Duluth Harbor and Waterfront Archives - Perfect Duluth Day

Duluth Harbor and Waterfront Posts

Postcard from the Grain Elevators on the Duluth-Superior Harbor

This undated postcard shows the Cargill and Belt Line grain elevators on the Duluth-Superior Harbor a good long while ago.

Duluth Waterfront Aerial Photo Circa 1903

This image from the Minnesota Digital Library, contributed from the Kathryn A. Martin Library Archives & Special Collections is estimated to be from the year 1903 — 120 years ago. It shows the Duluth Shipping Canal prior to construction of the Aerial Bridge, along with views of Canal Park, Rice’s Point and the old West End.

Postcard from a Section of the Duluth Harbor and Railroad Yards

This postcard, published by the Henricksen Agency of Duluth circa 1930, shows the Duluth waterfront, railroad yards and Aerial Lift Bridge.

St. Paul nonprofit is new owner of Duluth North Pierhead Light

Minnesota Public Radio reports the historic lighthouse at the entrance to the Duluth Ship Canal is St. Paul-based Rethos, a nonprofit that plans to open the lighthouse to tours.

Postcard from Tugboats Record and Sinclair

Icebreaking in the Duluth Harbor is expected to start this week, with the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Spar clearing the way for the start of another shipping season.

The postcard above is from the early 1900s and shows the tugboats Record and Sinclair breaking ice in the Duluth Harbor.

Postcard from Skyline of Business District from Harbor

This postcard from the early-to-middle 20th century shows Duluth’s business district as seen from the harbor.

Northland Larder serving up cured meats on Duluth’s waterfront

New among Duluth’s food trucks and trailers this summer is Northland Larder. The “immobile mobile food trailer” is parked near the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center between the Vista Fleet and the pedestrian bridge that crosses the Minnesota Slip into Canal Park. It features a shaded dining area, synthetic turf and Loll furniture.

Flame Excursion Boat during Portorama 1962

This photograph by Lyman E. Nylander was shot 60 years ago during the Duluth Seaway Portorama of 1962. The 108-passenger Flame served as a tourist excursion boat in Duluth from 1961 to 1973. It was replaced by the 256-passenger Vista Queen.

The Flame is now operating in Buffalo, N.Y.

Duluth Harbor Circa 1870s

Although this old photograph is labeled “Duluth Harbor,” it’s not what we think of today as the harbor. Based on a similar photo posted to Perfect Duluth Day in 2020 and the resulting discussion surrounding it in the comments, it was determined that the tall building shown in our photo here is the Lake Superior & Mississippi Railroad Grain Elevator A and was located roughly where the Northland Vietnam Veterans Memorial is today.

The Slice: Duluth Harbor Cams

Take a look at the sights and sounds of Lake Superior via web camera at duluthharborcam.com.

In its series The Slice, WDSE-TV presents short “slices of life” that capture the events and experiences that bring people together and speak to what it means to live up north.

Postcard from Dredging in the Duluth Harbor

Keeping Duluth’s shipping channels open requires occasional dredging. This undated postcard offers a look at the process in the early 20th century.

Duluth Boat Course

The Library of Congress has three photos on file labeled “Duluth Boat Course.” Above they are stitched together in Perfect Duluth Day’s attempt to see if they were intended to be used as a panorama. It almost kind of works.

Below are the three separate images, which show much better detail on their own. The photos are attributed to Bain News Service and dated “between ca. 1915 and ca. 1920.”

Daybreak on the Lake

Footage from the Duluth Harbor Cam of dawn breaking over Lake Superior on Aug. 4.

Airplane View of Grain Elevators, Lift Bridge and Duluth Harbor

This undated postcard from Zenith Interstate News Company offers a view of grain elevators on Rice’s Point, the Duluth-Superior Harbor, Aerial Lift Bridge and other waterfront locations.

The caption on the back reads:

Duluth-Superior Harbor ranks second in the world, second only to New York City in tonnage handled annually. More than ten thousand vessels arrive and depart annually from the Duluth-Superior Harbor. In this picture you see featured part of the great grain elevators and docks in the harbor. There are also the world’s largest iron ore and coal docks in this magnificent harbor.

PDD Video Lab: Cruising the Duluth Harbor on the Flame

In this edition of the PDD Video Lab we take a cruise with Lorraine and the kids on the Flame excursion boat in 1964. At the midway point of the video, the scene switches to the Edgewater Motel.