Tony Rogers posted this photo to Perfect Duluth Day ten years ago today — Dec. 7, 2007. It features the infamous round column from the sand- and gravel-hopper ruins known as “Uncle Harvey’s Mausoleum.”
Underwater footage of Uncle Harvey’s Mausoleum off the Duluth Lakewalk in relatively clear conditions. First I videoed the collapsed column in 9 feet of water, Then because visibility was so good, I swam around the base of the building structure too. That is 16 feet deep according to a depth chart I saw once.
Ruins of the column that collapsed this winter at “Uncle Harvey’s Mausoleum” off the Duluth Lakewalk. Water is really murky as its proximity to the shipping lanes stirs up a lot of silt this time of year. I intend to keep trying to get clearer shots but this is all I could manage during this initial foray. Water depth: 9 feet. Basically what you’re seeing here is a base of concrete sprouting metal bars and telephone-pole-like wooden posts that in some cases are splintered or splayed. The tops of some posts were sheared off and smoothed by ice sheet movement and lie just below the surface. The concrete top of the column lies on its side at the bottom, along with eroded steel jacketing that sheathed the base.
I was very cautious during these dives as the danger of getting snagged or nicked in the gloom was fearful to contemplate. I heard nearby swimmers claim a member of their party had scraped himself on the posts while swimming. Not to be a bringdown but this area has to be considered a hazard to swimmers and boaters alike. It is also the most interesting thing to look at in Lake Superior right now.
In a follow-up to the “Has a little of Uncle Harvey gone missing?” caper, the Duluth News Tribune reported on Sunday that a three-person team of St. Louis County Rescue Squad members, working with a remotely operated underwater vehicle, located the concrete column from Uncle Harvey’s Mausoleum largely intact on Saturday afternoon in about 9 feet of water. City Pages put together this edit of the underwater video.
Duluth’s megalithic ruins. I’d taken a spot of footage late last winter, and I’ve been looking forward to a summer shoot just like this to complete a video exploration of the Cribs, aka Uncle Harvey’s Mausoleum. Sure enough these kind party people let me video their fun-loving attempts to best a wiggly slackline here on the late summer date of Sept. 9.
The water was very cold, it must be said, but I seem to have experienced a bodywide mutagenic change that can take it. I look forward to a shoot next summer with warm, crystal clear water; maybe I can get video even farther down in and around this quintessentially Duluth structure.