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Port Reports -  June 25

St. Marys River
The annual Soo Locks Engineer’s Day started out Friday with the early downbound passages of Great Republic and the saltie Sjard. They were followed by Buffalo, American Spirit and Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin. Algoma Harvester was upbound, also in the morning. By 1 p.m. all traffic had cleared and there were no more vessels until after 5 p.m., when Joseph L. Block locked upbound, followed a couple of hours later by Edwin H. Gott. Tim S. Dool, Edgar B. Speer and Fivelborg were all downbound after dark.

Port Inland, Mich. – Denny Dushane
The barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann were expected during the late evening on Thursday. Due Friday was the Wilfred Sykes in the late afternoon. The Manitowoc is due on Saturday during the early morning.

Cedarville, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Mississagi arrived on Thursday morning to load. Also due Thursday was the Joseph L. Block, arriving during the early evening. There were no vessels scheduled for Friday. Due in Saturday is the Joseph H. Thompson in the early evening. Two vessels are expected on Sunday, with American Mariner due in the early morning followed a few hours later by the barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann.

Calcite, Mich. – Denny Dushane
American Mariner loaded and was expected to depart Friday at around 7:30 a.m. There are no vessels scheduled for Saturday. Two vessels are due Sunday morning, the first being the John J. Boland, followed by the Arthur M. Anderson a few hours later. Both will be loading at the South Dock.

Stoneport, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Arthur M. Anderson was due to depart on Friday at 8 a.m. Expected to arrive on Friday was the Cason J. Callaway in the mid-afternoon. Due to arrive Saturday are the barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore in the early afternoon. Great Republic is due on Sunday in the early morning. Due back on Monday are the barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore, arriving in the early evening. American Mariner and the Manitoulin are due Tuesday in the late morning. Due back on Wednesday is the Great Republic in the late afternoon.

Saginaw River - Gordy Garris
The tug Olive L. Moore and the barge Lewis J. Kuber were back outbound for the lake Friday evening after unloading at the Bay Aggregates dock in Bay City. The pair passed by the inbound saltie Sjard. Sjard was at anchor and expected to make port early Saturday morning. The tug Dorothy Ann and the barge Pathfinder are also expected to arrive on Saturday, with a cargo from Port Inland for Essexville.

Toledo, Ohio – Denny Dushane
At 11 a.m. Friday the Tecumseh departed layup at the former Interlake Iron Co. dock and headed upbound for Thunder Bay. The schedule also has the barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory due at the CSX coal dock on Monday in the early morning, along with Manitowoc in the early evening. Kaye E. Barker is due at CSX on Tuesday in the early morning, and the American Mariner is due on June 30 in the early morning. Expected Sunday evening at the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock is the barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory making a first-ever visit to that dock. The only vessel due at the Torco Dock are the barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory, three trips presently scheduled. They are due to arrive on their first trip July 2 in the early afternoon, followed by a return visit on July 9 in the early morning. They are due back again on July 15, arriving in the late afternoon.

Port Dover, Ont.
A tugboat event in the Port Dover, Ont., harbor on Saturday June 25 will be dedicated to Peggy Scruton’s life. Peggy Scruton was involved in all types of marine industry with her business, Scruton Marine. There will be competitions called tug pulls. Air horns will be blaring. The Scruton family has been planning this as a way to come together to remember her. The ex-Welland Canal Gate Lifter, now Silk King, will be set up with a barbeque for guests and friends at the outer harbor.

Oswego, N.Y. – Ned Goebricher
Luedtke Engineering equipment have arrived in Oswego to begin several weeks of dredging the harbor.

Trois Rivieres, Que.
CSL St.-Laurent has laid up due to a shortage off cargo. She's not expected to go back out before a few weeks, according to local news TV reports.

 

Barge sinks in Lake St. Clair; 3 rescued

6/25 - A 50-foot steel barge being pushed to a seawall repair job in Chesterfield Township sank in Lake St. Clair Tuesday afternoon in rough water about one-half mile north-northeast of the mouth of the Clinton River.

Macomb County Sheriff’s Lt. John Michalke said the barge sank at about 5:15 p.m. It was being pushed against the wind by a 25-foot vessel operated by a 39-year-old Algonac man when it encountered rough water. Lake water began coming over the top of the barge and into its hatches. The barge, which also had a crane, became unstable, began to list and then sank.

Michalke said a woman and a child were on the barge at some point, but it’s not clear if they were on the vessel as it began to sink. All three people were rescued by the sheriff’s marine patrol and taken to shore.

Michigan Marine Salvage was called to the scene and put a boom around the site, but no oil or fuel was released from the sinking vessel.

The barge was being pushed from Harsens Island to the seawall repair job in the area of 21 Mile Road and Jefferson Avenue in Chesterfield Township. The depth of the water at the site of the sinking is unknown, but the barge was sticking approximately 10 feet out of the water when it settled on the bottom of the lake. The barge owner is contracting with another company to recover the vessel with the assistance of the U.S. Coast Guard. The U.S. Coast Guard was not available for comment.

As of Thursday afternoon, the barge was still in the water, according to Michigan Marine Salvage.

To avoid any safety issues with boaters, the U.S. Coast Guard is broadcasting a safety perimeter message on the radio and lights have been attached to the portion of the barge that sits above the water.

Macomb Daily

 

Viking replica ship sails the St. Lawrence after crossing the Atlantic

6/25 - Brockville, Ont. – A traditional Viking ship that set sail from the west coast of Norway in late April is on the St. Lawrence Seaway this weekend. The nearly 100-foot long Draken Harald Haarfagre, or Harold the Fair Haired, crossed the Atlantic to Iceland, Greenland, and Newfoundland, and is on its way to the Great Lakes. The replica 11th century Viking ship is retracing the steps of Viking expeditions from more than a 1,000 years ago.

The ship and its 33 crew members will take part in a Tall Ships celebration in Toronto next month, and eventually visit the port city of Duluth, Minnesota on Lake Superior. The Draken, which means "dragon" in English, docked in Brockville, Ontario late Thursday night.

A large crowd gathered at the Eisenhower Lock in Massena yesterday afternoon as the Draken entered the Seaway. The crew waved and onlookers cheered as the lock filled with water. In a video on the ship's website, captain Bjorn Ahlander paid tribute to Seaway employees and pilots for their help. "The second pilot, Simon, he came with strawberries and did this for free. That's what I call friendship," said Ahlander.

The project is being financed by Norwegian businessman Sigurd Aase who wanted to build a Viking ship and hire a crew to sail it across the Atlantic.

North Country Public Radio

 

Updates -  June 25

News Photo Gallery
 

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 25

On this day in 1942, the LEON FRASER, Captain Neil Rolfson, completed her maiden voyage and delivered a record cargo of 16,414 tons of ore to Conneaut. The downbound trip only required 67.5 hours and broke the record of 15,218 tons set by the Canadian freighter LEMOYNE 15 days earlier. The FRASER was shortened and converted to a bulk cement carrier in 1991, and sails today as the b.) ALPENA.

On this day in 1969, the new Poe Lock was dedicated and opened to traffic. The first boat to transit the new lock was the PHILIP R. CLARKE. Captain Thomas Small, a 95-year old retired Pittsburgh captain, was at the wheel of the CLARKE. Thomas Small was also at the wheel of the COLGATE HOYT the first boat to transit the original Poe Lock on August 4, 1896.

On 26 June 1890, the SKATER (wooden propeller excursion steamer, 85 foot, 65 gross tons, built in 1890, at Detroit, Michigan) burned to the water’s edge about 20 miles north of Manistee, Michigan. The crew did not even have time to save their clothes, but they all escaped unharmed. The SKATER had just been fitted out for the season and had started her summer route on Traverse Bay. She was rebuilt in Cleveland and lasted until 1942, when she was abandoned at Michigan City, Indiana.

On 26 June 1895, the GEORGE FARWELL (wooden propeller steam barge, 182 foot, 977 gross tons) was launched by Alexander Anderson at Marine City, Michigan. After leaving the ways, she looked like she would capsize, but she righted herself. About 500 people watched the launch. She was taken to the Atlantic Coast in 1900. She only lasted until 1906, when she stranded on Cape Henry, Virginia and was a total loss.

On 26 June 1867, WATERS W. BRAMAN (wooden propeller tug, 89 tons, built in 1858, at Boston, Massachusetts, for the U.S.Q.M.C. and named RESCUE) was near Pelee Island in Lake Erie when fire started in her coal bunker and quickly spread. Her crew abandoned her in the yawl and were later picked up by the propeller TRADER. She had been sold by the Quartermaster Corps just the previous year and she had come to the Lakes from the East Coast just five weeks before this accident.

On 26 June 1900, Boynton & Thompson purchased the wreck of the NELLIE TORRENT (wooden propeller bulk freighter, 141 foot, 303 gross tons, built in 1881, at Wyandotte, Michigan) to raise her. She had been destroyed by fire at Lime Island near Detour, Michigan, on 22 June 1899.

On 26 June 1882, The Port Huron Times reported that the ARAXES (wooden propeller, 182 foot, 569 gross tons, built in 1856, at Buffalo, New York) sank in the Straits of Mackinac. She was raised on 6 July 1882, and repaired. She was built in 1856, and lasted until the summer of 1894, when she sank 4 miles off Bay City in Saginaw.

1916: The first STORMOUNT, a steel canaller, was wrecked on Gull Ledge, near Marie Joseph, N.S.

1937: Passengers from the SOUTH AMERICAN, stranded on a shoal, were removed with the aid of ALGOMAH II.

1993: The Norwegian tanker BOW ROGN first came through the Seaway in 1970. It was back as b) JO ROGN in 1981 and was leaking sulphuric acid into the pump room on this date as c) BETULA after discharging at Lazaro Cardenas, Mexico. The vessel was towed offshore but later driven aground on a sandy beach north of the port on June 28-29, and then blown over on its side during the passing of Hurricane Calvin on July 7, 1993.

2000: EMIL REITH first came through the Seaway in 1970. It was attacked by Tamil Tiger rebels as h) MERCS UHANA off northern Sri Lanka while carrying foodstuffs from Colombo to Tricomalee. The ship caught fire and five lives were lost. The ship sank the next day about 48 miles off Point Pedro.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Russ Plumb, Mike Nicholls, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series – Marine Historical Society of Detroit.

 

Wind towers setting sail in Manitowoc

6/24 - Manitowoc, Wis. – It’s no submarine, but what’s believed to one of the largest industrial products to leave Manitowoc’s harbor in decades is slated to set sail in the coming days.

On Friday, Broadwind Towers brought in a pair of cranes and prepared to begin loading a dozen 50-ton wind tower segments onto a barge headed for an Ohio wind farm. The load is the first of six or so slated to set sail this summer out of the Illinois-based company’s Manitowoc plant.

Company officials said the shipment will be riding aboard a barge that’s almost as long as a football field.

“The barge is massive,” said Matt Boor, OEM program manager at Broadwind, before the shipment was loaded. “A dozen of these things on one barge … I’m sitting here now trying to visualize that.”

The shipment is likely one of the largest to travel on the water in years from the Manitowoc port, which has traditionally been known more for shipbuilding than cargo, said Caitlin Clyne, registrar at the Wisconsin Maritime Museum.

The largest loads moving through here today are typically shipments of rock, she said.

The city saw its last World War II submarine built by Manitowoc Shipbuilding launch in 1944, according to the Manitowoc County Historical Society.

The company launched the Edward L. Ryerson in 1960, which was its last freight-carrying vessel built in Manitowoc, said Amy Meyer, the history society’s executive director, adding the Ryerson was so long it barely made it out of the river.

For Broadwind, which normally ships via truck, the wind tower shipment marks its first on water.

Boor said the company has long contemplated using water routes given the Manitowoc plant’s location on South 16th Street, along the Manitowoc River, which is the same site as the former Manitowoc Shipbuilding. Doing so, however, required a destination near water and a client that was open to the idea.

“If you’re going to Denver, that won’t work. But this blows the doors open to anything on the Great Lakes,” Boor said.

Shipping on the water can have significant logistical advantages, Boor said, as it means avoiding having to truck 75-foot tower sections through high-traffic urban areas.

It also can bring shipping costs down.

“There’s no traffic on the lake. You’re not trying to get through Chicago,” Boor said. “You push it out of downtown Manitowoc and you’re gone. Two bridges and a break wall and it’s on open water.”

Loading the barge will take about two days and will require two cranes lifting opposite ends of the tower segments before the towers are lowered onto the boat. The sections constitute three towers measuring about 300 feet tall.

Herald Times Reporter

 

Port Reports -  June 24

Marquette, Mich.
Buffalo was in port Thursday night, and Lee A. Tregurtha was headed in.

St. Marys River
Around 100 people gathered at Mission Point in Sault Ste. Marie Thursday for the annual Unofficial BoatNerd picnic on Rotary Island. They were treated with a procession of upbounders, starting with Lee A. Tregurtha in the morning on her way to Marquette. Lee A. was followed in the afternoon by Federal Baltic, Hon. James L. Oberstar, Lakes Contender/Ken Boothe Sr., James R. Barker, tug Zeus/Robert F. Deegan and Stewart J. Cort, all of which greeted the assembled Nerds with salutes. Paul R. Tregurtha was downbound in the morning, as was Whitefish Bay in the evening.

Alpena, Mich.
The steamer Alpena was loading Thursday evening in her namesake port.

Saginaw River - Gordy Garris
The tug Olive L. Moore and the barge Lewis J. Kuber are scheduled to unload cargo from Port Inland in Bay City on Friday afternoon. The saltie Sjard is also expected to arrive in Bay City on Friday. This will be Sjard's first ever visit to the Saginaw River.

 

Updates -  June 24

News Photo Gallery  

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 24

On June 24, 1971, a fire broke out in the engine room of the ROGER BLOUGH at the American Ship Building, Lorain, Ohio, yard, killing four yard workers and extensively damaging her Pielstick diesel engines. Extensive repairs, which included replacement of both engines, delayed her delivery for nearly a year.

The WILLIAM E. COREY (Hull#67), was launched at Chicago, Illinois by Chicago Ship Building Co., the first flagship for the Pittsburgh Steamship Co., Cleveland, Ohio. Sold to Canadian registry and renamed b.) RIDGETOWN in1963. Sold for use as a breakwall at Nanticoke in 1970, and since 1974, she has been used as a breakwater in Port Credit, Ontario.

CANOPUS (2-mast wooden brig, 386 tons, built in 1855, at Huron, Ohio) was carrying 16,500 bushels of wheat when she collided with the bark REPUBLIC between 3:00 and 4:00 a.m. on 24 June 1865. The CANOPUS sank in about 20 minutes off Clay Banks on Lake Erie. No lives were lost.

The wooden scow MYRA of Ashtabula, Ohio, was lost in a terrible squall on Lake Erie off Elk Creek on 24 June 1875. Three lives were lost.

1938 – REDFERN received minor hull damage when the steering cable broke near Dain City, on the Welland Canal and the vessel hit the west bank. It was taken to Port Colborne for repairs.

1955 – MANZZUTTI was taking water after the cargo of pulpwood shifted in heavy seas near the Straits of Mackinac. The vessel was initially in danger of sinking but reached safety.

1962 – JOHN A. FRANCE (ii) was aground in the upper St. Marys River and some of the cargo of grain was lightered before the ship could be refloated.

June 24 – The recently repaired PARKER EVANS and the ANNA KATRIN FRITZEN collided in heavy fog in Lake Huron with minor damage. The latter, a West German freighter and Seaway trader since 1961, and a return visitor as b) KATRIN in 1974, was scrapped at Bilbao, Spain, due to engine problems, in 1977.

1980 – CARTIERCLIFFE HALL, upbound with a cargo of iron ore, went aground in the Seaway near Cornwall, Ont. due to a steering problem and was released the next day with the aid of three tugs.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Mike Nicholls, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Second phase of Interlake’s exhaust gas scrubber installations complete

6/23 - Middleburgh Heights, Ohio – The Lee A. Tregurtha sailed Wednesday from Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding Company in Sturgeon Bay, Wis., becoming Interlake Steamship Company’s third self-unloading bulk carrier to be outfitted with exhaust gas scrubbers.

The Tregurtha is bound for Marquette, Mich., to load pellets.

Interlake became the first U.S.-flag fleet to test scrubbers on the Great Lakes in April 2015 after pioneering the emission-reduction technology on its Hon. James L. Oberstar. Earlier this month, the James R. Barker sailed as the fleet’s first thousand footer with scrubbers.

“With the Lee A. Tregurtha back in service, one third of our fleet is now equipped with innovative scrubber systems implemented specifically to net significant emission reductions,” says Interlake President Mark W. Barker. “Reducing our environmental footprint and leading the way with this technology illustrates our commitment to continuous improvement across our fleet.”

The retrofit of the Lee A. Tregurtha was supported by a $500,000 cooperative agreement from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD).

“We’re thrilled to have MARAD as a partner and to have their fiscal support to help prove our ongoing emission-reduction technology,” Barker says. “These types of public-private collaborations will fuel the advancement of cutting-edge technologies to promote more sustainable solutions in the shipping industry.”

Exhaust gas scrubbers reduce sulfur emissions to a level that meets or exceeds North American Emissions Control Area requirements.

Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding handled the successful installation on the 806-foot Oberstar and was the clear choice to complete the second phase of installations on the 1,004-foot Barker and the 826-foot Tregurtha.

Both the Lee A. Tregurtha and the James R. Barker are equipped with the same single-inlet, closed-loop DuPont™ Marine Scrubbers from Belco Technologies Corp. (BELCO), a DuPont company, that were installed on the Oberstar.

The scrubber units, which are attached to the exhaust system of each of the ship’s two engines, effectively strip the majority of sulfur from its stack emissions. Here’s how the systems work: Exhaust gas from the engine is sent through a series of absorption sprays that “wash” and remove impurities, specifically sulfur and particulate matter. That washed exhaust gas then travels through a droplet separator before a clean plume of white steam is discharged into the atmosphere.

A total of five Interlake vessels – including two additional 1,000-footers: the motor vessel Paul R. Tregurtha and motor vessel Mesabi Miner - will be outfitted with these types of scrubbers by 2017.

As the first U.S.-flag fleet to implement the scrubber technology, the Company was not only tasked with proving its emission-reduction capability but also taking the lead in developing a sustainable supply-and-delivery infrastructure to support its widespread use on the Great Lakes.

Specifically, the scrubber system relies on an injection of sodium hydroxide -- to neutralize and remove sulfur from the exhaust gas -- and that chemical has to be delivered to the vessel about twice a month.

Working with partners, Hawkins Inc., PVS Chemicals Inc., Garrow Oil & Propane and OSI Environmental, the Company has established waterfront supply capability at Sturgeon Bay, Wis., and Detroit, Mich. Calumet Specialties LLC has become a vital partner and stakeholder in the development of a new supply capability within the Twin Ports of Duluth, Minn., and Superior, Wis. A supply-and-delivery infrastructure is expected to be built out at ports located near East Chicago, Ill., and Burns Harbor, Ind.

Propelled by a long-term vision to create the most efficient and environmentally friendly fleet on the Great Lakes, Interlake is shoring up its 10-year, $100 million fleet modernization that includes the steam plant conversion program and the repower of its final vessel, the Herbert C. Jackson.

The Interlake Steamship Co.

 

Port Reports -  June 23

St. Marys River
It was a busy Wednesday for those arriving early for the annual BoatNerd Picnic and upcoming Engineer’s Day events. The Mackinac Island ferry Huron, fresh from the MCM Marine drydock, was downbound early for her home port. She was followed throughout the day by Kaye E. Barker, the saltie Trudy, CSL Assiniboine, Mesabi Miner, American Integrity, John B. Aird, tug Avenger IV with a PML barge and Fraserborg. Upbound traffic included Buffalo, Thunder Bay, Philip R. Clarke, Mississagi, Presque Isle and Algolake.

Port Inland, Mich. – Denny Dushane
The barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore were expected to arrive in the late afternoon on Wednesday. Also expected during the late evening Wednesday was the Joseph L. Block. They would get the dock upon the Lewis J. Kuber's departure. Due on Thursday during the early evening will be the barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann. Wilfred Sykes is on Friday in the late afternoon.

Cedarville, Mich. – Denny Dushane
There were no vessels loading on Wednesday and none were due. Two vessels are due in for Thursday, with Mississagi arriving during the lunch hour, followed by the Joseph L. Block in the early evening. There are no vessels scheduled for Friday. The American Mariner is due on Saturday in the late evening.

Calcite, Mich. – Denny Dushane
The barge Lakes Contender and tug Ken Boothe Sr. arrived at the South Dock to load on Wednesday in the late morning. There was also a fuel barge at the North Dock that was expected to depart at 1 p.m. on Wednesday. Due in for Thursday is the American Mariner at noon. Their loading dock was not given. There are no vessels scheduled Friday. Due in for Saturday is the John J. Boland in the early afternoon loading at the South Dock. Arthur M. Anderson is due in for Sunday in the early morning for the South Dock.

Stoneport, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Joseph H. Thompson loaded on Wednesday and was due to depart around 7 p.m. Two vessels are expected on Thursday with the barge Ashtabula and tug Defiance arriving in the early morning to be followed by the Arthur M. Anderson in the early afternoon. Due in Friday is the Cason J. Callaway in the mid-afternoon. Expected to arrive on Saturday is the barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore during the early evening. Due to arrive for Sunday is the Great Republic during the early morning.

Toledo, Ohio – Denny Dushane
Algowood is expected at the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock on Thursday in the early morning to unload stone. Due at the CSX Coal Dock to load is the Manitowoc on June 27 in the early evening. The barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory are due at CSX on June 28 in the late evening. At the Torco Dock, the barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory are due on July 3 in the late evening, followed by the 1,000 footer Mesabi Miner, making a rare visit in the late evening.

 

Royal Canadian Navy ships depart for Great Lakes deployment

6/23 - Halifax, N.S. – Her Majesty’s Canadian Ships (HMCS) Kingston and Goose Bay departed Halifax, N.S., earlier this week for a two-week tour of Canadian port cities along the St. Lawrence Seaway and the Great Lakes, while HMCS Montréal is scheduled to join in the second half of this year’s Great Lakes Deployment in September 2016.

HMCS Kingston will visit the following cities:
Toronto, Ontario (June 30-July 3)
Kingston, Ontario (July 8-11) – namesake port visit

HMCS Goose Bay will visit the following cities:
Toronto, Ontario (June 30-July 3)
Cobourg, Ontario (July 5-7)
Johnstown, Ontario (July 8-11)

Throughout the deployment, the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) ships will conduct training in order to enhance crew readiness, which is necessary in responding to the likely tasks that the government of Canada may assign.

The purpose of this Great Lakes deployment is to connect with Canadians who are not regularly exposed to the RCN. Through activities such as guided ship tours and demonstrations, the deployment aims to better inform Canadians about their Navy and its various roles, which include: protecting Canada by exercising sovereignty in our nation’s waters; preventing conflict by deploying around the world to strengthen partnerships; and safeguarding international maritime peace and security upon which the Canadian and global economies both depend.

RCN

 

Canal site loses piece of history with removal of Gatelifter No. 1

6/23 - Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. – The Gatelifter No. 1 was removed from the Sault Ste. Marie Canal site in May 2016, but a full heritage recording of the vessel has been preserved. Earlier this spring Gatelifter No. 1 was quietly removed and sold to a third-party. It's location or use remains unknown.

The unique piece of the canal's history will not be forgotten, said Jeanette Cowen, national historic sites manager at the canal. Any information about the vessel that the canal had on file since it was first used in 1922 has been retained.

“We have a full heritage recording on the Gatelifter, including its plans, original drawings, images and full write ups and they have been safely stored so that it can be used for interpretation in a future gate moving story,” she said in an interview.

The Gatelifter No. 1 was constructed by the Montreal-based company Vickers Canadian. The unit included a pontoon bottom, a special lift and control system and a crane on its barge. Its purpose was to lift the old wooden lock gate system into place in the historic lock system at the site's northeast pier.

Each of the old lock gates was constructed using 34 Douglas fir timbers and each gate weighed 71,120 kg. After soaking in water for decades, the weight increased to 121,920 kg. The Gatelifter has not been used for more than 40 years but has remained at the site until mid May.

“The historic lock closed in 1987, and it would have been used to put new wooden gates in place prior to that,” Cowen said. “The recreational lock has steel gates and there is no need to replace them, so the Gatelifter has become obsolete.”

Steel gates replaced the historic wooden gates and each is much lighter. Fact sheets show that each lower gate weighs 23,587 kg and upper gates weigh 10,886 kg.

The Gatelifter's sale and removal was not done without thorough consideration, she said. The equipment was very deteriorated and included hazardous materials like asbestos, lead paint and coal.

“It had become a public safety concern,” she said.

The Gatelifter was sold to a third party through public works and Cowen does not know what has become of it. She said that historical items are not randomly discarded and lots of consideration goes into the decision making process.

“We're making lots of investment on the site and doing our best to preserve our heritage and culture,” Cowen said.

Sault Star

 

Updates -  June 23

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 23

In 1976 the NEPCO 140, carrying six million gallons of No. 6 bunker oil and being pushed toward Oswego by the tug EILEEN C., grounded on the shore of Wellesley Island in the American Narrows section of the St. Lawrence River, just upstream from Alexandria Bay, N.Y. The grounding occurred about 1:35 a.m. in heavy fog and was followed by a second apparent grounding further up river, just before the barge reached the Seaway anchorage site off Mason's Point, some four miles above the initial grounding site. In all, over 300,000 of the thick crude was spilled into the River, creating the largest slick ever to pollute an inland U.S. waterway to that day. Seaway traffic was halted immediately, sending at least 20 ships to anchor. Within hours, over 20,000 feet of boom were deployed, but the spill moved steadily down river, coating granite shoreline, trapping waterfowl, forcing boat owners to pull their boats, and oozing into sensitive marshland, particularly Chippewa Bay in New York waters. Some oil eventually reached as far down the river as Lake St. Lawrence and coated shoreline along the Long Sault Parkway on the Canadian side of the lake. Clean-up lasted into the fall and cost in excess U.S. $8 million.

On 23 June 1903, the tug O.W. CHENEY steamed out of Buffalo harbor in heavy fog to tow the steamer CHEMUNG into the harbor. The tug ran too close to the oncoming steamer, was struck by the bow, and the CHENEY overturned and sank. Three crewmen were killed; two survivors were picked up by the tug FRANK S. BUTLER. On 23 June 1969, RALPH MISENER (steel propeller bulk freighter, 730 foot, 19,160 gross tons, built in 1968, at Montreal, Quebec) transited the Soo Locks upbound for the first time. She had an innovative self-unloading system with twin booms. The movable crane was equipped with a chain of buckets so it could discharge cargo from either side. This unloading system only lasted until 1976, when it was severely damaged in a squall on Lake Michigan. The vessel was then converted from a combination self-unloader/bulk carrier to a bulk carrier. She was renamed b.) GORDON C. LEITCH in 1994.

In 1926, the GLENMHOR (Hull#16), the name was soon corrected to GLENMOHR, was launched at Midland Ontario by Midland Shipbuilding Co., for Great Lakes Transportation Co., (James Playfair). She was 6 feet wider and 4 feet shallower than the largest ship at that time. Purchased by Canada Steamship Lines in 1926, renamed b.) LEMOYNE. Scrapped at Santander, Spain in 1969.

In 1929, the WILLIAM G. CLYDE (Hull#804) was launched at Lorain, Ohio, by American Shipbuilding Co., for the Pittsburgh Steamship Co. Converted to a self-unloader and renamed b.) CALCITE II in 1961. Renamed c.) MAUMEE in 2001. Launched in 1972, was the ALGOWAY (Hull#200) at Collingwood, Ontario, by Collingwood Shipyards Ltd., for Algoma Central Railway.

The first whaleback barge, 101, was launched along the shore of St. Louis Bay near Duluth, Minnesota, on 23 June 1888. Captain Alexander Mc Dougall, the inventor and designer, was there along with his wife, her sister-in-law and several hundred spectators. As the vessel splashed in to the bay, Mrs. Mc Dougall is supposed to have muttered, "There goes our last dollar!"

On 23 June 1900, the 450 foot steel steamer SIMON J. MURPHY (Hull#135) was launched at Wyandotte, Michigan, by the Detroit Ship Building Co., for the Eddy - Shaw Transportation Co. of Bay City, Michigan.

On 23 June 1873, B. F. BRUCE was launched at Crosthwaite's yard in East Saginaw, Michigan. She is not properly a schooner, but what is known as a "three-and-after" in nautical terms. Her capacity was 50,000 bushels of grain (800 tons) and the building cost was $50,000.

1942 – EUGENE J. BUFFINGTON struck Boulder Reef, Lake Michigan and the hull cracked in two places. The vessel as on the rocks for 25 days until it coould be strapped together and refloated. The ship was towed to Chicago for one of the largest repair jobs in Great Lakes history.

1948 – CRETE and J.P. MORGAN JR. were in a head-on collision, in fog, off the Apostle Islands, Lake Superior. Both ships suffered extensive damage. Two were killed, 3 more injured, aboard the latter steamer. ALTADOC and E.A.S. CLARKE also collided in fog near the Apostle Islands but the damage, while requiring repairs, was less serious.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Matthew Daley, Dave Swayze, Fritz Hager, Mike Nicholls, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. Marine Historical Society of Detroit.

 

U.S.-flag cargo movement on lakes down 12.5 percent in May

6/22 - Cleveland, Ohio – U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters) moved 9.5 million tons of cargo in May, a decrease of 12.5 percent compared to a year ago. The May float was also 5 percent below the month’s 5-year average.

Iron ore cargos for the steel industry totaled 4.7 million tons, a decrease of 12.4 percent compared to a year. Coal shipments to power plants and steel mills fell to 1.4 million tons, a decrease of nearly 28 percent. Limestone loads for construction projects and steel production totaled 2.9 million tons, a virtual repeat of a year ago.

Year-to-date U.S.-flag carriage stands at 20.9 million tons, a decrease of 2 percent compared to the same point in 2015. Iron ore cargos are up 7 percent, but coal cargos have dipped 28 percent. Limestone shipments are essentially on pace with a year ago.

Lake Carriers’ Association

 

McKeil Marine expands fleet with additional ship

6/22 - Hamilton, Ont. – McKeil Marine’s newest vessel, Arklow Willow, which will be renamed Florence Spirit, is the second ship in McKeil Marine's expanding fleet.

A modern, gearless bulk carrier with four cargo holds, she will complement the Evans Spirit—the ship that was acquired last year and named after company founder Evans McKeil. As the Florence Spirit, the new ship will carry the name of Evans' wife Florence.

“I’m immensely proud that McKeil Marine continues to grow. Acquiring a second ship and naming her after my mother really is a good news story that crowns our 60th year celebrations,” said Blair McKeil, chairman and CEO. “Our investment in the Evans Spirit and what will be the Florence Spirit has enabled McKeil to create 50 new permanent, full-time positions for skilled sailing crew.”

Built in 2004, the Arklow Willow is a 136 metre by 21 metre general cargo vessel capable of carrying 13,500 metric tonnes, supporting the company's focus on a 9,000-to-15,000-tonne niche cargo size. Trading predominantly between the Great Lakes and the Maritimes, the vessel will carry powdered cement and raw materials for the cement industry, amongst other bulk cargo.

Arklow Willow serves as an alternate solution to the Ardita—a bulk carrier that McKeil intended to acquire and took delivery of earlier this spring, but the deal was cancelled after the owners failed to deliver the documents required for closing. Reacting quickly to meet the needs of its customers, McKeil moved to acquire the Arklow Willow.

McKeil mobilized the Arklow Willow from Marseilles, France, sailed her across the North Atlantic to Sydney, NS, ‘Canadianized’ the vessel and will be loading her first cargo, all in just under four weeks.

Plans to convert the vessel to McKeil colors are pending, and a christening of both the Evans Spirit and Florence Spirit are in the works as part of McKeil's 60th anniversary celebrations.

McKeil Marine

 

Port Reports -  June 22

St. Marys River
An extremely slow Tuesday saw Manitoulin downbound in the morning and American Spirit upbound just after noon. Traffic picked up later in the day, with the tug Leonard M with her barge and Cason J. Callaway heading downbound. Great Lakes Trader, Saginaw and Federal Ems were upbound in the evening. Algoma Equinox was inbound at DeTour after dark.

Saginaw River – Gordy Garris
The tug Olive L. Moore and the barge Lewis J. Kuber turned around at the Sixth Street basin and were back outbound for the lake at 9 a.m. Tuesday, after unloading a split load overnight between the Wirt Stone docks in Bay City and Saginaw. The pair are headed to Port Inland to load their next cargo.

Detroit River – Ken Borg
Thalassa Desgagnes unloaded at Ajax Asphalt Terminal on the Rouge River on Tuesday.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
The passenger ship Grande Caribe was docked in the Erie Basin Tuesday evening. She arrived around 2 p.m. Tuesday.

 

DEQ rejects Harsens Island bridge plan

6/22 - Harsens Island, Mich. – Ambassador Bridge owner Manuel (Matty) Moroun has met a wall on another of his bridge proposals, this time to Harsens Island.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality has denied Moroun's permit request for a 1,750-foot, two-lane, bascule bridge across the North Channel of the St. Clair River between Algonac and the island, citing "significant adverse impacts" on natural resources and the area's wetlands.

Currently, the only way to access the island is via boat or Champions Auto Ferry. Many residents opposed Moroun's bridge plan, citing its potential impacts to the laid-back quality of life on the island, as well as its natural resources.

Some questioned whether the bridge would maintain financial viability or instead become a boondoggle that fell to Clay Township residents to maintain. Another concern was whether the bridge would drive the car ferry out of business or significantly spike fares. Still others worried about river ice jams in the winter caused by the bridge's pillars.

The Detroit International Bridge Co. did not show a public need for the proposed bridge, Katie Fairchild, an environmental quality analyst with the DEQ's Water Resources Division, wrote in a notice of permit denial sent to Moroun's company Monday.

"When considering the stated project purpose of providing 'a reliable and safe transportation route between Algonac and Harsens Island,' the DEQ finds that the existing ferry service fulfills that purpose," Fairchild stated.

The bridge as proposed would "destroy Great Lakes coastal wetland and negatively impact habitat for breeding, nesting, feeding and cover for a wide variety of wildlife species," Fairchild stated. The bridge would also harm the wetland's ability to trap sediments and retain storm and flood waters, degrading the river, she added.

Moroun has a 30-day window in which to appeal the DEQ's decision before an administrative law judge.

Port Huron Times Herald

 

Unofficial BoatNerd Picnic starts at noon on Thursday

6/22 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – The annual Unofficial BoatNerd Picnic, an informal gathering started in 2006 at Rotary Park at Mission Point in Sault Ste. Marie, will be held this Thursday. Grilling begins at noon. Hotdogs, hamburgers and buns will be provided by BoatNerd.Com, however bring other dishes to pass. Grills, plates, and utensils will also be provided. All are welcome. Bring your own beverage. Nametags will be provided in case you don't recognize faces.

 

Muskegon sculpture pays homage to maritime past, famous schooner

6/22 - Muskegon, Mich. – A large abstract sculpture paying homage to Muskegon's maritime history and one of the city's most famous schooners has been erected near downtown Muskegon.

The metal sculpture of sails and rigging has risen in the center of the traffic circle between the Shoreline Inn/Lake House and the new Terrace Pointe subdivision on Muskegon Lake.

It's sculptor Steve Anderson's vision of the Lyman M. Davis, the fastest and last commercial sailing ship on the Great Lakes that met a tragic end in a fiery spectacle not fitting such a noble vessel.

The sculpture has been the years-long dream of John Hermanson, whose grandfather was a captain of the Davis. Hermanson spearheaded the effort to design and raise the $144,000 needed for the 45-foot stainless steel piece.

Read more, and see photos at this link

 

Annual Seniors Cruise on St. Clair River set for June 29

6/22 - Sarnia, Ont. – A tradition launched on goodwill and powered by volunteers is ready to set to sail again. The Seniors Cruise aboard the Duc D’Orleans II is an outing on the St. Clair River enjoyed each year by more than 1,000 people, complete with lunch, refreshments and music.

The price of admission, as always, is just a smile. The event was created in 1979 by the late Peter Henderson, the cruise ship’s owners and the Mathers family, and it’s been going strong every since.

This year’s cruise is Monday, June 29, with departures leaving at approximately, 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 12 noon, 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. from the Front Street dock, rain or shine. The Duc’s owners provide the ship and crew while, donations and volunteers feed the cruisers, insure the event and set up tents, tables and washrooms.

Strong deckhands and firefighters make it accessible to manual wheelchairs and walkers.

Donations of soft drinks, water, purchased fruit or veggie trays, tables, chairs, tents, etc. are needed to make the day work. Financial donations can be sent to SHARE, Box 782, Sarnia, ON N7T 7J9, taken to 265 North Front Street, suite 200, Steeves & Rozema, or brought to the cruise. If you would like to volunteer contact Caryn Taylor at 519-344-8829 , ext. 306.

Dave Krywicki

 

10th annual Round Island Lighthouse open house July 9

6/22 - The 10th annual Round Island Lighthouse open house is scheduled for Saturday July 9. The lighthouse is accessible to the public for only one day a year.

Round Island is located roughly a half mile south of Mackinac Island in the Straits of Mackinac. Each year the Round Island Lighthouse Preservation Society and the National Forest Service hosts the event to raise funds to put toward the lighthouse. The lighthouse has an amazing history behind it and from the outside looks great, but the inside is rough. The Preservation Society is currently working to raise money to put toward restoring the inside of the lighthouse

The open house will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The cost is $15 per person. Visitors will learn the history of the lighthouse, and walk through the entire lighthouse from bottom to top. The tour will take roughly two hours, and will be guided by the Preservation Society and the Freeland Boy Scouts. Towards the end of the tour, visitors can go outside on top of the lighthouse, which is a great place to get pictures of surrounding landmarks. Looking north, the Grand Hotel and the entire southeast end of Mackinac Island are visible. Looking to the west is a great view of the five-mile long Mackinac Bridge.

To get to Round Island, organizers will first pick visitors up in a charter boat on Mackinac Island. This boat will carry visitors 3/4 of the way to the island. Due to the island’s rocky structure, visitors will be taken in to shore in a rubber Zodiac boat. Electronics should be stored in a Ziploc bag. No children under the age of 8 will be allowed. Be prepared to have to step into an inch of water at the shore while getting out of the Zodiac, so water shoes or any shoes that can get wet are recommended.

There will be a gift shop (cash only) set up in the lighthouse.

In the event of bad weather, or waves that are too dangerous to navigate by volunteers, the open house will have to be canceled or closed temporarily until conditions improve. Sometimes a cancellation comes about abruptly with sudden changes in conditions. Cancellations will be conveyed to the Mackinac Island Visitors Center and to the various ferry lines.

Details at http://roundislandlightmichigan.com/openhouse

Logan Vasicek

 

Updates -  June 22

News Photo Gallery
 

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 22

On 22 June 1959, BAYPORT (steel propeller tug, 72 foot, 65 gross tons, built in 1914, at Cleveland, Ohio, formerly named a.) FAIRPORT) had the steamer MOHAWK DEER in tow when she was hooked by her own tow cable, capsized and sank at Collingwood, Ontario. Three lives were lost. The tug was later raised and converted from steam to diesel. Later renamed c.) TWIN PORT, and d.) ROD MC LEAN in 1974. She was scrapped in 2008 at the Purvis west yard at Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

On 22 June 1909, W.P. THEW (wooden propeller freighter, 133 foot, 207 gross tons, built in 1884, at Lorain, Ohio) was in ballast, creeping through the fog off Alpena, Michigan on Lake Huron when she was rammed by the WILLIAM LIVINGSTONE (steel propeller freighter, 532 foot, 6,634 gross tons, built in 1908, at Ecorse, Michigan). After the collision, the LIVINGSTONE drifted away and lost track of the THEW. The THEW sank in 80 feet of water. Fortunately the steamer MARY C. ELPHICKE answered the distress whistle and picked up the THEW's crew from the lifeboat. No lives were lost.

The WILLIAM R. ROESCH (Hull#901) was launched and christened at Lorain, Ohio by American Ship Building Co., on June 22, 1973, for the Union Commerce Bank, Ohio (Trustee) and managed by the Kinsman Marine Transit Co., Cleveland, Ohio. Renamed b.) DAVID Z. NORTON in 1995, c.) DAVID Z in 2007 and d.) CALUMET in 2008.

June 22, 1957 - W. L. Mercereau, known as the Father of the Fleet, died. Mercereau developed the Pere Marquette fleet of car ferries into the largest in the world.

On 22 June 1853, CHALLENGE (wooden propeller freighter, 198 foot, 665 tons, built in 1853, at Newport, Michigan) was bound from Chicago for Buffalo with barreled pork and oats on one of her first trips. However, her boiler exploded off Cheboygan, Michigan. She burned and sank. Five died. The schooner NORTH STAR heard the blast ten miles away and came to the rescue of the rest of the passengers and crew.

On 22 June 1875, The Port Huron Times reported that "the Northern Transportation Company's fleet of 20 propellers, which have been idle all the season owing to difficulties between the Central Vermont and the Ogdensburg & Champlain Railroad Companies, have passed from the control of the Central Vermont Railroad Company and will commence regular trips as soon as they can be fitted out."

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Mike Nicholls, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. Marine Historical Society of Detroit.

 

With ore down, shipping buoyed by other cargoes

6/21 - Duluth, Minn. – As iron ore tonnage lags compared to historic levels, it’s the diversity of cargoes that has defined the first two months of the Great Lakes shipping season — much of it coming across the Atlantic Ocean on its way to the North American interior.

Transformers bound for electric power companies, tanks for beer-brewing operations, windmills for power generation and kaolin clay for the manufacturing of paper are some of the cargoes that have made it into Great Lakes ports, said the U.S. St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corp. in a news release this month.

Steady foreign vessel traffic has seen ships arrive from 30 countries.

“With the 58th navigation season well underway, we are excited about the strong mix of cargoes that have moved through the U.S. Seaway locks,” Administrator Betty Sutton said in the news release.

The Duluth Seaway Port Authority and its partner Lake Superior Warehousing have handled heavy-lift oil and gas refinery equipment for a project in Montana, a load of kaolin from Brazil to supply the state’s paper mills, and a shipment of 203-foot wind turbine blades for a wind energy project in Iowa. Two additional ships are en route with tower sections and other pieces for the same wind energy project.

“The array of salties at our Clure Terminal this spring reflects the versatility and vitality of the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway System,” Vanta Coda, executive director of the Duluth Seaway Port Authority, said in the news release.

Meanwhile, shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes totaled 6 million tons in May — the lowest total in more than five years and a half-million tons off the five-year average of 6.5 million tons for the month, said the Lake Carriers’ Association in its monthly news release.

Year-to-date, the iron ore trade stood at 15.4 million tons through May, an increase of 4 percent. Shipments from U.S. ports are up nearly 8 percent, but loadings at Canadian ports are down 21 percent.

Ore shipments out of Two Harbors and Superior for the year of 4.6 and 2.9 million tons, respectively, are above five-year averages of 4 and 2.3 million tons. In Duluth and Silver Bay, ore shipments are down to 1.7 million tons and 91,500 tons, respectively, from five-year averages of 2.2 and 1.3 million tons.

The Lake Carriers represent 14 American companies operating 56 U.S.-flag vessels on the Great Lakes.

In addition to foreign imports buoying the shipping industry, demand for raw materials from the U.S. manufacturing and construction sectors has kept up a solid pace, the Chamber of Marine Commerce said in a news release this month.

“So far, we’re encouraged that seaway shipping is holding its own considering global pricing on commodities such as iron ore,” President Stephen Brooks said in the news release out of chamber headquarters in Ottawa. “The Seaway benefits from the cross-border trade of raw materials like aluminum and cement, which is feeding American automotive manufacturing and construction activity.”

Aluminum shipped from Quebec made its way to Oswego, N.Y., Detroit and Toledo, Ohio, in late May.

A milder winter brought a quicker start to a shipping season that has been fueled by residential and commercial construction projects.

“Last year construction activity in the U.S. Great Lakes grew as the economy improved and, so far, we’re seeing that continue,” said Jim Reznik, director of North American logistics for Brazil’s Votorantim Cimentos, in the chamber news release. Votorantim Cimentos is the eighth-largest cement producer in the world.

A spate of road-work construction in advance of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland is fueling imports there, leading to a demand for cement and other construction materials.

Finally, a European connection that has been sought for Duluth in the past couple of seasons is making hay so far in Cleveland. The Cleveland-Europe Express has been cycling every 10 days with expectations for an even busier July and August, said Will Friedman, president and chief executive officer for the Port of Cleveland.

“The port continues to be a gateway for manufacturing exports with over-sized machinery and containers regularly leaving our terminals,” he said in the chamber news release.

Duluth News Tribune

 

2 vintage Osborne sandsuckers being scrapped

6/21 - Fairport, Ohio – Osborne Materials is scrapping their two sandsuckers at the north end of the old Diamond Alkali stone dock.

They just finished Emmett J. Carey (of 1948), and have now started on F. M. Osborne (1910). As of this past weekend, the upper bow had been cut off and was sitting on the dock intact, except that the forward control house was removed separately.

Dave Merchant

 

Port Reports -  June 21

Thunder Bay, Ont.
Cedarglen has gone into temporary layup at the Keefer Terminal.

St. Marys River
Winds gusting more than 40 miles per hour sent two upbound vessels to anchor on Monday afternoon. John B. Aird dropped the hook near Nine Mile Point, while Great Republic was stopped below the Mud Lake junction buoy. Both vessels got underway when winds dropped in the evening. Manitoulin, which did not stop, was upbound in the late afternoon, headed for Essar Steel. G3 Marquis was downbound in the early morning, while Hon. James L. Oberstar was above the locks in the late evening.

Milwaukee, Wis. – Alan Federal Baltic arrived at 6 a.m. Monday and moored at Pier 4.

 

Ship to shore: Logistics huge in Green Bay

6/21 - Green Bay, Wis. – Transportation and logistics may bring to mind long-haul truck drivers and the long trains that block Green Bay traffic on a daily basis.

But don’t forget the region’s original transportation lifeline: The Port of Green Bay. Fur and lumber, the original industries that helped build the port two centuries ago, may have gone the way of Fort Howard, but they’ve been replaced by coal, salt, cement, oil, limestone and other materials.

In recent years, maritime commerce has experienced a resurgence that local logistics industry officials expect will continue to grow. Port of Green Bay Director Dean Haen said the port plans to undertake strategic planning in the coming years to guide physical expansion, which should attract more industry.

As it does, Haen said demand for skilled labor, both on the shore and on the water, will grow beyond the roughly 800 jobs the port currently supports.

“Fuel costs will rise. Traffic congestion will rise. That will drive more things to the water,” Haen said. “And as more things are shipped on the water, you get more high-value products. And that means more logistics, more transportation and more freight-forwarding jobs.”

Companies like KK Integrated Logistics, which has operations in Green Bay, Marinette, and Manitowoc, has a need for stevedores, forklift operators, crane operators, local truck drivers and heavy equipment operators. Green Bay-based RGL Logistics needs forklift operators and truck drivers, and even offers a forklift training school for inexperienced workers looking for a change.

RGL CEO Bob Johnson said he anticipates the company expanding its port operations in the next 18 months to two years. With it, he said will come a demand for more workers with a broad skill set.

“There’s some very high-skilled labor that goes into it,” he said. “It depends on the type of ship.”

And not just more jobs are in demand, but jobs that pay well and only require training or education for two years or, more often, less.

The Wisconsin Technical College System’s 2015 Graduate Outcomes survey found transportation and logistics program graduates reported a starting median salary of $35,357. Within the industry, though, starting median salaries for some jobs are higher than that.

Graduates with a short-term technical certification to drive a commercial truck reported a median salary of $44,300, not to mention that roughly 90 percent of survey respondents said they found work in related fields.

Graduates with one-year technical degrees in diesel engine service and mechanics, marine repair and power train servicing reported median starting wages between $34,900 and $39,000, according to state technical college data. And 100 percent of the graduates in all four of those areas of study reported finding jobs.

Green Bay Press Gazette

 

Viking replica ship stops in Quebec after crossing Atlantic

6/21 - Montreal, Que. – A traditional Viking ship has sailed across the Atlantic and is now in Quebec. The Draken Harald Hårfagre, or Harold the Fair Haired, is a 35-metre long replica Viking ship retracing the steps of Viking expeditions from over 1,000 years ago.

It arrived in St. Anthony, N.L., June 1 and came to Montreal last weekend. The ship will sail on all the way to Duluth, after stopping in Toronto to participate in the Toronto Tall Ships Challenge.

The project is the childhood dream of Norwegian businessman Sigurd Aase, who wanted to build a Viking ship and follow the route of the Vikings to the New World. Aase is financing the whole project, but he didn't come aboard for the voyage. He leaves that to a crew captain, Björn Ahlander of Sweden and his 33 crew members — about 4,000 people tried out for the expedition.

They stopped in Quebec City earlier this month for a few days and let the public see the ship. It was timely rest for the crew. "You can't imagine the cold sometimes," Ahlander said of the Atlantic crossing. "It's so cold to be out when it's 2 degrees and a gale and 0 degrees in the water."

"It's very, very hard and challenging. Even if you try to imagine how it is, the reality is worse. We didn't cope, we were frozen."

On one of the first legs of the journey to Iceland, he considered leaving some of the crew there, but he said they became stronger as the voyage continued. Icebergs are a constant worry for ships crossing the Atlantic at this time of year, but it was the smaller ice chunks, known as growlers that worried the crew of the Harald Hårfagre.

Colliding with the ice can damage the hull or the rudder and in the middle of the Atlantic, the crew is far away from any assistance.

Ahlander is a hardy sailor, but he still says this voyage tested him the most. "I have sailed big sailing vessels to China and back, but this is tougher, because you cannot have any breaking waves coming over your side."

Despite the risks and challenges, the captain said some of the best moments were when they saw land — an experience that connected them to the Vikings. "When we came into Newfoundland and saw the coastline it was a touching moment actually," Ahlander said.

The ship was built by some of Norway's best traditional boat builders. It was ready in 2012, and did some test runs in 2013 along the Norwegian coast. In 2014 they sailed it to Liverpool.

CBC

 

Coast Guard rescues passengers on large canoe, one stays behind

6/21 - Cross Village, Mich. – Crews rescued six people on board a large canoe that was stranded about 6 miles off the shore of Cross Village on Lake Michigan Monday. A seventh passenger refused to leave the boat, and was being escorted by a 45 foot Coast Guard ship.

U.S. Coast Guard Chief John Tribfelner, the officer in charge at the Coast Guard Charlevoix station, said the canoeists left from the tribal boat launch at 9 Mile Point, but said he was unsure when the boat departed.

Tribfelner said the passengers planned to travel to Beaver Island, but early Monday morning they called for help, sending rescue crews to locate the boat about 6 to 8 miles off the shore from Cross Village.

At 7:58 a.m. the U.S. Coast Guard and other rescue crews had reached the ship and were bringing the passengers back to shore. Officials report that the six passengers were feeling seasick, and were escorted back to shore.

Tribfelner said he was informed that the seventh passenger remained on the canoe because the vessel has religious or symbolic value with the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians.

"We were thinking about towing the vessel, but it's not designed for that and could be damaged. So we have a [ship] from St. Ignace with the canoe, and we're trying to decide whether to tow it, or if we're going to escort it in," Tribfelner said.

Larry Denemy, of Charlevoix, was one of the seven passengers on the canoe. He said the trip was part of a traditional summer solstice ceremony to travel from the mainland to Beaver Island in the hand made canoe, known in Anishinabemowen as the "jiimaan."

The canoe left the shore at around 9 p.m., on Sunday, and Denemy said that the winds started to pick up around 3 a.m. Monday. "We were just trying to do something that the people were doing for thousands of years. Just trying to keep the tradition alive," Denemy said.

The canoeists, now safely ashore, described having to cover the boat with tarps and fighting strong winds and sea-sick conditions as they waited for crews for help.

Petoskey News Review

 

Updates -  June 21

News Photo Gallery
 

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 21

On 21 June 1868, the D&C Line's MORNING STAR (wooden side-wheel steamer, 243 foot, 1,075 tons, built in 1862, at Trenton, Michigan) was late in leaving her dock in Cleveland, Ohio, because she was loading some last-minute freight (iron bars and glass). As she sailed on Lake Erie to Detroit during the dark and rainy night, she collided with the heavy-laden bark COURTLAND and sank quickly, 10 miles off Lorain, Ohio. Twenty feet of the steamer's bow had been torn off while the bark was swept into one of the paddle wheels and destroyed. The side-wheel steamer R N RICE arrived on the scene at 3 a.m. and picked up the survivors - only 44 of them. In September, MORNING STAR was raised, towed to Lorain and re-sunk in 55 feet of water, for possible future rebuilding. Attempts were made to raise her again several times, but in the summer of 1872, she was abandoned because it was determined that the previous attempts had reduced her to rubble.

On 21 June 1878, the small passenger steamer J. HOLT, which ran between Chatham and Wallaceburg, Ontario, burned on Lake St. Clair. The passengers and crew escaped in the lifeboats.

On June 21, 1942, the LEON FRASER entered service as the largest vessel on the Great Lakes. The Pittsburgh Steamship Co. bulk freighter, originally 639 foot 6 inches long, retained at least a tie for that honor until the WILFRED SYKES entered service in 1949. She was shortened, converted to a self-unloading cement carrier and renamed b.) ALPENA in 1991.

June 21, 1942, the U.S. Steel bulk freighter EUGENE J. BUFFINGTON ran hard aground on Boulder Reef in Lake Michigan and broke in two. The vessel was subsequently recovered and, after a long career with U.S. Steel, was finally sold for scrap in 1980.

The m/v RANGER III (Hull#385) was side-launched at Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin by Christy Corporation, on Saturday, June 21, 1958. The vessel was custom designed by R.A. Stearns (Bay Engineering) also of Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, for the National Park Service, Isle Royale National Park.

On June 21, 1986, during a severe thunderstorm (and unofficial observations of a funnel cloud) in the Duluth area, the JOSHUA A. HATFIELD broke loose from Azcon Scrap Dock in Duluth and was blown across the harbor and ended up hard aground on Park Point (Minnesota Point). She remained stuck for nearly 3 weeks when a storm with east winds pushed the HATFIELD free and she blew most of the way back across the harbor back to the scrap dock. Tugs were dispatched in time to safely guide the HATFIELD back to the scrap dock. (June seems to be a bad month for U.S. Steel in accidents, with the June 7, 1977, accident involving the WILLIAM A. IRVIN, the June 15, 1943, collision between the D. M. CLEMSON and the GEORGE M. HUMPHREY, and the June 21, 1942, grounding of the EUGENE J. BUFFINGTON on Boulder Reef.)

June 21, 1916 - The ANN ARBOR NO 5, after departing the shipyards in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on June 21, 1916, where 3 buckets (blades) were replaced on her starboard propeller, arrived in Manistique, Michigan. While maneuvering around in the harbor she struck the rocky bottom and broke off the same three blades off her starboard propeller.

June 21, 1994 - The Ludington Daily News reported a planned sale of the CITY OF MIDLAND 41, to Contessa Cruise Lines of Minnesota. The deal included an option to sell the SPARTAN and Contessa was prohibited from competing against Lake Michigan Carferry Co., but it fell through.

The 3-mast wooden schooner GEORGE MURRAY was launched in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, on 21 June 1873. At the time, she was billed as the largest vessel ever built on Lake Michigan. Her dimensions were 299 foot long x 34 foot beam x 14 foot depth, with the capacity to carry 50,000 bushels of grain. She was built by G. S. Rand for J. R. Slauson of Racine, Wisconsin.

1910 – The tug C.W. ELPHICKE sank at Michigan City, Indiana, after a bizarre accident. The steamer UNITED STATES had struck the Franklin Street Bridge, which then collapsed on the tug. The tug was salvaged on July 12.

1941 – BOMMESTAD, a small Norwegian freighter, came to the Great Lakes in the 1920s and 1930s. It was sold and renamed HILDA in 1934 and registered in Finland when it was torpedoed and sunk by U-52 in the Bay of Biscay while enroute from Dunkirk, France, to the U.K. with a cargo of wheat.

1964 – The Norwegian freighter STELLA NOVA ran aground off Alexandria Bay, N.Y., while enroute from Duluth to Bombay, India. It was refloated June 24 with major bottom damage but was repaired. It had been a Seaway trader as a) VITO in 1959 and was scrapped as f) CORALBA after arriving at Split, Yugoslavia, on September 19, 1978.

On 21 June 1900, the wooden bulk freighter R C BRITTAIN was raised at Toledo, Ohio. She was brought to Sarnia where repairs were made and the engine of the tug F A FOLGER was installed in her. She had previously sunk at Toledo and remained there for several years before being raised. She lasted until 1912, when she burned at Sarnia.

Data from: Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Skip Gillham, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports -  June 20

St. Marys River
Downbound traffic Sunday included Stewart J. Cort, Saginaw, Kaministiqua and Sam Laud. Mesabi Miner, Whitefish Bay and H. Lee White were upbound. Leonard M and barge were at Essar Steel.

Milwaukee, Wis. – Alan
Algoway stayed a short while in port, arriving 18.28 CDT on Saturday and departing 04.19 CDT on Sunday (times courtesy of AIS). USEPA Lake Guardian returned to her Milwaukee base at 21.06 CDT Saturday evening after a spell on survey work in Lake Superior.

Saginaw River – Gordy Garris
Father's Day was busy on the Saginaw River with lots of traffic, both commercial and pleasure. John J. Boland returned for the second time in as many days, passing by the Front Range at 8 a.m. The Boland was met by a brigade of 150 plus fishing craft, led out of the river by the U.S. Coast Guard. The fishermen were en-route to the Saginaw Bay for the 5th annual Walleyes for Warriors gathering in Bay City. The fish caught in the bay are given to all of the veterans that attend the dinner at Vet's Park at the end of the day. After clearing the outbound parade of fisherman, the Boland proceeded upriver to unload at the Bay Aggregates dock in Bay City, making the dock around 9 a.m. The tug Dorothy Ann and the barge Pathfinder were inbound later in the day, passing by the Front Range around 3:30 p.m. Once the pair passed by the John J. Boland, the Boland was able to depart the Bay Aggregates dock. Having backed into the slip prior to unloading, this made for a quick departure, as the Boland was able make the turn swiftly from the slip and head back downriver. The Boland was outbound for the lake by 4 p.m. headed for Calcite to load its next cargo. Meanwhile, Dorothy Ann/Pathfinder made their way upriver to unload their cargo from Drummond Island at the Bay City Wirt dock. The pair will head upriver and complete unloading at the Saginaw Wirt dock Sunday night, and are expected to be back outbound for the lake early Monday morning.

 

Toledo Boatnerds anchored to the Great Lakes

6/20 - Toledo, Ohio – It would make sense for Aaron Border to be a fan of trains. The 33-year-old Toledoan has been a railroad engineer since 2007. But somehow those years spent operating trains has turned Mr. Border into a Boatnerd.

What is a Boatnerd? Boatnerds are unabashed fans of Great Lakes freighters and generally all things related to the maritime industry on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway.

Mr. Border has become such a fan that last August he created the Facebook group “Toledo Boatnerds,” a public group boasting 95 members and growing who track shipping traffic from the Detroit River south to Toledo and east to Huron, Ohio. Toledo Boatnerds offers an online meeting place for ship fans to share photographs, information, and friendship.

Many Boatnerds say there is something soothing about watching the boats as they go about their business. “I think it’s more relaxing than chasing trains,” Mr. Border said. “You can sit and enjoy the outside for awhile.”

Read more and view photos at this link

 

Updates -  June 20

News Photo Gallery
 

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 20

On this day in 1943, the IRVING S. OLDS departed Two Harbors with 20,543 tons of ore and the BENJAMIN F. FAIRLESS departed Two Harbors with 20,386 tons of ore. It was the first time that two lakers departed the same harbor on the same day with cargos in excess of 20,000 tons.

The SENATOR (steel propeller freighter, 410 foot, 4,048 gross tons) was launched by the Detroit Dry Dock Company (Hull #122) at Wyandotte, Michigan, on 20 June 1896, for the Wolverine Steamship Company. She lasted until 31 October 1929, when she collided with the steamer MARQUETTE in fog off Port Washington, Wisconsin, and sank with her cargo of 241 automobiles.

On 20 June 1893, GEORGE STONE (wooden propeller freighter, 270 foot, 1,841 gross tons) was launched by F. W. Wheeler & Co. (Hull #98) at West Bay City, Michigan. She lasted until 1909, when she stranded and burned on Lake Erie.

The WILLIAM P. COWAN (Hull#724) cleared Lorain, Ohio on her maiden voyage in 1918. Renamed b.) AMOCO ILLINOIS in 1962. Scrapped at Windsor, Ontario, by M & M Steel Co., in 1987.

In 1903, the twin-screw rail car ferry GRAND HAVEN (Hull#92) was launched at Toledo, Ohio, by the Craig Ship Building Co., for the Grand Trunk Carferry Line, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

1953 – The Paterson steamer SCOTIADOC sank in Lake Superior near Trowbridge Island after a collision in wind and fog with the BURLINGTON of Canada Steamship Lines. One man was lost when the starboard lifeboat was swamped after being launched.

1954 – The bulk carrier PATRIA, built in Canada during World War Two as the tanker MOOSE MOUNTAIN PARK, was declared a total loss after coming ashore 1 mile northwest of East Point, Santa Rosa Island, California. The ship was salvaged, repaired and made one trip through the Seaway in 1961 as PATAPSCO RIVER before being scrapped at Hirao, Japan, in 1963.

1973 – The bulk carrier ATLANTIC TRADER first traded through the Seaway in 1961 and returned on a regular basis as INVEREWE beginning in 1962. It was back again as d) THEOKEETOR in 1972 but sank June 20, 1973, after a collision with MARINA L. in dense fog off the Baja Peninsula of Mexico. All on board were saved.

1978 – A fire broke out in the cargo of coal aboard WILLIS B. BOYER and the ship docked at River Rouge where part of the cargo was unloaded to get at the fire. The vessel was enroute from Toledo to Silver Bay.

1995 – SAULT AU COCHON, built by Port Weller Dry Docks as a pulpwood barge in 1969, buckled and sank at Forestville, QC. The hull was refloated and taken to Hamilton for repairs later in the year.

2007 – KAPITAN RADIONOV first came to the Great Lakes in May 1992 with coal tar for Cleveland. It sank in severe weather on this date in 2007 as i) ALEXANDRA C. after flooding began in the engine room the previous day. The vessel went down 95 miles off Socotra Island, Yemen, while enroute to Australia with ammonium nitrate. All 19 crew on board were rescued.

On June 20, 1959, the SEAWAY QUEEN began her maiden voyage. The vessel was appropriately named, as at the time she was the largest Canadian vessel on the Great Lakes, the 2nd largest on the Great Lakes overall (behind the EDMUND FITZGERALD), and she entered service the same week that Queen Elizabeth II and President Dwight D. Eisenhower formally dedicated the St. Lawrence Seaway. She was one of the more popular and classic looking vessels on the Great Lakes. June 20, 1936 - PERE MARQUETTE 21 was blocked in Manitowoc following an accident that disabled the Manitowoc Tenth Street Bridge, making it impossible to raise the structure.

June 20, 1993 - BADGER struck the Ludington breakwall while arriving Ludington. She was sent to Sturgeon Bay for repairs. Ten operating days and 21 sailings were lost. The 230-foot wooden freighter JAMES DAVIDSON (Hull#4) was launched at West Bay City, Michigan, for James Davidson at his shipyard on 20 June 1874. JAMES DAVIDSON was wrecked in Lake Huron in 1883.

The MINNEHAHA, a wooden "clipper" schooner, was launched at James A. Baker's shipyard in Oswego, New York, on 20 June 1857. Her dimensions were 110 foot keel, 125 foot overall, x 25 foot 6 inches x 10 foot 6 inches. She could carry 13,000 bushels of grain. Mr. James Navagh, her master builder, received a gold watch and chain worth $200 in appreciation of his fine work on this vessel.

On Wednesday night, 20 June 1877, the schooner EVELINE (wooden schooner, 118 foot, 236 gross tons, built in 1861, at Litchfield, Michigan) was struck by lightning about sixty miles out from Alpena, Michigan. The bolt shattered the mainmast, throwing three large pieces over the vessel's sides. The large spar was split perpendicularly in two and the lightning bolt followed the grain of the wood in a circular manner until it reached the main boom jaw, which is enclosed in a band of iron fastened by a large bolt. This bolt was literally cut in two. The mate, George Mayom, had the left side of his body blistered and the skin burned off from the shoulder to the foot. His right leg, hands and arm were also severely burned, and he suffered internal injuries and bled freely. The vessel made it to port and she was repaired. She lasted until September 1895, when she sank off Kewaunee, Wisconsin.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Skip Gillham, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Algomarine arrives in Turkey

6/19 - The tug Diavlos Pride has dropped off the former Algoma Central motor vessel Algomarine at Aliaga, Turkey, ahead of schedule and has departed for her next job. Algomarine will be soon be beached, likely within the next few days.

John Tokarz‎

 

Port Reports -  June 19

Milwaukee, Wis. – Alan
G.L. Ostrander arrived Friday evening and was still at the LaFarge berth on Saturday. Algoway was due in port later Saturday evening.

 

Buyer wants to merge former Stelco and Algoma into Canadian steel company

6/19 - Hamilton, Ont. – A New York hedge fund with plans to merge the former Stelco and Algoma into a new Canadian steel company took a major step toward its goal Friday. The KPS Capital Partners LP bid for Algoma was accepted by the steelmaker Friday and is being recommended for court approval.

In an affidavit, Essar Algoma's chief restructuring adviser John Strek said the KPS bid was the only offer submitted at the end of the two-stage bidding process. He described it as "in the best interests of all stakeholders" and gets "the highest price realizable" for the troubled company.

"Furthermore … KPS will be a capable manager of the business," he added. "KPS is well-financed, has a track record of acquiring and turning around businesses, has experience in the metals industry, and has a successful history of working constructively with unions which are a key stakeholder in any steel company."

KPS is the leading firm in a consortium of investors including a syndicate of lenders led by Deutschebank. The deal promises "the continued employment of all or substantially all of Algoma's employees, both unionized and non-unionized."

Strek said Algoma has debts of more than $1 billion and is losing as much as $5 million a week. It filed for creditor protection in November last year, its fourth court-supervised restructuring.

The deal remains conditional on getting a new collective agreement with the United Steel Workers, clearing regulatory hurdles and getting the "support" of the provincial government.

The value of the deal was not disclosed, but sources say it would take more than $600 million in cash to "outbid" the consortium.

Sources, who asked for anonymity because they are not authorized to speak publicly, said KPS is one of two remaining strategic bidders for U.S. Steel Canada, which bought Stelco in 2007.

"Ultimately KPS' intention is to buy Stelco as well," one source said. "Their intention is to combine the companies and everything that is running now would continue to run."

Sources say KPS' Stelco bid contains the same conditions as the Algoma offer. They also say there are bidders for the Stelco land, with one "willing to lease it back for several years while the reconfiguration takes place."

Sources say KPS is prepared to invest more than $500 million to acquire both companies and to capitalize and equip the new firm.

Observers including McMaster University business professor Marvin Ryder, University of Toronto steel expert Peter Warrian and veteran industry analyst Chuck Bradford generally like the idea of combining Stelco and Algoma into a new, stronger Canadian steel company, but they want to see more details before passing final judgment.

"There's still a lot of fog here, but it's not a crazy idea, but putting two weak companies together doesn't automatically make a strong one," Ryder said. "There are still a lot of things that could fall apart here."

Bradford said one key to a successful new Canadian company would be a continued low exchange rate for the loonie that makes Canadian exports cheaper in foreign markets. Another is finding a way to break into a highly competitive global business with the capacity to produce far more steel than the world needs.

"I've seen guys make a lot of money in this industry if they hit the market right," he said. "But there's more competition than we've had before and all we ever hear from the steel companies is there's too much capacity out there."

Warrian called the merger idea "a forward-looking plan that's oriented to strengthening the Canadian steel industry" and praised its commitment to equip both companies. He worried, however, how Stelco's enormous pension liabilities will factor into a final deal.

"The pension thing is a big, heavy-duty question of the U.S. Steel Canada side," he said.

Stelco's four main pension plans are as much as $830 million underfunded and the United Steel Workers have made it plain solving that problem is the key to getting the union's support.

That, sources say, may be where the question of "provincial support" for a merger becomes critical. Such support could include a cash injection to the plans or a special deal giving the new company a longer period to top up its funds. Both tools were used in 2006 to get Stelco out of creditor protection.

The Spectator

 

Updates -  June 19

News Photo Gallery  

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 19

On 19 June 1889, NORTH STAR (steel propeller freighter, 299 foot, 2,476 gross tons, built in 1889, at Cleveland, Ohio) collided with CHARLES J. SHEFFIELD (steel propeller freighter, 260 foot, 1,699 gross tons, built in 1887, at Cleveland, Ohio) about sixty miles west of Whitefish Point on Lake Superior in heavy fog. The NORTH STAR kept her bow in the SHEFFIELD's side after the impact, giving the crew time to board. The SHEFFIELD then sank in 8 minutes. Her loss was valued at $160,000. The courts found both vessels to be equally at fault after years of litigation.

In 1954, GEORGE M. HUMPHREY (Hull#871) (named for President Eisenhower's Secretary of Treasury) was launched at Lorain, Ohio, by American Shipbuilding Co, for National Steel Co., M.A. Hanna, mgr.

In 1978, ALGOBAY (Hull#215) was launched by Collingwood Shipyards Ltd. for Algoma Central Railway. Renamed b.) ATLANTIC TRADER in 1994, and renamed c.) ALGOBAY in 1996 and d.) RADCLIFFE R. LATIMER in 2012.

On 19 June 1836, DELAWARE (wooden passenger/package freight side wheeler, 105 foot, 178 tons, built in 1833, at Huron, Ohio) was carrying general merchandise and passengers in a storm on Lake Michigan when she was thrown ashore off Niles, Illinois. She broke in two and was wrecked. No lives were lost.

On 19 June 1900, the wooden schooner THOMAS L. HOWLAND was raised and towed to Buffalo, New York for repairs. She had been sunk by the ice off Windmill Point in the Detroit River early in the season.

At 5:30 p.m., on 19 June 1872, the wooden package freight/passenger propeller MONTANA (236 foot, 1,535 gross tons) was finally afloat at Port Huron, Michigan. She was successfully launched at the Port Huron Dry Dock Company on Saturday, 15 June, but she got stuck in the mud. The tugs VULCAN, PRINDEVILLE, BROCKWAY and BURNSIDE were all employed to free her and the MONTANA's engines were also going. It took four days of pulling, hoisting and dredging to free her. The effort to get her free and afloat cost Alexander Muir, her builder, over $3,000 (in 1872 dollars). She lasted until 1914, when she burned near Alpena, Michigan.

1905 – The wooden passenger and freight steamer CITY OF COLLINGWOOD of 1893 vintage was destroyed by a fire at Collingwood and four lives were lost.

1917 – The Canadian bulk carrier NATIRONCO was beached in the Detroit River after a collision with the ASTERN STATES and was deemed a total loss. It was raised and repaired at Toledo and survived until scrapping at Civitavecchia, Italy, as d) SAN CARLO in 1929.

1925 – The wooden freighter MAPLEGLEN (i), is scuttled in Lake Ontario, west of Kingston, near Amherst Island. It had been idle since 1921 and was originally the WYOMING of 1881.

1929 –JOHN HANLAN was torched as a spectacle off the Sunnyside area of Toronto after having failed an inspection to continue service as a Toronto Island ferry. 1933 – MEADCLIFFE HALL sustained rudder damage after being struck by the CALGADOC (i) at Thorold. The grain-laden canaller was towed back to Port Colborne, unloaded, and repaired at Port Dalhousie.

1962 – Hatch cover planks give way at Cleveland aboard FLOWERGATE and a forklift and two men fell into the cargo hold, striking a third man. All were badly injured. The British freighter later returned through the Seaway under Panamanian registry as b) AMENITY and was scrapped at Troon, Scotland, in 1977.

Data from: Jody Aho, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Skip Gillham, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Manitowoc gets its own tour boat

6/18 - Manitowoc, Wis. – As home to the Wisconsin Maritime Museum, Manitowoc will no longer be a stranger to an on-the-water maritime tour. Beginning with the second annual Subfest July 8-10, and continuing through the end of the year, the Chiago-based Skyline Princess tour boat will offer cruises of the Manitowoc River and Lake Michigan.

This is a big deal for locals and visitors,” said Wisconsin Maritime Museum CEO Rolf Johnson. “Having this boat here will be a cool, new, on-the-water experience to accompany the museum.”

The 55-foot Coast Guard-inspected boat can hold up to 50 passengers and features open-bow seating and interior and stern seating. Mercury will provide a crew and Maritime Museum volunteers will serve as commentators during tours.

Johnson and the Maritime Museum Board, Burger Boat Company President Jim Ruffolo and Mercury Skyline Cruiseline partnered to bring the boat to Manitowoc.

Skyline Princess will arrive in town for Subfest. During the festival, tours will be offered daily, taking people to see where submarines were built in Manitowoc, up around the old shipyards, and all the way up to Burger Boat along the Manitowoc River. After Subfest, Skyline Princess will stay in town for the rest of the year to test special charters on the river and out to Lake Michigan. Daily tours will be considered for 2017.

Johnson said details about the tours and charters are being developed. He expects to see tours focused on the city’s maritime culture, showcasing the National Marine Sanctuary, Manitowoc’s shipbuilding history and educational programming for students. If things go well in Manitowoc, the boat may be rechristened with a name more reminiscent of her new duties and homeport.

Skyline Princess was built in 1965 and has been owned its whole life by the Bob and Holly Agra family, who owns Mercury Skyline Cruiseline. Skyline Princess was formerly a tour boat in Chicago, but has been in hibernation for the last few years.

“We hope it will be a successful venture,” Bob Agra said. “It will be a great opportunity for people to experience the waters around Manitowoc.”

Agra said to not be deceived by the boat's age, as it has been well maintained. Burger Boat will store the boat when it is not in use.

Burger Boat has a long history with the Agras, as they dock a boat at Burger during the winter and Burger built two new cruise boats for Mercury Skyline Cruiseline for use in Chicago. Agra said Skyline Princess is getting a paint job in preparation for its journey to Manitowoc.

Herald Times Reporter

 

Port Reports -  June 18

Saginaw River – Gordy Garris
The tug Olive L. Moore and the barge Lewis J. Kuber were back outbound for the lake early Thursday morning after completing their split load in Saginaw. The pair was headed to load next at Stoneport for Marine City. Arriving on Friday morning was the John J. Boland, making its second visit of the season. The Boland delivered a load from Stoneport for the Bay Aggregates dock in Bay City. The Boland was back outbound for the lake early Friday evening.

 

Updates -  June 18

News Photo Gallery
 

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 18

The steamer ILLINOIS was the first vessel to pass through the newly opened Soo Locks in 1855. To help commemorate the 100th anniversary of this event, an open house was held aboard the J. L. MAUTHE. While tied up at the Cleveland Lakefront dock, an estimated 1,700 persons toured the MAUTHE.

During a moonlight charter on 18 June 1936, the TASHMOO (steel side-wheel excursion steamer, 308 foot, 1,344 gross tons, built in 1900, at Wyandotte, Michigan) struck a boulder in the Sugar Island channel in the Detroit River. The vessel docked at Amherstburg, Ontario, where her passengers disembarked as the vessel settled to the bottom in 14 feet of water. Although the damage was not fatal, the salvage crew botched the job. The TASHMOO had one end raised too quickly and her keel broke. This ended this well-loved vessel’s too-short career.

The Soo Locks opened for their first season on 18 June 1855. The first vessel through the locks was the steamer ILLINOIS of 1853.

In 1949, the WILFRED SYKES (Hull#866) was launched at American Shipbuilding Co., Lorain, Ohio, for Inland Steel Co. At the time she was the largest and most powerful vessel on the lakes. The SYKES was also the first boat to have a poop deck. She was converted to a self-unloader in 1975.

In 1964, the bulk freighter SAGUENAY (Hull#647) was launched at Lauzon, Quebec, by Davie Ship Building Ltd., for Canada Steamship Lines Ltd.

In 1968, the ALGOCEN (Hull#191) was launched at Collingwood, Ontario by Collingwood Shipyards Ltd, for Algoma Central Railway. Renamed b.) VALGOCEN in 2005, she was used as a spoils barge in Keasby, New Jersey. She returned to the lakes in in 2008 as J.W. SHELLEY. Sold and renamed PHOENIX STAR in 2012.

On 18 June 1869, a little less than a week after being launched, the schooner DAVID A. WELLS sailed on her maiden voyage from Port Huron for Menominee, Michigan. On 18 June 1858, the steamship CANADA left the Lakes via the St. Lawrence rapids since she was too large for the existing locks. She had been built by Louis Shickluna at the Niagara Drydock Company in 1853, at a cost of $63,000. She was sold for ocean service after the Depression of 1857. Her hull was rebuilt and she was renamed MISSISSIPPI. She foundered in a gale in the South Atlantic on 12 August 1862.

The venerable side-wheel passenger ferry TRILLIUM (Hull #94) was launched June 18, 1910, at Toronto, Ontario by Polson Iron Works, for the Toronto Ferry Co. 1905 –ETRURIA sank after a collision with the AMASA STONE off Passage Island Light, Lake Superior.

1942 – The steamer THOMAS MAYTHAM of 1892 vintage was rebuilt as the New York State Barge Canal tanker DOLOMITE 2 in 1938 and renamed MOTOREX in 1942. It was sunk by gunfire from U-172 near the Colon entrance to the Panama Canal and all on board were rescued.

1944 – ALBERT C. FIELD, a former Great Lakes bulk canaller, was hit by an aerial torpedo from German aircraft and broke in two and sank in minutes. There were 4 lives lost when the ship was hit in the English Channel while carrying munitions and 130 bags of mail in support of the Normandy invasion.

1959 – SPRINGDALE, a Great Lakes trader in the early 1950s and later operated on charter to Reoch Transports, capsized and sank in the Gulf of Bothnia after the cargo of timber shifted in heavy weather.

1960 – GEERTJE BUISMAN came to the Great Lakes in 1960 and ran aground on Vienne Shoal in northern Lake Michigan while outbound from Chicago with a cargo that included new Nash Rambler automobiles for Europe. The Dutch vessel was stuck for 4 days, and had to be lightered. It returned to the Seaway again in later years and was finally scrapped as f) MOUNT at Varna, Bulgaria, in 2003-2004.

1991 – The saltwater trader AKTI was driven aground 14 miles north of Necochea, Argentina, in a storm and sold “as lies” before being refloated as d) AKTO on July 27. Examination determined that the ship was a total loss but it was rebuilt by Chilean interests as e) RIO CIERVOS. The vessel had been through the Seaway as a) ASIA PROSPERITY beginning in 1974, as b) HAN PACIFIC in 1983, and c) AKTI in 1988. It was scrapped at g) AL GIORGIS after arriving at Chittagong, Bangladesh, on November 17, 2005.

1997 – CANADIAN MARINER ran aground in the St. Lawrence near Crossover Shoal after losing power. The vessel had to be lightered to be released and was repaired by Port Weller Dry Docks. The ship was scrapped at Aliaga, Turkey, in 2007.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Gerry O., Joe Barr, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Algomarine, Algoma Navigator scrap tow updates

6/17 - Tug Diavlos Pride is currently near Cape Malea, and is expected to arrive at Aliaga with the former Algomarine on June 19. The tug Boulder has passed through the Strait of Gibraltar and is expected to arrive at Aliaga with the former Algoma Navigator on June 25.

John Tokarz

 

Great Lakes officials release plan to boost maritime trade

6/17 - An organization representing states and Canadian provinces in the Great Lakes region released a $3.8 billion plan Wednesday designed to improve their shared maritime transportation system and make cargo shipping more competitive.

Aside from doubling maritime trade, the region's first-ever waterborne transportation strategy is intended to support industry and reduce environmental damage, said Gov. Rick Snyder of Michigan and Premier Kathleen Wynne of Ontario, who released it on behalf of the Conference of Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Governors and Premiers.

"The maritime system connects regional markets with one another, and with the world," Snyder said. "By leveraging maritime transport on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River, we can boost the region's $5 trillion economy and create jobs throughout the region."

A preliminary analysis suggests the plan would take about 10 years to carry out, the officials said. Among the proposals:

• Building a second lock at Sault. Ste. Marie, Michigan, that can accommodate the largest freighters hauling iron ore, coal and other bulk raw materials.

• Clearing a backlog of dredging projects to make sure fully loaded vessels can get through shallow channels and harbors.

• Dredging the St. Marys River, the link between Lakes Huron and Superior, to its authorized depth of 27 feet.

• Developing a U.S.-Canadian treaty or other binding agreement for managing the regional maritime system and making regulations more consistent.

• Streamlining the process of clearing customs for cruise passengers and maritime cargo.

The governors and premiers put together the strategy in collaboration with representatives of government agencies, industry, environmental groups and others, officials said.

"These investments will make it easier, faster and cheaper to move iron ore and other goods from here to other U.S. and overseas markets," said Gov. Mark Dayton of Minnesota.

The maritime sector pumps $30 billion annually into the U.S. and Canadian economies and accounts for more than 220,000 jobs, according to the conference, which represents the governors of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, and the premiers of Ontario and Quebec.

The Associated Press

 

Steady shipping season in Twin Ports so far

6/17 - Duluth, Minn. – Three months into the 2016 shipping season in the Twin Ports, Adele Yorde with the Seaway Port Authority says it got off to a quick start in March. She says that makes it tough to compare with the previous year where ice conditions slowed everything down at the beginning of the season.

Yorde says with iron ore shipments taking a hit last year because of slow demand, "things are moving toward normal as we look to the 2nd and 3rd quarters this year with Cliffs and Mintac coming back on board." Everyone is expressing cautious optimism that this season will surpass 2015 when all is said and done.

Lake Superior water levels are still above the long-term average although they are down by 2 inches from June of last year. Water levels are important for shipping since it allows the vessels to take larger loads.

KDAL

 

Port Reports -  June 17

St. Marys River
Michipicoten departed Essar Steel on Thursday morning headed for Marquette, where she arrived in the late evening. Thursday evening, Samuel deChamplain and barge Integrity were upbound above the locks while the tanker Algonova was upbound below the locks.

Alpena, Mich. – Ben & Chanda McClain
Mississagi arrived at the Alpena Oil Dock at 4 p.m. on Thursday. It unloaded a cargo of road salt from Goderich, Ont. Mississagi finished the unload by 8 p.m. and backed out of the river. The Alpena moved over to the loading dock at Lafarge on Thursday, once both tug/barges were loaded under the silos. The tug Wendy Anne was out doing work in the bay on Thursday.

 

New Amherst Island ferry could be in service by 2019

6/17 - Kingston, Ont. – A new ferry to Amherst Island could be in service by early 2019. On a trip over to the island Wednesday, Ontario Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca said the contract for the new $20 million ferry could be signed in early 2017.

The design and build of the ferry is expected to take about two years.

“We are talking about being out in the marketplace with our procurement later this year,” Del Duca said. “A contract, we anticipate to be awarded in 2017, and somewhere in the neighborhood of 24 months for the new ferry to be built.”

The new ferry is to be able to carry approximately 40 vehicles, Kingston and the Islands MPP Sophie Kiwala said. In its 2016 budget, Ontario announced plans for the new ferry.

The Frontenac II is to become a backup ferry for both Amherst Island and Wolfe Island. Del Duca and Kiwala said the addition of a second ferry was, in part, motivated by public outcry over the long absence of the Wolfe Islander III last year, which was out of service for refit and maintenance for seven months.

During that time, the Frontenac II sailed the route from Kingston and Wolfe Island.

There are plans being made to add another 75-vehicle ferry to the Wolfe Island route.

In addition to a new ferry, dock facilities in Millhaven and Stella, including the docks, parking areas and marshalling yard, are also to be rebuilt in the coming few years. The new ferry and docks are to be end-loading and will replace the side-loading system used by the Frontenac II.

The Whig

 

New Welland Canal web site is on line

6/17 - Niagara’s canal cities have launched a new website and brochure to promote the history of the Welland Canal and its recreation and tourism opportunities.

The City of St. Catharines, Thorold, Welland and Port Colborne have joined with the Tourism Partnership of Niagara to launch the new website. It includes a brochure – all to help residents and tourists plan their trip to the canal cities and visit tourist and heritage landmarks. Information is also offered for visitors and tourists to the canal cities, with the history of the Welland Canal showcased.

The new website can be found at www.niagarawellandcanal.com (Please note: Once at the website you must scroll down to access all the information)

Paul Beesley

 

Port of Cleveland mourns passing of Sen. George Voinovich

6/17 - Cleveland, Ohio – The Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority (Port of Cleveland) voiced its sadness Thursday over the loss of George Voinovich, who as mayor of Cleveland, governor of Ohio, and U.S. senator for Ohio was a friend and champion to Lake Erie, Great Lakes maritime commerce, and clean water.

“The Port of Cleveland extends its heartfelt condolences to Senator Voinovich’s family and friends,” said Will Friedman, Port President and CEO. “During his nearly five decades of public service, he was a consistent voice calling for the protection and promotion of Ohio’s most vital asset – Lake Erie. His voice and leadership will be sorely missed.”

During his senate career, Sen. Voinovich served as co-chair of the Great Lakes Task Force and led passage of legislation to protect Lake Erie, including banning lake drilling, creating the Great Lakes Compact, funding cleanup of contaminated sediment, and addressing the threat of invasive species and algae blooms. As mayor of Cleveland and governor of Ohio, he helped leverage the port as an asset for public-private partnership and economic growth centered on maritime.

“When the Port of Cleveland was founded in 1968, Sen. Voinovich was a first term representative in the Ohio House,” said Chris Ronayne, Chair of the Port’s Board of Directors. “During the next five decades, he played a key role in transforming Lake Erie and the Cuyahoga River from a national punchline to a global success story of reclamation and rebirth. Our port, and more importantly our community, owe him a debt that can never be repaid.”

Port of Cleveland

 

Monroe, Mich., part of USDOT port performance working group

6/17 - Washington, D.C. – The U.S. Department of Transportation has announced the members of a working group that will make recommendations to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) concerning port performance measures. Six ports will be a part of the working group: five AAPA member deep-draft ports (Port of Houston, Port of Long Beach, Port of Los Angeles, Port of Monroe and the Port Authority of New York/New Jersey) and one inland port (America’s Central Port).

There are 27 other members of the working group, ranging from beneficial cargo owners, such as Lowe’s and Home Depot, to rail and trucking interests and labor unions. Thirteen federal agencies are also part of the working group.

The BTS Port Performance Freight Statistics Working Group has been established in accordance with Section 6018 of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act. The first meeting will be held in Washington, DC, on July 15.

The goal of the program is “to provide nationally consistent measures of performance” of the nation’s largest ports, and to report annually to Congress on port capacity and throughput. The working group’s first report to Congress is due December 4, 2016. In addition to the members appointed to the working group, BTS leadership said they will be actively engaging and soliciting input from additional industry leaders and experts as well. BTS is encouraging the port industry’s full engagement.

American Association of Port Authorities

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 17

On June 17, 1895, the J. W. Westcott Co. inaugurated its unique mail delivery service.

On 17 June 1878, the Canadian schooner JAMES SCOTT of Port Burwell capsized and sank in Lake Erie. The captain's wife, their child and two seamen were drowned.

The wooden schooner MONTEREY, which stranded on Sleeping Bear Point on Lake Michigan in early December 1890, was released on 17 June 1891.

The SCOTT MISENER (Hull#11) was christened on June 17, 1951, for Colonial Steamships Ltd. She was the first vessel built at Port Weller Drydocks Ltd. Renamed b.) JOHN E. F. MISENER in 1954, she was scrapped at Cartagena, Columbia, in 1986.

The PATERSON of 1954 collided with the steamer EDMUND W. MUDGE in 1957, in fog on the St. Clair River opposite Marine City, Michigan.

The WILLIAM A. IRVIN was towed to the Duluth Convention Center on June 17, 1986, by the tugs SIOUX and DAKOTA to be on station as a museum ship at the new $3 million convention facility.

June 17, 1998 - The barge PERE MARQUETTE 41 and tug UNDAUNTED arrived Ludington, Michigan from Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, after the remainder of the conversion there.

The propeller OWEN SOUND was launched at Collingwood, Ontario, on 17 June 1875. She measured 900 tons and could carry 30,000 bushels of grain.

1909 – The iron hulled passenger and freight steamer CAMPANA had been cut in two to leave the Great Lakes in 1895, but the hull broke in 1909 where the sections had been rejoined and sank in the St. Lawrence at Point St. Michael a few miles below Quebec City.

1918 – JAY GOULD was loaded with coal and towing the barge COMMODORE when it began leaking and then sank eight miles southeast of Southeast Shoal, Lake Erie. The hull was later dynamited as a hazard to navigation. The barge was overwhelmed by the seas and rolled in the trough for about two hours before it also sank. All on board both ships were saved.

1941 – The Lake Ontario passenger steamer KINGSTON ran aground on a shoal in the St. Lawrence 15 miles SW of Ogdensburg, NY after losing her way in thick fog. The passengers were transferred to RAPIDS PRINCE and the ship was released with the aid of pontoons and repaired at Kingston.

1998 – MOUNTAIN BLOSSOM was downbound in the Seaway when it struck the approach wall at the Eisenhower Lock, opening a crack in the hull that allowed about 50 gallons of xylene to escape. The immediate area was evacuated but the problem was quickly cleaned up. The ship was a regular Great Lakes trader from 1986 to 2007 and was scrapped at Xinhui, China, after arriving on January 10, 2010.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Detroit Marine Historian, Marine Historical Society's Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Lakes limestone trade in May repeats a year ago

6/16 - Cleveland, Ohio – Shipments of limestone on the Great Lakes totaled 3,806,526 tons in May, a virtual repeat of a year ago when the trade totaled 3,809,701 tons. This May’s loadings were, however, slightly below the month’s 5-year average.

Loadings out of U.S. quarries totaled 3,053,669 tons, a decrease of approximately 40,000 tons compared to a year ago. Shipments from Canadian quarries totaled 752,857 tons, an increase of 37,000 tons.

Year-to-date the Lakes limestone trade stands at 6,064,130 tons, an increase of 3.7 percent compared to a year ago. Again, loadings from Michigan and Ohio quarries are virtually unchanged from a year ago – 4.9 million tons. Shipments from Ontario quarries total 1,169,739 tons, an increase of 216,000 tons.

Lake Carriers’ Association

 

Coast Guard cutter Hollyhock to hold change of command ceremony

6/16 - Cleveland, Ohio – The crew of Coast Guard cutter Hollyhock, homeported in Port Huron, Mich., is scheduled to hold a change-of-command ceremony at 11 a.m. Friday at the Coast Guard moorings at Waterworks pier in Port Huron.

During the ceremony, Lt. Cmdr. Molly Waters will relieve Cmdr. Justin Kimura.

Waters is coming from the emerging policy staff under the Deputy Commandant for Operations at Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington, D.C. Kimura will become the visual aids-to-navigation division chief at the Office of Navigation Systems at Coast Guard headquarters.

The change-of-command ceremony is a time-honored tradition of the rich heritage of naval history. It is a naval custom, without equivalent counterpart in the Army or Air Force. Custom has established that this ceremony be formal and impressive, designed to strengthen respect for authority, which is vital to any military organization. Parading all hands at quarters and public reading of official orders stem from those days when movement of mail and persons was a very slow process. The procedure was designed to ensure that only duty authorized officers held command and that all aboard were aware of the order’s authenticity. The change of command is a transfer of total responsibility, authority and accountability from one individual to another.

USCG

 

Port Reports -  June 16

St. Marys River
Saginaw and Kaministiqua were upbound above the locks in the evening Wednesday, and Joseph L. Block was upbound behind Neebish Island. CSL Assiniboine and Baie Comeau were downbound. Michipicoten spent another day tied up at Essar.

Green Bay, Wis.
Sichem Dubai was unloading on Wednesday.

Alpena, Mich. – Ben & Chanda McClain
Calumet arrived at Lafarge Monday morning to unload coal. The Alpena is tied up at the coal dock at Lafarge and will possibly load on Thursday after the Samuel de Champlain and barge Innovation come into port. The tug Wendy Anne has been tied up in the river since the beginning of the week.

Saginaw River – Gordy Garris
The tug Zeus and the barge Robert F. Deegan were back outbound for the lake Wednesday morning after unloading overnight at the Port Fisher fertilizer dock in Bay City. Upon exiting the Saginaw Bay, they passed the inbound tug Olive L. Moore and barge Lewis J. Kuber at Tawas City around 10 a.m. Wednesday. The Moore/Kuber were bound for Essexville to unload their next cargo. The pair is expected to be back outbound for the lake late Wednesday night or early Thursday morning.

Lorain, Ohio – Phil Leon
Cuyahoga arrived in Lorain at 2:14 Wednesday morning and went to dock #3. She left at 6:44 a.m. and went to Cleveland.

 

Mac Lock ribbon cutting-ceremony June 24

6/16 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday, June 24, to celebrate the completion of the MacArthur Lock electrical modernization project at the Soo Locks.

The ceremony is being held in conjunction with the annual Soo Locks Engineers Day and will begin at 8:15 a.m. inside the park, next to the MacArthur Lock pedestrian entrance.

The $7.6-million project replaced 70-year-old electrical equipment such as switchgear, motors, and power and control cables. It also installed new digital control systems and upgraded the existing closed circuit television system. These improvements will improve the reliability of the MacArthur Lock and reduce electrical safety hazards to the operators.

The prime contractor is Windemuller Electric of Wayland, Michigan, which self-performed over 80 percent of the project. Ninety-five percent of the subcontractor man-hours on the project were performed by Michigan residents.

US Army Corps of Engineers

 

Updates -  June 16

News Photo Gallery
Saltie Gallery updated with pictures of the The saltie gallery has been updated with images of Bro Anges, Edzard Schulte, Federal Beaufort, Federal Oshima, Fivelborg, Greenwing, Harbour Fashion, MarBioko, Marselisborg, Mitiq, Mona Swan, Pacific Huron, Qamutik, SCT Matterhorn, SCT Stockhorn, Sichem Dubai, Songa Opal, Sten Baltic and Sten Bergen.

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 16

On 16 June 1891, Alexander McDougall himself took his brand-new whaleback steamer JOSEPH L. COLBY (steel propeller whaleback freighter, 265 foot, 1,245 gross tons, built in 1890 at West Superior, Wisconsin) down the St. Lawrence River to the sea. The double-hulled COLBY left Prescott, Ontario at 3 p.m., drawing six feet nine inches aft and five feet six inches forward and started on her wild ride through the rapids. The whaleback freighter plowed through the Galops, Iroquois, Long Sault, Coteau, Cedar, Split Rock and Cascade Rapids. She grated the bottom a number of times and had a number of close calls. Captain McDougall stood immobile throughout the trip but great beads of perspiration broke out on his forehead. When the vessel finally made it through the Cascades and was safe on Lake St. Louis, the French Canadian pilot left and the crew let out shouts of joy with the whistle blowing. The COLBY was the first screw steamer to attempt running the rapids.

On 16 June 1892, GENERAL BURNSIDE (3-mast wooden schooner, 138 foot, 308 gross tons, built in 1862, at Wolfe Island, Ontario) foundered in a powerful northwest gale on Lake Erie near Southeast Shoal Light. Her crew was rescued by the tug GREGORY.

The steamer UNIQUE (wooden propeller passenger/package freight steamer, 163 foot, 381 gross tons) was built by Alexander Anderson at Marine City, Michigan. She was launched stern first at 3:00 p.m. on 16 June 1894. There was quite a crowd assembled to watch the launch. While waiting for the launch, Engineer Merrill of the steamer MARY composed the following verse:

"The new steamer Unique
Made a beautiful suique
On a direction oblique
Into a big crique,
So to spique."

The vessel was painted a bright yellow up to the promenade deck with white cabins and upper works. In 1901, she left the upper lakes and was chartered for the Thousand Islands cruise trade. Later that year, she was sold to Philadelphia buyers for Delaware River service. Her upper cabins were removed in 1904, when she was rebuilt as a yacht. She lasted until 20 November 1915, when she burned to a total loss in New York harbor.

On 16 June 1905, at 2:00 a.m., a fire was discovered around the smokestack of the North Shore Navigation Company's CITY OF COLLINGWOOD (wooden propeller passenger-package freight steamer, 213 foot, 1,387 gross tons, built in 1893, at Owen Sound, Ontario) burned at the Grand Trunk Railway docks at Collingwood, Ontario and was destroyed along with the dock and nearby sheds. Four died, but most of crew jumped overboard. Captain Wright had gone to his home on Pine St. about an hour before and was preparing for bed when he heard four whistles sounded by the steamer BRITTANIC, which was laying alongside. He ran to the dock, went aboard and woke the 1st mate J. D. Montgomery and a wheelsman. They had to jump to the dock to escape the flames. James Meade, Lyman Finch, A. McClellan, and another unidentified crewmember who had just joined the vessel at the Soo were all sleeping in the forecastle and lost their lives.

In 1967, the FEUX FOLLETS (Hull#188) was launched at Collingwood, Ontario, by Collingwood Shipyards Ltd., for Papachristidis Co. Ltd. She was the last steam-powered lake ship. Renamed in 1972 as b.) CANADIAN LEADER and scrapped in 2012.

Upbound in the Welland Canal on June 16, 1963, loaded with iron ore for Chicago, U.S. Steel's BENJAMIN F. FAIRLESS suffered bow damage in collision with Canadian steamer RALPH S. MISENER. In 1918, the WILLIAM P. SNYDER JR was in collision with the steamer GEORGE W. PERKINS in Duluth Harbor resulting in damage of $5,000 to both vessels.

On 16 June 1861, ANDOVER (2-mast wooden schooner, 98 foot, 190 tons, built in 1844, at Black River, Ohio) was carrying lumber in a storm and ground on Pointe aux Barques reef on Lake Huron. Though not thought to be seriously damaged, she resisted all efforts by the tug ZOUAVE to release her. She was finally stripped and abandoned.

On 16 June 1887, CHAMPLAIN (wooden propeller passenger/package freight vessel, 135 foot, 438 gross tons, built in 1870, at Cleveland, Ohio) was carrying passengers, merchandise and horses on Lake Michigan when an engine room lamp exploded. The fire spread so quickly that the pumps could not be started. She headed for Fisherman's Island, Grand Traverse Bay, Lake Michigan, but struck a bar and sank a mile short of the beach. 22 of the 57 persons aboard died, most from drowning. Although initially declared a total loss, the hull was towed into Harbor Springs, Michigan, then taken to Milwaukee, Wisconsin and rebuilt as CITY OF CHARLEVOIX. She was also lengthened to 165 foot. She lasted until 1924, when she burned at her lay-up dock in Manistee, Michigan. At that time, she was named KANSAS.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II, the Fr. Dowling Collection and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports -  June 15

St. Marys River
Passenger ship Pearl Mist was docked in Sault, Ont., on Tuesday evening. Saginaw, Manitoulin and Michipicoten were at Essar Steel.

Cedarville, Mich.
Wilfred Sykes and Arthur M. Anderson loaded on Tuesday.

Escanaba, Mich.
American Spirit was loading Tuesday evening.

Sturgeon Bay, Wis.
Roger Blough reached Bay Shipbuilding Co. after noon on Tuesday, assisted by Selvick Marine Towing tugs. The 858-footer will be undergoing repairs after it ran aground on Gros Cap Reef May 27 at Whitefish Bay, west of Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.

Port Inland, Mich.
Joseph L. Block was loading Tuesday.

Montreal, Que. – René Beauchamp
The Peter (ex-Peter R. Cresswell) tow left Tuesday morning for Aliaga, Turkey. The Port of Montreal web site had it incorrectly listed as leaving Wednesday.

 

Newest vessel in McKeil Marine fleet docked at Sydport

6/15 Edwardsville, N.S. – The most recent addition to the McKeil Marine fleet was on display while at dock at the Sydport Industrial Park on Monday. The Arklow Willow, which Hamilton, Ont.,-headquartered McKeil Marine recently took delivery of in Marseilles, France, is at dock at Sydport to be reflagged as a Canadian vessel.

The ship, which was built in 2004, can carry just under 10,000 tonnes of cargo, noted company CEO Blair McKeil, and he said its current value is probably about $12 million.

“It’s in here getting prepped to go to work. It will leave here Wednesday or Thursday, so the crew is on getting a bunch of things ready — you’ve got Transport Canada, you’ve got class inspectors,” McKeil said. “Things like fire suits, survival suits, all that stuff —even though they work in Europe they don’t work in Canada, so you take a whole bunch of brand-new stuff off … and we’re putting all new Canadian stuff on.

“It’s like going through a major oil change — it just takes a few days longer.”

The Arklow Willow will then go on to load cement in the Great Lakes to deliver to Newfoundland and Labrador, and then load a quartz-like product there to transport to the Great Lakes. The ship won’t be based permanently out of Sydport, McKeil said, adding it will likely be kept busy travelling between the Maritimes and the Great Lakes.

McKeil Marine is a marine services company with a fleet of ocean-going and harbor tugs, barges for shipping and storage, temporary docks, oil rig servicing vessels, dry docks and repair facilities.

McKeil said activity has been growing at its Sydport base. Future activity at the port could include the addition of a floating dry dock, he said, working with Heddle Marine Service, which has located there and is doing much of McKeil’s repair work. McKeil said he would like to see something of that nature on site within eight-10 months.

Last year, Cape Breton regional Municipality council approved spending $1.2 million to buy a 24-acre parcel of land from Sydport Operations and East Coast Metal Fabricators that it would then lease on a cost-recovery basis over 20 years to McKeil Marine. The deal also included a clause allowing McKeil to buy the property.

On Monday, McKeil took Mayor Cecil Clarke and CBRM councillors Lowell Cormier and Darrell Flynn on a tour of the new ship. Clarke said the activity is resulting in spinoffs for the area’s economy.

“This new ship that’s in alone is going to have a $23,000 food bill before it takes to the sea in a few days and we just had a tugboat leave the harbor to be commissioned, and that boat as well was supplied here: local fuel supply, local contracting, and you see the buzz of people coming and going,” Clarke said. “It’s very much a working port.”

Clarke added it’s hoped that McKeil’s local operations will expand dry dock and marine activities.

Cape Breton Post

 

Evicted Kingston marine museum packing up

6/15 - Kingston, Ont. - The dismantling of the Marine Museum of the Great Lakes has begun. With the eviction date of Aug. 23 looming, volunteers and staff are bubble-wrapping artifacts and have boxed much of the 10,000-volume library collection.

"It looks like a shambles," said volunteer museum board chairman Christopher West on a tour of the facility Friday. "It's not a happy story for Kingston."

Indeed, the room containing the exhibit on the history of sailing has been disassembled and boxes of books dumped into one corner. Behind the exhibit walls sit 1,000 linear feet of documents -- a vast array of marine architectural plans and shipyard documents pertaining to the Great Lakes -- safe, for now, in their climate-controlled storage.

"It's the heritage of the nation, specially designated archival material," West grimly explained. "We are duty-bound to protect it."

Everything is in need of a new home, but very few suitable storage sites have been found, even as the clock ticks down on the museum's occupancy.

One of the biggest concerns is how to dispose of what is probably the largest museum artifact in eastern Ontario -- the Alexander Henry, a former coast guard ship sitting in the historic drydock. What to do with a mass of steel containing asbestos, oil and other contaminants?

West and the others also know there will come a time this summer when the museum, as it closes more and more of its public exhibits, will cease to be able to charge an admission and will turn to voluntary contributions for people to view what remains.

"People will probably show up. The place was crawling with kids on Wednesday -- 90 kids from Quebec," said West.

How the 40-year-old museum got to this point has been well-documented. It was put up for sale by the federal government in February 2015. City councillors balked at taking it over for the price of $1, fearing the fallout from contamination known to be underground on the 3.8-acre site.

In January, it was bought by Kingston developer Jay Patry for $3.2 million. After negotiations with Patry failed -- the museum couldn't afford the rent he was asking -- Patry gave notice they had to be out by Aug. 23.

"The sides were very far apart on rent," said West. "At one time the city may have thought they could bridge the gap, but that didn't bear any fruit. The gap was in the order of a quarter of a million dollars a year."

As soon as the museum was served the eviction notice, a board meeting was called and the directors adopted what West called "Plan B" -- essentially, to start packing. The plan also calls for keeping the collection intact.

"We're not shopping the museum anywhere," said West, acknowledging that several communities, such as Hamilton, have expressed interest in taking the artifacts. "We don't want to disperse the collection. You can't replace it. Even with a lot of money you couldn't put it back together." Instead, they fully intend to re-open in Kingston somewhere, somehow.

"Among the obvious candidates are Kingston Penitentiary and Portsmouth Olympic Harbour, which are undergoing a visioning process. We're talking to KEDCO [Kingston Economic Development Corporation] about a real museum hub on those grounds. There may be a prison museum. It could have a sister museum, the marine museum," said West.

Meantime, there are practical matters to take care of, including securing grant funding and maintaining official museum designation. Curator Sadrena Raymond is tasked with converting the school program for students to an outreach program. They will also look for a "storefront" location to put some artifacts on display and maintain a community presence.

And an Ottawa museum has commissioned the creation of a virtual shipwreck gallery using new footage taken by divers of some of the nearly 200 wrecks lying underwater off Kingston.

"While these things go on, we can eye the bigger picture: Where will the museum rise again?" said West.

Then there's the not-so-small matter of the big ship. Museum officials contacted the lone company on the Great Lakes that recycles ships but the $1-million price tag was prohibitive. ("The price of steel is at close to historical rock bottom," said West.)

They've also considered draining the drydock and stripping the ship where it rests, but that would also be costly at an estimated $400,000. The third, and possibly only viable option, is to float the Alexander Henry to another mooring and strip it over several years with the goal of sinking it offshore to become an artificial reef for divers.

Knowing the next three months will go by fast, the marine museum has put out the call for volunteers to come down and help pack artifacts. West would also like to secure more help from city officials as the museum fights to keep its head above water.

"Does Kingston really want its museum?" he asked. "Are we really the city where history and innovation thrive? It really is a question of walking the talk."

Whig Standard

 

Save $5 - Reserve now for Engineer’s Day Soo Cruise

6/15 - The annual freighter-chasing cruise on the St. Marys River is scheduled for Friday, June 24, as part of the annual Engineer’s Day Gathering in Sault Ste. Marie. The cruise will be three hours and we will travel thru both the U.S. and Canadian Locks, and do our best to find photo opportunities for any vessel traffic in the river.

Reservations are a must as we are limiting the group to 100 persons. Do not wait until you get to the Soo to join the group on this trip. Reservations must be received by Friday, June 17 to save $5. See the Gathering Page for details

 

Updates -  June 15

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 15

On this day in 1967, the new $6 million Allouez taconite pellet handling facility in Superior, Wisconsin, was dedicated. The first cargo of 18,145 tons of pellets was loaded into the holds of the Hanna Mining Company freighter JOSEPH H. THOMPSON.

At midnight, on Saturday, 15 June 1901, OMAR D. CONGER (wooden propeller ferry, 92 foot, 199 gross tons, built in 1882, at Port Huron, Michigan) burned at her dock on the Black River in Port Huron, Michigan. Her upper works were destroyed, but she was repaired and put back in service. She lasted until 1922, when her boiler exploded, killing four people and destroying the vessel.

On June 15, 1943, the D.M. CLEMSON collided with and sank the GEORGE M. HUMPHREY in the Straits of Mackinac. Both of these 600-footers recovered for long careers. The D.M. CLEMSON was sold for scrap in 1980. The GEORGE M. HUMPHREY was recovered over a year later, renamed the b.) CAPTAIN JOHN ROEN, later converted to a self-unloader, and finished her career as d.) CONSUMERS POWER at the end of the 1985, season before being scrapped in 1988.

In 1989, the ROGER M. KYES was rechristened b.) ADAM E. CORNELIUS by American Steamship Co.

The wooden 180-foot schooner JOHN A. FRANCOMB was launched at West Bay City, Michigan, on 15 June 1889. She was built by F. W. Wheeler & Co. (Hull #61). She lasted until she was abandoned at Bay City in 1934.

GRECIAN (steel propeller freighter, 296 foot, 2,348 gross tons, built in 1891, at Cleveland, Ohio by Globe Iron Works (Hull#40) struck a rock near Detour, Michigan, on 7 June 1906, but made dock at Detour before settling on bottom. After her cargo was removed, she was raised, and towed by her fleet mate SIR HENRY BESSEMER, bound for Detroit Shipbuilding Co. in Wyandotte, Michigan, for repairs, relying on air pressure in her sealed holds to keep her afloat. However, on 15 June 1906, her holds began to fill with water and she sank in Lake Huron off Thunder Bay. Her crew was rescued by SIR HENRY BESSEMER.

1933 – BRENTWOOD ran aground in the St. Marys River and was released on June 19 with about $60,000 in damage. The CSL vessel soon tied up at Midland and was scrapped there in 1937.

1943 – WILLIAM BREWSTER was on her maiden voyage when she collided with the W.D. CALVERLEY JR. and sank on her side in the St. Clair River off Algonac. The ship was not refloated until November and, after repairs, finally left the lakes in June 1944. It operated on saltwater routes until scrapping at Calcutta, India, as e) RAY MAYABUNDAR in 1967.

1962 – NYON, a Seaway visitor in 1961 and 1962, sank in the English Channel, 5 miles south of Beachy Head, after a collision in heavy fog with the Indian freighter JALAZAD. The latter came to the Great Lakes in 1969 and was eventually scuttled off Tema, Ghana, as b) JYOTI VINOD in September 1983.

1965 – BREIM, a Great Lakes visitor from Norway, got stuck in the mud below the Snell Lock at Massena, NY was released the next day after some cargo was lightered. The ship arrived at Visakhapatnam, India, for scrapping as c) CHRISTINA C. on October 24, 1983.

1988 – ALGOWEST and COUDRES D'ILE collided in fog on the St. Lawrence and the small coastal freighter sank with the loss of one life. The former now sails for Algoma as PETER R. CRESSWELL.

2001 – Fire broke out in the engine room of the Cypriot freighter FELIX 60 miles off Las Palmas, Canary Islands and the 21-member crew was removed. The ship first came to the Great Lakes as a) BEGONIA in 1978 and returned as b) TIMUR SWALLOW in 1983 and c) JENNIFER JANE in 1985. The burning vessel was anchored and the fire extinguished June 16. A total loss, the ship arrived at Aliaga, Turkey, under tow as f) ELI on December 1, 2001, and was broken up.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports – June 14

 Escanaba, Mich.
American Spirit and James R. Barker were in port to load Monday night.

Cedarville, Mich.
John J. Boland was loading stone on Monday.

Holland, Mich. – Al Walters
About 9 p.m. Monday, Pere Marquette 41 /Undaunted arrived with a load of stone.

Saginaw River – Gordy Garris
There were two vessel passages over the weekend on the Saginaw River. The tug Olive L. Moore and the barge Lewis J. Kuber were outbound from Bay City on Saturday, and the tug Samuel de Champlain and the barge Innovation finished unloading at the Lafarge Cement Terminal in Essexville early Sunday morning.

Milwaukee, Wis. – Alan
The Polsteam vessel Isa arrived and moored at Pier 2 early Friday. Tug/barge Prentiss Brown/St. Marys Challenger arrived late Sunday afternoon and moored at the usual spot for them, the cement silos in the Kinnickinnic River. Tug/barge Dorothy Ann/Pathfinder made a short visit, with aggregate, Sunday.

 Oswego, N.Y. – Ned Goebricher
Monday, Evans Spirit unloaded aluminum bars.

Montreal, Que. – René Beauchamp
The former Algoma Central self-unloader Peter (ex-Peter R. Cresswell) is to leave Montreal on Wednesday for the scrapyards of Aliaga, Turkey.

 

Lake Erie boaters, fishermen have new source of water data with high-tech buoy

 6/14 - Cleveland, Ohio – In preparation for construction of a six-turbine wind farm in Lake Erie in 2018, a high-tech buoy has been placed eight miles offshore to gather and transmit an extensive menu of environmental data.

The first-of-its-kind buoy is collecting real-time wind speeds, water temperatures and wave conditions in preparation for the construction of the wind farm. But the environmental information is proving to be a treasure trove for boaters, fishermen and scientists.

 "When we began planning for the lake study, we wanted to make as much of the data available to the public as possible and this buoy was a great opportunity for us to do that," said Lorry Wagner, president of the Lake Erie Energy Development Corp., which is in charge of the $40 million Icebreaker project.

 "As a boater myself, I know how valuable real-time local observations of wind speeds and wave heights can be when deciding to go on the water."

 Aquatic researchers and state agencies will have access to data on lake currents, water chemistry, toxic algae, fish habitat and behavior, as well as boating conditions. Data also will be gathered on migrating birds and bats.

 Ohio State University's Stone Laboratory is conducting studies on juvenile fish in that part of the lake, and will use environmental measurements and dissolved oxygen data collected from the buoy, Wagner said.

 The new buoy also has a high definition webcam that transmits video and images hourly to the internet.

 When the five-year study is completed, all of the data will be turned over to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

 "The whole concept is to know what's happening there from year to year," Wagner said. "We want to determine how the wind turbines have affected the environment of the lake after the they have been put in."

 Based on studies at 80 other wind farms around the world, there is hope that the Lake Erie wind farm will foster an increase in aquatic life, Wagner said. He cited findings by Stone Lab scientists that after the rubble from Cleveland Municipal Stadium was dumped into the lake, fish populations increased by 20 to 60 times at the artificial reef.

 "We're not claiming that's what we're going to do, but we're optimistic," Wagner said.

 The data from the buoy can be accessed at greatlakesbuoys.org/station

 Cleveland.com

 

Updates -  June 14

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 14

On this day in 1985, Captain Edward Rogowski passed away. Captain Rogowski started sailing as a deckhand on the 514 foot JOHN SHERWIN in 1936. He retired in 1982 as the first captain of the largest freighter on the Great Lakes, the 1,013 foot PAUL R TREGURTHA.

On this day in 1957, the Interlake Steamship Company freighter HARVEY H. BROWN, Captain Percy E. Mc Ginness, delivered the first cargo of coal to the new taconite loading port of Taconite Harbor, Minnesota.

ROGER BLOUGH departed the shipyard in ballast on her maiden voyage for U.S. Steel Corp. the night of June 14, 1972, for Two Harbors, Minnesota to load 41,608 gross tons of taconite ore pellets. She was nearly a year late because of a fire in her engine room.

On June 14, 1988, the CONSUMERS POWER of 1927, with her former fleet mate JOHN T. HUTCHINSON, departed Lauzon, Quebec, in tow of the Panamanian tug/supply ship OMEGA 809, bound for a scrap yard in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. The steamer PRINCESS was sold to Little and Fitzgerald on 14 June 1873. She was built in 1858, at Algonac, Michigan by Z. Pangborn.

The wooden scow TINKER was launched at Leighton & Dunford's yard in Port Huron, Michigan on 14 June 1876.

1954 – W.F. WHITE crushed the tug OHIO against a pier in Buffalo and the latter was a total loss. The tug was refloated and scrapped at Cleveland in 1955.

1977 – ALMAR came to the Great Lakes under Greek registry in 1964. It caught fire in the engine room as c) IJESHA LION at Abidjan, Ivory Coast, and sustained major damage. The hull was abandoned by the owners, towed out to sea and scuttled in 1978

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II, The Marine Historical Society of Detroit and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Roger Blough continues trip to shipyard

 6/13 - Roger Blough anchored in Potagannissing Bay in the lower St. Marys River Saturday at sunset, and proceeded into Lake Huron Sunday at around 2 a.m. By 7:30 a.m. Sunday, she and her accompanying tug Candace Elise were a couple of miles west of the Mackinac Bridge moving at a slow speed. By 11:00 PM the pair were east of the Garden Peninsula moving at a slow speed.

 

Second phase of Interlake’s exhaust gas scrubber program underway

 6/13 - Middleburg Heights, Ohio – The M/V James R. Barker sailed Sunday from Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding Company in Sturgeon Bay, Wis., becoming Interlake Steamship Company’s first 1,000-footer and its second self-unloading bulk carrier to be outfitted with exhaust gas scrubbers.

 Interlake became the first U.S.-flag fleet to test scrubbers on the Great Lakes in April 2015 after pioneering the emission-reduction technology on its M/V Hon. James L. Oberstar.

 “Implementing this innovative scrubber system on our 1,000-foot class ships will make an even greater impact on reducing our fleet’s carbon footprint,” says Interlake President Mark W. Barker. “Leading the way with emission-reduction technology is just another example of our commitment to continuous improvement across our fleet.”

 Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding handled the successful installation on the 806-foot Oberstar and was the clear choice to complete the second phase of installations on the 1,004-foot Barker and the 826-foot M/V Lee A. Tregurtha, which is slated to sail later this month.

 A total of five Interlake vessels – including two additional 1,000-footers – the M/V Paul R. Tregurtha and M/V Mesabi Miner – will be outfitted with these types of scrubbers by 2017.

The James R. Barker is equipped with the same single-inlet, closed-loop DuPont Marine Scrubbers from Belco Technologies Corp. (BELCO), a DuPont company, that were installed on the Oberstar.

 The scrubber units, which are attached to the exhaust system of each of the ship’s two engines, effectively strip the majority of sulfur from its stack emissions. Here’s how the systems work: Exhaust gas from the engine is sent through a series of absorption sprays that “wash” and remove impurities, specifically sulfur and particulate matter. That washed exhaust gas then travels through a droplet separator before a clean plume of white steam is discharged into the atmosphere.

 Propelled by a long-term vision to create the most efficient and environmentally friendly fleet on the Great Lakes, Interlake is shoring up its 10-year, $100 million fleet modernization, which includes the steam plant conversion program and the repower of its final vessel, the Herbert C. Jackson.

  The Interlake Steamship Co.

 

Port Reports – June 13

Duluth, Minn.
The saltwater vessel Greenwing arrived at Duluth Sunday evening. After fueling, she headed to CHS in Superior to load grain.

Port Inland, Mich. – Denny Dushane
The barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory were due to arrive on Saturday in the mid-afternoon to load. Manitowoc was also expected during the late afternoon on Saturday. It would be going to anchor and getting the dock upon the Kuber's departure. Expected to arrive on Sunday during the late morning was the barge Pere Marquette 41 and tug Undaunted. Due in for Monday are the barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann, arriving in the early evening.

 Cedarville, Mich. – Denny Dushane
There were no vessels scheduled Saturday and Sunday. Due in Monday the Wilfred Sykes during the late afternoon. John J. Boland is due in on Tuesday during the early morning, and Arthur M. Anderson is due on Tuesday in the morning to load.

 Calcite, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Cason J. Callaway continued to load Sunday at the North Dock and was giving an ETD of noon. Two vessels, both evening arrivals, are due in for Monday, with the Calumet loading at the North and South docks and the barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory loading at the South Dock. Due in for Tuesday is the American Mariner in the morning for the North and the South docks.

Stoneport, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Great Republic was expected to arrive on Sunday during the late evening. There are four vessels scheduled Monday. Manitoulin, making a rare appearance, is due in the early morning, followed by Kaye E. Barker. Cason J. Callaway is also due on Monday, arriving during the late afternoon. Joseph H. Thompson is due on Monday during the early evening. Due Tuesday will be the barge Lewis J. Kuber and the tug Olive L. Moore.

Marinette, Wis. – Scott Best
Federal Hudson departed Marinette on a sunny Sunday afternoon with assistance from the Great Lakes Towing Co.'s tug Texas.

 Green Bay, Wis. – Scott Best
Tug Dylan Cooper Reinauer with her barge are on an unusual trip to the US Oil VT Venture Dock. They arrived early Sunday morning.

 Toledo, Ohio – Denny Dushane
The Interlake Steamship Co.’s 1,000-footer James R. Barker is expected to arrive at the Torco Dock on Tuesday in the early evening. Also due at Torco are the barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory on June 26 during the early evening, and are scheduled to return on July 3 in the morning. There is nothing due at the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock. Due at the CSX coal dock is the Hon. James L. Oberstar, arriving on Tuesday in the late evening. Evans Spirit is due at CSX on Wednesday in the late morning, and Whitefish Bay is due at CSX on June 17 during the late morning. The saltwater vessel Redhead remains in port upriver loading grain.

 

Industry groups offer ballast water facts, not hype

6/13 - Cleveland, Ohio – Lake Carriers’ Association, American Great Lakes Ports Association and Great Lakes Maritime Task Force are issuing this report that addresses exaggerations and inaccuracies that have been published about the Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (VIDA), and explains how the legislation will in fact best protect the Great Lakes from aquatic nuisance species.

VIDA consolidates vessel ballast water regulatory authority under the U.S. Coast Guard, confirms the current USCG ballast water regulations, and provides for a periodic process to upgrade the USCG ballast water discharge standard (BWDS) with input from states and the EPA.

 Some VIDA opponents claim it eliminates current requirements that vessels treat their ballast water, inferring that only judicial enforcement of the Clean Water Act (CWA) drives this requirement.  Others claim this consolidation would make the Great Lakes vulnerable to more aquatic non-native species (ANS).  Most cite the Lakes’ experience with zebra mussels as an example of what will happen.  We agree that ANS introduced into the lakes years ago caused harm, but the rest is hype.

What they do not say is that lakes ANS were all introduced before 2006, when the USCG, under a separate authority than the CWA, began requiring vessels entering the lakes from outside U.S. waters to exchange their ballast water with ocean water.  Since then, no new ballast water-borne ANS were introduced into the lakes, despite thousands of foreign vessels entering the lakes since then.

 These articles, editorials and letters claim the USCG’s rules for treating vessel ballast water are too weak, but they are just beginning to be implemented, so their effectiveness cannot yet be fairly assessed. Also, ballast water treatment is in addition to the lakes’ already highly effective ballast water exchange requirement.  Equally important, the USCG and the EPA independently determined that the technology doesn’t yet exist to meet a more stringent BWDS.  VIDA opponents also claim VIDA would freeze the current USCG discharge standard.  This is a wild exaggeration of VIDA’s process for reviewing and improving the USCG BWDS.  Also, contrary to some statements, the USCG has far greater experience regulating vessel discharges and inspecting vessels than the EPA or the states.

Some VIDA opponents claim it’s exemption from ballast water treatment for vessels serving only lakes ports (“lakers”) will spread ANS among these ports.  However, current EPA and USCG regulations already exempt lakers from ballast water treatment and instead require extensive best ballast water management practices. 

Since the USCG began requiring mid-ocean exchange for other vessels, lakers have discharged approximately 66 billion gallons of ballast water from the lower lakes into Lake Superior waters.  According to the EPA, U.S. Geological Service, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, no ANS have been moved anywhere in the lakes by lakers.  Clearly, lakers are not the problem.

Why is there opposition to VIDA?  Some groups focused on general environmental goals see lawsuits against Federal, state, and private entities as their preferred mechanism of change and confuse competing and conflicting regulations with progress.  However, laker operators were one of the first groups to sound the alarm on ANS.  In 1993 we instituted our own best management practices to prevent ANS inter-lake movement.  Laker operators work with government agencies, universities, research institutions, and environmental and engineering experts to move the state of science and technology forward.  The Federal government is establishing ballast water management technological standards, inspection and monitoring criteria, and enforcement capabilities.  We see few signs that VIDA opponents are working equally as hard for solutions that really work.

CWA was specifically designed for fixed industrial facilities handling substances such as industrial wastes, sewage, and garbage, not the lake water used as ballast by lakers.  Commercial aircraft and trains do not have to meet varying equipment requirements for each state they serve or pass through; they meet nationwide Federal standards.  Applying the same approach to vessels will not have a disastrous effect on the health of the lakes; it will just reduce conflicting and redundant regulations that cost good-paying jobs and increase consumer prices.

VIDA is well-reasoned, common sense legislation, and it will result in significant new protection against ANS threats.  VIDA keeps the gate closed to aquatic non-native species and gives the Coast Guard, the agency that closed the gate, primary responsibility as our national invasive species gatekeeper.

 Lake Carriers’ Association, American Great Lakes Ports Association and Great Lakes Maritime Task Force

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 13

On 13 June 2003, after completing her conversion from American to Canadian registry, Lower Lakes Towing's newly-acquired MICHIPICOTEN, a.) ELTON HOYT 2ND, departed the Government dock at Sarnia, Ontario. First she went to the Shell Oil dock in Corunna, Ontario to fuel, then she departed for Marquette, Michigan to load ore for Algoma Steel in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

On 13 June 1902, METROPOLIS (wooden side-wheel steamer, 168 foot, 425 tons, built in 1868, at Detroit, Michigan) caught fire and burned to a total loss at her dock in Toledo, Ohio. She was only used occasionally for excursions and spent most of her time tied up to the dock.

On June 13, 1983, JOHN B. AIRD began its maiden voyage for Algoma Central Railway, a load of coal from Thunder Bay to Nanticoke, Ontario.

IRVING S. OLDS carried a record 17,817 gross tons of iron ore on June 13, 1943, from Lake Superior and transported a total of 736,800 short tons of various bulk cargoes the next year.

On the morning of June 13, 1905, running downbound on Lake Superior, the heavily-laden SYLVANIA encountered heavy fog as she approached the Soo. Confused whistle signals resulted in the SYLVANIA glancing off the Pittsburgh Steamship Co., steamer SIR HENRY BESSEMER, which sustained a 175-foot port side gash from the SYLVANIA's anchor. The BESSEMER required $40,000 in repairs and the SYLVANIA's damage totaled $10,000, which included a new anchor and shell plating which was completed at the Craig Shipbuilding Co., Toledo, Ohio.

June 13, 1930 - Shortly after leaving Menominee, Michigan, fireman Walter O'Leary of the ANN ARBOR NO 7 became ill. The carferry proceeded at full speed to the nearest doctor at Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, where surgery was performed to remove gallstones.

June 13, 1974 - The CITY OF GREEN BAY, formerly WABASH was sold to Marine Salvage Company to be scrapped. She was scrapped at Castellon, Spain in 1974. On 13 June 1903, CHARLES H. DAVIS (wooden propeller bulk freighter, 145 foot, 391 gross tons, built in 1881, at Saginaw, Michigan) was carrying limestone on Lake Erie off Cleveland when she developed a leak which quickly got worse and admitted water faster than her pumps capacity. She sank near the Cleveland breakwater. She was an unusual vessel, reportedly built of pine and pointed at both ends with her planking set diagonally.

1905 – The wooden steamer YAKIMA had stranded in Lake St. Clair on June 10, 1905, but caught fire and burned on this date while waiting to be salvaged. The remains were later towed into Lake Huron and scuttled.

1906 – The newly-built J. PIERPONT MORGAN carried a record 13, 294 tons of iron ore out of Escanaba for Chicago.

1944 – CANADIAN OTTER was built at Welland in 1920 but, in 1944, was sailing as f) FUKOKU MARU as a Japanese army cargo ship. It was sunk by aircraft from U.S.S. ESSEX while in a convoy from Philippines to Japan in the overnight hours of June 13-14, 1944.

1959 – A fire in the crew quarters of the FEDERAL PIONEER, docked at Section 51 in Montreal, was quickly controlled with only minor damage and sailing was delayed by three hours. The ship was a frequent Seaway trader for Federal Commerce and Navigation, now known as FedNav, and arrived at Hsinkiang, China, for scrapping on January 21, 1971.

1978 – Seven men were lost aboard the ANCO DUKE while cleaning tanks out in the Pacific. They were likely overcome by fumes. The ship later came to the Great Lakes as c) LAKE ANETTE in 1980, as d) SATU MAR in 1984 and as e) TOVE COB in 1987. It was scrapped in Bangladesh in 1993.

1978 – The bulk carrier ARCTIC hit the Cherry Street Bridge at Toledo on its first trip and had to return to Port Weller Dry Docks for repairs.

1980 – TROYAN first came through the Seaway in 1972. The ship began leaking in heavy weather as c) SUNRISE and foundered June 13, 1980, in the outer anchorage at Bombay, India, while enroute from Japan to Damman, Saudi Arabia, with bagged cement.

2004 – The SINGAPORE STAR first came to the Great Lakes in 1982. It caught fire in the accommodation area while on the Black Sea as c) BARBADOS OKTAY on June 13, 2004. The ship was carrying scrap steel from Novorossiysk, Russia, to Eregli, Turkey. The blaze was put out with tug assistance but the ship was sold for scrap and arrived at Aliaga, Turkey, to be broken up on July 19, 2004.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II, The Marine Historical Society of Detroit and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Roger Blough on the move Saturday

6/12 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – The U.S. Coast Guard captain of the port gave the motor vessel Roger Blough permission Saturday to transit down the St. Marys River to anchorage in Potagannissing Bay in the vicinity of DeTour Village, Michigan.

The Blough had been anchored in Waiska Bay in Lake Superior since June 4 after grounding on Gros Cap Reef May 27. Just before 11:30 a.m., the Blough weighed anchor from Waiska Bay and began its transit down the St. Marys River. 

 The Blough was escorted by the tug Candace Elise. The pair passed through the Soo Locks early Saturday afternoon, and were in the vicinity of DeTour by 10 p.m. Coast Guard officials in Sault Ste. Marie and Milwaukee are currently reviewing the vessel's full transit plan as it intends to make its way to the shipyard in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.

 USCG

 

Ships outfitted with scrubbers in Sturgeon Bay

6/12 - Sturgeon Bay, Wis. – Two ships owned by Interlake Steamship Co. were outfitted over the winter at Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding Co. in Sturgeon Bay with systems meant to help limit pollutants released into the air.

 The James R. Barker and the Lee A. Tregurtha came in earlier this year to have scrubber systems installed in their smoke stacks. The scrubbers take the place of a normal muffler in an exhaust system, said Drew Leonardi, Interlake Steamship Co. fleet engineer.

 “It is set up so it washes the exhaust gas like a shower,” Leonardi said. Caustic soda, also known as sodium hydroxide, is injected into the mix, and that helps separate the sulfur from the exhaust gas.

 The water is separated from the carbon, sulfur and other harmful materials, he said. The harmful materials are pumped into a holding tank for eventual disposal. After it goes through the system, water is clean enough to pump back into the lake, he said.

 The exhaust comes out in a white plume. It looks worse than older exhaust, but it is cleaner, Leonardi said.

 “This is an international mandate in certain eco zones,” he said. “So everybody had to make a decision about what they were going to do the first of January 2015 and then present their plan to the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency)."

 Those that chose not to install scrubbers were required to switch from what is known as “heavy fuel” to diesel fuel, Leonardi said. He estimated the cost of each conversion to be about $4 million.

 Leonardi explained that even though installing the scrubbers is mandatory for those using heavy fuel, Interlake is committed to helping the environment. According to Todd Thayse, Bay Ship vice president and general manager, three ships including the Barker and Tregurtha have installed scrubbers since 2015.

 The 1,000-foot Barker was scheduled to leave Bay Ship Saturday and the 800-foot Tregurtha is expected to leave June 20.

 Door County Advocate

 

Tour boat Kawartha Spirit arrives in Halifax

6/12 - Halifax, N.S. – The former Muskoka region tour boat Kawartha Spirit (ex Miss Muskoka) has arrived in Halifax to take up duties as a harbor tour boat. It joins the Ambassatours fleet that includes tug Theodore Too. Last year Ambassatours, a tour bus operator, purchased Murphy Sailing Tours and their fleet of five harbor tour boats.

Built by Hike Metal Products in 1964, Kawartha Spirit will replace Haligonian III, a similar vessel, also built by Hike, but in 1972. Haligonian III has spent its entire career in salt water and has been retired.

Kawartha Spirit left Stoney Lake, sailing down the Trent-Severn Waterway, across Lake Ontario through the New York State Canal system, then via New York to Halifax, hugging the coastline.

Mac Mackay

 

Port Reports – June 12

Port Inland, Mich. – Denny Dushane
The barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory were due on Saturday in the early afternoon to load. Also due Saturday was the Manitowoc in the late afternoon. They would get the dock following the departure of the James L. Kuber. Due in Sunday are the barge Pere Marquette 41 and the tug Undaunted in the late morning. Two vessels are due in for Monday early afternoon arrivals, with the barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann and the Manitowoc returning.

 Cedarville, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Joseph H. Thompson arrived on Friday in the morning to load. There are no vessels scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, however two vessels are expected on Monday, with the Wilfred Sykes due in the late afternoon followed by the John J. Boland in the late evening.

 Escanaba, Mich.
Joseph L. Block was loading Saturday evening.

 Alpena, Mich. – Ben & Chanda McClain
Algoway arrived at the Alpena Oil Dock around 2 a.m. on Friday. It tied up and unloaded a cargo of road salt. Algoway finished unloading and departed before 9 a.m. on a calm and beautiful morning. On Saturday, the tug Undaunted and barge Pere Marquette 41 arrived at Lafarge to unload. G.L Ostrander and barge Integrity is due into port early Sunday morning.

 Calcite, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Both Cason J. Callaway and John J. Boland loaded at Calcite's stone docks on Saturday. The Callaway, having received a change in orders, was diverted from Stoneport and loaded at the North Dock in Calcite and was giving an ETD of 6 p.m. The Boland loaded at the South Dock with an ETD of 8 p.m. There are no vessels scheduled for Sunday. Due in for Monday are the barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory, arriving during the evening for the South Dock. For Tuesday, two vessels are due in the morning. First will be the Calumet for the North and South docks followed later by American Mariner, also loading at both the North and South Docks.

 Toledo, Ohio – Denny Dushane
Algolake arrived on Friday afternoon to unload stone at the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock. It was still there unloading on Saturday morning. Vessels due at the Torco Dock include the Interlake Steamship 1,000 footer James R. Barker on Tuesday in the early evening. Also due at Torco are the barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory on June 26 in the early evening, and they are due to return on July 3 in the morning. Vessels due at the CSX Coal Dock included the Hon. James L. Oberstar on Tuesday in the late evening. Also due at CSX is the Evans Spirit on Wednesday during the late morning. Whitefish Bay is due at CSX on Thursday in the morning. Vessels in port included the saltwater vessel Redhead upriver loading grain. The cement tug/barge combo Petite Forte and St. Marys Cement were unloading at the St. Marys Cement Terminal. Tug Anglian Lady and a barge were also in port.

 Welland Canal – Bill Bird
Traffic in the canal Saturday included Algoma Guardian, bound for Thunder Bay, and Algoma Discovery, headed for Montreal.

 Hamilton, Ont. – Jens Juhl
The tug William Rest will soon be launched on a second career. Ports Toronto has sold the tug to Galcon Marine. The tug is currently high and dry on the blocks and chocks over at the Galcon yard located on the north end of Terminal 52 where it is undergoing an extensive overhaul.

 Erie, Pa. – Brian W.
The passenger ship Grande Mariner was in port on Saturday.

 Montreal, Que. – Rene´ Beauchamp
The tug VB Hispania will arrive early Sunday morning, docking at section 28 under the Jacques-Cartier Bridge. The scrapyard-bound Peter (ex-Peter R. Cresswell) is at section 29.

 

Algoma Navigator scrap tow update

 6/12 - A check on the website Tschudi Offshore Towage has the m/v Boulder/Algoma Navigator tow N.N.E. of the Azores and heading for the Straits of Gibraltar at 6 knots. With the current severe slump in the offshore oil industry, some owners are keeping their tugs employed towing scrapyard-bound vessels. This work may not be as lucrative as towing a jack-up oilrig but it pays the bills and keeps a highly skilled crew employed. The costly alternative is laying up the vessel creating negative cash flow and putting the crew on the beach. The m/v Bluster, the sister ship of the Boulder, has just completed towing a scrap tanker from Italy to Turkey.

Both the Boulder and the Bluster were built at Scheepswerf (shipyard) Waterhuizen J.Pattje,in the Netherlands in 1988. They were launched as the Maersk Lifter and Maersk Launcher. Each tug is powered by a 12,000 H.P. twin diesel plant developing a 132 ton bollard pull. In 2007 the Maersk Lifter was renamed Boulder and in 2008 the Maersk Launcher was renamed Bluster. The two tugs were managed by International Transport Contractors (I.T.C.) but back in 2003 this company was bought out by Norwegian ship owner Tschudi and Eitzen A/S (aksjeselskap=Ltd.) and this explains the DNV (det Norske Veritas) classification. Both tugs are homeported in Amsterdam and fly the Dutch flag.

 Jens Juhl

 

Save $5 - Reserve now for Engineer’s Day Soo Cruise

The annual freighter-chasing cruise on the St. Marys River is scheduled for Friday, June 24, 2016, as part of the annual Engineer’s Day Gathering in Sault Ste. Marie. The cruise will be three (3) hours and we will travel thru both the U.S. and Canadian Locks, and do our best to find photo opportunities for any vessel traffic in the river.

Reservations are a must as we are limiting the group to 100 persons. Do not wait until you get to the Soo to join the group on this trip. Reservations must be received by Friday, June 17 to save $5.00. See the Gathering Page for details.

 

Seaway salties renamed

6/12 - The following saltwater vessels have been renamed, with each having made visits to the Great Lakes/Seaway system. Apollon, which first came inland with that name in 2006 and last visited as recently as 2015, is now the Bos Angel of St. Vincent and Grenadines registry. This vessel was also known as the Spring Laker from 1996 to 2006, and first came inland with that name in 1997.

 Sunrose E, which first came inland in 2015 on its only visit with that name, is now the MBC Rose of Italy. It carried the name Sunrose E from 2011 until April 2016. Clipper Magdalena, familiar to many as the Magdalena Green, is now Thorco Majanne of Gibraltar registry. Chemtrans Alster, a tanker which first came inland as such in 2010 and last visited in 2013, is now the Woo Chan of South Korea. It carried the name Chemtrans Alster from 2008 until April 2014, and carried the name Green Oak as well, however it did not return inland with that name.

 Denny Dushane

 

Updates -  June 12

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 12

On 12 June 1898, SAKIE SHEPHERD (wooden propeller freighter, 100 foot, 189 gross tons, built in 1883, at Huron, Ohio) burned while at the dock in Courtright, Ontario. The fire was discovered at 1:00 a.m. and the crew just had time to escape. The schooner YOUNG AMERICA also caught fire and had damage done to her stern. The SHEPHERD was towed to Detroit where she was rebuilt and lasted until 1903, when she sank in Lake Huron.

On 12 June 1900, the UNIQUE (wooden propeller, 163 foot, 381 gross tons, built in 1894, at Marine City, Michigan) was sold at public auction at St. Clair, Michigan to satisfy a mortgage. W. J. Laidlaw of Ogdensburg, New York purchased her for $20,000 for the Rapid Transit Co. to run between Ogdensburg and Kingston, Ontario. In 1904, her upper cabins were removed and she was rebuilt as a yacht. She lasted until 1915, when she burned in New York City harbor.

"STUBBY", the bow and stern sections of the STEWART J. CORT welded together, passed Port Colborne, Ontario on June 12, 1970, bound for Erie, Pennsylvania under her own power. STUBBY's bow and stern sections were later separated at Erie Marine, Inc., a Div. of Litton, and joined to the 816 foot hull mid-body.

The NANTICOKE (Hull#218) departed Collingwood, Ontario in 1980, beginning her maiden voyage for Canada Steamship Lines Ltd.

In 1959, the BENSON FORD of 1924 ran aground in the Amherstburg Channel on her upbound trip with coal for the Rouge Plant. After five days of lightering and with tug assistance, she was freed. Damage amounted to 41 bottom plates, which took 30 days to repair.

On 12 June 1832, the wooden schooner GUERRIER was sailing from Oswego, New York for Detroit when she capsized in a squall off Bar Point on Lake Erie. Captain Pember and the crew and most of the passengers made it to the Canadian shore, but one family was trapped in the cabin. The husband was able to keep his head above water in the upside down cabin, but through the night, one by one, his four children and then his wife slipped from his grasp and perished. The following day, Capt. Stanard took his steamer NIAGARA to the wreck and rescued the man.

On 12 June 1900, the steel tow barge BRYN MAWR (Hull#41) was launched at South Chicago, Illinois by the Chicago Ship Building Co., for the Pittsburgh Steamship Company.

The wooden propeller freighter MILWAUKEE (264 foot, 1,770 gross tons) was launched at Quayle & Sons yard in Cleveland, Ohio on 12 June 1879, for the Western Transportation Company of Buffalo, New York. She had supporting arches above decks. In 1902, she was renamed YONKERS and rebuilt as a barge in 1911. She lasted until 1917-1918 when she stranded, then burned.

1897 – I.W. NICHOLAS (ii) stranded at Point Aux Pins in fog and was released two days later. The ship needed drydocking for repairs.

1904 – The sidewheel passenger ship CANADA sank on her side off Sorel after a collision with the CAPE BRETON. Five of the 110 on board perished. The ship was refloated and rebuilt at Sorel in 1905 as ST. IRENEE which later became part of the C.S.L. Fleet.

1919 – GERMAN was cut in two to leave the Great Lakes in 1918 and renamed b) YANKEE. It sank after a collision with the Italian steamer ARGENTIA off Fire Island, NY, while enroute from Norfolk, VA to Boston MA with coal. The hull has been found and is in two pieces on the ocean floor.

1977 – The VERA CRUZ first came to the Great Lakes in 1964 as a 10-year old Liberian flag freighter. It foundered in the Arabian Sea as c) BUKOM ISLAND on June 12, 1974, during a cyclone. The ship was enroute from Umm Said, Qatar, to Singapore with a cargo of bagged fertilizer and seven lives were lost.

1978 – YELLOWSTONE had been built as the C-4 troop carrier MARINE PERCH in 1944. After being laid up in the Reserve Fleet, it was rebuilt as a bulk carrier and renamed at Tampa in 1965. The ship was downbound in the Seaway with grain from Duluth to North Africa in May 1978 and sank after a collision in fog with the IBN BATOUTA on June 12, 1978. YELLOWSTONE was taken in tow but went down June 13 about 14 miles south of Gibraltar. Five lives were lost.

1993 – The deep-sea tug VORTICE was abandoned after fire broke out near the Canary Islands, while on a voyage from Bari, Italy, to Veracruz, Mexico. The vessel was laid up, unrepaired, and then towed to Canada for McKeil Marine. It received partial repairs but was sold and left the lakes for additional work. It returned inland as e) NORFOLK in 2005 and now serves Lafarge North America Inc. as f) SAMUEL DE CHAMPLAIN.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Update on Herbert C. Jackson fire

6/11 –Superior WI - There was a small fire in the starboard side of the conveyorman workshop on the M/V Herbert C. Jackson on Tuesday afternoon at Fraser Shipyards. Thankfully no one was injured and both Fraser Shipyards and the Superior Fire Department promptly responded and extinguished the fire in relatively quick order. This incident will not affect the repowering project currently underway on the 690-foot Jackson.

The Interlake Steamship Co.

 

Shippers dragged down by slumps in grain, iron ore and coal

 6/11 - Toronto, Ont. – Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway shipments of grain, iron ore and coal slumped deeper this year, but cement and other construction materials are seeing a rebound after a mild winter that gave an early start to North American construction projects.

 The amount of industrial goods also surged in the first two months of the shipping season, as aluminum from Sept-Îles destined for automotive plants in New York, Ohio and Detroit lifted general cargo volumes by 64 per cent, the Chamber of Marine Commerce said on Thursday.

 “Businesses are responding to demand from the U.S. automotive and construction industries,” said Terence Bowles, head of the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp.

 However, the shipping companies, mines and mills that trade on the 3,700-kilometre waterway cannot dodge the global slump in demand and prices for the dry bulk commodities that are the main cargo: iron ore, coal and grain.

Overall cargo volumes fell by 4 per cent, year-over-year, since the route opened on March 21, driven by a decline in steel and iron ore. Tonnage fell by 9 per cent in 2015, led by a 40-per-cent plunge in coal shipments.

A surplus of ships and slowing demand for industrial commodities in an economic slowdown have sent vessel rates plunging on the Seaway and global waters in the past year. Ship owners have responded by scrapping or selling vessels earlier than planned, and by merging or forming alliances with rivals to stay afloat.

French shipping giant CMA CGM recently joined the Ocean Alliance with China’s Cosco Group, Hong Kong’s Evergreen Line and Taiwan’s Orient Overseas Container Line. CMA is also pushing ahead with an attempted $2.4-billion (U.S.) takeover of Singapore’s Neptune Orient Lines. The chief executive officer of Neptune Orient said in a published report this week the carrier’s high costs and smaller size make it impossible to survive alone.

Last year, five of the world’s largest bulk shipping companies formed a group that pools their fleets of large carriers.

On the Great Lakes, Algoma Central and Canada Steamship Lines are scrapping older ships and buying vessels that are more fuel-efficient and have self-unloading cargo holds amid a slump in the short-sea shipping business in North America. Still, there are some positive signs.

Two major shipments of wind turbines, made by Enercon and Siemens at their respective plants in Southern Ontario, left Lake Ontario ports for Nova Scotia and overseas markets. And St. Marys Cement in Bowmanville, Ont., has been supplying its plants in Ohio and Detroit, which have seen a rise in demand from builders of housing and commercial buildings.

Better demand for cement, drywall material, gypsum and road salt lifted shipments of dry bulk cargo by 5 per cent.

Dry bulk cargo shipments, in the same period, totaled 1.9 million tonnes, up 5 per cent, with strong performances from cement, road salt and gypsum.

“The milder winter has led to a jump-start to the construction season. Last year, construction activity in the U.S. Great Lakes grew as the economy improved and, so far, we’re seeing that continue,” said Jim Reznik, logistics director for St. Marys owner Votorantim Cimentos. “With the Seaway opening earlier, we have been able to get extra vessel loads out to serve our customers.”

Globe & Mail

 

Port Reports June 11

 St. Marys River
There has been no change in the status of the Roger Blough, which is still anchored in Waiska Bay with the tug Candace Elise alongside. The saltie Greenwing was upbound in the afternoon Friday, while Atlantic Huron was downbound.

Cedarville, Mich.
Joseph H. Thompson loaded Friday and was headed down Lake Huron by evening.

 Calcite, Mich. – Denny Dushane
The barge Lakes Contender and tug Ken Boothe Sr. loaded at the South Dock on Friday and were expected to depart at 7 p.m. Also due on Friday was the Great Republic in the late morning, loading at the North Dock. H. Lee White is due on Saturday during the early morning for the South Dock, and the Great Republic returns on Sunday in the early evening for the North Dock.

 Stoneport, Mich. – Denny Dushane
John J. Boland loaded on Friday and was expected to depart around 11 a.m. Next in line was the barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann. Also due Friday was the Arthur M. Anderson in the late evening to load. Expected to arrive on Saturday is the Cason J. Callaway during the early morning. Two vessels are due in Sunday, with the first being the barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore during the early morning. Manitoulin is expected to make a rare visit on Sunday in the late afternoon. Two more vessels are due on Monday, Kaye E. Barker during the late afternoon followed by Joseph H. Thompson in the early evening.

 Goderich, Ont.
Algoway arrived Friday afternoon to load salt. Federal Beaufort remains in port.

Port Huron, Mich.
Friday afternoon downbound traffic included Walter J. McCarthy Jr., Federal Yukon and the tug Anglian Lady with her barge. The Reinauer tug Dylan Cooper and her barge, H. Lee White and Cason J. Callaway were all upbound in the afternoon.     Hon. James L. Oberstar was upbound in the late evening, followed by the tanker Sten Baltic, which was headed for Sarnia. The saltwater tanker Harbour Fashion was tied up on the Sarnia side during the day, but was headed downbound in the early evening.

Toledo, Ohio – Denny Dushane
Algolake was expected at the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock on Friday in the late afternoon to unload a stone cargo. Expected at the CSX coal dock on Friday was the John D. Leitch in the late evening. Also due at CSX was the Hon. James L. Oberstar on Tuesday during the late evening. Evans Spirit is  due at CSX on Wednesday in the early morning. Due at the Torco Dock is the James R. Barker on Tuesday in the early evening. The barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory are due at Torco on June 26 in the late morning.

Lorain, Ohio – Phil Leon
Saginaw came in Thursday night about 22:30 and went to dock #3. She left Friday morning at 05:50.

 

New McKeil vessel, others, now under Canadian flag

 McKeil Workboats Ltd registered its newest acquisition, Arklow Willow, in Hamilton on June 9, assigned Official Number 839979. The general cargo ship was built in 2004 by Kyokuya Chofu in Shimonoseki, Japan, and measures 8935 gross tons, 13,873 deadweight tonnes.

 Svitzer Canada Ltd registered their latest tug, Svitzer Montreal, in Halifax, June 10. The tug was built by East Isle Shipyard in Georgetown, Prince Edward Island in 2004 as Caucedo for Remolcadores Dominicanos of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. It was acquired by Svitzer earlier this year and renamed Svitzer Caucedo for its delivery trip to Halifax, where it arrived May 27. Following refit, the 5,000 bhp azimuthing stern drive tug will be assigned to Montreal where it will cover for Svitzer Nerthus and Svitzer Njal when they go to work in Baffin Island for the summer.

 Coastal Shipping, part of the Woodward Group of Newfoundland, registered the tanker Sten Fjord in St. John's on May 24. The 8,882 gross tons, 13,670 deadweight ship was built as Falcon by Jianyang Shipyard in Shanghai in 2004 and renamed Sten Fjord in 2009.

 Zelada Desgagnes is due in Halifax June 11, where it is expected to return to Canadian flag after a bareboat charter under the Barbados flag. As with other Desgagnes ships, it trades worldwide when not working to supply northern outposts during the summer months.

 Mac Mackay

 

Annual St. Clair Marine Mart today

6/11 - The 35th Annual Marine Memorabilia Market, sponsored by the Lake Huron Lore Marine Historical Society, will be held Saturday, June 11, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Riverview Plaza Mall in downtown St. Clair, Mich. More than 30 vendors will be offering items that are related exclusively to Great Lakes shipping. The market will have available for sale historical artifacts, artwork, books, photographs, advertising, memorabilia and more. It is one of only a few such annual events in the region. Admission is free.

 

Pace quickens on dock rehab in Duluth

6-11 – Duluth, Minn. – Started in the spring of 2015, the nearly $18 million rehabilitation of Dock C and D in the Superior Bay reached a fever pitch this week with contractors assembling the dock wall, the rail spur that will access the 26-acre dock and more.

"There were more interesting activities happening today than we've had any day since this thing started," said Jim Sharrow, director of port planning and resiliency with the Duluth Seaway Port Authority, on Wednesday. "It was much more than just your average day."

Concrete pours starting at 5 a.m. and running into the afternoon totaled 1,000 cubic yards as work continued on the dock's centerpiece — a 700-foot long and 60-foot wide heavy-lift dock surface that will be used to support heavy cargo transfers.

With four of six concrete pours now complete, major concrete work that began last winter with the pouring of the new roll-on/roll-off dock near Helberg Drive is expected to finish in about a month, Sharrow said.

The whole dock is 1,600 feet long and contractors from Lunda Construction of Black River Falls, Wis., continue to tie back the sheet pilings that make up the dock wall. Much of the length of dock is being anchored into the old foundation of the grain elevators. Where there is no foundation, a second steel-sheet piling wall has been installed for anchoring, Sharrow explained.

In the slip itself, Veit and Co., of Duluth, is in the process of performing the dredging that will make the dockside slip some 30 feet deep. Sharrow said dredging is 10 percent completed. All told, 62,000 cubic yards of material will be dredged from the slip. Some of the material will be used as sandy fill on the site, some will be used as soil on city projects and some of it will go to the construction industry.

Back on dock, earth movers from Northern Interstate Construction, of South Range, Wis., are making progress on ground work — filling and setting the final grade on the dock, which is expected to be used for storage of things such as wind power blades. There are fabrics and grids being layered near the top of the surface to reinforce the soil before a finishing layer of Class 5 gravel is overlaid, Sharrow explained.

Finally, the rail work is being conducted by Canadian Pacific Railway on side of Helberg Drive opposite from the dock. Last year, the Port Authority reached a dual-operations agreement with two railways, including BNSF. Canadian Pacific is busy installing the initial switch and first section of rail, before Port Authority contractors take it across Helberg Drive and into the dock.

The Port Authority, said spokesperson Adele Yorde, is not making any plans to receive cargoes in 2016 in case the dock is not ready to receive anything by October's scheduled completion.

The dock is expected to be ready for the 2017 shipping campaign — one Sharrow said "is setting up to be a busy year."

But with the shipping season extending into January, there is a never-say-never approach. Said Yorde, "We're always hoping for that one last shipment that might not be on the books yet."

Duluth News Tribune

 

Labor Secretary Perez visits Great Lakes Towing, Great Lakes Shipyard

6/11 – Cleveland, Ohio – U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez traveled to Cleveland on June 6, to meet with Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish, Chairman Ronald Rasmus of The Great Lakes Towing Company and members of the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Workforce Investment Board to discuss the crucial role that sector strategic partnerships play in equipping workers with the skills they need to compete in today’s labor market.

“Sector strategies” are employer-driven partnerships of industry, education and training, and other stakeholders that focus on the workforce needs of key industries in a regional labor market.

Perez and Budish toured Great Lakes Shipyard – a full-service shipyard for new vessel construction, ship maintenance and repairs, and custom fabrication – that used its sector partnerships to grow their business and train their workers.

During the visit, Perez announced the availability of approximately $100 million in America’s Promise Job-Driven Grants to develop and grow regional partnerships between workforce agencies, education and training providers and employers in a variety of industries such as information technology, healthcare, advanced manufacturing, financial services and educational services.

Rasmus shared details on the Workforce Pipeline that The Great Lakes Towing Company and Great Lakes Shipyard created to provide internship and on-the-job training opportunities for local students at three Cleveland schools: Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C), Max S. Hayes High School and Saint Martin de Porres High School.

Rasmus believes that these scholastic partnerships support skilled trades by continuing their legacy through Cleveland’s future employees. “As a Cleveland business with 116 years of expertise in the maritime industry, The Towing Company has always known, the significance of training and developing our youth in preparation for real-world, good paying careers in the trades. Exposing students to the shipyard and teaching them interpersonal skills, not only increases their growth but allows us to create a talent pool for us to tap into as we expand our manufacturing business.” 

Great Lakes Towing Co.

 

Updates -  June 11

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 11

TASHMOO (steel side-wheel excursion steamer, 308 foot, 1,344 gross tons, built in 1900, at Wyandotte, Michigan) entered regular service for the White Star Line at Detroit, Michigan, on 11 June 1900.

On 11 June 1903, HORACE H. BADGER (wooden 3-mast schooner, 129 foot, 263 gross tons, built in 1867, at Conneaut, Ohio as a 2-mast schooner, formerly KATE GILLETT) was carrying coal in a storm on Lake Erie. She was driven onto the breakwater at Cleveland, Ohio and broke up in the storm waves. The crew of seven was rescued by the Life Saving Service. This vessel had been wrecked twice before; once at Cross Village, Michigan, in 1895, and again near Alpena, Michigan in 1896.

ATLANTIC SUPERIOR (Hull#222) was float-launched at Thunder Bay, Ontario, by Port Arthur Ship Building Co. Ltd., in 1982, for Federal Commerce & Navigation Ltd., Montreal, Quebec (Canada Steamship Lines Ltd., mgr.), built for the Caribbean trade. MESABI MINER was christened at Duluth, Minnesota in 1977; she became the fourth thousand-foot bulk carrier on the Great Lakes and Interlake Steamship Co.'s second. CARL D. BRADLEY (Hull#718) cleared Lorain, Ohio, in her gray and white livery in 1917, on her maiden voyage light bound for Calcite, Michigan, to load limestone. She was the first Great Lakes commercial ship equipped with both Morse code telegraphy as well as ship-to-shore radio in 1922, which was standard on only 20 vessels by 1924. Renamed b.) JOHN G. MUNSON in 1927, c.) IRVIN L. CLYMER in 1951, she was scrapped at Duluth, Minnesota, in 1994-5.

June 11, 1981 - The BADGER steamed out of Ludington en route to Milwaukee under an MDOT subsidy that was approved earlier in March.

The propeller E. B. HALE was launched at Cleveland, Ohio, at the yard of Quayle & Sons on 11 June 1874. Her length was 217 foot keel, 227 foot overall. She was owned by Capt. Bradley, Mr. Thomas Quayle and Mr. Loomis, and she cost $100,000. The wooden rabbit J. S. RUBY was launched at Fair Haven, Michigan, on 11 June 1881. Her dimensions were 106 feet 6 inches x 21 feet x 7 feet. She was towed to Port Huron for the installation of her boiler and engine that were built by the Phoenix Iron Works. She lasted until burned to a total loss off Stag Island in the St. Clair River on November 9, 1891.

1872 – Fire broke out aboard the passenger steamer KINGSTON about 18 miles upstream after the ship had left Brockville for Toronto. The ship was beached and the superstructure was destroyed but there were only two casualties. The hull was rebuilt at Montreal and later sailed as BAVARIAN, ALGERIAN and CORNWALL before being scuttled in Lake Ontario about 1929.

1936 – AYCLIFFE HALL sank in fog shrouded off Long Point, Lake Erie after a collision with the EDWARD J. BERWIND. All 19 on board were rescued. After salvage efforts failed, the rigging was blown clear by explosives. The EDWARD J. BERWIND was repaired and last sailed as LAC STE. ANNE in 1982.

1942 – HAVTOR, a Norwegian freighter, first came to the Great Lakes in 1932 and returned as late as 1939. It was sunk by a German submarine enroute from Reykjavik, Iceland, to Pictou, Nova Scotia, and 6 of the crew were lost.

1950 – The Italian freighter MARIA PAOLINA G. had been built in Canada as FORT ISLAND in 1944. It was downbound from the Saguenay River when it struck the Canada Steamship Lines passenger steamer ST. LAWRENCE, which had turned to dock at Tadoussac. Injuries were reported by 25 people and 30 cabins were damaged aboard the CSL ship.

1978 – The hull of the former passenger steamer RAPIDS QUEEN arrived at Toronto under tow from Kingston to be sunk as a breakwall off for the Queen City Yacht Club. It is still there.

1993 – PITRIA SKY first visited the Great Lakes in 1978. It departed Singapore for Shantou in southeast China, as h) HAI HONG 3 on June 11, 1993, but went back out to sea on arrival to ride out a pending typhoon. The ship was never seen again and it disappeared with all hands.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

 

 Cliffs says United Taconite restart has been moved up two months

 6/10 – Duluth, Minn. – Cliffs Natural Resources announced Thursday that it is moving up the reopening of United Taconite from October to August.

Nearly 450 employees have been on layoff from United Taconite's mine in Eveleth and processing plant in Forbes for nearly one year, with the closure coming amid a sagging domestic steel industry in 2015.

But last week Cliffs announced that United would reopen thanks to a 10-year deal to supply steelmaker ArcelorMittal USA with taconite pellets.

 The reopening had been slated for October, but on Thursday Cliffs announced in a news release that it would be moved up two months "due to additional business recently contracted with U.S. Steel Canada to supply the majority of their iron ore pellet requirements for the third and the fourth quarters of 2016."

 "The vast majority of the steel companies in North America are currently enjoying stronger order books, and their demand for high quality iron ore pellets from a reliable supplier is increasing. With that, Cliffs' business continues to gain very positive momentum, with the improvement of the existing business with our long-established clients and the addition of new ones," Cliffs CEO Lourenco Goncalves said in a news release. "We are very pleased to announce an increase of our pellet supply to U.S. Steel Canada, who became a new Cliffs client in 2016. ... I am happy to bring our entire UTAC team back to work a lot earlier than previously announced last week."

 Duluth News Tribune

 

U.S. ports gear up for 2016 shipping season

6/10 – Washington, D.C. – The St. Lawrence Seaway opened two weeks earlier this shipping season and U.S. ports took advantage of the warm weather to move cargo for their customers.

 “During the first nine weeks of the 2016 navigation season, ships arrived from 30 countries and delivered high value cargo that supported a wide range of manufacturing,” said Betty Sutton, Administrator of the U.S. Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation.

 “Our longshoremen worked diligently to offload cargo ships delivering transformers bound for electric power companies, tanks for beer brewing companies, windmills for power generation, dockside cranes for offloading ships, and kaolin for the manufacturing of paper.  With the 58th navigation season well underway, we are excited about the strong mix of cargoes that have moved through the U.S. Seaway locks.”

 “The array of salties at our Clure Terminal this spring reflects the versatility and vitality of the Great Lakes-Seaway System,” added Vanta Coda, executive director of the Duluth Seaway Port Authority.

 “We’ve already handled heavy-lift oil and gas refinery equipment for a project in Montana; a load of kaolin clay from Brazil to supply Minnesota paper mills; and a shipment of 62-meter (203-foot) wind turbine blades for a wind energy project in Iowa. Two additional ships are en route with tower sections and nacelles and hubs for that same project. Making these vital connections to the heartland of North America is precisely why we market our services as Duluth Cargo Connect.”

There was positive news at other ports as well, including the Port of Oswego.

“During the month of May the Port of Oswego received three shipments of aluminum totaling 9,079 metric tons, which was delivered to us on the Alouette Spirit and Evans Spirit,” said Zelko Kirincich, executive director and CEO of the Port.

 “The Evans Spirit is a shallow-draft vessel with two cargo holds that have a pass-pass loading and discharge arrangement. This is the first time the Evans Spirit, has been to the port with its new loading and discharge system.  We have a year-to-date total of 19,507 metric tons of aluminum, which an increase of 86 percent over this time last year. In addition to the aluminum shipments, we have received 8,802 metric tons of potash from Thunder Bay and 11,400 metric tons of corn from Hamilton.  We are excited to have had a very busy start to the shipping season and are looking forward to an even busier year ahead with both inbound and outbound cargo.” 

 “May was a busy month at the Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor with 15 international ships,” said Port Director Rick Heimann. “Shipments included European beer fermentation tanks as well as organic corn and soybeans to be used for specialty animal feeds in U.S. farms. Since 2014, the port has handled over 80 beer tanks for craft breweries around the Midwest with most of those going to Lagunitas Brewing Co. in Chicago.”

 “Steel has arrived at a steady pace for regional manufacturers, matching last year’s strong volumes” said Paul Vornholt, port director of the Port of Milwaukee. “The first part of the 2016 shipping season has also brought steady saltie traffic to the largest grain silos at the port.”

 “The Port of Cleveland is currently lagging slightly behind 2015 tonnage numbers at the start of our season for our traditional non-containerized steel business line,” stated David Gutheil, vice president maritime and logistics.  “We are optimistic that our numbers will increase moving into the summer months and that the growth we have experienced since 2009 will continue.  The Cleveland-Europe Express continues to attract new customers, as evidenced by our recent partnership announcement with Lubrizol for export container business to Europe.  We also moved our first cargo to the country of Georgia, a 100-ton transformer from Siemens Energy in Mt. Vernon, Ohio. 

 “In order to keep with our growing demand for cargo, the port and our terminal operators continue to invest in infrastructure and equipment.  The port commissioned two new Liebherr 280 mobile harbor cranes in May, which will significantly increase the speed and efficiency of our operation.  Our new 21,000 square foot warehouse will be ready for use in late June, and will enable us to provide transloading services and additional storage capacity.  We are also pleased that Federal Marine Terminals has ordered a 2016 Kobelco Hydraulic Crawler Crane with 275-ton capacity.  The new crane is expected to arrive at the Port in September and will enhance their ability to handle large and complex project cargoes.”

 The St. Lawrence Seaway reported that year-to-date cargo shipments for the period March 21 to May 31 were 6.5 million metric tons, down 4.15 percent over the same period in 2015.  The dry bulk category was up nearly 5 percent with salt, potash and gypsum in the positive column at 25, 35, and 108 percent respectively. Iron ore was down 9 percent; coal was down almost 1 percent. While steel products were down 23 percent, other general cargo was up 113 percent.

 The Great Lakes Seaway Partnership

 

Cruise ship Pearl Mist makes port call at Muskegon

 6/10 – Muskegon, Mich. – A cruise ship's return to what locals call Port City was the reward for a heavy investment and months of planning.

Pearl Mist, a 108-suite ocean-going cruise ship, pulled into the Muskegon Channel from Lake Michigan about 7:30 a.m. Thursday, June 9. The ship was greeted by a sheriff's safety patrol boat, a barbershop quartet, a group of local officials.

"We at the county are very excited for what opportunities this provides for Muskegon to be able to show off what we have here in Muskegon, and hopefully to be able to entice these visitors to come back and spend some more time here," said Muskegon County Board of Commissioners Chairman Terry Sabo.

During the ship's first visit in September 2015 – an unscheduled stop that reportedly took place because there wasn't docking room in nearby Holland – some locals seemed skeptical of the cruise ship's return. Commenters on MLive.com Muskegon Chronicle voiced concerns about there not being enough to do in Downtown Muskegon and the city's ability to attract tourists.

 But fast forward 10 months, and Muskegon has worked out the details. Pearl Seas Cruises has 10 total visits planned to the city for 2016.

 Last year, the vessel drew up at the Mart Dock, an industrial facility. This year, officials invested funds into existing infrastructure at Heritage Landing, a park and outdoor event venue owned by Muskegon County at the east side of inland lake.

 "Through some grants, we've put in about $350,000 worth of work here at the Heritage Landing to make sure the cruise ships could dock here," Sabo said. The work includes new section of dock, built for $243,000. The cruise ship's gangplank rested on Thursday where the concrete had been poured a few weeks ago.

 Law enforcement headed up by the Muskegon County Sheriff's Marine division developed a security plan approved by the Coast Guard. On Thursday, the landing area was fenced off to the public with non-threatening plastic purple fences, and sheriff's boat patrolled the harbor.

 In the scrambling visit last fall, Muskegon was just an alternative visit to Holland. During the interim, the Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Muskegon Now, and Muskegon Museums put together a menu activities, including "The Art of Food" at the Muskegon Museum of Art with cheese, chocolate and beer tasting. A trolley tour of downtown Muskegon was also offered, as was a shuttle service to the beach and U.S.S. Silversides Submarine Museum.

 On Thursday, tourists could take two excursions – the preplanned trip to Holland for the morning, and one in Muskegon during the afternoon.

Tourism is just one part of the community's efforts to develop Muskegon Lake as a multi-use port. The county's port advisory committee has involved business and private interests in an effort to increase commercial shipping through the port.

"I think one of the most important elements of this type of project is, this really is an expansion of our harbor capabilities," said Muskegon Mayor Stephen Gawron. "This will be able to showcase what a great port we do have here in Muskegon, and return us once again to being Muskegon, the Port City.

"Beyond that," he added, "I think it's an excellent opportunity to be able to showcase greater Muskegon, the county of Muskegon, and West Michigan overall by bringing in these new visitors and new friends to the area."

 Muskegon Chronicle

 

Port Reports - June 10

St. Marys River
The Ashton Marine tug Candace Elise was still alongside the anchored Roger Blough on Thursday. There has been no announcement regarding the eventual movement of the Blough to Bay Shipbuilding Co. Now that the bad weather of earlier this week has cleared, divers have been inspecting underwater damage to the ship’s bow. Leonard M and her barge, as well as Michipicoten, were at Essar Steel on Thursday. Thunder Bay, Edwin H. Gott and Federal Yukon were downbound in the late afternoon. Presque Isle was upbound at Nine Mile at 10 p.m. The Roen tug John Asher and her barges were outbound at DeTour in the late afternoon and were westbound in the Straits in the late evening.

 Brevort, Mich.
Mississagi was loading sand on Thursday. She left and headed eastbound in the early evening.

Escanaba, Mich.
Sam Laud was loading on Thursday night.

Port Inland, Mich.
Great Republic arrived at Port Inland on Wednesday during the morning. Wilfred Sykes arrived on Thursday during the afternoon. There are no vessels scheduled for Friday, however three vessels are expected Saturday. Due in first are the barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory during the lunch hour. Also due Saturday are the barge Pere Marquette 41 and tug Undaunted, arriving during the early evening. Manitowoc is also due on Saturday in the early evening. Due Sunday are the barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann in the early evening.

 Cedarville, Mich.
The barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore were expected Thursday in the early evening. Due Friday morning is the Joseph H. Thompson. There are no vessels scheduled for Saturday and Sunday. Due Monday is the Wilfred Sykes, arriving during the early afternoon. John J. Boland is also due on Monday in the early evening, and Arthur M. Anderson is expected to arrive on Monday in the late evening.

Milwaukee, Wis. – Alan
G.L. Ostrander/Integrity sailed from Milwaukee at 0642 CDT for Chicago Thursday. The tug John Marshall with two barges is at the southwest of the inner basin south of the grain elevators.  This vessel has been busy in the port taking aggregate from the piles near the Veolia plant and moving it down to the Oak Creek area. Finally, the saltie Iryda sailed about 8 p.m. Wednesday with Port Colborne listed on AIS as its destination.

Calcite, Mich.
Presque Isle made a rare visit to Calcite and loaded on Wednesday at the South Dock. They were still loading on Thursday and gave an ETD of 2:30 p.m. Two vessels are scheduled for arrivals on Friday, the first one being the barge Lakes Contender and tug Ken Boothe Sr. in the early morning for the South Dock. Great Republic is also due on Friday in the late morning for the North Dock to load. Due Saturday is the H. Lee White in the early morning for the South Dock. Great Republic returns on Sunday during the early evening for the North Dock.

Stoneport, Mich.
Cason J. Callaway loaded on Wednesday and was due to depart around 6 p.m. On Thursday, the John J. Boland loaded and was also due to leave at 6 p.m. Three other vessels were due Thursday, the first being the barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann at noon. Also due in during the mid-afternoon was the Joseph H. Thompson, which would be anchoring until the Pathfinder's departure. The barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore were also expected on Thursday during the late evening. They would be getting the dock after the Joseph H. Thompson departs. Due in Friday during the late morning is the Cason J. Callaway.

Toledo, Ohio
Manitowoc was due at the CSX coal dock on Wednesday to load. Also due at CSX is the John D. Leitch on Friday during the late evening. Evans Spirit, formerly Spavalda, is also due at CSX to load on Tuesday in the early evening. Hon. James L. Oberstar is due at CSX on Tuesday in the late evening. Expected at the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock is the Algolake on Friday to unload stone in the late afternoon. Vessels scheduled to arrive at the Torco Dock include the barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory on Thursday in the late afternoon to unload. Also due at Torco is the Hon. James L. Oberstar on Tuesday, arriving in the early morning. Expected also on Tuesday at Torco is the Interlake Steamship 1,000-footer James R. Barker in the early evening. Of note, this will be the Barker's first trip from lay-up in 2016 after receiving new gas exhaust scrubbers at Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay this winter.

 Lorain, Ohio – Phil Leon
Manitoulin arrived about 11:10 a.m. Thursday and went to dock #1 to unload stone. She left the harbor at 15:30.

 

U.S. manufacturing and construction give Seaway shipping solid start

6/10 – Demand for raw materials from the U.S. manufacturing and construction sectors has kept St. Lawrence Seaway cargo shipments at a solid pace, despite tough economic conditions for some commodities.

 “So far, we’re encouraged. Seaway shipping is holding its own considering global pricing on commodities such as iron ore. The Seaway benefits from the cross-border trade of raw materials like aluminum and cement which is feeding American automotive manufacturing and construction activity,” said Chamber of Marine Commerce President Stephen Brooks.

Across the board, total Seaway year-to-date shipments (March 21 to May 31) reached 6.5 million metric tons, down 4 percent (282,000 metric tons) compared to the same period last year. This decrease is largely due to tonnage decreases in iron ore and imported steel.

 But there were a number of positive cargo categories during March 21 – May 31, compared to the same period in 2015.

Domestic general cargo shipments were up 64 percent, with aluminum ingots (for car and truck manufacturing) shipped by McKeil Marine from the Aluminerie Alouette plant in Sept-Iles, Quebec to Oswego, NY, Detroit, Michigan and Toledo, Ohio.

Dry bulk cargo shipments totaled 1.9 million metric tons – up five percent – with strong performances from cement, road salt and gypsum.  The Port of Green Bay, for example, saw a significant uptick of road salt imports from both U.S. and Canadian mines.

“Year-to-date domestic salt shipments are up 135 percent and foreign salt is up 328 percent. While these rises are significant, that may be just a matter of timing,” said Dean Haen, director of the Port of Green Bay.

 St. Marys Cement, part of Votorantim Cimentos, transports cement and/or clinker from its Ontario plant to its facilities in Cleveland, Toledo and Detroit for residential and commercial construction projects.

“The milder winter has led to a quick jumpstart to the construction season,” Jim Reznik, Director of Logistics, North America for Votorantim Cimentos. “Last year, construction activity in the U.S. Great Lakes grew as the economy improved and, so far, we’re seeing that continue. With the Seaway opening earlier, we have been able to get extra vessel loads out to serve our customers.”

Shipments at the Port of Cleveland’s bulk terminals, including cement and iron ore, are up 15 percent this season compared to the same period last year.  In May Siemens exported a gas turbine weighing close to 100,000 metric tons via the port to the country of Georgia. Specialty chemicals business Lubrizol Corp. of Wickliffe also announced it will ship containerized products from its plants in Avon Lake and Painesville through the port to Europe.

 “The city has had a spate of new roadworks and other construction activity leading up to the U.S. Republican convention this July, which has led to more demand for cement and construction materials,” said Will Friedman, president and CEO of the Port of Cleveland.

“The port also continues to be a gateway for manufacturing exports, with over-sized machinery and containers regularly leaving our terminals.  Our Cleveland-Europe Express has been coming in every 10 days now to meet the demand and we are expecting a major uptick in international vessels in July and August,” Friedman added.

Chamber of Marine Commerce

 

Saginaw River to receive nearly $3 million for dredging shipping channel

6/10 – Saginaw, Mich. – The Saginaw River will receive more than $3 million in dredging his year, according to Saginaw County officials.

A technicality nearly stalled the project, important to keep the shipping channel open for freighters, but the Saginaw County Board of Commissioners made the decision that was needed to move it forward Monday, June 6.

The situation was explained to commissioners Monday by county attorney Bill Smith and Jim Koski, a former county public works commissioner and now a consultant for the Saginaw River Alliance, a group that advocates for commercial shipping interests along the river.

 Smith told commissioners that questions were raised about whether a longstanding agreement between the county and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had all the proper documents.

 "They have the rights under the current agreement, in my opinion," Smith said. "They felt there was one railroad right-of-way that was not specified to their satisfaction."

 The Corps of Engineers, which coordinates the dredging work, asked that the proper documents be provided before the project moves forward, Smith said.

 He said the Corps of Engineers reported they were missing a "right of entry" agreement that would make clear that dredging crews have permission to access an easement that provides access to the Dredged Material Disposal Facility, or DMDF. The facility, located along Melbourne Road at the Saginaw-Bay county line, was created to dispose of dredging spoils from the Saginaw River.

Koski said this year's dredging will cost more than $3 million, significantly more than in the past. Its part of the reason he said it was so important to ensure a technicality did not stall the dredging.

Removing material from the shipping channel that runs down the river from the Saginaw Bay to Saginaw, Koski said, is crucial to maintaining the local shipping industry. Saginaw is the dropping-off and distribution point for road salt used on a large portion of the roads in the Lower Peninsula.

In addition to salt, the ports along the Saginaw River are important collection points for agricultural products such as fertilizer and construction products such as sand, asphalt, stone and concrete materials.

 Officials said they expect bids to be issued for the dredging work on Wednesday, June 8, and for the project to begin later in the season.

 M Live

 

Seaway salties renamed

 6/10 – The following saltwater vessels have been renamed. Each has made visits to the Great Lakes/Seaway system.

 Apollogracht, which first came inland in 2012 on its only visit with that name, is now Nikifor Begichev of Russia. The vessel carried the name Apollogracht from 1991 until 2016, and was renamed in April. The tanker Ardmore Calypso, which first came in 2011 and last visited as such in 2012, is now the BTS Calypso of Singapore. It also carried the name Samho Leader from 2010-11, before being renamed in June 2011. It did not come inland with that name.

Deltuva, which first came inland as such in 2014 on its only visit, is now the Pirita of Antigua and Barbuda registry. This vessel was once known as Clipper Falcon, a name it carried from 1994 until 2007. It first came inland as such in 2000 and was renamed Deltuva in August 2007.

 Flintereems, which first came inland in 2002 and last visited as such in 2008, is now Maxi of Antigua and Barbuda registry.  Flintermaas, which first came inland in 2001 and last visited as such in 2009, is now Felix of Antigua and Barbuda registry.

Harbour Loyalty, a tanker that first came inland as such in 2012 and last visited in 2013, is now Meya of Thailand registry. This is the former Clipper Loyalty, a name it held from 2007 until 2011. It first came inland as such in 2007 and last visited as such in 2011 before being renamed in November 2011. It carried the name Harbour Loyalty from 2011 until being renamed in 2016 in March.

 MCT Breithorn, a tanker that first came inland as such in 2014 on its only visit with that name, is now the SCT Breithorn of Switzerland. The vessel carried the name HLL Celtic briefly in 2007 before it was renamed in December of that year. It sailed as MCT Breithorn from 2007 until 2016 being renamed in March.

 Sichem Contester, a tanker that first came inland as such in 2012 on its first and only visit, is now Barbouni of Marshall Islands registry. It carried the name Sichem Contester from 2007 until November 2015.

 Sloman Dispatcher, which first came inland as such in 2012 on its only visit with that name, is now the Sun Dispatcher of Antigua and Barbuda registry. It carried the name Sloman Dispatcher from 2012 until 2016, and was renamed in April.

 Denny Dushane

 

Annual St. Clair Marine Mart is this Saturday

 6/10 - The 35th Annual Marine Memorabilia Market, sponsored by the Lake Huron Lore Marine Historical Society, will be held Saturday, June 11, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Riverview Plaza Mall in downtown St. Clair, Mich. More than 30 vendors will be offering items that are related exclusively to Great Lakes shipping. The market will have available for sale historical artifacts, artwork, books, photographs, advertising, memorabilia and more. It is one of only a few such annual events in the region. Admission is free.

 

Border patrol agencies conduct a blitz along the St. Lawrence River

6/10 – Ottawa, Ont. – Fifteen different law enforcement agencies from Canada and the U.S. have joined forces for a two-day border security blitz along the St. Lawrence River.

 Most visible was the NGCC Corporal Teather C.V. – a Canadian Coast Guard mid-shore patrol vessel of the joint Coast Guard/RCMP Marine Security Enforcement Team. It’s basically a 140-foot floating police station. “That’s our base of operations. We live on the ship,” says Cpl. Chris Scott of the RCMP. “This is our floating detachment, and then our so-called police car will be our RHIBs.” (Rigid-Hulled Inflatable Boats that can be launched from the ship.)

Other agencies involved in the blitz include the O.P.P., Cornwall Police, Canada Border Services, New York State Police, Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service, and several other agencies from both sides of the border. They are the agencies that routinely patrol Canada/U.S. waterways for signs of smuggling and other criminal activities.

In addition to heightening the visibility of the marine border patrols, the purpose of the blitz was also to remind the public of their role. Officers also went door-to-door along the shoreline asking people to report any signs of suspicious activity. "For example it could be somebody dropping off someone and boating right away off. It could be dropping off some luggage or duffle bags," says Cst. Jean Juneau of the Cornwall Regional Task Force.

 Anyone with anything to report can call the Cornwall Regional Task Force at at 1-613-937-2800 or 1-800-387-0020.

CTV Ottawa

 

Study finds Port of Cleveland producing $3.5 billion in annual economic value

 6/10 – Cleveland, Ohio – The Board of Directors of the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority (Port of Cleveland) met Thursday and received a report demonstrating significant growth of Cleveland Harbor’s economic impact in northeast Ohio. The report, authored by international maritime and logistics consulting firm Martin Associates, found that maritime commerce in Cleveland produces over $3.5 billion of total economic value annually for northeast Ohio.

The port’s maritime capacity also supports 20,000 jobs, including more than 4,000 direct jobs in the region, an increase of over 10 percent from the most recent economic impact study performed in 2011.

“The growth in economic impact from the Port of Cleveland is significant, especially given that it is located on the Great Lakes and not one of the traditional larger coastal ports,” said Dr. John Martin, founder of Martin Associates. “It suggests that the innovative work being done by the Port of Cleveland, including its international container service and its key infrastructure investments, are indeed generating new jobs”

“The new impact report makes it clear that the Port of Cleveland and maritime trade is truly an economic driver for Northeast Ohio,” said Will Friedman, Port President and CEO. “It also shows that our recent strategic investments in our marine terminals and services are paying off, growing the total value of maritime activity by $1 billion, almost a 30 percent increase, to $3.5 billion since our last analysis.” 

 Friedman cited the creation of the Cleveland-Europe Express (CEE), the Great Lakes’ first regular international container shipping service in 50 years, as a key factor in the port’s recent growth.

Port of Cleveland

 

Coast Guard crew responds to disabled vessel report, finds intoxicated operator

 6/10 – Pentwater, Mich. – A Coast Guard response to a report of a disabled vessel in Lake Michigan Wednesday evening just north of Pentwater, Mich., resulted in the operator being taken into custody by local police for boating under the influence when alcohol testing revealed his blood alcohol content was 0.194.

Shortly before 9:30 p.m., watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Lake Michigan in Milwaukee were notified via VHF-FM channel 16 of a disabled 20-foot vessel with two people aboard approximately 2 nautical miles north of the Pentwater pier. Communication with the vessel was spotty and there was no working cell phone aboard.

 Sector Lake Michigan directed a Station Ludington, Mich., boat crew to respond aboard a 25-foot response boat due to the communication issues and the vessel's proximity to shore. The crew arrived on scene shortly after and towed the vessel to Charlie's Marina.

 During the post-search-and-rescue boarding, the Coast Guard boarding officer suspected the operator might have been under the influence of alcohol. Officers from the Pentwater Police and Oceana County Sheriff's Department were contacted and once on scene, administered field sobriety tests. The operator failed four of the six tests.

 The Pentwater Police also administered a blood alcohol test on the operator, revealing a 0.194 BAC, more than double the legal limit of .08. The Oceana County Sheriff's Department took the operator into custody. The Coast Guard also cited the operator for operating a vessel without navigation lights and for not having flares or other visual distress signals.

 "Boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs is extremely reckless and a danger to everyone on the water," says Mike Baron, the recreational boating safety specialist for the Coast Guard 9th District in Cleveland. "The marine environment can be dangerous enough, without alcohol being involved."

 USCG

 

Seaway salties go for scrap

 6/10 – The following saltwater vessels have been sold for scrap, with each having made visits to the Great Lakes/Seaway system.

 Arwad Tower, which may be familiar as the Stefania I or as Astral Ocean, has been sold for scrap. This vessel was built in 1985 as Astral Ocean and it carried this name from 1985-1995 and first came inland with this name in 1986. It was renamed Sea Crystal in January 1995, and held this name from 1995 to 1997, however it never came inland with that name. In November 1997 the ship was renamed Stefania and it carried this name from 1997 to 1998, again never visiting with that name. It was renamed Stefania I in February 1998, and the vessel carried this name from 1998 to 2013. It first came inland as Stefania I in 1998 and last visited as such in 2012.

Dona Maria, also familiar as either Peonia or Scoter, has been scrapped. This vessel was built in 1983 as Peonia and it carried this name from 1983 to 2004. It first came inland as Peonia in 1985. The ship was renamed Scoter in February 2004 and carried this name from 2004 until 2007. It first came inland as the Scoter in 2004 and last visited as such in 2007 before being renamed in November 2007. The ship never returned inland.

 Blue Phoenix I, which first came inland in 2014 on its only visit with that name, has been scrapped. This vessel may be more familiar as Elise Oldendorff, a name it carried from 1998, when it was built, until 2007. The ship also came inland as such for the first time in 1998. It was renamed in December 2007 to the Pacific Grace and carried this name from 2007 until 2010. The ship did not return with this name and it was renamed in March 2010 to the Birch 2 and it held this name from 2010 until 2013. It did not return with this name, and in October 2013, it was renamed again to the Blue Phoenix and it carried this name for a brief period in 2014 before it was renamed Blue Phoenix I.

 Universe Forest has been scrapped as well. This vessel may be more familiar as Washington Rainbow II, a name it held from the time it was built in 1984 until 2006. The ship first came inland as such in 1998 before it was renamed Vinashin Iron in September 2006. It was renamed Universe Forest in 2011.

Denny Dushane

 

Updates -  June 10

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 10

On 10 June 1891, the tug AMERICAN EAGLE (wooden propeller tug, 46 gross tons, built in 1865, at Buffalo, New York) collided with the tug ALVA B (wooden propeller tug, 73 foot, 83 gross tons, built in 1890, at Buffalo, New York), which was not in motion, about 2.5 miles west of the Cleveland breakwater. The ALVA B hooked up a line and started towing the AMERICAN EAGLE in, but she sank a half-mile from the harbor entrance.

On 10 June 1891, CHARLES W. WETMORE (steel propeller whaleback freighter, 265 foot, 1,399 gross tons) left the shipyard at West Superior, Wisconsin, on her maiden voyage, bound for Liverpool, England with a cargo of grain. During her trip to the Atlantic Ocean, she shot the St. Lawrence River rapids. In Liverpool, she loaded machinery for Puget Sound. She only lasted until September 1892, when she stranded one mile north of Coos Bay, Oregon in fog. Bad weather stopped salvage attempts and the vessel was abandoned.

Bethlehem's LEWIS WILSON FOY loaded her first cargo June 10, 1978, at Burlington Northern #5, Superior, Wisconsin, with 57,952 tons of Hibbing taconite pellets for Burns Harbor, Indiana. Renamed b.) OGLEBAY NORTON in 1991.

In 1892, the keel for the ANN ARBOR NO 1 (Hull#55) was laid at Toledo, Ohio by Craig Shipbuilding Co.

The ANN ARBOR NO 4 was sold to the Michigan State Ferries in 1937, and renamed b.) CITY OF CHEBOYGAN.

On 10 June 1877, while lying at her dock at Detroit, the wooden side-wheeler R N RICE burned. The damage was estimated at $30,000. After this fire, she was rebuilt as a barge.

The propeller MONTGOMERY burned in the early morning hours of 10 June 1878. The fire started while she was laying at the dock in Point Edward, Ontario. The carferry INTERNATIONAL towed her out into the St. Clair River and cast her off to drift. Fortunately there were no injuries. She finally was beached opposite Batchelor's Mill on the Canadian side by the tugs CRUSADER and J H MARTIN. At 10:00 a.m., she was still burning. The MONTGOMERY was a steam barge of 1,104 tons, built in 1856, and owned by Capt. John Pridgeon. She was fully loaded with 29,000 bushels of corn, 320 barrels of flour, 540 barrels of corn meal, 200 bags of timothy seed and 111 bales of broom corn, besides other freight. The local papers claimed that the spectacle presented by the burning vessel as she drifted down the river was "grand and beautiful". The light was so brilliant that the entire city of Port Huron was illuminated and many people came out to watch. The following day, the wreck was towed to the American side of the river just below Avery's Mill. Whatever was left of her cargo was taken off and sold. Her engines and boiler were so badly warped and twisted from the intense heat that they were worthless except as scrap.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineer dredge MARKHAM (Hull#904) was launched in 1959, at Avondale, Louisiana, by Avondale Marine Ways Inc.

1940 – PAIPOONGE was cut in two and left the Great Lakes for saltwater service in 1919. It was registered in Latvia as d) KAUPO when it was sunk as a blockship at Dieppe, France, on this date in 1940. The hull was reported as refloated and scrapped in 1946-1947.

1942 – CONTINENT came to the Great Lakes in 1939-1940. The Newfoundland owned freighter was on a bareboat charter to the U.S. Army when it sank, following a collision with the American tanker BYRON D. BENSON, while enroute from New York to Bermuda.

1967 – The former Norwegian Seaway salty FRO was abandoned in sinking condition as c) WINSOME after a fire broke out in the cargo holds and spread throughout the ship on June 10, 1967. The vessel was enroute to Bangkok, Thailand, when it sank in the South China Sea.

1968 – JOHN T. HUTCHINSON suffered damage above the waterline when it was in a collision with the SUSANNE REITH at the head of Lake St. Clair. The latter, a West German salty, was on her first trip to the Great Lakes. This ship was eventually scrapped after arriving at Alang, India, as m) ALFA I on October 18, 2000.

1977 – RUTHIE MICHAELS came inland in 1970 and last reported in as d) EUROBULKER on June 10, 1977. The ship was enroute from Djibouti, to Bandar Shahpoir, Iran when it disappeared with the entire crew of 29. The ship is believed to have sunk off the coast of Oman perhaps as late as June 12.

1998 – The Greek flag bulk carrier OLYNTHIA first traveled the Seaway in 1978. It ran aground off Veraval, India, as d) OCEAN CRUISER in a tropical cyclone while bound for the United Arab Emirates. While released, it appears that the 26-year-old ship never sailed again and was broken up at Bharnvar, India, due to the damage.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody L. Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

DTE plans future shut down of St. Clair and 2 other power plants

 6/9 - St. Clair, Mich. – The St. Clair power plant will be shuttered between 2020 and 2023.

 The plant in East China Township went into service in 1953 and currently employs 280 people. The St. Clair plant's retirement was not the only one announced by the energy company Wednesday. It will also be retiring the River Rouge and Trenton plants within the next seven years.

 All three plants receive their coal by Great Lakes freighter.

 The plants together generated about 25 percent of electricity produced by the utility in 2015 or enough to power 900,000 homes, according to the company.

 "There will be no job layoff or separation from this announcement, the workers will be transitioned to other DTE facilities," said Brian Corbett, DTE spokesman.

 Earlier this year, DTE retired three coal generating units due to age and projected future costs. The utility says it will replace coal generating units with a mix of newer, more modern and cleaner sources of energy such as wind, natural gas and solar power.

 "The plants slated for closure served customers, communities and the state for decades, powering an era of rapid growth in Michigan, providing jobs for residents, and contributing significant revenue for municipal services and community activities," DTE said in a statement. "DTE is working with the communities impacted by the plant retirements, and will transition employees working at these plants into new roles at other facilities."

 Corbett said the Belle River plant will continue operations. "Belle River is our newest coal plant, so they will continue to operate beyond that 2023 time frame," he said. What will happen to the St. Clair plant property will be discussed with community leaders, Corbett said.

 Last fall the Marysville power plant along the St. Clair River was imploded. That coal-fire plant operated between 1922 and 2001. It was decommissioned in 2011.

 Port Huron Times Herald

 

Port Reports – June 9

 St. Marys River
The Heritage Marine tug Nancy J., which has been alongside the damaged Roger Blough in Waiska Bay, departed on Wednesday. Her AIS shows a destination of Duluth. Meanwhile, the tug Candace Elise, from the Muskegon, Mich.-based Ashton Marine, was upbound above the locks Wednesday evening headed for the Blough. There is no word when the Blough will leave for the shipyard at Sturgeon Bay. Stewart J. Cort and Lake Guardian were also upbound in the evening, while Virginiaborg, CSL Assiniboine, Hon. James L. Oberstar, Edgar B. Speer, the tug John R. Asher and two barges, Walter J. McCarthy Jr. and Algoma Discovery were downbound.

 Green Bay, Wis. – Scott Best
Tug Genesis Victory-barge GM6506 were loading ethanol-based gasoline at the US Oil VT Venture Dock in Green Bay Wednesday evening.

 Holland, Mich. – Al Walters
Mississagi came in with a load of stone for Verplank on Wednesday.

 Goderich, Ont.
The new Fednav saltie Federal Beaufort was at the grain elevator on Wednesday.

 Seaway
The New York-based Reinauer Transportation Co. tug Dylan Cooper, pushing the barge RTC 108, was upbound in the Seaway on Wednesday, and was near Kingston Thursday night. She is expected in Green Bay on June 12.

 

The Pride of Baltimore II set for Great Lakes voyage

6/9 - Baltimore, Md. – The Pride of Baltimore II is leaving the city for a four-month voyage along the East Coast to the Great Lakes.

The tall ship's mission is to promote Maryland's economic interests to ports around the U.S. and Canada. It also will participate in the Tall Ships Challenge Great Lakes 2016. That involves several sailing races throughout the summer.

The ship leaves Tuesday and is scheduled to return in early October.

Since being commissioned in 1988, the ship has traveled more than 250,000 nautical miles and visited 40 countries in 200 ports.

WESM

 

Coast Guard creates safety zone around Navy Pier for America’s Cup races

 6/9 - Chicago, Ill. – The Coast Guard will establish a safety zone area in Lake Michigan around Navy Pier in Chicago for the America’s Cup World Series races Friday through Sunday.

 The Coast Guard safety zone will be in effect from noon until 4 p.m. daily Friday through Sunday to protect vessels and people from the potential hazards associated with a sailing competition. 

 The zone runs from Navy Pier on the north to the Monroe Harbor Entrance on the south, all inside the outer Chicago Harbor break wall. Vessels will not be allowed to enter, transit through, or anchor within this safety zone without the permission of the Coast Guard captain of the port or a designated representative.

USCG

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 9

TASHMOO (steel side-wheel excursion steamer, 308 foot, 1,344 gross tons, built in 1900, at Wyandotte, Michigan) hosted Admiral George Dewey on her inaugural trip from Cleveland, Ohio, to Detroit, Michigan, on 09 June 1900. Admiral Dewey had just returned from his conquest of the Philippines during the Spanish American War and was a national hero. TASHMOO entered regular service for the White Star Line two days later.

The Lubeck, Germany-built, 305-foot Greek freighter CASTALIA of 1953 struck the north tower pier of the Mackinac Bridge at 7 p.m. on 09 June 1968, in dense fog. The bridge was not damaged and the ship took on water, but was able to proceed to Chicago without assistance.

LIGHTSHIP 103 was delivered to the 12th District Headquarters at Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on June 9, 1921, to begin her Great Lakes career.

June 9, 1983, ALGOWEST loaded a record 1,047,758 bushels of wheat at Thunder Bay, Ontario.

ROGER BLOUGH began sea trials in 1972.

June 9, 1911, The ANN ARBOR NO 1 was raised by Smith Wrecking Company of Muskegon after being considered a menace to navigation by the Coast Guard (she had been sunk by the south breakwater at Frankfort, Michigan, after burning on March 8th). She was taken to Muskegon, and repaired sufficiently to become a sand scow for the Love Construction Company. The cost of raising her was $8,000. On 9 June 1884, ANNAPEE (2-mast wooden scow-schooner, 71 foot, 118 gross tons, built in 1867, at Ahnapee (Wolf River), Wisconsin) was bound from Torch Lake, Michigan, for Milwaukee with a load of railroad ties and cordwood when she stranded in fog on North Point in Lake Michigan, 2 1/2 miles from Sheboygan, Wisconsin. Later a strong wind blew her into the rocks and she broke up. No lives were lost and part of her cargo was saved.

On 9 June 1882, the LIZZIE A. LAW (wooden schooner, 196 foot, 747 gross tons, built in 1875, at Port Huron, Michigan) collided with the R.B. HAYES (wooden schooner, 147 foot, 668 gross tons, built in 1877, at Gibraltar, Michigan) near the foot of Lake Huron. Although the LAW suffered severe damage, she completed her trip to Buffalo and was repaired there. The LAW lasted until 1908, when she was lost in a storm.

1909 ASSINIBOIA and CRESCENT CITY were washed through the Canadian Lock at Sault Ste. Marie when the upbound PERRY WALKER struck the lower gate. All three ships were damaged but were repaired and returned to service.

1963 The newly built SILVER ISLE of Mohawk Navigation and the PRINS ALEXANDER of the Oranje Line, collided in fog and rain on the St. Lawrence near Kingston. Both ships required repairs. The former was scrapped at Aliaga, Turkey, in 2010 as ALGOISLE while the latter struck a reef and sank in the Red Sea as f) POLIAIGOS on December 28, 1980.

1979 The French freighter MELUSINE first came to the Great Lakes in 1962 and returned as b) LENA in 1978. It sank the French fishing vessel ANTIOCHE III in the English Channel with the loss of 4 lives on this day in 1979. LENA was scrapped at Ferrol, Spain, in 1982, after suffering engine damage on a voyage from Bilbao, Spain, to Detroit.

1998 COMMON VENTURE began Great Lakes trading in 1980. It broke loose of its moorings in a cyclone as f) PEARL OF DAMMAN and grounded at Kandla, India, on this date in 1998. The ship was loaded with sulphur and sustained considerable damage. Following a sale for scrap, the 27 year old carrier arrived at Alang, India, September 12, 1998, for dismantling.

1998 TOKAI MARU was a first time Seaway caller in 1977 and a return visitor as b) EASTERN HERO in 1993. This ship was also blown aground off Kandla, India, by the same cyclone. It was now d) SURPRISE and became a total loss. This ship arrived at Alang October 8, 1998, and was broken up.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody L. Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels

 

Crews extinguish fire aboard Herbert C. Jackson in Superior

6/8 - Superior, Wis. – Fire crews spent more than an hour Tuesday extinguishing a fire on a freighter at Fraser Shipyards.

 The Superior Fire Department reported that it responded to a fire on the Herbert C. Jackson in the shipyard at 1:16 p.m. The 690-foot lake freighter was in a dry dock undergoing repowering at the time.

 Fire crews arrived to find dark smoke coming from several areas of the aft end of the Jackson. It took crews more than an hour and half get the fire under control and extinguished due to poor visibility, extremely high heat and difficult access to the area of the fire's origin, according to the Superior Fire Department. All workers were out of the boat by the time firefighters arrived. Fire crews left the scene at 4:16 p.m.

 The fire department reports that welding and torch work being done in the area was likely the cause of the fire.

 The Superior Fire Department responded with three engines, a heavy rescue vehicle and a total of nine fighters. Lake assault boats located at the shipyards provided water supply. The U.S. Coast Guard responded to ensure that there were no environmental runoff issues.

There was no report on the extent of damages.

 Duluth News Tribune

 

Roger Blough off-loading complete

 6/8 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – Lightering operations were completed around 10:30 a.m. Tuesday. The cargo on board the Roger Blough was successfully offloaded onto two vessels, the Philip R. Clarke and Arthur M. Anderson. Each of the receiving vessels has departed the Waiska Bay anchorage to deliver the iron ore to its intended destination, Conneaut, Ohio. 

A detailed damage assessment of the Blough will be conducted once favorable weather conditions are met. Results from the assessment will determine the extent of repairs and mode of transit to its final destination, which is expected to be Bay Shipbuilding Co. at Sturgeon Bay, Wis.  As of Tuesday evening, the Duluth-based tug Nancy J. was still alongside.

 The Blough had picked up a load of iron ore in Duluth before it ran aground May 27 near Gros Cap Reef in Whitefish Bay, about 10 miles west of Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., in eastern Lake Superior.

 USCG

 

Great Lakes iron ore trade down 9 percent in May

 6/8 - Cleveland, Ohio – Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway totaled 6 million tons in May, a decrease of 9 percent compared to a year ago.  Shipments also trailed the month’s 5-year average by 7 percent.

 Shipments from U.S. ports totaled 5.5 million tons in May, a decrease of 8 percent compared to a year ago.  Loadings at Canadian terminals dipped by 20 percent to 556,000 tons.

 Year-to-date the iron ore trade stands at 15.4 million tons, an increase of 4 percent.  Loadings at U.S. ports are up nearly 8 percent, but shipments from Canadian ports in the St. Lawrence Seaway are down 21 percent.

 Lake Carriers’ Association

 

New Great Lakes icebreaker step closer to reality

 6/8 - Toledo, Ohio – The building of a second heavy icebreaker for service on the Great Lakes has taken another step toward reality with Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) including $2 million for initial survey and design work for a vessel that is at least as capable as the current Mackinaw in the committee report on the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations bill. 

 The Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2015 had previously authorized a new heavy icebreaker for lakes service.  Senator Baldwin’s provision would provide the first funds specifically targeted toward acquisition of a second heavy icebreaker to partner with the cutter Mackinaw commissioned in 2006.

Cargo movement during the ice season is crucial to meeting the needs of commerce.  Ice can begin forming in early December and linger well into April, on occasion, into May.  The cargos that move during those months can top 20 million tons, or 15-plus percent of the Lakes/Seaway’s annual total.

 Iron ore for steel production and coal for power generation are the primary cargos shipped during the ice season, but limestone, salt, cement, grain, general cargo and liquid-bulk products move as well.

The U.S. Coast Guard has nine icebreakers assigned to the Great Lakes, but one is undergoing modernization at the Coast Guard yard in Baltimore, Maryland.  When it is ready, it will return to the Great Lakes and another vessel of its class will undergo service life extension until all of the six 140-foot-long icebreaking tugs have been modernized.

 Canada has two icebreakers permanently stationed on the lakes and brings in other assets when required.

 “We cannot let the mild winter of 2015/2016 lull us into a false sense of security,” said James H.I. Weakley, 2nd vice president of Great Lakes Maritime Task Force and president of Lake Carriers’ Association. 

“Just 16 months ago a U.S.-flag laker with an ice-strengthened bow and 7,000 horsepower engine sat immobile within sight of land for 5 days.  The Coast Guard icebreaker dispatched to the scene was unable to free the vessel and its last cargo had to be cancelled.  The U.S. Coast Guard must have two heavy icebreakers in order to reliably meet the needs of commerce.”

 Lake Carriers Association

 

Victory Cruise Lines to begin service with former Saint Laurent

6/8 - Victory Cruise Lines has announced it intends to begin sailing from Montreal, Canada, to ports in Canada and on the U.S. Great Lakes July 8, with further plans to sail Florida-Cuba itineraries starting in November, according to a statement.

 The 5,000-gross-ton, 300-foot-long Victory I, the former Saint Laurent, has been renovated and has 101 cabins. Shore excursions in port will be included in the cruise fare, along with wine and beer at lunch and dinner at no additional charge.

Victory I's inaugural cruise to the Great Lakes is slated to depart from Montreal, Canada, July 8, 2016, and is scheduled to sail in that region through the summer and early fall of 2016 and 2017.

Cruise Industry News

 

Annual St. Clair Marine Mart coming up this Saturday

 6/8 - The 35th Annual Marine Memorabilia Market, sponsored by the Lake Huron Lore Marine Historical Society, will be held this Saturday, June 11, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Riverview Plaza Mall in downtown St. Clair, Mich. More than 30 vendors will be offering items that are related exclusively to Great Lakes shipping. The market will have available for sale historical artifacts, artwork, books, photographs, advertising, memorabilia and more. It is one of only a few such annual events in the region. Admission is free.

 

Port reports – June 8

 St. Marys River
The Poe Lock was closed just before noon for possible inspection and/or repairs. It reopened at 5 p.m. The downbound Arthur M. Anderson and the upbound CSL Laurentien were delayed. While tied at the West Center Pier, the Anderson received supplies from the Ojibway, which made an unusual upbound passage through the MacArthur Lock to make the delivery. Earlier, the cruise ship Pearl Mist departed Bondar Marina on the Canadian side and went to the Carbide Dock on the U.S. side. She headed down river in the early evening.

 Saginaw River – Todd Shorkey
There was a flurry of activity on the Saginaw River during the afternoon Tuesday.  Algoway, which had arrived overnight and unloaded at the Bay Aggregates Dock in Bay City, backed out of the slip and tied up across the river at the Lafarge cement dock.  There, she waited for the inbound tug Leonard M and barge Huron Spirit to enter the slip that they had just vacated.  Once Leonard M - Huron Spirit were safely in the slip to unload, the Harbour Fashion, assisted by the tug Gregory J. Busch, departed the Port Fisher Fertilizer Dock, where they had finished unloading overnight.  She turned in the Essexville Basin, and departed for the lake. Once Harbour Fashion was clear of the waiting Algoway, the Gregory J. Busch assisted the latter off the Lafarge dock so she could finally make her way out of the river. 

 

No charges in Chambers Island wake incident

6/8 - Green Bay, Wis. – The U.S. Coast Guard has decided not to charge anyone involved in a Sept. 5 incident near Chambers Island when more than 30 boats were damaged in a sudden wake from the USS Milwaukee.

 The USS Milwaukee is a 378-foot-long Freedom-Class littoral combat ship that was being built at Marinette Marine for the U.S. Navy. At the time of the incident, the vessel had not been turned over to the Navy and was returning from conducting underway acceptance trials.

 According to a Department of Natural Resources report earlier this year, a wake that came into North Bay of Chambers Island – probably caused by the Milwaukee – struck the more than 30 boats. Many of the boats near the island’s shore were tethered together.

 Videos provided by the DNR at first show large waves gently rocking the boats. Moments later larger waves cause boats to collide and people on the shore of Chambers Island to be knocked over. Screams can be heard as large waves hit the shore.

 According to the report, more than 50 people were involved in the incident. Of the boat owners, only 22 people contacted the DNR with information and damage estimates. Those estimates totaled $170,140.98.

The Coast Guard said a marine casualty investigation collects and reviews all available information when a marine incident occurs and causes an injury, a specific level of property damage, harms the environment, affects seaworthiness of the vessel, or results in a loss of life. A marine casualty investigation does not include the determination of fault for damages, the Guard said.

Green Bay Press Gazette

 

After 60 years, families of fallen Seaway workers gathered for memorial

 6/8 - Massena, N.Y. – Almost 60 years have passed since work finished on the St. Lawrence Seaway. The ripple effects have been huge, more trade and good jobs for thousands of people in northern New York. But building the Seaway was a risky job, too. It’s not clear how many workers were hurt or killed during the five-year construction project. For a long time, no one asked. Stories have been surfacing, though. Last Friday, friends and family of the dead gathered at the Eisenhower Lock outside Massena to pay tribute.

For a long time, Bonnie Pearson thought her family was the only one with a story like this. "It was nighttime. He was moving a large pile of sand. And his bucket on the crane stopped working," Pearson said. "While adjusting the cables while on the ground, the huge bucket fell on him."

It was 1955. Pearson's father, David Hanna, was a heavy equipment operator. Hanna had only been on the job for two weeks, trying to wrangle a wild river into a shipping lane and a power dam. Hanna had survived World War II and a big battle at Guadalcanal, but he was fatally injured when the crane fell. Pearson said her father lived long enough to say goodbye to his wife in the hospital. He was 37.

In front of about 80 people in a Seaway visitor center, Hanna’s daughters held up his portrait, lined with tinkling war medals. "Our families and all of you are here at this remembrance ceremony to honor those who died while working on the Seaway," Pearson said. About 22,000 workers pitched in to build the Seaway in the mid-1950s. They came from all over. Records got lost and mixed up, and as far as we know, there is no record of who died during construction.

But seaway engineer Tom Lavigne said they pulled off one of the biggest engineering feats of the 20th century. "Less than five years is extraordinary," Lavigne said. "It truly is. And when I think of the tools and equipment available at that time, it’s even more amazing." Crews had to relocate power lines and carve out huge channels for ships to pass through. At times, Levine says the ground just wouldn’t give. "It was as hard as concrete. You can only imagine trying to dig this big hole," Lavigne said. "At Snell Lock, three miles downstream from here, it’s marine clay. Put a little bit of water on it, and it’s so slippery you can’t move the equipment."

 By comparison, Joe Cosentino said he had it easy. Cosentino is one of a few surviving Seaway workers who volunteered to speak. "I had the first snack truck on the Seaway," Cosentino said. "Everyone that worked on it, I fed them something. Burned hamburgers and hot dogs. But I actually go back quite a ways with Dave Hanna."

 Cosentino is 90 now, but that day is scorched into his memory. Cosentino drove up to the job site and got the news firsthand. "I told my sister-in-law that Dave was killed and she almost died, too," Cosentino said, his voice wavering. "Dave was the most level-headed person I know. And the thing that happened to him was murder."

 I caught up with Cosentino after the ceremony. He said he doesn’t blame anyone. What's more, he spent his whole career working jobs around the Seaway. "This is the eighth wonder of the world," Cosentino said, pointing through the chain link fence that separated us from the Eisenhower Lock. "Do you realize—I do—what they’ve done to make it? Over in Cornwall, they moved a whole city." Nine villages in Canada got flooded out and disappeared.  But talking about who was lost in the making—that feels new.

 Bonnie Pearson didn’t realize how many workers might have died until she read a book about the Seaway. That’s when she started lobbying for a memorial. Seaway administrator Betty Sutton said that request came as a shock.

 "I was unaware that there was no plaque, that there had never really been a proper ceremony to honor these individuals," Sutton said. "And when we learned that, we were moved." The Seaway has placed a new plaque in the visitors’ center. But without reliable records, they didn’t feel comfortable adding names.

 "We have tried. We’ve put out the call for information," Sutton said. "But it’s true. It’s really hard to identify exactly all who were lost in the building and the construction of the waterway." There’s still time. Another ceremony is being planned for next year, to take place on Workers' Memorial Day. (It always falls on April 28.)

North Country Public Radio

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 8

June 8 1951, CLIFFS VICTORY entered Cleveland with a load of iron ore from Marquette. The VICTORY completed the one-way trip in 37 hours - 20 hours faster than the best previous time.

On 08 June 1854, J. YOUNG SCAMMON (2-mast wooden brig, built in 1845, at Chicago, Illinois) was sheltering from a storm at S. Manitou Island on Lake Michigan when she dragged her anchors, stranded and broke in three pieces. She was driven in so close to the shore that the crew was able to use a broken spar to climb to the beach. No lives lost.

On 08 June 1897, RITA MC DONALD (wooden propeller tug, 72 foot, 69 gross tons) was launched by J. Davidson (Hull #84) at West Bay City, Michigan. She lasted until 1920, when she was abandoned in Chicago, Illinois.

In 1978, the LEWIS WILSON FOY was christened for the Bethlehem Steel Co., Cleveland, Ohio. Renamed b.) OGLEBAY NORTON in 1991. She now sails as AMERICAN INTEGRITY.

In 1938, the GOVERNOR MILLER (Hull#810) a sister ship to the WILLIAM A. IRVIN, began her maiden voyage, leaving Lorain, Ohio. The GOVERNOR MILLER was only the second Great Lakes vessel to be powered by a steam turbine with a direct drive to the propeller shaft via reduction gear.

In 1976 - the Midwest Energy Terminal at Superior, Wisconsin, loaded its first cargo of low-sulfur coal. The steamer JOHN J. BOLAND of 1953, took the honors as the first vessel to load at this dock. She was sold Canadian and renamed b.) SAGINAW in 1999.

On this date in 1977, the HARRY .L ALLEN was the first freighter to load at Burlington Northern's Dock #5 in Superior, Wisconsin.

On 8 June 1847, CHESAPEAKE (wooden side-wheeler, 172 foot, 412 tons, built in 1838, at Maumee, Ohio) was fully laden and had 97 aboard when she rammed the schooner JOHN F PORTER on a dark night off Conneaut, Ohio. As she started to sink, she was run to shore in an effort to save her, but she sank a mile short of the beach. Lake Erie was fairly calm and the crew and passengers tried to get to shore in boats and makeshift rafts. Most made it and many were also picked up by the steamer HARRISON. Estimates of the number of dead vary from 7 to 13. The wooden side-wheel tug and upriver packet TRAFFIC (75 foot, 50 tons, built in 1853, at St. Clair, Michigan) sank near Sebewaing, Michigan on 8 June 1868. She was recovered and repaired, but only lasted a little longer than a year since she burned in Saginaw in October 1869.

1933: WILHELMINE, dated from 1888 and was one of the world's earliest tankers, ran aground off Morgan Point, west of Port Colborne, while enroute from Chicago to Liverpool with 2,700,000 lbs of lard. The crew were removed and the ship abandoned. The hull was refloated June 3 but was not repaired and may have been dismantled at Ashtabula.

1954: The tug EDWARD C. WHALEN sank in Lake Superior near Corbeil Point. It was salvaged in 1955 and rebuilt a decade later as b) JOHN McLEAN. It survives in the Purvis Marine fleet as c) ADANAC.

1977: CYDONIA first came through the Seaway in 1962 and returned as b) VERMONT I in 1969. It was under tow due to rudder damage as e) JOY when a fire broke out in the engineroom near the mouth of the Mississippi River. The vessel was rocked by three explosions and sank in the Gulf of Mexico.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody L. Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Roger Blough cargo lightering still underway

 6/7 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – Lightering operations continue while the Roger Blough, which grounded May 27 on Gros Cap Reef and was freed Saturday, is anchored in Waiska Bay. Cargo transfer to Philip R. Clarke, which had been ongoing since last Friday, was completed Monday and the Clarke headed downbound for Conneaut, Ohio.

 Arthur M. Anderson joined the transfer effort Saturday, and will take on the remainder of the Blough’s pellets.

 A detailed damage assessment will be conducted once the iron ore is completely off-loaded from the Blough. Results from the assessment will determine the extent of repairs and mode of transit to its final destination.

 The Waiska Bay anchorage area, located just west of the Soo Locks, remains closed to all vessels not part of the operation.

 USCG

 

Port Reports - June 7

Saginaw River – Todd Shorkey
Harbour Fashion made her first ever visit to the Saginaw River early Monday afternoon.  Assisted by the tug Gregory J. Busch, she called on the Port Fisher Fertilizer Dock in Bay City to unload.  After the assist, the Gregory J. Busch headed back upriver to her home dock in Carrollton. Harbour Fashion was expected to be outbound Tuesday morning.

Lorain, Ohio
Cuyahoga came in on Sunday at 13:45 and was at dock 1. She left at 18:15. Great Lakes Trader came in the same day at 23:30 and was at dock 3. She left on Monday at 09:55.

 

Reserve now for Engineer’s Day Soo Cruise

The annual freighter-chasing cruise on the St. Marys River is scheduled for Friday, June 24, 2016, as part of the annual Engineer’s Day Gathering in Sault Ste. Marie. The cruise will be three (3) hours and we will travel thru both the U.S. and Canadian Locks, and do our best to find photo opportunities for any vessel traffic in the river. Buffet dinner is included in the price which has not been increased. Cash bar on board.

Reservations are a must as we are limiting the group to 100 persons. Do not wait until you get to the Soo to join the group on this trip. Reservations must be received by Friday, June 17 to save $5.00. See the Gathering Page for details.

 

Updates -  June 7

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 7

1958, the largest freighter ever built on the Great Lakes slid down the ways at River Rouge, Michigan. The new freighter was christened by Mrs. Edmund Fitzgerald and named EDMUND FITZGERALD. The 729-foot FITZGERALD was owned by Northwestern Mutual Insurance Company and operated by Columbia Transportation under a 25-year bare boat charter.

In 1977, tugs refused to tow the new MESABI MINER out of the harbor due to high winds. Captain William McSweeney brought the MESABI MINER out under her own power to begin her maiden trip. On 07 June 1890, EMILY P. WEED (steel propeller freighter, 300 foot, 2,362 gross tons) was launched by F. W. Wheeler (Hull #69) at W. Bay City, Michigan for the Hollister Transportation Co. She lasted until 02 September 1905, when she stranded on Sand Island Reef, Apostle Islands on Lake Superior and broke in two.

On 07 June 1862, MORNING STAR (wooden side-wheel steamer, 248 foot, 1,265 gross tons) was launched by A. A. Turner at Trenton, Michigan. She only lasted until 1868, when she sank in Lake Erie in a collision with the bark COURTLAND.

In 1977, WILLIAM A. IRVIN ran into the side of the Rock Cut after a power failure on board. The vessel received only slight damage. (For a more detailed account, read Jody Aho's book "The Steamer William A Irvin: Queen of the Silver Stackers").

On June 7, 1991, the ALPENA, the former LEON FRASER) began her maiden voyage as a cement carrier, departing Superior, Wisconsin, for her namesake port. Fraser Shipyards, which performed the conversion, took out a full-page ad in the Superior Evening Telegram proclaiming "INLAND LAKES MANAGEMENT, YOUR SHIP IS READY" and a picture of the vessel.

On 7 June 1859, COLUMBIA (2-mast wooden brig, 92 foot, 177 gross tons, built in 1842, at Sandusky, Ohio) broke up in a storm near Sherwood Point, Green Bay (Death's Door). She was famous for bringing the first load of copper ore from the Keweenaw Peninsula to through the Soo. She also brought the first locomotive to Marquette.

The METEOR (wooden steam barge, 201 foot, 729 gross tons, built in 1863, at Cleveland, Ohio) burned at Buckley's dock at the foot of 2nd Street in Detroit, Michigan on 7 June 1873. The fire supposedly started in her hold at 1:30 a.m. and was not discovered until it was too late. The ship burned to the waterline and sank. Some docks and warehouses also burned in this catastrophe. The wreck was raised in early September 1875, and towed to the foot of Belle Isle where the machinery and hull were sold at the U.S. Marshall's sale on 24 April 1876. Although originally thought to be the end of this vessel, the hull was purchased by Stephen B. Grummond of Detroit for $480. It was rebuilt as the schooner-barge NELSON BLOOM in 1882 and lasted until abandoned in 1925.

1894: The wooden steamer OCEAN received a massive hole in the bow after a collision with the barge KENT at Alexandria Bay on the St. Lawrence.

1902: The whaleback steamer THOMAS WILSON sank after a collision with the GEORGE G. HADLEY a mile off the Duluth piers while outbound with iron ore and nine lives were lost.

1915: JAMES B. EADS and the CHICAGO collided in the St. Clair River.

1941: The fish tug FINGLO caught fire and burned at Toronto. It was rebuilt for harbor duty as the steam tug H.J.D. NO. 1. In 1956-1957, the ship was unofficially renamed Salamander to star in the Canadian television series Tugboat Annie.

1971: SILVER CREST visited the Seaway in 1971 after previous calls as a) VIGRID in 1959 and 1963. It also returned as b) ROSTO in 1963 before becoming d) SILVER CREST in 1968. The ship stranded on Sisal Reef, in the Gulf of Mexico while enroute from Veracruz to Progresso, Mexico, but was refloated on June 12. The vessel arrived at Whampoa, China, for scrapping in July 1973.

1991: HERMES SCAN, a first time Seaway trader in 1977, sank in the Bay of Bengal as d) BRAUT TEAM after developing leaks the previous day. The heavy-lift vessel was reportedly carrying a Chinese steam locomotive for delivery to New York for the New York, Susquehanna and Western Railroad. All on board were saved.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II, The Marine Historical Society of Detroit and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports -  June 6

Silver Bay, Minn. – Denny Dushane
Interlake Steamship Co.’s 1,000-footer Mesabi Miner arrived at Silver Bay on its second visit to that dock for the 2016 shipping season to load iron ore pellets on June 1. They left the same day for Indiana Harbor. Mesabi Miner was also the first ship of the 2016/17 season to load here on May 18. The dock has seen very little vessel activity this year.

St. Marys River
The Duluth tug Nancy J stopped at the Soo just below the locks, but Sunday evening, was reported alongside the Roger Blough. Algoway was at the Essar Export dock on Sunday.

Port Inland, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Wilfred Sykes was expected Sunday in the evening. Two vessels are expected for Monday, both of them during the late afternoon – the barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore, and the barge Pere Marquette 41 and tug Undaunted. There are no vessels scheduled for June 7. Due in on June 8 in the early morning will be the Great Republic.

Cedarville, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Wilfred Sykes loaded on Saturday and is expected to return on June 9 in the late afternoon. Also due in on June 9 in the early evening will be the barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore.

Calcite, Mich. – Denny Dushane
H. Lee White was expected to load at the North Dock on Sunday in the early evening. There are no vessels scheduled for Monday. Due in for Tuesday in the late afternoon is the John J. Boland for both the North and South docks. There are no vessels scheduled in for Wednesday. Expected to arrive for Thursday is the barge Lakes Contender and tug Ken Boothe Sr. in the early morning for the South Dock.

Stoneport, Mich. – Denny Dushane
The barge Ashtabula and tug Defiance were expected on Sunday in the late afternoon to load. Two vessels are expected to arrive on Monday, with the barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann expected to arrive in the early morning, followed by the Joseph H. Thompson in the early evening. Due on Tuesday at midnight are the barge Great Lakes Trader and tug Joyce L. Van Enkevort. For Wednesday, two vessels are due in, with the Philip R. Clarke arriving in the early morning. They will be followed by a return visit from the Pathfinder during the early evening. Due on Thursday will be the Arthur M. Anderson in the early evening.

Milwaukee, Wis. – Alan
Polsteam saltie Iryda returned to Milwaukee from Burns Harbor a day or two ago. She has been lying at the Nidera elevator quay. Lafarge tug G.L. Ostrander / Integrity barge arrived just after 2 a.m. Sunday and is at the Lafarge dock.

Chicago, Ill. – Steve Bauer
Mississagi left South Chicago Sunday morning on her way to St. Joseph, Mich.

Saginaw River – Gordy Garris
The tug Undaunted and the barge Pere Marquette 41 were back outbound for the lake Friday afternoon, after arriving to unload at the Bay Aggregates dock in Bay City earlier in the day. The pair passed by the Front Range at 3:45 p.m. bound for Port Inland to load their next cargo. The saltie Harbour Fashion is scheduled to arrive on the Saginaw River at 9 a.m. Monday with a load for the Port Fisher Fertilizer dock in Bay City. This will be the vessel's first visit to the river.

Toledo, Ohio – Denny Dushane
The barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory arrived at the Torco Dock and unloaded iron ore pellets on Saturday. They are scheduled to return to the Torco Dock on June 9 in the late morning. Due at the CSX Coal Dock is the Manitowoc on Tuesday in the late evening. Also due at CSX is the John D. Leitch on June 11 in the early morning, and the Hon. James L. Oberstar is due at CSX on June 13 during the evening. Due at the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock is the Algolake on June 8 in the late morning. Vessels in port include the saltwater vessel Kurt Paul, still at the Midwest Terminal Overseas Dock loading cargo. The G tug New Jersey was also in port at the time of this report.

 

Updated list of new saltwater visitors

6/6 - As of June 1 there were 13 salties making their first-ever visits under their current names to the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Seaway system at the Eisenhower Lock in Massena, N.Y. The list includes Ardita, BBC Haren, Cape (ex-Heloise), Fearless (ex-Bright Laker), Federal Biscay, Federal Caribou, Floretgracht, Jan Van Gent, Minervagracht, Ocean Castle (ex-Federal Mattawa), SCT Monte Rosa, Tradewind Adventure and Vectis Castle. Vectis Castle has been chartered to Groupe Desgagnes Inc. and was re-flagged Canadian on April 13. Since June 1, there have been three more new visitors making their first visits, with a fourth one yet to make an inland voyage. The three include the Federal Cedar, SCT Matterhorn and SCT Stockhorn. Mona Swan is also expected to be making an inland voyage at some point in June for the first time.

Denny Dushane

 

Half back: Better times on the Iron Range

6/6 - Duluth, Minn. – After the worst year on Minnesota's Iron Range in decades, with a majority of the region's mining operations closed and thousands of people laid off, the worst seems to be over.

At various times in 2015, eight of those 11 mines and processing plants were closed. Now, it's down to five, with the largest operations either up and running or set to open by October.

U.S. Steel's Minntac operations in Mountain Iron, which incurred shutdown with layoffs for a short time last year, is running full bore, as is Hibbing Taconite and ArcelorMittal's Minorca Mine in Virginia —two that never idled — and Cliff's Natural Resources Northshore Mining in Silver Bay and Babbitt, which had been fully closed for several months.

Cliff's United Taconite operations in Eveleth and Forbes are set to reopen in October after a yearlong shutdown, company officials announced last week, and will be expanding to handle a new kind of pellet.

The doomsday predictions by some pundits that this downturn would be different — that it would be permanent — that the traditional cycle of mining's ups and downs was broken for good, didn't pan out.

"It's good news for people in Eveleth and Silver Bay, and good news for the Iron Range, and good news for Cliffs' leadership that they may have saved that company from demise," said State Rep. Tom Anzelc, DFL-Balsam. "It does feel like the bottom may have bottomed out and we are moving up again."

"With United Taconite coming back online, and with Cliffs already having brought its Northshore Mining operation to full production, I'm hopeful that we're seeing the beginning of a real turnaround for our Range economy," U.S. Sen. Al Franken said in a statement on the United Taconite news.

U.S.-based steelmakers are churning out more steel again as foreign-based producers, especially in China, have been knocked back with steep tariffs imposed by the U.S. government after their steel products were found to be sold for below cost — so-called steel dumping.

"It does seem like this trade crackdown — the efforts of Klobuchar, Franken and Nolan — really did help this time," Anzelc added.

Because Minnesota's iron producers are far more tied to domestic steel production than global ore prices, the continuing strong U.S. economy is helping with the Iron Range recovery. Demand remains strong for steel for automobiles and construction steel (not so much for tubular steel for oil pipelines) so U.S. steel mills are gobbling up more Minnesota taconite iron ore and related products.

The American Iron and Steel Institute reported last week that U.S. mills were using 76 percent of their capacity, up 4.2 percent from the same week in 2015 and up 1.1 percent from the week before. (At one point last year nearly 40 percent of U.S.steelmaking capacity sat idle.)

Thanks to U.S. government trade actions "the glut of illegal foreign steel in the U.S. marketplace is declining. Steel imports have dropped by almost 34 percent since the Department of Commerce imposed tough new preliminary tariffs," said U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan., D-Crosby, in heralding last week's United Taconite scheduled reopening. "The cripplingly high tariffs and taxes the (Obama) Administration has imposed on steel from China have helped reduce the glut of foreign steel in the U.S. market. The price of Range iron ore is on the rise."

Despite the string of good news, however, all's not well on the Range.

Five operations that employed more than 800 people as recently as 2014 remain shuttered — including U.S. Steel's Keetac operations in Keewatin, the Mesabi Nugget iron nugget plant near Hoyt Lakes, the Chisholm iron recovery operation that supplies Mesabi Nugget (co-owned with Magnetation) and two of three Grand Rapids-based Magnetation iron recovery and processing operations are closed with no sign if or when they will reopen and the parent company mired in a yearlong bankruptcy.

There are signs that this downturn may have spurred a long-lasting or even permanent downsizing of the Iron Range mining industry, with some demand and production never to return.

"History tells us that every time we go through one of these cycles, one of these major downturns, that when we come back, we come back smaller," Anzelc said.

That happened in the early 1980s, after taconite production peaked in 1979 at more than 54 million tons, it plummeted due to the crash of the domestic steel industry, to just 23 million tons by 1982. Employment tanked at the mines, and across the region people moved away. St. Louis County alone lost 20,000 people in the 1980s and never got them back.

Production and employment bounced back, with production peaking again 45 million tons in 1995, before dropping again since then, with a low of 17 million tons during the global economic crash of 2009. The latest peak was just under 39 million tons in 2012.

Mesabi Nugget's parent company, Steel Dynamics, Inc., said the facility wouldn't open until at least 2017, but also said the closure was indefinite, with the facility never meeting company expectations for production or profit.

Keetac's future appears to be tied to U.S. Steel mills that make tubular steel, an industry sector tied to the sluggish domestic oil industry that has reeled back from unbridled exploration and production.

Magnetation said its two shuttered plants have higher operating costs than its newest and largest plant just outside Grand Rapids that remains operating. Right now, the newest plant is making all the recovered iron ore concentrate the company needs for its single customer, AK Steel, and it's unclear if the Keewatin and Bovey facilities will ever reopen.

There's also no indication if or when Essar Steel Minnesota's proposed all-new taconite iron ore mine and processing plant will open. The plant in Nashwauk sits half finished, with construction at a standstill since December and creditors filing suit for unpaid bills. The company is desperately looking for equity partners, is said to be considering bankruptcy protection, is past-due on more than $60 million owed the state and last week lost its major outside contract for taconite pellets — iron ore that was supposed to go to ArcelorMittal steel mills — to Cliffs Natural Resources.

Investors who hold the delinquent bonds for the Essar project are working with Iron Range officials and businesses to see if the project can be salvaged, with or without Essar's involvement, Anzelc noted.

But even if the project can be completed, it's not clear who would buy the taconite pellets produced at the new facility.

"What was good news (last week) for Cliffs and its steelworkers is bad news for the Nashwauk project and for what Essar was going to be," Anzelc said. "They don't have a customer now to buy their product. That doesn't bode well."

Duluth News Tribune

 

Updates -  June 6

News Photo Gallery
 

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 6

On 06 June 1891, BAY CITY (wooden propeller freighter, 152 foot, 372 gross tons, built in 1867, at Marine City, Michigan) burned to a total loss while being repaired at the foot of Rivard Street in Detroit, Michigan. She was loaded with 300,000 feet of white pine lumber at the time. Her watchman reported the fire during the night and firemen thought they had it out, but it re-ignited and the vessel burned to a total loss. This ship had previously burned 20 years before on 10 April 1871, when she was on her first trip of the season after being rebuilt over the winter. Then she caught fire and burned nearly to the waterline but was rebuilt again and lasted until this last fire in 1891.

On 06 June 1917, ISABELLA J. BOYCE (wooden propeller sandsucker, 138 foot, 368 gross tons, built in 1889, at Manitowoc, Wisconsin as a freighter) grounded on Middle Bass Island in Lake Erie and then was destroyed by fire. No lives were lost.

In 1944, the C-4 bulk carrier MARINE ROBIN participated in the D-Day invasion at Normandy. In 1952, after conversion into a bulk freighter she began service in the lakes for M.A. Hanna Co., as b.) JOSEPH H. THOMPSON. She serves today as a tug barge combination created from the sections of the original vessel.

E.B. BARBER (Hull#111) of the Port Arthur Shipbuilding Co., entered service on June 6, 1953, for Algoma Central Railway Ltd.

In 1953, ARMCO (Hull#870) began her maiden voyage from Lorain, Ohio, for the Columbia Transportation Div., bound for Superior, Wisconsin, to load iron ore.

On June 6, 1959, ADAM E. CORNELIUS (Hull#) 424) began her maiden voyage for the American Steamship Co., from Manitowoc, Wisconsin. This was the last Great Lakes vessel constructed with telescoping hatch covers. Sold Canadian and converted to a barge she was renamed b.) CAPT. EDWARD V. SMITH in 1988, and c.) SEA BARGE ONE in 1991 and d.) SARAH SPENCER in 1996.

Upper Lakes Shipping's POINTE NOIRE was in collision with Cleveland Tanker's SATURN on June 6, 1977, near Fighting Island in the Detroit River.

On 6 June 1869, ASA COVELL (wooden propeller tug, 20 gross tons, built in 1852, at Buffalo, New York) was towing the brig IROQUOIS up the Cuyahoga River at Cleveland when her boiler exploded and she sank. Her captain was killed when the pilothouse was blown into the river.

On 6 June 1883, HERCULES (wooden schooner-barge, 139 foot, 195 tons, built in 1867, at Algonac, Michigan) was upbound in the south bend of the St. Clair River near Algonac, Michigan when the CLARION (iron propeller package freighter, 240 foot, 1,711 gross tons, built in 1881, at Wyandotte, Michigan) overtook her and collided with her in broad daylight. HERCULES drifted to the bank, capsized and sank. No lives were lost.

1956: NEWBRUNDOC ran aground at Densmore Bay on the southeast side of Wellesley Island in the St. Lawrence after straying out of the channel in fog. The ore-laden vessel, enroute from Contrecoeur to Buffalo, was released the next day.

1964: The Norwegian freighter FRO made 10 trips through the Seaway from 1961 to 1965. It ran aground at Milwaukee after loading 7500 tons of scrap for France on June 6, 1964, and was lightered to the YANKCANUCK before being refloated June 9.

1967: FRANKCLIFFE HALL ran aground off Hare Island, Lake Superior in dense fog and received heavy damage to bottom plates. The ship was lightered and released June 9 and went to the Davie shipyard for repairs. This vessel was scrapped at Aliaga, Turkey, as HALIFAX in 2011.

1967: AUGUSTUS B. WOLVIN struck the bank of the Welland Canal and grounded. A subsequent survey of the damage at Port Weller Dry Docks revealed it was not worth the cost of repairs and the ship was laid up and sold for scrap.

1982: ALGOSEA (i) rammed the west pier at Port Weller entering the Welland Canal in fog turning the bulbous bow by 90 degrees. The damaged ship was allowed to go to Thunder Bay for repairs. It became c) SAUNIERE later in 1982 and was scrapped at Aliaga, Turkey, in 2011.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II, The Marine Historical Society of Detroit and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Tugs free Roger Blough from grounding; cargo offloading continues

6/5 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – The grounded Roger Blough was freed from a reef in eastern Lake Superior by tugs Saturday morning.

The freighter sailed under its own power to Waiska Bay, east of Whitefish Bay and above the Soo Locks, to be evaluated for repairs and to have its remaining cargo transferred to other vessels. Efforts to lighten the Blough’s full load of iron ore pellets from Duluth began early Friday morning after fleetmate Philip R. Clarke arrived on the scene Thursday afternoon. Another vessel, the Arthur M. Anderson, was enroute Saturday evening and will also take on some of the Blough’s cargo.

The Blough was refloated at 10:45 a.m. with the assistance of the tugs Anglian Lady, W.I. Scott Purvis and Missouri. When the cargo is unloaded, the Blough will head for Bay Shipbuilding Co. in Sturgeon Bay, Wis., for further inspection and repairs.

The 858-foot Blough ran aground May 27 shortly after noon, near Gros Cap Reef, about 10 miles west of Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.

 

Bear cub boards Cason J. Callaway in Two Harbors

6/5 - Two Harbors, Minn. – A bear cub decided to stow away on an ore boat for a while on Friday. Keith Baker was walking back to his room on the Cason J. Callaway after eating lunch when the watchman told him to look over the side of the freighter, docked in Two Harbors to load iron ore pellets at the time.

That’s when he spotted the bear cub attempting to climb up the Callaway’s draft board, which was hanging in the water on the side of the ship, said Baker of Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.

The watchman told Baker that the cub swam over to the Callaway from a vacant ore dock. “He grabbed on and wasn’t letting go,” Baker told the News Tribune.

Posting photos on Facebook of the bear playing with the Callaway’s draft board, Baker noted that the Callaway’s “little visitor” stayed on the board for a while and seemed like he was taking a rest.

“He’s got that ‘I ain’t going back in that cold water’ look,” Baker wrote on Facebook, joking that getting a midship draft reading was difficult because “it’s a bit hairy at the moment.”

The cub eventually let go of the draft board and swam back to shore as the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources arrived on the scene, said Baker, who regularly posts photos of his maritime travels on Facebook under the name “Great Lakes Sailor/Keith Baker.”

A report of a bear playing on an ore ship was a first for conservation officer David Schottenbauer.

“I think it was just out scouting around and looking at stuff and being curious and found itself hanging off an ore ship,” Schottenbauer said. “It was a bear cub being a bear cub.”

The ore docks in Two Harbor’s Agate Bay served as a playground for the cub for about an hour around 11:30 a.m. Friday before it ran off along the shore of Lake Superior, said Schottenbauer, who works out of the Silver Bay DNR station.

He explained that the cub was skittish toward humans and wasn’t a public safety threat, so he let it find its way out of the area on its own. The workers were shooing the cub off the ore dock and told Schottenbauer that they’ve had bears in the area before.

The bear was a small cub, weighing an estimated 30 pounds and probably born this past winter. Its mother wasn’t visible, but may have been nearby, he said. The cub appeared healthy as it was running around.

“There was nothing that told me the bear wasn’t normal other than the fact that it was goofing around down there at the dock — more of a curiosity thing than anything,” he said.

Duluth News Tribune

 

Port Reports -  June 5

Thunder Bay, Ont. – William Lafferty
The tug Teclutsa was registered with Transport Canada under that name (official number 839964) on June 3 with Lakehead Tug Boats Inc., Thunder Bay, as owner. Built at Marinette, Wis., in 1973, she the former USNS Pawhuska (YTB 822). Her most recent owner was Coos Bay Towboat Co., Coos Bay, Or.

St. Marys River
The upper river from the Soo Locks to Gros Cap was closed in the morning Saturday while the stuck Roger Blough was refloated from Gros Cap Reef. The upbound Cedarglen and the downbound Hon James L. Oberstar, Sam Laud and Joseph L. Block were delayed until around noon. Other upbound traffic included the Lakes Contender/Ken Boothe Sr., Arthur M. Anderson (headed for the Blough to lighter more cargo), Defiance / Ashtabula (to Essar Steel), Virginiaborg and American Century. Cason J. Callaway was downbound. Algoway was upbound in the lower river at 11 p.m.

Saginaw River – Gordy Garris
The tug Undaunted and the barge Pere Marquette 41 are scheduled to arrive at 8 a.m. Sunday with a load for Bay City. This will be the pair's first visit to the Saginaw River since October 19, 2015.

Cleveland, Ohio – WKYC News
The Calumet, while in the Cuyahoga River Friday night, hit the dock at Shooters restaurant, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. Witnesses say the freighter was trying to clear the area near the mouth of the Cuyahoga River when it struck the dock, causing damage. There were no reports of any injuries. Calumet was loading Saturday at the Marblehead stone dock.

Lorain, Ohio – Phil Leon
Saginaw was in port late Saturday morning.

 

Updates -  June 5

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 5

Over the winter of 1960 - 1961, CHARLES M. SCHWAB was rebuilt by joining the forward end of the original SCHWAB with the after end of the former oil tanker GULFPORT. On this date in 1961, Captain Raphael "Dewey" Marsden conducted sea trials with the vessel on Lake Erie between Lorain and Cleveland.

On 05 June 1884, the wooden 3-mast 139-foot schooner GUIDING STAR, which went ashore 12 miles north of Milwaukee on 06 November 1883, was finally abandoned when all efforts to release her had failed. About two-thirds of her cargo of coal was salvaged.

On 05 June 1888, the wreck of the tug FRANK MOFFAT was removed from the St. Clair River at Sombra, Ontario by the Canadian Government. The tug was wrecked when her boiler exploded in November 1885.

In 1972, ROGER BLOUGH (Hull#900) was christened at Lorain, Ohio by American Ship Building Co. for U.S. Steel Corp.

Also in 1972, PARKER EVANS was in collision with the upbound Erie Sand steamer SIDNEY E. SMITH JR just below the Blue Water Bridge, at Port Huron, Michigan. The SMITH sank in 20 minutes with no loss of life. The EVANS, with bow damage, proceeded to Port Weller Dry Docks for extensive repairs. As a result of this accident, on October 4, 1972, alternate one-way traffic between the Black River Buoy and Buoys One and Two in Lake Huron was agreed upon by the shipping companies. Also a call-in system was initiated to monitor traffic between the Detroit River Light and Buoys 7 and 8 in Lake Huron by the newly established Sarnia Traffic.

On 05 June 1979, while carrying corn on Lake Superior, CARTIERCLIFFE HALL (steel propeller bulk freighter, 730 foot, 18,531 gross tons, built in 1960, in Germany as a.) RUHR ORE) caught fire 10 miles north of Copper Harbor, Michigan. Her crew abandoned ship in two life rafts and one lifeboat. Six died in this tragedy while five were injured; four (including Captain Raymond Boudreault) were injured seriously enough to be flown to the University of Michigan Burn Center in Ann Arbor, Michigan. U. S. Steel's THOMAS W. LAMONT rescued 17 at 4:52 a.m. while CSL’s LOUIS R. DESMARAIS rescued two more. The CARTIERCLIFFE HALL was towed to Thunder Bay by the tug PENNSYLVANIA the following day.

June 5, 1947, the Pere Marquette Railway was acquired by the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad.

LIGHTSHIP 103, (HURON) had her keel laid June 5, 1918, at Morris Heights, New York by Consolidated Shipbuilding Corp. Upon her retirement in 1971, the lightship was acquired by the City of Port Huron for use as a museum.

On 5 June 1864, COL A B WILLIAMS (2 mast wooden schooner, 110 foot, 150 tons, built in 1856, at Big Sodus, New York) was carrying coal on Lake Huron when she collided with the big ore-laden bark TWILIGHT. The WILLIAMS sank in 85 feet of water, 3 miles below Port Sanilac. Her crew was rescued by the TWILIGHT.

Shortly before midnight, Sunday, 5 June 1870, the WABASH and EMPIRE STATE collided in Lake Huron about 10 miles above Fort Gratiot Light. The WABASH sank and the EMPIRE STATE was damaged. The steamer JAY GOULD took the passengers off both vessels.

1943: FRANK ARMSTRONG, upbound on her maiden voyage, collided with the C.S.L. bulk carrier GODERICH in the St. Mary's River. Both sustained significant damage.

1991: OLYMPIC POWER was a year old when it first came through the Seaway in 1969. The vessel was sailing as c) FREE POWER when a fire broke out in the engine room off Oman on this date in 1991 and the ship had to be abandoned by the crew. One sailor was lost. The hull was a CTL and it reached Alang, India, for scrapping on February 8, 1993.

1998: The small Danish flag freighter, SEA STAR came to the Great Lakes with steel for Cleveland in April 1998. The vessel returned to the sea and sank in the Caribbean two months later on this date after a collision with the tuna boat MASA YOSHI MARU. SEA STAR was traveling from Colombia to Haiti with 2000 tonnes of bagged cement. Two members of the crew were lost.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II, The Marine Historical Society of Detroit and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Roger Blough refloated

6/4 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – 11 a.m. update – The Roger Blough has been freed from Gros Cap Reef by tugs and is being moved to the Waiska Bay anchorage. Once she reaches the anchorage safely, the river will be reopened to traffic. The tugs Anglian Lady, W.I. Scott Purvis and Missouri are all on scene.

 

River closed in preparation for Blough move

6/4 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – 8:45 a.m. - Saturday morning the St. Marys River is closed between Gros Cap and the Soo Locks. They are preparing to move the Roger Blough from Gros Cap Reef to the anchorage in Waiski Bay for inspection.

The lightering into the Philip R. Clarke has been completed, and the Blough is deballasting in preparation for the move. The Corps will doing a brief bottom survey after the Blough moves. The survey vessel Bufe is enroute to the scene from the Corps basin below the locks.

Three down bound vessels are above Gros Cap, Hon James M, Oberstar, Sam Laud and Joseph L. Block. Upbound the Cedarglen is just below the locks.

Arthur M. Anderson is anchored in the lower St. Marys River just above DeTour. Once the move of the Blough to Waiska Bay, the Anderson come up for further offloading of the Blough.

At 8:45 a.m. Saturday the Clarke arrived in the Waiskey Bay anchorage, near Light 26. At about 9:15 a.m., efforts to begin towing the Blough appears to be underway with the tug Anglian Lady pulling at the stern. The tow is also headed for the Waiskey Bay anchorage as well when completed.

Dave Wobser

 

Lightering of Roger Blough’s cargo underway

6/4 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – Lightering operations began at first light Friday at the Roger Blough grounding site at Gros Cap reef in the upper river. Fleetmate Philip R. Clarke was tied on the Blough’s starboard side for most of the day as the Blough slowly offloaded her pellet cargo via her own self-unloading boom into the Clarke. Arthur M. Anderson is due on Saturday to take the Clarke’s place alongside the Blough, which ran aground a week ago Friday.

 

Port Reports -  June 4

St. Marys River
It was a busy Friday morning on the river, with a string of downbounders that included CSL Laurentien, Vikingbank, Vlieborg, barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory, barge Spartan II and tug Spartan, American Integrity, Algoma Transport and Lisanna. John B. Aird was downbound in the afternoon and Edwin H. Gott followed in the evening. Upbound traffic was lighter and included John D. Leitch, Federal Yukon and tug Avenger IV / barge PML 2501 in the morning, and Federal Bristol after dark. As night fell, Algoma Equinox was headed upbound to DeTour and Burns Harbor was downbound above the locks. The tug Undaunted and barge Pere Marquette 41 spent much of the day unloading scrap at Essar Steel.

Marquette, Mich. – Denny Dushane
The ASC 1,000-footer Walter J. McCarthy Jr. arrived at the upper harbor in Marquette on its fourth visit to that dock on May 28 just after noon to unload coal. They departed May 29 in the afternoon. The McCarthy first arrived in Marquette at the upper harbor on April 11 and returned on April 22 and again on May 11, each time unloading coal from Superior. Until 2016, the McCarthy Jr. never visited Marquette. Also tentatively scheduled to arrive at the upper harbor with coal are the ASC 1,000 footers American Century – expected on June 14 in the early morning with coal from Superior – and the American Integrity, which has never visited Marquette with that name or its previous names of Lewis Wilson Foy and the Oglebay Norton – is expected at the upper harbor on June 25 in the early evening with coal from Superior. All dates and times are subject to change.

Port Inland, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Manitoulin was expected on Friday during the morning to load. There are no vessels after that until Monday, when the barge Pere Marquette 41 and tug Undaunted are due in during the late afternoon. Great Republic is due Tuesday in the mid-afternoon.

Cedarville, Mich. – Denny Dushane
There were no vessels loading Friday and none are due in until Sunday, when the Wilfred Sykes is expected in the early morning. Following the Sykes, there are no vessels scheduled until June 8 when the Joseph H. Thompson is expected during the early morning to load. Wilfred Sykes rounds out the lineup on June 8 in the very late evening.

Calcite, Mich. – Denny Dushane
John J. Boland loaded at the North Dock on Friday and was were due to depart around 5:30 p.m. There are no vessels due in for Saturday. Due in Sunday is the American Mariner in the late morning, loading at the South Dock.

Stoneport, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Joseph H. Thompson was expected on Friday in the early evening to load. There are no vessels scheduled for Saturday. Two vessels are due in for Sunday, with the barge Ashtabula and tug Defiance due in the early evening followed by the barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann in the late evening. The Philip R. Clarke is due Monday in the late evening to load. On Tuesday, June 7, the barge Great Lakes Trader and tug Joyce L. Van Enkevort are expected in the early morning to load. Another two vessels are expected to arrive on Wednesday, June 8, with the Arthur M. Anderson due in first in the early morning followed by a return visit from the Pathfinder in the mid-afternoon.

Saginaw, Mich. – Todd Shorkey
The tug Zeus and barge Robert F. Deegan called at the Port Fisher Dock on Thursday, unloading into the Dow/Oxy pipeline. The pair was outbound on Friday. For the month of May, there were 13 commercial vessel passages on the Saginaw River. This is down from the 17 recorded in in May 2015. It is also down from the five-year average for May, which is 16 passages, and the 10-year average of 18. For the year to date, there have been a total of 18 commercial vessel passages on the Saginaw River. This is down from the 25 recorded during the same time period in 2015. This is also down from both the five-year average (22) and the 10-year average (29).

Toledo, Ohio – Denny Dushane
American Mariner was expected at the CSX Coal Dock to load on Friday in the mid-afternoon. Also due at CSX is the Manitowoc to load on June 7 in the early morning. John D. Leitch is due at CSX on June 10 in the late afternoon. There is nothing scheduled at the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock. The barge James L. Kuber and tug Victory are due at the Torco Dock on June 4 in the mid-afternoon, and are due back at Torco on June 9 in the early morning. Vessels in port at the time of this report included the Saginaw, the G tugs New Jersey and the Nebraska. The saltwater vessel Kurt Paul was still loading cargo at the Midwest Terminal Overseas Dock, while the salty Federal Mackinac was upriver continuing to load grain.

 

Federal Cedar makes first inland voyage

6/4 - Federal Cedar (IMO 9671101), built in 2016 at the Oshima Shipbuilding Co. Shipyard in Oshima, Japan, entered the St. Lawrence Seaway on its first voyage to the Great Lakes/Seaway system on June 3. They are enroute to Windsor, Ont., and are expected to arrive sometime on June 5. Federal Cedar arrived in Sorel, Quebec on May 29 where it unloaded cargo before departing on June 2. This is one of several new vessels being built for Fednav at the Oshima Shipbuilding Co.

There are two new series of ships being built at Oshima for Fednav – the B and the C series." Federal Baltic is the lead ship in the B-series, with Federal Barents, Federal Beaufort, Federal Bering, Federal Biscay and Federal Bristol follwing. The C-series thus far consists of the Federal Caribou, Federal Cedar, Federal Champlain and Federal Churchill. Thus far, only the Federal Champlain and the Federal Churchill have yet to make inland voyages, while the others have.

It is expected that eventually 16 ships similar to the Federal Cedar will be added to Fednav's fleet.

Denny Dushane

 

Updates -  June 4

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 4

In 1955, J. L. MAUTHE established a new Great Lakes cargo record for a coal cargo delivered to an upper lakes port. She loaded 18392 tons of coal at the Toledo C&O dock.

1943, BENJAMIN F. FAIRLESS, Captain Harry Ashby, delivered a record cargo of 19343.5 net tons of iron ore at Cleveland. The ore was loaded at Two Harbors, Minnesota.

In 1947, the Canada Steamship Lines steamer EMPEROR, loaded with ore and bound for Ashtabula, hit the rocks off Isle Royale at 4:10 a.m. The vessel sank within minutes but the crew was able to launch 2 lifeboats. Captain Eldon Walkinshaw, First Mate D. Moray, and 10 other crew members drowned when one of the lifeboats overturned. Twenty-one other survivors were rescued by the U.S.C.G. cutter KIMBALL.

On 04 June 1872, while carrying wooden barrel staves from Bay City, Michigan to Buffalo, New York, the bark AMERICAN GIANT encountered rough weather off Port Stanley, Ontario, on Lake Erie. Heavy seas carried off her deck cargo of 25,000 staves and the vessel became waterlogged. As the crew considered abandoning, the steamer MENDOTA saw their plight and took the GIANT in tow for Buffalo where they arrived the following day. For days afterward, other vessels reported the litter of barrel staves floating in the middle of Lake Erie.

At 2:00 a.m., 04 June 1891, in heavy fog, the NORTHERN QUEEN (steel propeller freighter, 299 foot, 2,476 gross tons, built in 1889, at Cleveland, Ohio) struck the schooner FAYETTE BROWN (wooden schooner, 178 foot, 553 gross tons, built in 1868, at Cleveland, Ohio) about ten miles off Dummy Light on Lake Erie. The BROWN, which was loaded with stone blocks, quickly sank in over 60 feet of water. One of the schooner's crewmen climbed aboard the QUEEN while the others barely had time to scramble up the schooner's masts. Accounts of the accident differ. The schooner's skipper claimed that the NORTHERN QUEEN continued on her journey while the schooner's crew clung to the masts while the skipper of the NORTHERN QUEEN claimed that he tried to find survivors, but lost the wreck in the fog and reluctantly continued on his journey, figuring that there were no survivors. Nevertheless, about an hour after the disaster, the steamer ROBERT MILLS (wooden propeller freighter, 256 foot, 1,790 gross tons, built in 1888, at Buffalo, New York) came along, heard the cries of the unfortunate seamen clinging to the masts and rescued them. No lives were lost.

On 04 June 1881, the OGEMAW (wooden propeller freighter, 167 foot, 624 gross tons) was launched at Simon Langell's yard in St. Clair, Michigan for Mr. Wood & Company of Cleveland, Ohio.

CLIFFS VICTORY sailed on her maiden voyage in ballast from South Chicago, Illinois, in 1951.

On June 4, 1968, the keel for OTTERCLIFFE HALL (Hull#667) was laid at Lauzon, Quebec, by Davie Shipbuilding Co. Ltd., for the Hall Corporation of Canada. Renamed b.) ROYALTON in 1983, c.) OTTERCLIFFE HALL in 1985, d.) PETER MISENER in 1988 and e.) CANADIAN TRADER in 1994. She arrived at Alang, India, for scrapping on January 7, 2005.

EDGAR B. SPEER (Hull#908) was christened on June 4th 1980, at Lorain, Ohio, for the Connecticut Bank & Trust Co., Hartford, Connecticut, managed by the Great Lakes Fleet of the United States Steel Corp., Duluth, Minnesota.

In 1988, IRVING S. OLDS departed Duluth under tow of tug SALVAGE MONARCH, headed for overseas scrapping. She was scrapped by Sing Cheng Yung Iron & Steel Co., in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, scrapping began on November 24, 1988.

June 4, 1940 - Oiler George Riemersma, 50, died of a heart attack while at work on the PERE MARQUETTE 21.

June 4, 1942 - John A. Clancey, 58, general manager of the Grand Trunk Western Railway and president of the Grand Trunk Milwaukee Carferry Co. died suddenly of a heart attack while at his desk in Detroit.

The Port Huron Times reported "The new trim and tidy tug, the P L JOHNSON, built for Capt. Sol Rummage, passed up last night with her first tow. She is of medium size and wears the national colors on her smokestack for which some of the boys call her a floating barber shop."

On 4 June 1859, GENERAL HOUSTON (2-mast wooden schooner, 83 foot, 123 tons, built in 1844, at French Creek, New York) was bound from Port Huron for Buffalo with a load of lumber. During a terrific gale, she missed the mouth of the Grand River near Fairport, Ohio and went on the pier where she broke up. Fortunately no lives were lost. The lighthouse keeper on the pier where she broke up later refused to light the lantern while the wreck was in place for fear of drawing other vessels into it. The U. S. Government quickly contracted to remove the hulk from the channel, but a month later, a storm did the job for free, obliterating the wreck so completely that it was reported to have just "disappeared." June 4th is the anniversary of the famous race between the TASHMOO and the CITY OF ERIE, an exciting race that included many thousands of dollars in wagers, great advance publicity, and the use of many other boats to watch the action along the way. The drama was such that carrier pigeons were released at various times to take the latest updates to waiting newspaper reporters. The CITY OF ERIE won the race in a very close match, and the story has been retold in several books about the Great Lakes.

1961: C.A. BENNETT went aground in the Wiley-Dondero Channel of the Seaway while trying to avoid the REDFERN and was released with her own power.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II, The Marine Historical Society of Detroit and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports -  June 3

St. Marys River
The USCG cutter Mobile Bay and her barge were headed downbound Thursday in the early afternoon after spending the last several days at the Roger Blough grounding site. Philip R. Clarke arrived at the scene Thursday afternoon to be used in lightering cargo from the Blough. Tug Missouri was also there Thursday afternoon, along with the Purvis tug Anglian Lady. The training vessel State of Michigan has been running cruises this week on the river. Downbound traffic included Thunder Bay, Algolake and Kaye E. Barker late. CSL Niagara was upbound to DeTour in the early evening.

Escanaba, Mich. – Raymond H
On Thursday, Wilfred Sykes arrived at CN to load iron ore.

Ludington, Mich.
Manitoulin arrived from Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., with slag on Thursday.

Port Inland, Mich. – Denny Dushane Manitowoc was expected Wednesday during the evening to load. There were no vessels due for Thursday. Due to load on Friday in the early morning is the Manitoulin.

Cedarville, Mich. – Denny Dushane
The barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann were due on Wednesday in the early evening. Also expected was the Calumet at midnight on Wednesday. They were due to get the dock following the Pathfinder's departure.

Stoneport, Mich. – Denny Dushane
The barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore loaded on Thursday and was expected to depart around 10:30 p.m. Due in Friday is the Joseph H. Thompson in the early evening. There are no vessels scheduled for Saturday. Two vessels are expected to arrive on Sunday, with the barge Pathfinder and tug Dorothy Ann due in the late afternoon, followed by the barge Ashtabula and tug Defiance in the early evening.

Calcite, Mich. – Denny Dushane
H. Lee White loaded at the South Dock on Thursday and was expected to depart at noon. At the North Dock was the barge Pathfinder and the tug Dorothy Ann waiting for the H. Lee White to clear before shifting over to the South Dock to load. Due in for Friday is the John J. Boland during the early morning for the North Dock.

Saginaw River - Gordy Garris
The tug Olive L. Moore and the barge Lewis J. Kuber completed unloading overnight at the Saginaw Wirt dock, turned around at the Sixth Street basin and were back outbound for the lake around 9:00 am Thursday morning. The tug Zeus and her barge arrived on the Saginaw River just after sunset with a cargo for the Dow Chemical dock in Bay City. The pair are expected to be back outbound for the lake on Friday.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
The tug Calusa Coast and barge Delaware were on their trip to Noco in Tonawanda on Thursday.

 

Updates -  June 3

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 3

On 03 June 1882, the schooner C. BELL was launched at the yard of Mason, Corning & Company in East Saginaw, Michigan. Her dimensions were 185 feet x 30 feet x 11 feet, and she cost $20,000.

JOHN B. AIRD was christened in 1983, at Thunder Bay for Algoma Central Marine, Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.

After successfully completing her sea trials on June 3, 1951, CLIFFS VICTORY entered service for Cleveland Cliffs Steamship Co., a little under six months from the time she was purchased from the U.S.M.C.

PATERSON (Hull#113) of the Port Arthur Shipbuilding Co. Ltd., entered service for N.M. Paterson & Sons Ltd., on June 3, 1954, by carrying 440,000 bushels of wheat from Port Arthur, Ontario. She was scrapped at Thunder Bay, Ontario in 1985.

On 3 June 1870, T.F. PARK (wooden side-wheeler, 170 foot, 450 tons, built in 1851, at Chatham, Ontario) caught fire and burned to the waterline at the dock near the Detroit & Milwaukee Grain Elevator at Detroit, Michigan. The hull was later removed after being struck by several vessels.

On 3 June 1875, the iron carferry HURON (238 foot, 1,052 gross tons) was launched at Point Edward, Ontario for the Grand Trunk Railway. Miss Jessie S. Hughes of Toronto christened the vessel with a bottle of wine. The hull's iron plates were manufactured in Scotland and shipped to Point Edward where they were assembled. Work began on 12 August 1874. Her engine and boiler were built at Dundas, Ont. This vessel ran between Windsor and Detroit for over a century. Her hull is still in existence, submerged in the old Great Lakes Engineering Works slip in River Rouge, Michigan.

1911: The passenger steamer NORTH WEST was gutted by a fire while fitting out at Buffalo. The hull remained idle until it was cut in two in 1918 for a tow to saltwater, but the bow section sank in Lake Ontario. The stern was rebuilt on the St. Lawrence as MAPLECOURT and returned to the lakes, again in two sections, in 1922.

1923: WILLIAM B. SCHILLER and HORACE S. WILKINSON collided in Whitefish Bay. The former was anchored when hit on the port side at #5 hatch. The SCHILLER’s captain pulled up the hook and raced for shore so as to sink in shallow water. It went down in about 40 feet and was salvaged on July 2.

1940: JOHN J. RAMMACHER and WILLIAM A. REISS (ii) collided just after midnight beneath the Blue Water Bridge at Sarnia-Port Huron and both ships were damaged.

1999: HOPE I lost power in the Seaway while downbound with wheat and stranded above Morrisburg. The hull was holed and the ship was released with the aid of tugs on June 5. The ship first came inland as a) NOSIRA MADELEINE in 1983 and returned as c) HOPE I for the first time in 1993, and then as d) HOPE in 2004. It was last reported as f) H. PIONEER in 2011.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Plan to offload Blough cargo expected to start Thursday

6/2 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – Plans are moving forward to refloat the Roger Blough after the vessel ran aground Friday afternoon on Gros Cap Reef in Whitefish Bay in Lake Superior.

The Philip R. Clarke and Arthur M. Anderson are expected to pull along side the Blough where the crew will offload iron ore onto the other vessels until the Blough floats free of the reef. The Blough is aground just outside the navigable channel allowing enough water depth for the unloaded Anderson and Clarke to pull within reach of the Blough's shuttle boom. The Clarke is expected on Thursday with the Anderson on Saturday. Once free the Blough will head to Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay, Wisc. for repairs.

Salvage divers completed an underwater survey Tuesday and a completed salvage plan was submitted to officials for review and approval. The vessel took on water in two forward ballast tanks up to the lake level of 25 feet but there was no pollution discharge from the aft fuel tanks, which are secure on the interior of the ship — away from the hull.

The investigation into the cause of the grounding continues. In its first comments since the incident, Keystone said it was conducting its own internal investigation. There were reports of fog in the area at the time of the grounding, and also reports of the Blough attempting to pass another ship that was under a dead tow.

The 500-yard safety zone remains in effect around the Blough.

USCG and Duluth News Tribune

 

Engineer charged with releasing oil in Lake Huron in 2014

6/2 - Bay City, Mich. – An engineer aboard a commercial ship has been charged with intentionally discharging oil into Lake Huron in 2014. The U.S. Coast Guard says two oily sheens were spotted by air, east of Cheboygan and east of Alpena, two years ago. Investigators were tipped by a crewmember who worked in the engine room aboard the tug Victory.

Jeffrey Patrick, who was chief engineer on the Victory, is charged with knowingly releasing oily waste. He’ll be arraigned Tuesday in Bay City federal court. A message seeking comment was left for his attorney.

The Coast Guard says bilge waste can be discharged to a site on land or pumped overboard only after oil has been separated.

The Victory is mated with the barge James L. Kuber. The vessels are a part of Rand Logistic’s U.S.-flagged Great Lakes fleet.

Associated Press

 

Port Reports -  June 2

Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.
A busy but rainy day saw G3 Marquis, Manitoulin, and Arthur M. Anderson pass downbound. The latter will unload in Detroit before returning upbound to take part in the lightering of the stranded Roger Blough. Upbounders included American Spirit, tug Victory and her barge, Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin and Great Republic.

Port Inland, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Manitowoc arrived on Tuesday in the early morning to load. Expected to arrive on Wednesday in the very late evening was the Manitowoc.

Cedarville, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Joseph H. Thompson arrived at noon on Tuesday to load. Also expected on Tuesday was the Great Republic in the early evening. The barge Pathfinder along with the tug Dorothy Ann were due to arrive on Wednesday in the early evening. Rounding out the schedule was the Calumet, expected Thursday in the early morning to load.

Holland, Mich. – Al Walters
Pere Marquette 41 and Undaunted left mid-afternoon Wednesday with scrap metal from Padnos.

Calcite, Mich. – Denny Dushane
American Mariner loaded at the South Dock on Tuesday and was expected to depart Wednesday around 10 a.m. Due in Wednesday in the early afternoon was the H. Lee White for the South Dock. Expected to arrive on Thursday is the barge Pathfinder and the tug Dorothy Ann in the early morning for the South Dock.

Stoneport, Mich. – Denny Dushane
Hon. James L. Oberstar was expected to load on Wednesday in the early afternoon. There are no vessels scheduled Thursday. Due on Friday are the barge Lewis J. Kuber and tug Olive L. Moore in the morning.

Saginaw, Mich. – Gordy Garris
The tug Olive L. Moore and the barge Lewis J. Kuber were back again on Wednesday, arriving around 8 p.m. with a load for the Bay City Wirt dock. In less than one month's time, the pair has already made seven visits to the Saginaw River so far this season. At this rate, the Moore/Kuber are on pace to make 50 visits again for the second year in a row. The pair is expected to be back outbound for the lake on Thursday.

Toledo, Ohio – Denny Dushane
American Mariner is due at the CSX coal dock to load on Friday in the early afternoon. Also due at CSX is the Manitowoc on June 6 in the early morning. The John D. Leitch is due at CSX on June 10 to load in the mid-afternoon and the Hon. James L. Oberstar is due at CSX on June 13 in the early evening. There is nothing scheduled for the Midwest Terminal stone dock. Vessels due at the Torco ore dock include the James L. Kuber on Saturday in the early afternoon and they are due back at Torco on June 9 in the early morning. Also due at Torco is the Hon. James L. Oberstar on June 13 in the early afternoon. James L. Kuber returns to Torco on June 15 in the early evening. In port at the time of this report were the tug Genesis Victory and a barge and the saltwater vessel Kurt Paul at the Midwest Terminal Overseas Dock. The tug New Jersey was docked along the Maumee River, and further upstream and river was the saltwater vessel Federal Mackinac loading at one of the Toledo grain elevators.

 

Obituary: Trevor White

6/2 - Superior, Wis. – Trevor White, longtime engineering director and executive at Fraser Shipyards Inc. of Superior, died May 30, in his home in Duluth at the age of 90.

He joined the shipyard in 1964, when it was known as Fraser-Nelson Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Co., and served the company for more than 43 years. During his tenure, he helped plan and oversee the lengthening and conversion of several Great Lakes vessels during an especially active period for the shipyard from the 1970s into the 1990s. He served as director of engineering from 1964 to 1989, when he was promoted to vice president and general manager, a position he held until he opted to leave the company in 2007, at the age of 81.

He began his career in naval architecture at the age of 15, working as an apprentice and journeyman draftsman during and after World War II at Belfast's Harland & Wolff shipyard, one of the largest shipyards in the world. After obtaining his bachelor's of science degree in naval architecture from Queens University, Belfast, in 1949, he moved overseas to Montreal, Canada, to work in the drafting department at Canadian Vickers shipyard.

In Montreal, he met his future wife, Alberte Nadeau, and the two married on April 7, 1951 in Montreal. Later that year they moved to Cleveland, Ohio, where White took a job with American Shipbuilding Co. as a draftsman and hull engineer. In 1962, he became director of engineering for American Ship.

White moved his family to Duluth to start his long career at Fraser Shipyards in February 1964. He was a longtime member of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers and wrote several technical papers for the society, including one on the conversion of older Great Lakes ships for new purposes. He was also active in the Duluth chapter of the Propeller Club of the United States, a maritime industry organization.

There will be a celebration of life at 11 a.m. Tuesday, June 7, in Glen Avon Presbyterian Church, Duluth, Minn., with visitation one hour prior.

 

Limited number of tickets left for Door County Lighthouse Festival

6/2 - Sturgeon Bay, Wis. – The Door County Lighthouse Festival will take place Friday-Sunday, June 10-12, and tickets remain for a variety of the land-based and boat excursion offerings.

This year marks the 23rd annual event in which the Door County Maritime Museum spotlights perhaps the heaviest concentration of lighthouses in the country.

Two different day-long, land-based tours, visit the five mainland lights and depart from either the Door County Maritime Museum in Sturgeon Bay or the Door County Trolley Depot in Egg Harbor. Three of the four tours being offered by the Door County Trolley have seats available while the naturalist-narrated tour on Friday and Saturday also have availabilities. Each include a lunch as part of the extensive tour. The Ghost/Mystery trolley tour leaves from the Door County Maritime Museum on Friday and Saturday evenings with a rare visit to the Sherwood Point Lighthouse included.

New this year is the Baileys Harbor Range Light Tour at the Ridges Sanctuary. The two range lights in the sanctuary are spotlighted as you also learn about the history and culture of Wisconsin’s first land trust property as you hike the sanctuary’s new Hidden Brook boardwalk.

The Friday tours to Rock Island as well as the weekend tours to Plum Island are sold out due to limited seating capacity. But the excursion to Chambers Island can handle larger capacities and has tickets available for most of its tours. Participants need to be prepared for a scenic mile-plus cross-island hike to the lighthouse and back.

The schooner trip aboard the “tall ship” Edith Becker from Sister Bay is also among the offerings this year with trips under sail past the Eagle Bluff Lighthouse. This tour is selling well with limited tickets available.

The Sturgeon Bay Fireboat will be offering its regular daily tours from the Door County Maritime Museum as well as special sunset dessert cruises both Friday and Saturday evenings passing Sherwood Point Lighthouse.

Cana Island and Eagle Bluff Lighthouses maintain regular seasonal hours throughout the weekend. Both the Sherwood Point Lighthouse and Sturgeon Bay Canal Light are operated by the U.S. Coast Guard and offer free admission over the weekend. However, Saturday and Sunday of the Lighthouse Festival weekend are the only days the property and lighthouse are open to the public at Sherwood Point. The range lights in the Ridges Sanctuary in Baileys Harbor, with its newly restored lower light, will also welcome visitors Friday between 10 am-2 pm for a free-will offering.

For more detailed information on tours and pricings or to request a brochure visit www.dcmm.org. Tickets can be ordered on the website or by calling (920) 743-5958.

Door County Maritime Museum & Lighthouse Preservation Society

 

Updates -  June 2

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 2

On 02 June 1958, the Liberian-flagged freighter MOUNT DELPHI sank enroute to Karachi, Pakistan. She was built by the British American Shipbuilding Company at Welland, Ontario, during the final years of World War I. She had 12 different owners during her career and had been seized by Vichy interests at Casablanca, Morocco, in 1940, and then by the Italian government in 1942.

On 02 June 1893, CORSICAN (wooden schooner, 112 foot, 210 gross tons, built in 1862, at Olcott, New York) was carrying coal from Cleveland, Ohio to St. Ignace, Michigan, on a foggy night on Lake Huron. She collided with the iron steamer CORSICA and sank quickly off Thunder Bay Island. All six onboard went down with her. The wounded CORSICA was beached near Ossineke, Michigan, was later patched and proceeded to Ashtabula, Ohio.

In 1973, the SYLVANIA, downbound light in fog, collided with the FRANK PURNELL just north of the Detroit River Light at 05:23 hours. The SYLVANIA suffered minor bow damage and went to Toledo for repairs.

On 2 June 1855, J.W. BLAKE (wooden scow-schooner, 68 foot, 33 tons, built in 1853, at Dover, Ohio) was carrying lumber in a storm four miles off Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, when she capsized. Her crew escaped in her yawl, but it was a very close call for one who was asleep below decks when she capsized. The vessel was later recovered and put back in service.

June 2, 1988 - The CITY OF MIDLAND 41 took on 17 truckloads of lake trout, which were planted off Beaver Island.

On 2 June 1882, INDUSTRY (wooden schooner, 63 foot, 30 tons, built in 1847, at Michigan City, Indiana) capsized and sank just a half-mile from South Haven, Michigan. The three crewmen clung to the wreck for a while as rescue attempts were made from shore, but they all perished. The wreck later drifted to the beach about five miles south of town and went to pieces.

1943: The W.W. HOLLOWAY and HARRY WM. HOSFORD collided in foggy lower Whitefish Bay and the latter steamer had to be beached at Point Iroquois to avoid sinking.

1958: WAR RACCOON was built at Welland in 1919. It was sailing under Liberian registry as l) MOUNT DELPHI when it hit a rock and was beached at Grand Island, near Mormugao, India, on a voyage from Mouimein, Burma, to Karachi, Pakistan. The ship was a total loss.

1968: CASTALIA, a Greek flag freighter, struck the north pier of the Mackinac Bridge, in dense fog and made a small gouge in the structure. The ship was holed and leaking but cleared to proceed to Chicago. It was on its first trip through the Seaway and was later scrapped as c) NEW ENGLANDER after arriving at Bilbao, Spain, on July 4, 1973.

1978: The bulk carrier ARCTIC was christened in a ceremony at Port Weller Dry Docks in St. Catharines.

1981: The sidewheel Toronto Island ferry TRILLIUM was unable to stop in time at the mainland dock. It struck the restaurant ship NORMAC and the latter sank two weeks later.

2000: ALGOWOOD buckled amidships while loading stone at Bruce Mines. The hull was patched, strengthened, refloated and towed to Port Weller Dry Docks to be lengthened and repaired.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Jody Aho, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II, The Marine Historical Society of Detroit and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Coalition files suit against Coast Guard over pilotage rate increases

6/1 - Washington, D.C. – An alliance of U.S. Great Lakes ports, vessel-operating companies and maritime trade associations filed suit Tuesday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, challenging the U.S. Coast Guard's 58 percent increase in Great Lakes pilotage rates, the American Great Lakes Ports Association reported in a news release.

"Great Lakes pilotage costs have gone up 114 percent over the last 10 years," said Will Friedman, president of the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority. "The Coast Guard wants to increase them another 58 percent by 2017. These increases are unsustainable and will ultimately erode the viability of international trade through Great Lakes ports."

Under federal law, all oceangoing vessels on the Great Lakes Seaway System must hire local pilots — navigators familiar with local conditions — to assist with navigation. The Coast Guard regulates and sets rates for Great Lakes pilotage, which is provided by three private companies.

The American Great Lakes Ports Association, the Shipping Federation of Canada and the U.S. Great Lakes Shipping Association filed the complaint along with vessel-operating companies Fednav International Ltd, Canfornav Inc., Polish Steamship Company, Spliethoff Transport, Brochart Shipping and Wagenborg Shipping.

The coalition argues that the Coast Guard violated the Administrative Procedures Act by making "arbitrary and unsubstantiated decisions during development of the 2016 pilotage rates," the news release stated.

The plaintiffs have asked the court to remand the rulemaking back to the Coast Guard for revision.

Duluth News Tribune

 

ArcelorMittal signs 10-year iron ore deal

6/1 - ArcelorMittal has reached a new long-term deal to bring iron ore to its steel mills in Indiana Harbor East, West and Cleveland.

The steelmaker, which is headquartered in Luxembourg and whose USA operations are based in Chicago, will retain Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. as its sole outside supplier of iron ore pellets to its U.S. operations through 2026. Cliff's is the sole outside pellet supplier to ArcelorMittal Indiana Harbor West. It also supplements supplies at the former Inland Steel mill at Indiana Harbor East.

Iron ore pellets are a crucial input, along with coke and limestone, for making iron in blast furnaces.

"The market-based pricing mechanisms at the core of this agreement provide ArcelorMittal USA with increased financial flexibility, better aligning raw material costs with pricing conditions in the steel market,” ArcelorMittal USA President and Chief Executive Officer John Brett said. "Similar to the previous agreements, the new agreement also allows us to adjust volumes based on market conditions."

Under the contract, the iron ore prices ArcelorMittal will pay will vary based on market indices, as well as general inflation. Neither side is disclosing the exact terms of the deal for competitive reasons.

The new deal replaces previous agreements that expired in December and January. ArcelorMittal's new agreement with Cliffs, which operates mines in Minnesota and Michigan, establishes a minimum iron ore volume of 7 million long tons annually, which is higher than what was agreed to in the two previous contracts combined.

"We arrived at a mutually beneficial agreement, as both companies recognize the importance of bringing sustainable value to our respective businesses," Cliffs' Chairman, President and CEO Lourenco Goncalves said. "The signing of the new supply agreement confirms what we have always stated regarding the strength of the business relationship between Cliffs and ArcelorMittal USA."

The CEO added the new agreement removes any remaining uncertainty about Cliffs, and supports its confidence in a bright future for the company, its employees, its shareholders, and all other stakeholders, including communities.

NW Indiana Times

 

Port Reports -  June 1

St. Marys River
The supply boat Ojibway paid another visit to the grounded Roger Blough on Tuesday. The Great Lakes Towing tug Missouri also headed up to the site. Downbound traffic for the day included the tanker Jada Desgagnes and CSL Assiniboine. After dark, Lakes Contender/Ken Boothe St. locked down. The training vessel State of Michigan was upbound (and docked at the Soo Coast Guard base for the night), followed by the Joseph L. Block in the late afternoon. Whitefish Bay, John J. Boland, Kaye E. Barker, Kaministiqua and Edwin H. Gott were upbound in the lower river in the late evening.

Cedarville, Mich.
Great Republic was loading Tuesday evening.

Saginaw River – Gordy Garris
Tuesday afternoon saw the arrival of the tug Dorothy Ann and barge Pathfinder. The pair made their third visit to the Saginaw River this season, and for the second consecutive time they delivered a split load to the Wirt Stone docks in Bay City and Saginaw. After finishing the first half of their load, the pair made their way upriver through the drawbridges in downtown Bay City during 5 p.m. rush hour traffic; causing extensive back-ups for motorists throughout the city. Dorothy Ann/Pathfinder arrived in Saginaw and began unloading around 7 p.m. The pair are expected to be back outbound for the lake late Tuesday night.

 

UTac to restart in October after Cliffs reaches pellet agreement

6/1 - Cliffs Natural Resources CEO Lourenco Goncalves says United Taconite will restart in mid-October, now that the company has reached a much anticipated business agreement with steelmaker ArcelorMittal.

"We are already reaching out to our people. I told them they would begin work by the end of the year, and I am keeping my word. We plan on being up to full production in November," Goncalves said over the phone.

Tuesday morning, Cliffs announced they have reached a 10-year agreement with ArcelorMittal, replacing two existing agreements that expire in December 2016 and January 2017.

Goncalves said that the reopening of UTac, which has facilities in Eveleth and Forbes, hinged on the agreement.

In a statement on Tuesday, he said, "The signing of the new supply agreement confirms what we have always stated regarding the strength of the business relationship between Cliffs and ArcelorMittal USA. The new agreement also removes any remaining uncertainty about Cliffs, and supports our conviction in the bright future of our company, its employees, its shareholders, and all other stakeholders, including the communities in which we operate."

UTAC has been idle since last summer, putting nearly 500 people out of work.

The company is poised to invest $65 million to do upgrades to the plant, so it can produce the custom made pellet required by ArcelorMittal. It's called the Mustang modification. Goncalves said, "We plan on starting that now. We will be hiring contractors to do the work right away, and plan on making the custom pellet by next year."

Cliffs will continue to be the sole outside supplier of pellets for ArcelorMittal.

WDIO

 

Boat tour to take passengers to view Roger Blough on Friday

6/1 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. – Soo Locks Boat Tours will be running an unscheduled lighthouse trip to the Gros Cap Lighthouse and site of the Roger Blough on Friday, June 3. The trip will depart from Dock #1, 1157 E Portage Ave, Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., at 8 a.m. Anyone interested in taking this trip must call and make a reservation, 906-632-2512. Space will be limited. Cost is normally $60, but for this event, passengers will be $45 per person. The trip will last for approximately 4 1/2 hours. Bring your camera.

Soo Locks Boat Tours

 

Updates -  June 1

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  June 1

On 01 June 1903, ISAAC ELLWOOD (steel propeller freighter, 478 foot, 5,085 gross tons, built in 1900, at W. Bay City, Michigan) broke the record for ore when she carried a cargo of 8,579 tons out of Duluth harbor. This broke the record held by JOHN SMEATON (steel barge, 458 foot, 5,049 gross tons, built in 1899, at Superior, Wisconsin), which was 8,571 tons of ore.

ASA CHILDS (wooden scow schooner, 125 foot, 204 gross tons, built in 1866, at Mentor, Ohio) was carrying lumber in a storm on Lake Michigan when she was driven ashore at Highland Park just north of Chicago, Illinois on 01 June 1879, and was a total loss. The crew escaped in the lifeboat.

On 01 June 1914, the St. Joseph-Chicago Steamship Company bought the EASTLAND (steel propeller passenger steamer, 265 foot, 1,961 gross tons, built in 1903, at Port Huron, Michigan) from the Eastland Navigation Company for $150,000.

In 1943, IRVING S OLDS collided with the 524 foot steamer CHARLES O. JENKINS in heavy fog 28 miles northeast of Cleveland on Lake Erie and was holed eight feet above the water line. The OLDS was able to help the badly damaged JENKINS back to Cleveland by lashing the two vessels together. After a grueling seven hours the JENKINS was beached in the outer harbor to prevent her from sinking. The OLDS was repaired in time to carry a new record of 17,817 gross tons of iron ore on June 13, 1943. In 1952, the steamer J.L. MAUTHE (Hull#298) was launched at Great Lakes Engineering Works, River Rouge, Michigan, for the Interlake Steamship Co.

The WHITEFISH BAY, loaded with 950,000 bushels of spring wheat, was honored as she carried the billionth metric ton of cargo through the Eisenhower Lock in 1983.

On June 1, 1907, the Great Lakes Engineering Works launched the bulk steamer WILPEN (Hull#28) at Ecorse, Michigan, for the Shenango Steamship Co., a subsidiary of Shenango Furnace Co., Cleveland, Ohio. Renamed b.) DAVID P. THOMPSON in 1926, and converted to a self-unloader in 1957, at Superior, Wisconsin. She was renamed c.) JOSEPH S. YOUNG in 1969, and scrapped at La Spezia, Italy in 1979.

H. LEE WHITE departed Sturgeon Bay in ballast on her maiden voyage for the American Steamship Co., on June 1, 1974, to load iron ore at Escanaba, Michigan for Indiana Harbor.

June 1, 1902 - While northbound for Manistique, Michigan, the ANN ARBOR NO 1 went aground in a heavy fog about noon on South Manitou Island, but was able to free herself and to proceed undamaged.

June 1, 1938 - PERE MARQUETTE 21, under the command of Captain Arthur Altschwager, was released from a sand bar in the outer harbor at Manitowoc at 1:06 p.m. today after being aground for six hours. Her sister ship, the PERE MARQUETTE 22, commanded by J.F. Johnson, freed the ferry after taking a line and pulling the big ship back off the bar.

June, 1958, The ANN ARBOR NO 6 was taken out of service for extensive refitting. She was renamed b.) ARTHUR K. ATKINSON.

On 1 June 1887, LUCINDA VAN VALKENBURG (wooden schooner, 129 foot, 302 gross tons, built in 1862, at Tonawanda, New York) collided with the iron steamer LEHIGH in fog and sank near Thunder Bay Island on Lake Huron. The crew was safely taken aboard the LEHIGH and brought to Port Huron.

On 1 June 1892, the steel bulk freighter CHOCTAW was launched at the Cleveland Shipbuilding Company (Hull #17) in Cleveland, Ohio for the Lake Superior Iron Company. Her dimensions were 207 feet x 38 feet x 18 feet and she had a triple expansion steam engine 17 feet, 29 inches, 47 inches x 36 inch stroke. She was built as "monitor" type vessel based on whaleback design with all her cabins aft. She lasted until sunk in a collision in 1915.

1923: The barge BROOKDALE of Canada Steamship Lines was sunk near Montreal after a collision with MAPLEDAWN. The wooden hulled vessel, originally the schooner MORAVIA, was refloated and scrapped.

1943: A collision on foggy Lake Superior between BATTLEFORD and PRINDOC sank the latter off Passage Island. All on board were saved from the downbound, wheat-laden bulk carrier of the Paterson fleet.

1944: The first NEWBRUNDOC had been built at Toronto in 1921 and had previously sailed as CANADIAN ENGINEER and b) DONALD E.McKAY. The ship became f) SAVLATORE in 1934 and, with the outbreak of war, was now the enemy. It was bombed and sunk by British aircraft as part of a German convoy in the Aegean Sea and all hands were lost.

1966: RIO ALTO, a Liberty ship, came to the Great Lakes under Liberian registry in 1963. It developed leaks on the Pacific while enroute from Manati, Puerto Rico, to China as d) AKTOR and sank on this date 860 miles SSW of San Diego, CA in 1966.

1967: RENVOYLE struck the docked SYLVANIA while turning at Port Huron and the latter sank against the dock. The former, a C.S.L. package freighter, received bow damage and was laid up and then sold for scrap. SYLVANIA was refloated, repaired and returned to service.

1979: GEORGES HERBERT, a wooden goelette that occasionally came to the Great Lakes, sank in the Gulf of Mexico while carrying a cargo of corn.

2011: CANADIAN RANGER, under tow on the St. Lawrence, got spun around 180 degrees by a wind gust above the Iroquois Lock and had to be towed through the lock stern first before being realigned below the lock. It reached the scrap yard at Aliaga, Turkey, on July 13, 2011.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.


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