Mesabi Miner

Tug barge Margot Lockwood

Mesabi Miner was built in 1977, is 1004 feet long and flies a U.S. flag

Mobile Bay

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Listen to her whistle on October 15, 2011:
The Mesabi Miner was built in 1977 in Lorain, Ohio and is 1,004 feet in length. She has 36 hatches that open into 7 cargo holds below deck and provide a maximum carrying capacity of 62,336 tons. She can discharge that cargo at a rate of 10,000 tons per hour with the 265-foot self-unloading boom that sits on her deck.
2008Jan17_4061PRODThe Mesabi Miner was christened at the Port Terminal in Duluth on June 11, 1977. Muriel Humphrey broke the bottle of champagne over her bow, and Senator Humphrey, as was his custom, gave a speech. After the champagne bottle was broken, one of the hatch covers was lifted and thousands of red, white and blue balloons came out. The Miner was named in honor of the men and women who have worked in the Mesabi Iron Range. For the 2012-13 shipping season, she came to Duluth 40 times, almost exclusively to load coal. Above picture taken January 17, 2008
Above, she sits at her winter layup dock at Midwest Energy Resources  on March 12, 2015
Above and below: She is greeted by friendly crowds as she approached the Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge on September 9, 2015

Above, she moves slowly toward the Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge as she departs Duluth on August 28, 2011; below, she clears the Duluth ship canal on October 15, 2001
She arrives under the Aerial Bridge on November 5, 2010
October 1, 2009; she enters the Duluth ship canal on a very windy day
January 21, 2008: she gets a tug assist through the ice as she comes in for winter layup
Below, two  months later, she departs using the Superior entry; I took the picture from the Alder, who had gone ahead to clear the channel.
Above and below, she is loading coal from the Midwest Energy dock where she spent winter layup; and the next day, below, she departed the port; the first vessel  movement of the new season.
On April 12, she approaches the Duluth ship canal. Below, she gave a good show on August 24, 2008 as she came under the Lift Bridge.
Below, on October 11, 2008, she arrives in the Duluth harbor
Above, on March 16, 2007, was the first boat to move in the harbor in the new season; 3 days later she returns to load coal for another delivery within Lake Superior as the Soo looks won’t open until March 25.
Above, she turns into the Duluth harbor on March 26, 2002; below, she is leaving on August 12, 2002


  1. Here is a fact.The James R.Barker and her are both the same size.

  2. scott moore says:

    Is there a process for me to follow to get a electronic copy of one of your photos?

    Thank you.


  3. I moved to Duluth between Christmas and New Years Day of 2011, so as of this comment, I have only been here for about 5 1/2 months. I was fortunate enough to just happen down to the canal at 11:15 December 31st, only 45 minutes before the new year, and got to see this big beautiful ship pull through the canal and under the bridge. What a treat it was, and a spectacle to behold!

    • Rita Allerding says:

      Pat, Yes Duluth has some of the most beautiful views of the Great Lake Superior. I also love ( when in town…from MI. ) going to the Army Corp and checking out the big ships and history of . Enjoy your new life in Duluth. Rita

  4. as of about 7:30 last evening, she was docked in Marquette, Mi. watched her pull in there on AIS.

  5. I heard that as of 3/17/12, the Mesabi Miner is once again at work on Lake Superior. She is the first one out and the last one in. May she and her crew always be safe in their comings and goings.

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