(By Greg Rourke) – We know about the thousand foot boats hauling bulk cargo all over the Great Lakes, but you may not know about the Pere Marquette 41. This barge may be the James Brown of the Great Lakes, the hardest working boat on the water.
The story starts in 1940 when construction began on the City Of Midland 41 carferry. The vessel was designed for cross Lake Michigan traffic, and could carry 34 rail cars, 50 automobiles, and 375 passengers. It was considered the most luxurious ferry of it’s time. Things went well for her owners, first the Pere Marquette, and later the C&O railroads until 1985 when traffic died down.