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More than one Edmund Fitzgerald has sunk in the Great Lakes
One Edmund Fitzgerald was lost 38 years ago this Sunday; the other went down nearly 130 years ago


Kevin Niedermier
The Edmund Fitzgerald at the bottom of Lake Superior. That ship sank 92 years after the Edmond Fitzgerald went down in Lake Erie.
Courtesy of Fredrick J. Shannon
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In The Region:

This Sunday marks the 38th anniversary of the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald in Lake Superior. But it wasn’t the first ship of the same name to go down in the Great Lakes. Historian Betty Lou Higgins of Elyria says just about this time 130 years ago, the other Edmond Fitzgerald sank during a heavy storm in Lake Erie off Long Point, Ontario.

LISTEN: A family history

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“It was built by the same Fitzgerald family that owned the famous Fitzgerald. And, in fact, the gentleman’s name was Edmond Fitzgerald who built it. He was Edmond with an 'O.'
"In 1870, he built the lumber-and-grain-carrying, two-masted schooner the Edmond Fitzgerald with an 'O.'  That’s the one that went down in 1883.It was his nephew, Edmund with a 'U' for which the second Edmund Fitzgerald was named.”  

All seven crew members of the first Edmond Fitzgerald were lost. In 1975, all 29 people on the second Edmund Fitzgerald died when that ship sank during a strong storm. It’s estimated that since the 1600’s, more than 6,000 ships have gone down the Great Lakes.

Listener Comments:

I have a sinking feeling about this.

Posted by: Joan (C-Falls) on November 10, 2013 8:11AM
This is mysteriously interesting ... as well as so tragic. Are there any photos of this "new find"???

Posted by: jo Davis (Olmsted Twp) on November 9, 2013 2:11AM
This was interesting. I never knew about the first sinking.

Posted by: Brian Barb (Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio) on November 8, 2013 6:11AM
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