Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald

Whitefish Point, which juts out into Lake Superior, is called the "Graveyard of the Great Lakes." It's the site of 550 shipwrecks. The latest and most famous was the Edmund Fitzgerald, which sank in 1975 with 29 souls on board. It was the subject of the 1976 hit by Gordon Lightfoot, The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Here she is in better days.

The Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum in Whitefish Point has a terrific exhibit on "The Fitz," including the bell, which was recovered in 1995 and replaced with another bell engraved with the names of those who were lost. The cause of the 729-foot long ship's demise is still not known, although it occurred in a huge storm.

The first commercial vessel lost on Lake Superior was in 1816, a British schooner named "Invincible." Probably a bad name...

The Whitefish Point lighthouse, first lit in 1849.

Nearby are the beautiful Tahquamenon Falls. The amber color is caused by tanin leached from the Cedar, Spruce & Hemlock in the swamps drained by the river.

From 1870 to 1910, the River was used to transport logs from the wilderness to sawmills. The logs would just be shoved over the 50-foot falls.

These Yoopers are really friendly -- even the wildlife!


  1. Beautiful picutres!! And such friendly moose. The moose over here in Wyoming aren't that friendly.

  2. So sad about the shipwrecks - 550 of them - hard to imagine. I remember that moose - he was friendly.

  3. My BIL, who was born and raised on the shore of Lake Michigan, served one summer in the late 1950s on "Lake Boats" (like the Edmund Fitzgerald). That was enough for him....



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