40 years ago, a massive lake freighter tempted fate by trying to cross Lake Superior in November. It’s red hull and sides trying in vain to stop the force of the stormy waves as they crash over the top. The Edmund Fitzgerald was last seen trying to sail the 30 to 52 foot waves and battling winds as fast as 75 MPH. On November 10 the Edmund Fitzgerald sank 17 miles northwest of Whitefish bay, Located in Michigan’s upper peninsula.
All 29 of the crew were lost on that fateful night as one of the worst storms ever known on Lake Superior roar it’s fury. Many Ship Captains and sailors have call the month of November, The month of Storms. A fact still respected to this day. Named Lake Gitche Gumee by the Ojibwa tribes, Lake Superior is also called an Inland sea. Her vast deep blue waters very rarely giving up her secrets.
The 729 foot long Edmund Fitzgerald sank into 530 feet of water, Weighing 13,682 tons while empty it’s estimated that the Edmund Fitzgerald sank with engines going and hit the lake bottom going full force. Before her sinking the Edmund Fitzgerald held many records including the biggest ship of her time to work the great lakes and the biggest ship ever to sink in the great lakes.
Many memorials are being held on November 10th. Honoring the 40 year anniversary of the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald.
11 a.m. November 8,
Great Lakes Memorial
Mariner’s church of Detroit
170 E. Jefferson
Detroit, Mi 48226
Lake Superior Marine Museum
“Gales of November”
600 South Lake Ave.
Duluth, Minn 55802
Dossin Great Lakes Museum
Lost Mariner’s remembrance
During the day before this year’s Lost Mariners Remembrance, you can visit the Dossin Great Lakes Museum and learn more about the Edmund Fitzgerald on the 40 anniversary of her loss. Museum docents will provide information about the William Clay Ford pilot house and what is known of the Edmund Fitzgerald and her last voyage.
11 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., see a brief film covering the Edmund Fitzgerald’s launch at the Great Lakes Engineering Works in 1958, which includes images of the assembled crowd and a flotilla of small craft, as well as the “Raising of the Anchor” video produced by WDIV-TV, which documents the recovery of the anchor from the Detroit River.
1:30 p.m., Pam Johnson, whose father was cook aboard the Edmund Fitzgerald when it sank, will discuss her relationship with the Fitz and with other families of those lost on board.
Throughout the day, visit a small display of framed illustrations and photographs of the Edmund Fitzgerald from the Detroit Historical Society
Belle Island, Michigan
River Rouge Historical Museum
Edmund Fitzgerald Memorial service
This service commemorates the 29 lives lost when the vessel sank on November 10, 1975. The ship was built in River Rouge at the Great Lakes Engineering Works in 1958 and it’s last voyage was to Zug Island in River Rouge. The service is held in a heated tent along the Detroit River and lanterns will be placed along the dock and a bell rung 29 times for each crew member, a bagpiper will lead this event. This is the 40 year anniversary of the sinking and may be the last held at Belanger Park.
Belanger Park Dr, River Rouge, MI 48218
Iron Hulls and Turbulent water exhibit
A panel discussion is scheduled for 7 p.m. Nov. 10 at the MSU Library featuring State Archaeologist Dean Anderson and MSU professors Peter Kakela and Michael Velbel. They’ll discuss the nature and shipping of iron ore and Great Lakes shipwrecks. In addition, Robert Campbell, author of “Classic Ships of the Great Lakes,” will sign books and speak at 7 p.m. Nov. 17 at Schuler Books in Meridian Mall.
409 W. Circle drive, East Lansing,Mi
Michigan Maritime Museum
“Gales of November: The 40 Anniversary of the Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald”
7 p.m. Nov. 10 at the Michigan Maritime Museum in South Haven. Speaker Jim Spurr will discuss the perils of Lake Superior travel in November, from 1816 through the Fitzgerald sinking in 1975.
Admission is $8.
260 Dyckman Ave, South Haven, MI 49090
Great lakes Shipwreck Museum
The 40 Anniversary Memorial Ceremony
7 p.m. Nov. 10 in the main gallery at the Great Lakes Shipwreck Gallery in Whitefish Point. The museum displays the bell of the wrecked ship as well as its life boats and other artifacts. The bell will toll 29 times, once for each member of the crew, and a 30th time for all lost on the Great Lakes. The museum also will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 10.
18335 N Whitefish Point Rd, Paradise, MI 49768
National Museum of the Great lakes
Edmund Fitzgerald Memorial and Documentary preimer
Join NMGL as we commemorate the anniversary of the loss of the Edmund Fitzgerald. We will be hosting a memorial ceremony, which will be followed by the world premier of the new documentary “A Good Ship and Crew Well Seasoned: The Fitzgerald and Her Legacy”.
A reception will begin at 6:00 pm, followed by the ceremony at 7:00, and the premier at 7:30 pm.
Members are only $45, non-members are $60.
National Museum of the Great Lakes, 1701 Front St, Toledo, OH 43605, United States