Your Gateway to Toledo and Northwest Ohio History

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Transportation History

Col. James M. Schoonmaker

Toledo’s history and the history of commerce on the Great Lakes has been intertwined since the city’s inception. Toledo’s position on the Maumee River at the western end of Lake Erie has made it one of the busiest ports on the Great Lakes. It is fitting then that Toledo is home to the National Museum of the Great Lakes which includes the museum ship Col. James M. Schoonmaker. [Exhibit link]

Nasby Interlocking Tower

Nasby Tower was at the intersection of the Toledo Terminal Railroad (TTRR) and the east-west Conrail main line. The tower controlled the TTRR crossing, several tracks into the west end of the old Air Line Yard (now an intermodal terminal), a branch main to Detroit, a long siding to the west, and crossovers between the mains. The second floor was where the action was. The first floor was filled with wiring, relays, and back-up batteries. [Exhibit link]

S. S. Willis B. Boyer

In the shadow of the downtown Toledo skyline, moored alongside the rolling landscape of International Park, a splash of history and romance awaits you on the S.S. Willis B. Boyer. Careful, authentic restoration has made the ship come alive! Memorabilia, photography, and artifacts maintained and displayed by the Western Lake Erie Historical Society are all part of this nautical museum. The Boyer offers to all who visit the unique opportunity to experience the shipping lifestyle in a hands-on setting. As one of a few of its kind remaining, the Boyer will charm and intrigue you with its vastness, fascinating engineering design, and beautiful interior. [Exhibit link]

NOTE: The S. S. Willis B. Boyer has been renamed the Col. James M. Schoonmaker.  A more recent exhibit is accessible above.