: Original description reads: "Cleveland Cliff Iron Co. dock, Lake Erie, west of the mouth of the Cuyahoga River, near Edgewater Park."
The ship in the photograph is the "Fred G. Hartwell", an ore carrier built in 1922, being unloaded by a Hulett, a specialized unloading machine. This group of four Huletts can be found on Whiskey Island, between the mouth of the Cuyahoga River and Edgewater Park, in Cleveland, Ohio.
The Hulett Automatic Ore Unloader was invented by George H. Hulett, a native of Ohio, in the late 1800's. The unloader became an essential element in the development of the iron ore industry in Ohio, allowing rapid unloading of cargo and increasing the volume and efficiency of ore docks at Ohio ports. The machines remained in use, with few changes, until the early 1990s.
Cliffs Natural Resources, formerly Cleveland-Cliffs, is a Cleveland, Ohio business firm that specializes in the mining and beneficiation of iron ore and the mining of coal.
The firm's earliest predecessor was the Cleveland Iron Mining Company, founded in 1847. Samuel Mather and six associates had learned of rich iron-ore deposits recently discovered in the highlands of the Upper Peninsula region of Michigan. The final decades of the 1800s were a period of business consolidation from the partnership-sized businesses of an earlier generation to a new type of business firm, the stock-market-traded corporation intent on maximizing market share. The former Cleveland Iron Mining Co. was a survivor of this shakeout, purchasing many of its competitors. One key merger in 1890, with Jeptha Wade's Cliffs Iron Company led the combined firm to change its name to the Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Company.
William G. Mather, the son of Samuel, guided Cleveland-Cliffs as president and later as chairman of the board during the period of 1890-1947. Under Mather, Cleveland-Cliffs was a leader in the development of the classic-type lake freighter, a bulk-cargo vessel especially designed to carry Great Lakes commodities. The 618-foot (188 m)-long William G. Mather, launched in 1925, is a surviving example of this ship type. For almost a century, the black-hulled Cleveland-Cliffs ships were familiar sights on the upper Lakes.
In 1933, Edward Greene (the son-in-law of Jeptha Homer Wade II) replaced William G. Mather as the head of the company. Demand for American iron ore hit peaks during World War I, World War II, and the post-WWII consumer boom, and the company enjoyed success for many decades.
The periods following the recessions of 1974-75 and 1981-83 were harsh ones for the iron ore industry. Cleveland-Cliffs shrank its operations, closing many of their plants and began turning the associated tailings ponds into compensatory wetlands for its other properties. In 1984, Cliffs withdrew from the Great Lakes shipping industry.
In June 2007, Cleveland-Cliffs purchased its first domestic coal property. In line with its venture into coal, the company changed its name from Cleveland-Cliffs to Cliffs Natural Resources in October 2008. View on Ohio Memory.
: SA1039AV_B04F11_31_01 Subjects
: Lake Erie; Shipping industry; Docks--Ohio--Cleveland; Lake steamers--Great Lakes (North America)--History; Shipping--Erie, Lake; Cargo ships; Ores--Transportation; Hulett iron-ore unloaders; National Register of Historic Places; Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Company; Mather, Samuel, 1851-1931; Mather, William Gwinn, 1857-1951 Places
: Cleveland (Ohio); Cuyahoga County (Ohio)