When in Duluth, one must stop at the 'stich.
For those that have not yet been there, the showroom is great because you can try on the various sizes to get the right fit.
Ore cars full of stone.
There is an excursion train operating out of Duluth. Picture from their web site
No sign of any excursion train while I was there.
Riverside was a ship building town. It is now a neighborhood in Duluth. The company came in and built the town for their workers. The outfit closed in 1945. This building was the company store, school, and offices.
This building was the company hospital. Remarkably it has been refurbished and is now a care facility.
The next town south is Morgan Park. It was a planned community by US Steel. In the early 1900s US Steel wanted a mill here. This is Lake View Store and is America's first indoor shopping mall. Downtown had the mall, bank, commons, and community center. The 1916 Lake View Store had a pharmacy, department store, butcher, clothing store, hardware store, furniture store, and a general store. The second floor had a bank, dentist, barber, hair salon, billiard room, and auditorium.
This steel town had better buildings that were made of block instead of wood.
The idea behind this mill was to get steel production up here. Iron ore could be brought directly to the mill from the mines. Limestone and coal could be brought up on bulk carriers that would otherwise be empty on their return trip after hauling ore to mills further south. They thought Duluth would become a huge manufacturing center. They made rails, billet wire, nails, fence posts, steel wool, and welded wire for concrete roads. Also stuff for missile silos.
It was a good idea but the mill still only got to about 20% production capacity. It closed in 1972 putting 2,500 people out of work. There is nothing left at the site now.
This is a view of the town from the ridge. It was well laid out and very pleasant. The mill would have been to the right of the picture. The big building in the middle is the school.
I run you down to a historic area where explorers landed and stuff like that. The waypoints are on the track.
Coming back north we ride through a training center for aircraft fires. Pretty hot set-up.
Some other old town buildings. This is a combo police and fire station. Must have been great at the time. This was in a commuter town for US Steel.
Al old telephone exchange building. In the background is the replacement facility that has a lot more capacity in a lot less space.
Looking north toward the mouth of the harbor.
Be sure to ride the Skyline Drive. The southern most end is gravel but nice.
You'll pass through the Spirit Mountain Adventure Area. In summer you can ride one of these down the ski hill.
Minnesota's only seaport. But . . . they do have access to the Mississippi River which gets them to world ports as well.
The Skyline Drive runs the scenic contours of some ancient beaches along the high ridges above Duluth. Very scenic ride.
Major Bong's memorial bridge. The climbing curves remind me of his being a fighter pilot.
Ship loading at the DMIR ore dock.
Early 1900s doing the same thing.
Enger Tower. Climb it for a nice view.
Overlooking Rice's Point from the Skyline Drive. This point separates the inner and outer harbors. You can see the sandbar which also hosts an airport.
The natural harbor entrance.
Inner harbor DMIR ore docks.
Lift bridge we'll visit later on.
Antenna farm on the Skyline Drive.
This concrete street was constructed over 100 years ago. It is the oldest concrete road in Minnesota. It is in great shape.
Whatever they did back then they did right.
Years ago some guy wanted a scenic drive. He ran a road down a waterway and crossed the river seven times with some elegant wooden bridges.
The wooden bridges blew out with floods and after the city got the property (donated) they put in stone bridges. A nice twisting and descending ride down the waterway in Seven Bridges Park.
In 1920 three black circus workers were lynched by an angry mob in Duluth based on a rumor that six blacks raped a teenage girl. A medical exam revealed no assault. The police chief lined up 150 circus workers and the two young people making the assault claim picked out six. A mob of 5-10K formed up outside the jail, broke down the doors, grabbed these guys, beat them, and after a quick phony trial hung them from a pole across the street from this memorial. Some people in the area already had ill-will about blacks coming north to get jobs (like at US Steel). The National Guard came to town the next day to restore order. Previously a Finnish immigrant had been lynched for dodging the draft during WWI. He was found dead in a park after being tarred and feathered. Ugly history for this town.