Call Whistle --
Captain -- Charles E. Robertson
Chief Engineer -- Richard Langrill
From "The Great Lakes News",
March 1941 (Roxy Wienand)
- Approximately 6,000,000 pounds of steel were employed in
its construction. Paint used totaled 35 tons or 70,000 pounds.
- About 700,000 rivets were used to bind the ship together.
Almost a year, or 352 days, elapsed from the time the keel was laid up
to its trial run.
- The ship is 406 feet in length and has a carrying capacity
of 34 freight cars, 50 automobiles and 376 passengers. She has 60
staterooms and 12 parors.
- The large dining room seats 60 persons at one time. Mandel
Brothers, well-known Chicago department store, was in charge of all
- So complete and modern is the new ship that it provides
eight steel dog kennels for those who take their pets with them.
- The ship has a guaranteed service speed of 18 mph and will
normally make the Ludington-Manitowoc run in three and one-half hours.
- The new flagship is the only craft of its type to date with
double bottom construction--two complete bottoms, each independent of
the other, as a special safety protection.
- Two Skinner uniflow steam engines, largest of their type
ever contructed, produce a normal 6,000 shaft horsepower.
- About 25 miles of electrical wire were needed to equip the
ship and about two miles of pipe. She has 450 light fixtures.
- November, 1939 -- The CITY OF MIDLAND 41 was ordered by the
Pere Marquette Railway.
- March 14, 1940 -- The Ludington Daily News reported that
the keel laying for the new Pere Marquette carferry (as of yet unamed)
would take place sometime during the next week.
- March 21, 1940 -- The keel was laid for the CITY OF MIDLAND
- August 5, 1940 -- The Ludington Daily News reported that
the date of the launch of the CITY OF MIDLAND 41 was announced by
marine superintendant L.H. Kent. The date was set for September
- August 31, 1940 -- The Ludington Daily News reported that
the 16-year-old daughter of Willard H. Dow (president of Dow Chemical),
Helen A. would be the sponser of the CITY OF MIDLAND 41.
- September 18, 1940 -- CITY OF MIDLAND 41 was launched in
Manitowoc, WI. She was christened by Miss Helen Dow, daughter of
Willard H. Dow, president of Dow Chemical Co.
the Ludington Daily News, September 1940
"REMEMBERS LAUNCHING OF FIRST P.M. CARFERRY"
"Forty three years ago, in 1897 the first Pere Marquette carferry was
launched in Bay City. On Wednesday, September 18 the latest Pere
Marquette carferry, $2,000,000 CITY OF MIDLAND 41, world's largest and
most luxurious, was launched at Manitowoc, Wis.
As far as is known, Horace Abbott, 81 year old retired Ludington
resident, who lives on Ludington Avenue, a short distance east of the
city limits, is the only person in this vicinity who witnessed both
"Mr. Abbott, general foreman and mechanical and car department foreman
of the Pere Marquette for many years, worked for the railroad at
Saginaw in the 1890's and journeyed to Bay City to see the launching of
the first steel carferry--originally named the PERE MARQUETTE and later
the PERE MARQUETTE 15.
It was an auspicious event he recalls but nothing like the ceremony at
Manitowoc Wednesday. Although launched 43 years ago, that first
ferry however was not entirely outclassed in size by the new 41 being
350 feet in length as compared to the 406 feet overall length of the
CITY OF MIDLAND he related.
The 15 had four decktracks like the present ships and had a capacity of
26 freight cars he recalled further. Her driving engines were
rated at 2500 horsepower and the hull construction was such as to make
her an impressive ice-breaker. Mr. Abbott was much impressed with
the appearance of the CITY OF MIDLAND. 'She really is a beautiful
ship' he remarked.
Retired since 1936, Mr. Abbott is one of the keenest sports followers
in the country. Basketball and football are his particular loves.
Born in Canada of American parents he came to Michigan in 1882 after
'knocking around' for several years in company mining camps. He
sucured a position with the Pere Marquette Railroad then the Flint and
Pere Marquette in 1890. He transferred to Ludington in 1899 and
he has resided here since."
- September 27, 1940 -- After the launching, Miss Helen Dow,
who christened the ship, was presented with a traveling bag by the
Manitowoc Shipbuilding Company.
- October 25, 1940 -- The Ludington Daily News reported the
L.H. Kent showed movies of the CITY OF MIDLAND 41, showing the
preparation of plans and moulds, laying of the keel, construction of
the hull and superstructure up to the present. Most of the footage was
taken by Kent. He said that the installation of the engines was
nearly complete. The showing was made at the Monthly Rotary Club
meeting at the Hotel Stearns.
- January 18, 1941 -- The Ludington Daily News reported that
finishing touches were being done to the new CITY OF MIDLAND 41
Manitowoc. The LDN reported that she should enter service around
15th of February.
- February 3, 1941 -- It was announced by the Ludington Daily
that the boilers of the CITY OF MIDLAND 41 were scheduled to be lit for
the first time on Friday, February 7, 1941.
WELCOME COMMITTEE NAMED
A committee to arrange for a city-wide celebration on the occasion of
the maiden arrival of the Pere Marquette's $2,000,000 carferry, CITY OF
MIDLAND 41, was announced today by Chamber of Commerce officials.
It includes Jacob Lunde, Vance Callaghan, and C. Lawrence Lind,
secretary. They will cooperate with Pere Marquette Railroad
officials in staging a welcome. Maiden voyage of the steamline
vessel is scheduled for late January."
Ludington Daily News, December 1940
- February 15, 1941 -- The Ludington Daily News reported that
the maiden voyage of the new CITY OF MIDLAND 41 was now scheduled for
sometime during the week of March 2nd. The original date was for
2/15 but had to be postponed "because of a delay in the delivery of
- March 6, 1941 -- The Ludington Daily News reported that the
announcement was made that the maiden voyage of the CITY OF MIDLAND 41
would be on March 12. She would be running tests (sea trials) off
the Wisconsin shore on March 8th.
- March 12, 1941 -- The CITY OF MIDLAND 41 arrived Ludington
on her maiden voyage. She loaded cars of paper at Manitowoc, then
picked up some cars of canned milk at Kewaunee.
- June 29, 1941 -- Four hundred residents of Midland,
Michigan took part in a special exursion cruise on the CITY OF MIDLAND
41 offered by the Pere Marquette Railway.
- March 12, 1942 -- The Ludington Daily News reported that
the CITY OF MIDLAND 41 ended her first year of service with
approximately 1200 lake crossings.
- November 27, 1986 - The CITY OF MIDLAND 41 ran aground at
Ludington in a storm.
- November 9, 1971 -- The CITY OF MIDLAND 41 was laid up due
to coal stike.
- April 5, 1977 -- Chessie System annouced that the CITY OF
MIDLAND 41 would be withdrawn from service and only the SPARTAN and
BADGER would run for the season.
- March 9, 1985 -- The CITY OF MIDLAND 41 got stuck in the
channel (Ludington) beside the tug JUDY ANN.
- May 3, 1985 -- The CITY OF MIDLAND 41 was taken out of
service for about three weeks with BADGER taking her place to prepare
the 41 for the summer season.
- May 16, 1987 -- The CITY OF MIDLAND was used to plant lake
trout off Beaver Island.
- June 8, 1988 -- The CITY OF MIDLAND 41 loaded a 42-wheel
semi carrying a 100-ton steam turbine generator bound for Colorodo.
- November, 1988 -- The CITY OF MIDLAND 41 was laid up.
- October 1, 1997 -- The CITY OF MIDLAND 41 was towed
out of Ludington to be converted to a barge.