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Great lake freighter

When launched on June 8, 1958, SS Edmund Fitzgerald was the largest ship on North America's Great Lakes. Nicknamed the "Mighty Fitz", "Fitz", or "Big Fitz".

For seventeen years the Fitzgerald carried taconite iron ore from mines near Duluth, Minnesota, to iron works in Detroit, Toledo, and other Great Lakes ports. As a "workhorse" she set seasonal haul records six times, often beating her own previous record.  Her size, record-breaking performance, and "DJ captain" endeared the Fitzgerald to boat watchers.  Captain Peter Pulcer was known for piping music day or night over the ship's intercom system while passing through the St. Clair and Detroit Rivers (between Lakes Huron and Erie), and entertaining spectators at the Soo Locks (between Lakes Superior and Huron) with a running commentary about the Fitzgerald.

On the afternoon of November 9, 1975, carrying a full cargo of ore pellets, the Edmund Fitzgerald embarked on her voyage from Superior, Wisconsin. En route to a steel mill near Detroit, Michigan, she joined a second freighter, the SS Arthur M. Anderson. By the next day the two ships were caught in the midst of a severe winter storm on Lake Superior, with near hurricane-force winds and waves up to 35 feet high. Shortly after 7:10 p.m. the Fitzgerald suddenly sank in Canadian waters 530 feet deep.  Although the Fitzgerald had reported being in difficulty earlier, no distress signals were sent before she sank. Her crew of 29 all perished, and no bodies were recovered.

The sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald is the most famous disaster in the history of Great Lakes shipping, and is the subject of Gordon Lightfoot's hit song, "The Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald." 

The wreck & sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald has been a subject fascinating many people. How a storm on Lake Superior could take down a ship that had a length of 2 city blocks with such speed that no distress call could be made? The precise cause of her sinking remains a mystery.

Edmund Fitzgerald remained the largest freighter on the great lakes for 17 years, until sunk.


This model of the Edmund Fitzgerald features:

- Superior hollow hull construction (very important), weighing less than 10 lbs  (A solid hull of this model would be over 30 lbs which feels like a heavy toy rather than an art piece.)

- Hollow superstructure is comprised of many individual thin pieces of wood glued together, not several solid pieces of wood stacking on top one another

- Windows are cutouts (not black decals), thanks to the hollow structures

- >95% of parts are wood and metal

46" long x 9.5 tall x 5" wide    $2,300   S & H is $90  


"Returned from vacation to find my model of the Fitzgerald.  I opened the box and examined the model yesterday.  It seems to have arrived in great shape.  The ship looks wonderful...Captain Mark O."