The lake superior Maritime Visitor center in Duluth,Minnesota showcases life on Lake Superior
with two levels packed full of exhibits.
The interactive exhibits focus on how the ore docks and locks work. There is also a boat's bridge with a map table and giant helm or steering wheel that can be turned.
The upper level has 3 living quarters cabins, each depicted in detail. A schooner, a freighter and a Passenger steamer. These cabins give a hint of the small and tight living environment of the old ships that sailed Lake Superior.
There are also glass displays featuring models of many different classes of boats and ships that sailed Lake Superior. From ore loaded ships to canoes hauling furs and pelts. A special display features the Edmond Fitzgerald with a detailed model.
The Maritime center also plays home to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. A section of the upper level is dedicated to the history of the Corps of Engineers and shows the advancements that have been made. Displays showing early underwater diving suits and pictures of the men who served here.
There are geological displays also, showing what the lake bottoms look like.
The outside of the Maritime center has a beautiful view of the Duluth-Superior harbor. In front of the center sit the Tugboat Bayfield, The Bayfield was used to move crane barges around the Harbor. It had also acted as a ferry for workers. The Bayfield was built in Holland Michigan in 1954 and retired in 1995 and put on display in at the maritime center in 1999.
The St. Lawrence seaway allows ships to travel from Duluth-Superior Harbor and St. Louis river to the Atlantic ocean. The seaway is 300 feet wide and 29 feet deep. It was first created in 1871 by the city of Duluth and then taken over by the Corps of engineers in 1874.
The lighthouses that line the Harbor provided a means to navigate the harbor. The Inner range lighthouse was built in 1901 and sits nearest to the Aerial bridge. Next the Duluth outer range lighthouse that sits at the end of the 1600 ft. pier. It was built in 1874. The 3rd lighthouse is the North Pier built in 1910 and sitting across from the Duluth outer range lighthouse. It also sits at the end of a long pier.
The Aerial Bridge was built as a means of connecting the lands after the seaway was dug. Built in 1901 the bridge was first designed with a Gondola car that carried people, horses and wagons and automobiles across the water for a nickel. The gondola ran for 25 years before being changed to a Aerial lift bridge.
Five ship artifacts line the walkway along the shore. 4 massive ship anchors that braved the Lake superior waters. Some of the anchors date back to the 1800's. There is also a Capstan that was recovered from the sunken Schooner, The SAMUAL P. ELY at two harbors,Mn in 1896.
for more information go to: www.LSMMA.com
Lake Superior Maritime Visitor Center (LSMVC)
600 South Lake Avenue
Duluth, MN 55802
10:00 am – 9:00 pm
October to December
10:00 am - 4:30pm