When a boat-bridge collision shut down the Twin Ports

The Interstate Bridge after its collision with the steamer Troy in 1906. (Image: Lake Superior Maritime Collection)

As the news cycle continues to feed us updates on the bridge-boat collision that forced the Francis Scott Key Bridge to collapse, closing off the Port of Baltimore, we thought it would be appropo to share how Duluthians and Superiorites experienced the same situation before—twice. Fortunately, unlike in Baltimore, no lives were lost.

In August 1906 the steamer Troy slammed into the Interstate Bridge just after midnight, with captain Robert Murphy blaming the bridge’s lights making it difficult to see. Access to the Duluth-Superior port was blocked for over a week, and it took engineers two years to fully restore the bridge. Eighteen years later—November 1924—captain A. R. Morse accidentally steered the 600-foot, 8,000-ton steamer Merton E. Farr into the Interstate Bridge. It took nearly two months days to get the bridge back in working order.

Read the story of both bridge collapses here: https://zenithcity.com/archive/legendary-tales/interstate-bridge-wrecks/.