Shipping observers were shocked recently when a newspaper listing of vessel passages reported that PAUL L. TIETJEN had passed upbound at the Soo on Monday, October 3rd. The report was surprising in that TIETJEN was laid up at Toledo at the end of July and seemed destined never to run again. For those who might have been tempted to believe the report, we can now confirm that it was without foundation in reality for the TIETJEN was and still is languishing in the Frog Pond at Toledo along with GEORGE M. STEINBRENNER. The possibility of PAUL L. TIETJEN seeing further service would seem remote.
As of late October, the graving dock at the Lorain yard of the American Shipbuilding Company was occupied by the carferry CITY OF MILWAUKEE and the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker MACKINAW, the latter vessel undergoing extensive repairs.
The stern and about 200 feet of the hull of the Hanna 1000-foot self-unloader GEORGE A. STINSON are well on the way at AmShip's Lorain shipyard. This vessel will be the next new carrier to be commissioned from AmShip. In addition, the yard is making good progress on the construction of a 1,000-foot self-unloader for the United States Steel Corporation. As of late October, the stern and a good portion of the after hull section of this boat were taking shape but little of the superstructure had yet been erected.
U.S. Steel has released details of its other 1,000-footer which will be built as Hull 718 of the Bay Shipbuilding Corp. at Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin. Fabrication of sections of the boat has been in progress since February but her keel has not yet been laid. She will be 105 feet in breadth and will have a capacity of approximately 58,000 long tons of taconite. Cargo will feed onto a single conveyor at the bottom of the hold and will be unloaded via a "transverse shuttleboom" which will be located directly in front of the superstructure aft. She will not carry the traditional type of boom. Her bow will be very bluff and diagrams of the boat indicate that she will have a completely flush deck without raised forecastle. Her 20,000 h.p. diesels will reportedly give her a loaded speed at full power in excess of 16 miles per hour. She is scheduled for delivery during the 1979 season.
Elsewhere in these pages, we have mentioned that the Ford Motor Company's JOHN DYKSTRA passed down the Welland Canal October 19-20. We now learn that she loaded ore at Pointe Noire, Quebec, and was back up the Welland on October 30th. Meanwhile we have heard that there is a distinct possibility that Ford's WILLIAM CLAY FORD will also be voyaging down to the St. Lawrence River in the near future.
A surprise visitor in the Welland Canal on October 30 was the Hansand Steamship Corporation's bulk carrier JOSEPH H. THOMPSON which was downbound with coal from Sandusky for Hamilton. It is believed that she would be heading down the St. Lawrence for iron ore after delivering her coal cargo.
The tanker IMPERIAL LONDON, her move to the Caribbean aborted as a result of a lack of funds, was back in Ramey's Bend at Humberstone by October 29. It is as yet unclear whether Marine Salvage Ltd. will be seeking another buyer for the steamer or whether she will be dismantled there. She is presently sporting a freshly-painted bottom, the result of her drydocking at Whitby in anticipation of her projected move to southern climes.
The first of a new series of 730-foot bulk carriers built in South Korea for Federal Commerce and Navigation Ltd., the FEDERAL SCHELDE, arrived in Toronto on October 31st with a cargo of Australian sugar for the Redpath plant. FEDERAL RHINE and FEDERAL CALUMET will also be bringing sugar to Toronto this autumn. FEDERAL SCHELDE is not a good looking boat; in fact, she might charitably be described as being downright homely. She is far too long to fit into the Jarvis Street slip at Toronto where the Redpath Sugar warehouse is located and the sight of this ugly monster, fully a third of her length protruding into the Bay and the top of her pilothouse almost level with the peaked roof of the warehouse even when she was fully loaded, was enough to make even the most casual shipwatcher stand agape.
THE INTERNATIONAL, (a) WILLIAM H. WARNER, was officially rechristened (c) MAXINE at South Chicago on October 18th by her new owner, the E.D.C. Holding Company. The odd part of the affair was that the steamer was laid up at the time, a victim of the Minnesota iron ore miners' strike.
Speaking of the miners' strike, readers would do well to watch for several other U.S. vessel operators to jump on the bandwagon and send their boats down the Seaway for ore. We would also recommend a trip to the Welland Canal one of these fine fall days. Vessel traffic of such proportions has seldom been seen since the 1950's when the canallers were still running.
Reproduced for the Web with the permission of the Toronto Marine Historical Society.