Thomas Wilson

(collision, 1902)

wilsonThe Thomas Wilson was a riveted-steel, single propeller freight-carrying steamship. The Wilson was built during the winter of 1891-1892 at West Superior, Wisc., and was launched April 30, 1892. The wreck of the Wilson is historically significant as the best known surviving example of the earliest whaleback steamships. Whalebacks were a distinctive type of Great Lakes bulk freighter designed by Captain Alexander McDougall for the transportation of grain, iron ore and lumber in the late 19th century. The Wilson was the last whaleback constructed without hatch coamings. The Wilson's importance is enhanced by its role in the establishment of safe operating procedures at Duluth-West Superior Harbor as a result of its loss. The remains of the Thomas Wilson were listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1994.

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