking around the right ore dock, the Leon Fraser, with the Henry H. Rogers at the Hallett Dock unloading across the slip. Notice that the Superior Midwest Energy coal dock across in Superior was not there yet.
Steve Miller: When did they stop using that right dock?
David Schauer: Steve Miller 1985
Al Miller: Cool to see all those bridge cranes.
Steve Miller: How did the bridge cranes work?
Richard Wicklund: Those docks across in Superior worked the same as the one on the right where the Henry H. Rogers is being unloaded. A bucket on the crane moves out and lowers it into the hold of the ship. Also the entire crane moves on rails up and down the slip adjusting to the ship. The crane unloads the bucket in the proper piles, or in reverse, can load the ship.

Eric Berger posted
My first view of Duluth, through the windshield on an Interstate.
[3D Satellite]
Street View
The Interstate does provide some interesting views of the docks.
Street View

Andrew Haenisch posted
Original press photo. The newspaper caption on the back of the photograph says the following. "A French ship took on a load of grain at the port of Duluth - Superior". The photo is dated October 8th, 1978.
Photographer is unknown.
  • Great Lakes Shipping History

David Schauer posted
The new Algoma Strongfield takes on a cargo of UTAC pellets at CN's Dock 6 in West Duluth for Quebec City (for eventual movement to Europe). This is the first trip to the Twin Ports for the Strongfield, which was delivered recently from a shipyard in China as part of Algoma's fleet modernization program. June 18, 2017.
Google Maps
Marty Bernard posted
DM&IR ore docks in Duluth, MN on March 16, 1984. Walt Dunlap photo

[Look at all of the workers on top preparing to unload.]

Chris Mazzella posted
J.P. Morgan Jr. ( William P Palmer behind her), Thomas Lynch and Percival Roberts Jr, tied up at DM&IR Dock 6 during the US Workers strike. July 17, 1959

Jeff Andersen posted
The Winter 2018 CHS COOP magazine has this centerfold photo of the CHS Port of Superior, WI elevator with text. It is nice to see it still active.
Twin Ports Rail posted
Spring is here and so is the shipping season. The James R Barker backs into the slip at CN Dock 6 in West Duluth while a BNSF coal train unloads across the bay and a roadswitch job with IC 6252 works the dock. This is the first ship of the season for Dock 6, loading UTAC pellets. March 22, 2018.
Jose D Nevarez No chance CN will open the other bridge?Twin Ports Rail Nope - eventually will be scrapped.Gary Luskey Does alot of grain still get loaded on to ships up there yet?Twin Ports Rail Not much relative to 20 years ago. Spring and fall still see some decent activity.
Robby Gragg posted
A former DM&IR tunnel motor rests on the Duluth dock. Duluth, MN

Wayne Ciampaglia posted
Illinois Central SD on the Duluth Ore Dock 5-25-14
Mark Strock Never seen this dock in action, are they going up or coming down? I imagine they are winched up.
DaBob Olson Optical illusion, the tracks are actually level, the picture is taken from above and at an angle. I have been to Duluth, no dock is going up hill like that. But it does make you think.
Picture taken from Skyline Parkway Overlook.!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4...

Edward Duke posted six photos with the comment: "10-7-19 Some elevator shots from Duluth, MN and Superior, WI."



<photos 4-6 are on the Duluth, MN, side>

Al Miller posted
Views of a glass plate print of the Soo Line whaleback Washburn loading. Although the elevator says Duluth, I believe this actually is in Superior, Wis.
[Al's posting includes three closeups of the whaleback boat.]
Tim Pranke Al, I don't think I have seen this one before. And you are correct, this is Superior, the elevator that burn a couple years ago.
Al Miller Tim Pranke This is a 1980s print made off a glass plate neg that I believe was shot by D.F. Barry, who set up shop in Superior for a time and apparently did some work for McDougall in the early days to help publicize the whaleback design.

Mike Harlan shared
Greg Sumser I believe that elevator is STILL standing near BARCO in Superior.

Dennis DeBruler shared
The first photo is of interest. According to Google Earth images, it burned between Sep 2006 and Sep 2008. It appears it has been disassembled for the wood.…/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x52ae53fa…
It looks like these elevators are also being "mined" for wood.…/@46.7388935,-92.1018…/data=!3m1!1e3
Rick Aylsworth Yes, it was being salvaged for timber at the time of the fire.
Bob Summers Estimated date for this photo? Looks like a steam engine room on the left, so likely before they had electric motors?
Dennis DeBruler The first whaleback was built in 1887, so this could be before electricity became popular. Or they may have converted it to electricity but they hadn't bothered to tear down the steam plant. I think it is safe to say that it is old enough that it originally operated with steam instead of electricity.
I just noticed the wires in the foreground. But I don't think those are electric power wires.
We are also left with the question of what did the conveyor on the right go to.
Bob Summers Dennis DeBruler based on my research the mills and elevators here in central Kansas converted to powering with electric motors mostly in the second decade of the 20rh century, may have had electric light a little earlier. When our first concrete terminal was built in Hutchinson in 1913 they used electric motors, and the mills and older wooden elevators were starting to change over from the coal fired steam power plants. Lots of fires in those days. I suppose the conveyor you mentioned when to another laker loading pier to the right.

Dennis DeBruler commented on Greg's comment on Mike's post
It looks like it got disassembled for the wood.!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4...

Judging from images from Google Earth, it burned between Sep 2006 and Sep 2008. I include a Dec 2005 image because it is better.



Or is it these elevators that are being "mined" for wood.
3D Satellite

Is Anand shared a Marco Delgado post
Fred Babin Interesting to see the ship discharging cargo prior to taking on a load of iron ore pellets.
Brandon Lee Many of these lake freighters haul limestone, coal or other commodity up north on the return trips.
Dennis DeBruler And the UP Big Boy is a bonus.

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

William Brown shared a David Schauer post
Ultimate rail & sail combination. Timing is everything, and everything came together this evening as three trains converged at Dock 6 in Duluth while the distinctive laker John D. Leitch loaded ore. Great light and color with the shadows holding off long enough to get all three trains unobstructed. Canadian railroads and boat plus all EMD. Credit skillful piloting by Gus with composition/exposure and framing assist from dad. 8/6/19

In 1888, this harbor also had the world's largest grain elevator. It was being disassembled to salvage its old-growth wood when it burned Dec 17, 2018.

Unfortunately, I don't have the time to find where this is in Duluth.
Ben Stalvey posted
Can you spot the Manitowoc 4100?
Jordan Korzenowski Port of Duluth
Mike Holland Yes just left of center. Right behind the aggregate piles for the asphalt plant.
[The answer seems to be the red one that is front and center with an "offset boom." So I guess it is not just the 2250 that has a fixed gantry. Note all of the wind tower segments in the background. I assume they are being imported instead of exported.]

Photos of Dock 6 and the coal/limestone docks

1 comment:

  1. Great website. love it. Just what I needed to start my H.O. Grain Elevator at a port. Thanks