View of Duluth from Skyline Parkway

This undated photo of Downtown Duluth, Canal Park, the Aerial Lift Bridge, etc. is from Gallagher’s Studio of Photography. The biggest clue to when the photo was shot is the scrapyard where the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center stands today. So we know the image was captured prior to construction of the Duluth Arena in 1966. Are there any other clues in there?

Seen in this image, by the way, are the old Warehouse (or Wholesale) District buildings on Fifth Avenue West that were discussed in detail on the post “Mystery Photo #84: Building near Duluth Arena“: Leithead Drug, Patrick Woolen Mills, Stone-Ordean-Wells, Kelley-Howe-Thomson, etc.


Tony D.

about 3 years ago

Looks like the 1889 Duluth National Bank is still standing (triangular tower cap near left side of image) and that came down in 1957. And the Medical Arts Building is standing, so it is after 1932.


about 3 years ago

Going back to the comments on Mystery Photo #84, it seems like the building complex with the giant smokestack on the left of this photo might help date the Gallagher Studio photo.

These buildings are still standing in the “View of Duluth from Skyline Parkway” but were at least partially demolished by 1963.

In this photo, also by Gallagher Studios, questionably dated from 1962, not only are the buildings still intact but most of the smokestack is still up.

So this view from Skyline must have been taken after the smokestack was taken down but before the left half of the building complex was demolished. From Tony's observation that the top of the Duluth National Bank can still be seen in all of these photos, the 1962 date must not be correct, but the building complex's progressive destruction suggests the photo was taken as the building complex was going down in preparation for the redevelopment, and therefore likely quite close to when the demolition of Duluth National Bank was completed in 1959.

More details might be visible in this high definition photo from Minnesota Reflections taken from nearly the exact same perspective by the same studio at what seems to be around the same time. It is not the same photograph, however, as the shadow on the back city hall suggest it was taken earlier in the day, the bridge is only half way up, and another boat is in the harbor.

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