Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Buffalo in Erie County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

The Union Ship Canal

The Industrial Heritage Trail

 
 
The Union Ship Canal Marker image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, June 3, 2015
1. The Union Ship Canal Marker
Inscription. The Union Ship Canal came about as a collective effort of railroad, shipping, banking, and iron smelting business interests. The founders of the Buffalo and Susquehanna Iron Company (the predecessor to Hanna Furnace) controlled rail lines to Buffalo from coal fields in Pennsylvania. They also had interests in Great Lakes shipping that could suply iron ore from Michigan and Minnesota. In cooperation with the Pennsylvania Railroad, the Buffalo and Susquehanna Iron Company began construction of a canal in 1903 to connect these resources.

The canal (originally called the Goodyear Canal) began at the shore of Lake Erie and crossed Fuhrmann Boulevard, which was spanned with a Scherzer Rolling Lift Bridge. In 1910, the canal was extended an additional 950 feet. In its final form, the canal was 2,240 feet long, 222 feet wide, and over 23 feet deep.

The Union Ship Canal was used for unloading the bulk cargo carriers that brought iron ore and limestone. The imported minerals were stored on the grounds of the Pennsylvania Railroad to the north, and the Hanna Furnace storage yeard to the south.

A larger boat could be unloaded in nine to sixteen hours. During the summer months, the shipment of iron ore and limestone was a continuous around-the-clock undertaking, in order to provide the furnace with the minerals for the ongoing
Marker & Union Ship Canal image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, June 3, 2015
2. Marker & Union Ship Canal
Marker is on the third tower from the right, facing left. Fuhrmann Boulevard is segmented by the canal here.
smelting operations, as well as stockpile reserves for the winter, when the Great Lakes were frozen.

The canal was also used for loading ships that carried iron to automobile plants, steel mills, and foundaries throughout the Great Lakes and east coast.

The Union Ship Canal, circa 1910.

Buffalo Outer Harbor, 1927. Image Source: Fairchild Aerial Survey, University at Buffalo Digital Map Collection.
 
Erected by The Industrial Heritage Committee, Inc.
 
Location. 42° 50.044′ N, 78° 51.285′ W. Marker is in Buffalo, New York, in Erie County. Marker is on Fuhrmann Boulevard mile south of Ohio Street, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Buffalo NY 14203, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Lehigh Portland Cement Company (here, next to this marker); Bethlehem Steel in Lackawanna (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named Bethlehem Steel in Lackawanna (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named Bethlehem Steel in Lackawanna (here, next to this marker); Improvements in Ship Design (here,
The Union Ship Canal image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, June 3, 2015
3. The Union Ship Canal
Marker towers are off-picture, to the left.
next to this marker); Early Lake Erie Water Craft (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named Bethlehem Steel in Lackawanna (here, next to this marker); The Great Lakes (a few steps from this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Buffalo.
 
Categories. Industry & CommerceWaterways & Vessels
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 25, 2015, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York. This page has been viewed 168 times since then and 25 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on July 25, 2015, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.
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