Lost ship's legend lives on





The vicious, swirling storm that battered the Great Lakes region in late October inspired talk of a similar gale that brought about one of the great mysteries of the 20th century.

The mighty ore carrier Edmund Fitzgerald, one of the largest ships on America's inland seas, seemed invincible in its bulk and mass, but it was no match for a howling Lake Superior gale on November 10, 1975.

A day earlier, the 729-foot behemoth, operated by mineral company Oglebay Norton, had chugged away from port in Superior, Wisconsin, on a course that would take it across the length of Lake Superior, through the Soo Locks and down Lake Huron to Detroit, Michigan, a journey that should have taken about 48 hours.

With the storm bearing down on them the next morning, the Fitzgerald and another freighter, the Arthur M. Anderson, took a northerly route, hoping the Canadian shore would provide a buffer. Icy rain was driven sideways by hurricane-force wind and monstrous 25-foot waves crashed over the main deck, which rode less than 12 feet above the waterline....



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