Apr 10-04

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2004: April: Apr 10-04
Michipicoten in Marquette    ...scroll down to share comments
Photo by Chris Koskiniemi

Toivo from Toivola on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 09:13 am:

A freighter unloading her cargo at the Upper Harbor Ore Dock in Marquette is a fascinating sight, even if you've seen it a hundred times. Chris Koskiniemi must have gone on a road trip to grab this shot of the Michipicoten doing her thing!

Here's a bit of history on this particular ore dock for the trivia buffs in the crowd: Built in 1911, spanning 1300 feet and 75 feet high, it was the first dock in the world constructed with steel reinforced concrete instead of wooden timbers. Marquette serves as a Lake Superior port city, for coal delivered to the electric company generating plants near Presque Isle and in South Marquette. Iron ore is transported on 1000 foot freighters to the manufacturing centers in lower Michigan, Indiana and Illinois from this dock also.

Sure is an impressive engineering feat way back 93 years ago, to have constructed such an important piece of U.P. shipping history!

By tc in MI on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 09:18 am:

Ha!! First post. I'm at work and checked to see today's pix one minute after it was posted. Happy early Easter toe veryone, and may the Good Lord bless you!

By tom on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 09:33 am:

This is a great picture but the freighter is loading taconite..they unload coal on the other side of the dock into a bin and then it is transferred by conveyor belt over the highway to the power plant. Coal is also unloaded downtown at the municipal power plant.

By Mike Mehrman, MI on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 09:57 am:

Does anyone know where I can get one of those "Say Yah to the UP...." bumper stickers? Thanks

By David Antikainen on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 10:11 am:

Mike...Go to dayoopers.com, and go to there web store, they have all kinds of yooper stuff...

By yooper in Eagle Harbor on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 10:12 am:

Mike mehrman try COPPER WORLD in Calumet.

By Jean, West Texas on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 10:32 am:

Here in West Texas it is a typical "spring yooper day" with temps in the low 50's and a blustery north wind....far cry from the 80 degree sunshine we had yesterday. Houghton looks to be a bit on the gloomy side also today.. Happy Easter to all.

By D&D on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 10:46 am:

Just want to say HOWDY, This is my first time on this page.
Thought i'd try my hand at it!!

Also i want to give a BIG howdy, to family in the

Everone have a Blessed EASTER.


By JS in WA state on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 11:27 am:

Mike was right. That bumper sticker is indeed on the dayoppers.com site. Here's the link:


By Margaret, Amarillo, TX on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 11:31 am:

Boy or boy does this bring back memories. My brother and I lived in Ashland for eight years and this same scene was at then end of "Gramma's street." Granpa and Daddy worked on the docks there. Here in AMA there is no way you can explain an ore/coal dock to a kid because there isn't a big enough puddle of water to even envision a dock (ha ha ha). Love to all,

By musical yooper on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 11:44 am:

I've gotten my "say yah" stickers from Elderly Instruments in Lansing too

By Mary Drew on her day off at Pasty Central :-> on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 12:51 pm:

Tom, pointed out that the freighter pictured above is loading taconite, because they unload coal on the opposite side of the dock. Thanks to Rick Anderson, over at Skypixs, we have a view of that process. Check out the greenery too...it's not that far away now! :->



JAD, Oskar, MI on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 01:08 pm:

I nominate one of the ski-pics for the 2005 calendar.

By Julie Barrie on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 01:43 pm:

those are great pics mary and so darn clear...
Happy Easter to all... dont eat to much choco.

By Not the Easter Bunny anymore on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 01:50 pm:

Oops! I forgot to buy the chocolate!! Kids are all grown and don't have grandchildren, yet. I still have time to pick some up! (Hehe- 1/2 price starting on Mon!)

LOVE those pics of the dock and the story of it being the first steel reinforced concrete one in the WORLD- so proud of my Yoop.

By Bob Brown, Alabama on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 01:55 pm:

Does anyone have any idea of how long it takes to load a freighter with taconite. How many tons in what period of time???

Also how long to unload the coal. How many tons in what period of time.

Beautiful pics and a grest visual explanation of material handling on the Great Lakes.

By Mary Lou on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 02:37 pm:

Happy Easter Greetings from Escanaba!!....It looks pretty positive for Escanaba to become a Port City on Lake Michigan.....I think that would be SUPER for the whole UP economy.....

By Mary Ann, WY on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 02:56 pm:

Enjoy seeing the photo of the boats. Memories of growing up in the UP. Really enjoy the Skypix photos also. Wish Rick would do some photos in the Manistique area.

Happy Easter!

By Roudy Mi on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 03:05 pm:

Loaded 66,600 ton of western coal in 8 hours onto the Paul R . She can unload at a rate of up to 10,000 tons per hour.

By ed on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 03:45 pm:

Here is another picture from SKY PIX showing the Shiras generating plant in downtown Marquette with the piles of coal on the dock. This dock also receives loads of limestone that is trucked out to Cleveland Cliffs at the mines and is used in the process of making taconite.(Rick at Sky Pix is my nephew)

By Dave of Mohawk on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 04:35 pm:

How fast a vessel can load is usually restricted by her ability to pump off ballast. One of the fastest on the lakes is the Stewart J. Cort. She has individual pumps for each of her tanks, which is an unusual design. Christmas Eve of 1990 we loaded 56,000 tons of taconite on the Cort at Burlington Northern dock 5 in Superior Wi in 3 hours and 50 minutes. Not much port time for the crew. She is capable of discharging 20,000 tons per hour, although she has never done it because they have to unload into a hopper and there aren't any hoppers that are able to handle that amount, so average unloading time is about 7 to 9 hours.

By Bill in Bham. Ala. on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 09:19 pm:

Bob Brown in Alabama great question and I beleive your in Montgomery,Alabama originally from Lake Linden and thanks to Dave of Mohawk for the answer. Dave do you go to SLIMS in the early mornings for coffee?

By Steve the flying and boating troll on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 09:24 pm:

I delivered mail one day with a friend who worked the Westcott at Detroit. We serviced the Cort.
A year later, the Westcott was sunk and nobody gets a free ride anymore. Liablilty and lawyers. I had a once in a lifetime experience delivering mail in a bucket to a 1000 footer that towered 8 stories over our little mailboat. That mailboat has it's own zipcode by the way and provides anything that the big ships ask for from bearings to whatever...........plus the mail

By Ray Albuquerque NM. on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 10:22 pm:

Awesome pics of the docks. Nice to see some docks with activity. Last several times I went through Ashland there was no activity at all. Guess that port is all but closed. Margaret, the same can be said for Albuquerque. No docks in sight.

By Ray Albuquerque NM. on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 10:23 pm:

By the way, Happy Easter everybody.

By Ken and Mimi from da UP on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 10:36 pm:

MICHIPICOTEN'S unloading boom is swung out over the side to make room for the loading chutes to swing down to the hatches. While I was aboard the HENRY R. PLATT Jr. we loaded ore here. Don't think it was taconite yet in '59 and '60. Really nice shots from Skypix! That must be flood damage yet, left of the power co. conveyor belt, 'eh? Got mail from the old WESCOTT, in the Detroit River, too.

By Alice, Ventura, CA on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 11:55 pm:

I agree with JAD Oskar,MI. The Skypix would be a great picture for the 2005 calendar.

By Therese Dimet on Saturday, April 10, 2004 - 11:59 pm:

Happy Easter to Art & Claire chaput Barbara Ginch Anderson also Rick an his wife keep up the good works with the pictures
Therese Dimet

an any of my relative up there

By Mary Lou on Sunday, April 11, 2004 - 07:24 am:

...guess I should add:...Escanaba already has ore and coal docks for large carriers,(it is really already a "port") .....however, it looks like in ten years or so we will be able to ship other product to markets on Lake Michigan....a "Port City",...if the plan goes through....

By Kate, CA on Sunday, April 11, 2004 - 01:57 pm:

In the upper pic that Mary sent I think there's a glimpse of the edge of the "hot pond" where, as college students, we used to enjoy jumpin' in for a dip, regardless of cool temps outside....years later it was illegal to swim there.... (Wonder what that effluent contains?) Anyone else recall swimming there? As an 18 yr. old, my room mate and myself climbed to the top of the dock at the invitation of a couple of railroad workers who let us ride in the caboose to Ishpeming and back again....It was fascinating to see the cars unload into the ship via the huge chutes. Ah, 'twas a different time.

By Mike-Transplanted Yooper-Redford, Mi on Monday, April 12, 2004 - 09:15 am:

Lookit' at all 'dem LS&I ore jennies. For all the non-railroad buffs, LS&I stands for Lake Superior & Ishpeming railroad. It is the name of the railroad that hauls the ore pellets down from the Tilden & Empire Mines. Perhaps you've seen the green & white locomotives "shuffling" cars up on the dock.
Very interesting to watch as an ore freighter is being loaded here.

By Roger Midland, Mi. on Saturday, April 17, 2004 - 11:32 pm:

When was the old dock torn down at Marquette. There was some talk of putting a restaurant on top of it. Guess that didn't work out. I climbed on top to look at the worker sheds and rails and ties.

By kristen, brooklyn,ny on Thursday, April 29, 2004 - 11:50 am:

I seem to remember people wearing green "say ya to
da up" t-shirts. Is that a figment of my memory or could I
acutally find one of them? They don't have them on
dayoopers site.


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