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Posts tagged ‘Edmund Fitzgerald’

August 3rd, 2011 ~ Arthur Reflections

Arthur M. Anderson Going

The Arthur M. Anderson Sailing into the Sunset

The SS Arthur M. Anderson, from July 20th’s post, sailing away into the sun…

From Wikipedia:

The SS Arthur M. Anderson is a cargo ship of the laker type. It is famous for being the last ship to be in contact with the SS Edmund Fitzgerald (before it sank 10 November 1975). The Anderson was also the first rescue ship on the scene in a vain search for Fitzgerald survivors (there were none).

The SS Arthur M. Anderson came out of the drydock of the American Ship Building Company of Lorain, Ohio in 1952.[1] It had a length of 647 feet, 70 foot beam, a 36 foot depth,[1] and a gross tonnage of roughly 20,000 tons.[citation needed] It was second of eight of the AAA class of lake freighters; the others being, in order, the SS Philip R. Clarke, SS Cason J. Callaway, SS Reserve, SS J.L. Mauthe, SS Armco, SS Edward B. Greene, and the SS William Clay Ford. It, along with the SS Philip R. Clarke and SS Cason J. Callaway, was built for the Pittsburgh Steamship Division of U.S. Steel. The Anderson’s sea-trials commenced on 7 August 1952, and it loaded its first cargo at the Two Harbors dock on August 12th. It received several refits in its life including a new 120 foot mid-section which added about 6,000 tons to its gross tonnage. In 1981 it received a self unloading boom which improved its cargo loading and unloading. It is unique among the three Great Lakes Fleet steamships in that it has a softer mid-section that prohibits loading as much cargo as the others; roughly 1500 tons less.[1][2]
The SS Arthur M. Anderson unloading at Huron, Ohio in 2008.

Its namesake, Arthur Marvin Anderson, was director of U.S. Steel at the time.

It has been a member of the U.S. Steel fleet its entire life, and is still sailing as of 2011.

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July 20th, 2011 ~ Arthur Edmund

Arthur M. Anderson Coming

The Arthur M. Anderson sailing in Lake Michigan

Taken in 2004, this shot shows the SS Arthur M. Anderson sailing from Lake Michigan to Lake Huron. This ship was the last to communicate with the Edmund Fitzgerald, a ship that sank in 1975 in a massive winter hurricane, (Lake Superior is no joke). The story was made famous by folk singer Gordon Lightfoot- I think I’ll let him tell the tale…

Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald
Music and lyrics ©1976 by Gordon Lightfoot

The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down
of the big lake they called “Gitche Gumee.”
The lake, it is said, never gives up her dead
when the skies of November turn gloomy.
With a load of iron ore twenty-six thousand tons more
than the Edmund Fitzgerald weighed empty,
that good ship and true was a bone to be chewed
when the “Gales of November” came early.

The ship was the pride of the American side
coming back from some mill in Wisconsin.
As the big freighters go, it was bigger than most
with a crew and good captain well seasoned,
concluding some terms with a couple of steel firms
when they left fully loaded for Cleveland.
And later that night when the ship’s bell rang,
could it be the north wind they’d been feelin’?

The wind in the wires made a tattle-tale sound
and a wave broke over the railing.
And ev’ry man knew, as the captain did too
’twas the witch of November come stealin’.
The dawn came late and the breakfast had to wait
when the Gales of November came slashin’.
When afternoon came it was freezin’ rain
in the face of a hurricane west wind.

When suppertime came the old cook came on deck sayin’.

“Fellas, it’s too rough t’feed ya.”
At seven P.M. a main hatchway caved in; he said,
“Fellas, it’s bin good t’know ya!”
The captain wired in he had water comin’ in
and the good ship and crew was in peril.
And later that night when ‘is lights went outta sight
came the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Does any one know where the love of God goes
when the waves turn the minutes to hours?
The searchers all say they’d have made Whitefish Bay
if they’d put fifteen more miles behind ‘er.
They might have split up or they might have capsized;
they may have broke deep and took water.
And all that remains is the faces and the names
of the wives and the sons and the daughters.

Lake Huron rolls, Superior sings
in the rooms of her ice-water mansion.
Old Michigan steams like a young man’s dreams;
the islands and bays are for sportsmen.
And farther below Lake Ontario
takes in what Lake Erie can send her,
And the iron boats go as the mariners all know
with the Gales of November remembered.

In a musty old hall in Detroit they prayed,
in the “Maritime Sailors’ Cathedral.”
The church bell chimed ’til it rang twenty-nine times
for each man on the Edmund Fitzgerald.
The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down
of the big lake they call “Gitche Gumee.”
“Superior,” they said, “never gives up her dead
when the gales of November come early!”

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