You might have assumed that the ill-fated ship the Edmund Fitzgerald was named for an old-timey sea captain or an Irish bartender or some other sailing-adjacent fellow. Not so!
As our new biography of Edmund Fitzgerald reveals, he was an insurance executive. To be precise, the president of the Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company, which paid for and launched the ship in 1958 as an investment. There was big money in those days in hauling iron ore around the Great Lakes. Here’s what the launch looked like: