Through Gordon Lightfoot’s song, the Edmund Fitzgerald has become an icon for the power of the Great Lakes. Nowhere can you see it better than Joseph Fulton’s video of The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald, a fantastic piece of film-making that you need to see if you haven’t already.
What I suspect that a lot of people forget (because I know I do) is that the S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald was just one of many ships plying the Great Lakes. About the photo above, Bill writes:
My father-in-law took this shot. He told my wife that he wasn’t taking a picture of the Big Fitz; he just wanted a photo of the locks, and this happened to be in the photo. Unfortunately, the negative is long gone and this photo was printed on some sort of rough-coated matte paper so that it could be mailed as a postcard.
My father-in-law didn’t realize until months after the sinking that he had a picture of this vessel.
The photo was taken in August 1975; the Edmund Fitzgerald sank November 10th of that year. It was, ironically, the sinking that made this ship famous. After it was built in 1958, until 1971, it was the largest ship on the Great Lakes, but other than that, it was just another anonymous working vessel plying the waters between Wisconsin and Michigan.
- Gallery of Edmund Fitzgerald photos from the Detroit Free Press
- Photos from the launch of the Edmund Fitzgerald on June 7th, 1958 and an account of the Edmund Fitzgerald’s maiden season
- SS Edmund Fitzgerald on Wikipedia
- History of the Edmund Fitzgerald from the Marine Historical Society of Detroit
- The Edmund Fitzgerald slideshow on Flickr and Wade Streeter’s Edmund Fitzgerald set