Duluth, Missabe & Iron Range (1938 to Present)

  • The first Baldwin 2-8-8-4 Yellowstone steam locomotives arrive in 1941. A second batch arrives in 1943.
  • DM&IR ships 44,788,199 tons in 1943. Second highest tonnage figure.
  • Wales Branch extended 32 miles in 1947.
  • In 1953, the Missabe reaches its all-time annual ore shipment high of 49,317,625 tons. First diesels, EMD SW-9s, arrive.
  • EMD SD-9s join the locomotive roster in 1956. The Missabe completely dieselizes in 1960.
  • Passenger service on the Missabe division ends in 1957. Duluth to Ely service ceases in 1961.
  • Ore mining ends at the Soudan underground mine in 1962 and at the Ely mines in 1963.
  • The Two Harbors docks close in 1963 and don't re-open until 1966.
  • Taconite Amendment to Minnesota constitution passes in 1963.
  • Eveleth Taconite Co. formed in 1964.
  • Missabe's Lakehead Storage Facility completed in 1964 for winter storage of taconite pellets in Duluth.
  • USS Minntac starts operations at Mountain Iron in 1967.
  • Self-unloading 1,000 foot ore boats go into service in 1972.
  • Inland Steel opens its Minorca taconite pellet plant near Virginia in 1977.
  • During the 1978-1986 period, US Steel closes the Duluth Works, South Works in Chicago, Ohio Works in Youngstown, the Cuyahoga Works in Cleveland; at Pittsburgh: Homestead Works, Carrie Furnaces, Duquesne Works and National Tube; the hot side of the Fairless Works near Trenton, New Jersey and sells off the Johnstown Works in Pennsylvania and Geneva Works in Utah.
  • US Steel buys Marathon Oil in 1982 and changes its name to USX in 1986.
  • In 1988, USX spins off DM&IR; Elgin, Joliet & Eastern (EJ&E), Union RR, the Pittsburgh & Conneaut Dock Company, Bessemer & Lake Erie (B&LE), Birmingham Southern, the Great Lakes Fleet and Warrior & Gulf Navigation into subsidiary Transtar, then sells majority control to the Blackstone Group and USX.
  • In 1998, Dutch steelmaker Ispat International buys Inland Steel, including Minorca plant.
  • In 2001, USX takes back the Union Railroad, EJ&E, Birmingham Southern and Warrior & Gulf
  • Navigation from the Blackstone Group.

  • DM&IR, Great Lakes Fleet, B&LE and the Pittsburgh and Conneaut Dock Company were spun off from Transtar into the new company Great Lakes Transportation (owned by Blackstone Holdings). For the first time in over 100 years DM&IR is no longer associated with US Steel.
  • USX acquires National Steel, including National Steel Pellet Co., in 2003.
  • EVTAC (Eveleth Taconite) shuts down in May 2003. DM&IR loses half of its traffic and second largest source of revenue.
  • In late 2003, Blackstone Holdings agrees to sell Great Lakes Transportation to the Canadian National. Includes the Missabe, Great Lakes Fleet, Bessemer & Lake Erie and C&P Dock.
  • EVTAC becomes United Taconite (owned by Cleveland-Cliffs and a Chinese steel company). Raw ore moves again moves from the Thunderbird Mine to the processor in Forbes in December 2003.
  • In early 2004, Cleveland-Cliffs explores the possibilty of routing pellets from United Taconite and Hibbing Taconite to its former LTV Steel Mining dock at Taconite Harbor.