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Edmund Fitzgerald sinking remains a Great Lakes mystery 40 years later

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posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 05:38 PM
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It was exactly 40 years ago Tuesday when "the winds of November came early" and took the legendary Great Lakes freighter Edmund Fitzgerald and 29 souls to the bottom of Lake Superior, a disaster memorialized in book and song that remains mired in maritime mystery.

The 729-foot ore-carrier, called the "Queen of the Great Lakes" sank during a brutal storm on the eastern section of the lake, but the exact cause of its demise continues to elude experts and historians. From the plausible explanations offered in Gordon Lightfoot's haunting classic, "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald," to crackpot theories involving space aliens, theories abound as to what caused one of the 20th century's best-chronicled American shipwrecks.


I have always found the Great Lakes Region and especially Lake Superior to be a fascinating and magical place. I travel to the Upper Peninsula every few years and it never fails to refresh my sense of wonder at the beautiful area and surrounding Hiawatha National Forest and Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.

I have been to the Great Lakes Shipwreck museum at Whitefish Point (near Paradise, MI) maybe a half-dozen times and am always left in awe of the great ship...the Edmund Fitzgerald and the mystery behind her sinking. As you walk through the museum the Gordon Lightfoot song 'The Edmund Fitzgerald' starts playing and it is surreal as you are surrounded by pieces of the the old ships, their cargo and stories from all of the wrecks in the area. The original bell from the the Fitz has been recovered and you can see other memorabilia recovered from the ship and other wrecks as you investigate the museum.

It is a great area for scuba diving because the water in Lake Superior never gets much above 50 degrees fahrenheit so and the ships, even the wooden ones, are well preserved. I highly recommend everyone travel to the region at some point in their life. It is full of Native American stories, ghost stories and many things that still aren't understood or known today.

The sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald is probably one of the most well known tales from the region.



Sour ce
edit on 2015/11/10 by Metallicus because: Spelling Correction




posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 05:51 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

God rest there soul's, one theory I remember was a freak wave may have swamped her.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 06:43 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus
I have pondered the possibility that it was sunk on purpose for insurance, but it's questionable, since there doesn't seem to be any indication they had financial troubles. It could have just been the right storm at the right time. RIP gentlemen.

edit on 11/10/2015 by Klassified because: (no reason given)

edit on 11/10/2015 by Klassified because: gwammar



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 07:12 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus


My wife officially hates you now metallicus.
She has that damn song stuck in her head now...

But I'm just like you. I've always been facinated by shipwrecks.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 07:42 PM
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a reply to: Bluntone22
There are worse songs to have stuck in your head. Really, there are.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 07:45 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus
That is one of the saddest and most beautiful songs I've ever heard. I've always liked it. The imagery in it is haunting.
As for the disaster, it's a horrible thing to have happened. I don't think anyone will find out what really happened.
I found news footage where they found a body of a crewman. According to the video, it's the only one they've ever found.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 08:07 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus

My understanding of the sinking was that the ends of the Edmund Fitzgerald ended up on the peaks of two waves with the middle in the trough between them. The weight just snapped it in the middle and it sunk like a stone. I don't think there is much doubt of it. The pieces on the bottom seem to indicate that as well.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 08:34 PM
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a reply to: Metallicus
I just found this and thought that it would be a great addition to your thread. It's supposed to be radio traffic during the search for the Edmund Fitzgerald. Somebody might find it interesting.



posted on Nov, 10 2015 @ 09:42 PM
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originally posted by: Bluntone22
a reply to: Metallicus


My wife officially hates you now metallicus.
She has that damn song stuck in her head now...

But I'm just like you. I've always been facinated by shipwrecks.


It is a very catchy tune, lol.

The Museum cycles the song every 20 minutes or so and it can get stuck in your head very easily. Lake Superior and the UP are simply amazing. I hope everyone gets a chance to visit it at some point during their life.

The Lake itself is huge and deep. You can definitely see how it could sink a ship...even a large one. The Fitz was the biggest of the fleet at the time so it was surprising when it went down.



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