Duluth Minnesota's Playground

15 Interesting Facts on Duluth’s Shipping

Home / 15 Interesting Facts on Duluth's Shipping

Canal park is known for being one of the major port cities in the United States. With hundreds of ships visiting each year, and a one of a kind lift bridge, it has also become a huge tourist destination as well. We’ve collected some of the most interesting facts on Duluth’s shipping industry and how it came to be!


If you are also interested in any other Duluth shipping news, be sure to check out our shipping schedule page.





Duluth Shipping


-The actual canal started being built in 1870 and was finished in 1871


-There is an old legend that the canal was built in 3 days, but it actually took almost a year due to the cold temperatures and the ground freezing


-Duluth is the largest port on the Great Lakes, mainly transporting coal, iron ore, and grain


-Duluth is the second largest city off of Lake Superior’s shores


-The harbor is 2,342 miles away from the Atlantic Ocean


-The depths of the harbor were initially only 6-8 feet deep, they now are almost 30 feet deep!


-Until the lift bridge was built, people accessed Minnesota Point or Park Point by ferry


-In 1904 people upgraded to a giant gondola to get across to park point 


-The famous lift bridge wasn’t built until 1939


-Initially the lift bridge was called the Duluth Aerial Ferry Bridge.


-The lift bridge can rise in 55 seconds, making it one of the biggest and quickest bridges of it’s kind


-Small steam tug Frank C. Fero was the first boat through the canal


-Each year there are about 900 vessels that visit Canal Park


-Lakers are a type of ship that makes up about 90% of traffic


-The largest Lakers that visit Duluth are over 1,000 feet long





Love Duluth? Find “Get Bridged” t-shirts at our Canal Park online store!




Get Exclusive Canal Park Updates!

Don't miss out! Get 10% off your first purchase when you join our email list, plus receive updates on Canal Park deals, discounts, and events.