Archives for April 2008

Adam E. Cornelius leads Tregurtha into Duluth ship canal

On April 19th, the Paul R. Tregurtha departed Duluth with a cargo of coal for Detroit Edison in St. Clair, Michigan. Two days later, the Adam E. Cornelius departed Duluth, heading for Buffalo with a cargo of wheat. In the picture above, taken yesterday, the Cornelius just beat the Tregurtha to the Duluth ship canal as both were returning from trips to Buffalo and Detroit. But the race was not so close since the Tregurtha had made another round trip to Detroit while the Cornelius was discharging wheat one Great Lake (Erie) further. The Tregurtha has probably already departed the port for Detroit with another cargo of coal. The Cornelius won’t get away until this evening. Coal is faster than wheat!
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-30-2008

Rebecca here for grain

Five boats will be arriving in Duluth today. Three of them are expected to depart today also. The Rebecca is expected here to load grain and will be here several days. Last year, it was the first salt water ship of the season, coming into port on April 10th (above) with the help of the tug Minnesota on the stern and the North Dakota on the bow. Today, it is still only the second saltie of the season.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-29-2008

James R. Barker again for coal

The James R. Barker came into port on Sunday evening (above) to load coal for a Detroit Edison power plant in St. Clair, Michigan. The boat called the St. Clair was named after the city since it was intended to deliver coal to that power plant. It still does but it goes to many other ports with a variety of cargos. Today it was set to load iron ore pellets in Two Harbors but it arrived in Duluth at 7:30 Sunday night. It is either getting fuel or repairs or their orders have been changed. The now Canadian flagged Robert S. Pierson will load iron ore pellets in Superior. It is the former US flagged Wolverine.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-28-2008

Vista Star, always a sign of spring

The return of the Vista boats to their dock at the DECC is usually a sure sign of spring. The Vista Queen and Vista Star arrived there on Friday, signaling instead a last blast of winter. A new employee training session was planned in the harbor for Saturday but cold weather prevented the Minnesota Slip Bridge from opening, so they had the session on board the boat at the slip while it snowed outside (above).
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-27-2008

Presque Isle is one of many vessels coming into the port

On this day last year, the 5th salt water ship of the season arrived in the Twin Ports. This year, the 2nd saltie is not expected until next week when three should be arriving. One of them, the BBC Zarate, will be bringing the first of many shipments of wind turbine parts this year, this one from Siemens in Denmark. Today 3 US flagged boats and 2 Canadian flags will be here. Three will load taconite and 2 will be loading iron ore pellets. Two will be taking cargo to Nanticoke, Ontario. The Canadian Olympic will load coal for Nanticoke while the Presque Isle will be taking iron ore pellets there. Above, the Presque Isle is seen coming into port last July 28th.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-26-2008

Roger Blough comes out of the fog

The Roger Blough came in through the fog last night at 6:30 (above) to load iron ore pellets for Conneaut. The Cason J. Callaway is expected this evening. It made 18 trips to the Twin Ports last season, often bringing limestone here and then loading iron ore pellets, usually at Two Harbors. This will be its first trip of the season to the Twin Ports. It is bringing limestone loaded at Cedarville, Michigan and will then load iron ore pellets for the downbound cargo. Both boats are owned and operated by Great Lakes Fleet, located in Duluth.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-25-2008

Getting your TWIC card

The Twin Ports are spread over two cities in two states. The people who operate the port work in a wide variety of occupations from stevedores and tug operators to guards and accountants. There are only two people who know everyone in the port. That would be Meredith Karasti (left) and Brenda Hennessey (right). They work for the Department of Homeland Security’s Transportation Worker Identification Credential Program, TWIC for short. Soon, anyone who works within, or needs access to, the port’s secure areas will need to have an id card, commonly called a TWIC card. Meredith and Brenda, both from Duluth, have been interviewing, finger printing and photographing those many, many people since late December. Above, they are working with Julie Danula (right), senior accounting analyst at Midwest Energy Resources in Superior.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-24-2008


Previous names:
Marquette: 1942-1942
Neshanic: 1942-1947
Gulfoil: 1947-1961
Pioneer Challenger: 1961-1962
Middletown: 1962-2006
American Victory: 2006-

The American Victory has been in long term layup since November of 2008, in Superior, WI
Click here for other pages featuring the American Victory

2008Aug26_0931PRODThe American Victory, formerly the Middletown, is one of the oldest and most historic boats on the Great Lakes. She was built as the Marquette in 1942 at Sparrows Point, Maryland. Later that same year, she became the Neshanic. During the Second World War the ship saw duty on both the Atlantic and Pacific Ocean as a tanker. She is credited with shooting down an enemy aircraft and was also hit by a Japanese bomber while refueling a destroyer in the Pacific.
In 1947, she was renamed the Gulfoil when she was purchased by the Gulf Oil Company. In 1958, she was in a collision with another tanker and lost many of her crew members. Although heavily damaged, she was repaired, and converted to a Great Lakes bulk carrier called the Pioneer Challenger. In 1962, her name was changed to the hometown of the Armco Steel Company, Middletown, Ohio. In 2006, she was sold by Oglebay Norton to American Steamship and became the American Victory. Picture above taken Tuesday, August 26, 2008 arriving Duluth when she was the American Victory.
For pictures and information about her when she was the American Victory, go here.
Picture above taken Saturday, November 5, 2005
Picture above taken Saturday, October 8, 2005
Above, she departs Duluth on April  23, 2004. Below, I visited the boat on October 30, 2004 while she was discharging a cargo of limestone
Middletown captain Ted Olm was checking his charts in the pilot house while the Middletown was discharging a cargo of limestone. She loaded a cargo of iron ore pellets before departing the Port.
Then, he gave me a tour of his boat, which is a walk back in history. My guess is the two pictures below show equipment that might have been original; but they were not in use any more.
The original engine has been long gone; below are pictures from my visit; hard to tell now what is still in use.
I took the picture of the picture of the boat as it was during World War 2, below, a picture that shows all the gun placements on the boat.
middletownthanksgivingmenuI visited the Middletown on November 24, 2004, the day before Thanksgiving, a bad choice; had I waited a day, I could have celebrated with them. Click the menu here to see what I missed. Below, steward John (Waldo) Wagner prepares the turkeys. He was nice enough to share their dinner that night with me, delicious salmon/crab croquettes.
Picture below taken Wednesday, December 22, 2004
Above and below, going under the Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge, from the bridge, on June 19, 2003
Picture above taken July 24, 2001 while she was under the Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge as she departed the port; picture below taken Tuesday, November 20, 2001: entering the Duluth ship canal

Lee A. Tregurtha here for coal

The Lee A. Tregurtha came into port Tuesday afternoon to load coal at Midwest Energy Resources for Taconite Harbor. It likely departed for there very early this morning and is expected to leave there later today to load iron ore pellets at Two Harbors. It was followed at the coal dock by the Paul R. Tregurtha. It is loading coal for a Detroit Edison power plant at St. Clair, Michigan. The boats are named after Paul R. Tregurtha, vice chairman of Interlake Steamship Company and his wife Lee. The Paul R. is the largest boat on the Great Lakes. The Lee A. is one of the oldest and most historic, and to many people, one of the prettiest boats on the Great Lakes. It was built at Sparrows Point, Maryland as the USS Chiwawa and served as a tanker on the Atlantic Ocean during World War 2. The boat was awarded 2 battle stars.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-23-2008

American Century due here to load pellets

The American Century is due here this evening to load iron ore pellets at the CN Dock in West Duluth. The Century usually loads coal at Midwest Energy Resources, across the St. Louis River from the CN dock. It will take the cargo of pellets to Conneaut. On the previous trip to the Twin Ports, it also loaded iron ore pellets, but at the Burlington Northern Dock in Superior. Those pellets were taken to Zug Island, Michigan, near Detroit. Above, the American Century is seen departing Duluth with coal on December 7th, last year.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-22-2008

Adam E. Cornelius here for wheat

The Adam E. Cornelius came into port on Sunday afternoon (above) to load wheat at the General Mills dock in Superior. This is the first trip here for the Cornelius this season. It was here 21 times last year. As on most of the trips it makes here, it is loading wheat at General Mills in Superior to take to the Frontier grain elevator in Buffalo. That is work that was handled by the Kinsman Independent for many years. The Cornelius was built as the Roger M. Kyes in 1973 and became the Adam E. Cornelius in 1989. It was chartered to Inland Steel for many years, but since 1998, it has sailed for American Steamship Company in Buffalo.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-21-2008

Algoway back for 2nd trip

Most boats that come to the Twin Ports start loading or unloading cargo within minutes of their arrival. They depart minutes after that work is complete. Sailors on those boats usually work 4 hours on and 4 hours off, three shifts a day. They will still stand those shifts whether in port or out in the lake. Still, the American Integrity will seem a little like a normal place of business today, arriving around 8 this morning and leaving about 9 hours later, giving them a good hour for lunch. Normal that is, except for the day of the week. Working on a boat is a 7 day a week job. The Algoway will be back today for the second time this year. It had not been to the Twin Ports for many years before its first trip this season, when it arrived on April 8th (above).
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-20-2008

A barge named James L. Kuber

I suppose if you only have one boat coming in for the day, it might as well be the biggest boat on the Great Lakes, and that is what we have today. The Paul R. Tregurtha will be here to load coal for the Detroit Edison power plant in St. Clair, Michigan. That happens about once a week during the shipping season. The steamship Reserve used to come here, not as often, but still fairly regularly. It was back in the Twin Ports yesterday, but everything behind the self unloader has been removed, replaced by a notch for a tug. The Reserve is now a barge named the James L. Kuber. After discharging limestone in the port, the barge, pushed by the tug Victory, departed on Friday afternoon (above) for Silver Bay to load iron ore pellets.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-19-2008

Arthur M. Anderson in with limestone

The Arthur M. Anderson spent the winter layup at Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay and made its first trip to Duluth yesterday, coming in with a cargo of limestone around 9 in the morning. It departed Duluth for Two Harbors late Thursday afternoon (above). It will load iron ore pellets there for Gary, Indiana. We will likely not see any boat traffic in the Twin Ports today until this evening. Two boats from the Interlake Steamship Company will be here. The Charles M. Beeghly is expected first. It is also making its first trip here this season. It will load iron ore pellets. The Paul R. Tregurtha will follow, loading coal at Midwest Energy Resources.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-18-2008

Steamer Reserve now barge James L. Kuber

The tug Victory was set to arrive earlier this morning, pushing the barge James L. Kuber in front of it. The barge was last here on July 13th, 2007 when it was the steamer Reserve. It left on the 14th and is now coming back as the barge James L. Kuber. Above it is seen coming into port two weeks earlier, on July 1st, when it was still the steamer Reserve. The power plant was taken out and the superstructure, the two decks above the main deck at the bow of the boat, as in the picture above, were removed and a notch was added so that a tug could move in and connect to the vessel. Why was it done? One reason was the reduction in crew needed to operate a tug as opposed to a Great Lakes steamer. The tug only needs a crew of about 14 while the Reserve had a crew of at least 25.
*submitted to the Duluth News Tribune for publication on 04-17-2008