Great Lakes Shipwrecks


Kyrila Scully

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Apr 15, 2001
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Okay, I have just wasted hours on the internet looking from one website to another for any information about ships that were wrecked in the Great Lakes from 1900-1910. Anyone out there have any information? Needed for a storyline. The Empress of Ireland is a possibility if I can't find anything earlier than 1914. Thanks for your help!

Kyrila
 

Jim Kalafus

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Dec 3, 2000
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There are at least two good books about the 1913 storm, which was wreck laden. There was also an eerie incident aboard the Eastland in July 1904 which COULD be included- during an afternoon departure with several thousand people aboard, she developed a severe list, recovered, and then rolled even more dramatically to the other side, wiht water beginning to enter her lower passenger decks (as happened in the eventual 1915 capsize) and only fast action by the crew preventing a complete disaster. This took place only a mile or so from port and was witnessed by hundreds, if not thousands, on land, and was the start of her bad reputation. Similar incidents happened several times between 1904 and 1915, but the 1904 incident is the best documented.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Associated Press:

Century-Old Shipwreck Found in Superior
quote:

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) – Explorers have discovered a century-old shipwrecked ore carrier that sank mysteriously during a Lake Superior storm less than two months after it was launched.

All but one of the Cyprus' 23 crew members died in the Oct. 11, 1907, disaster. A team with the Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society found the wreckage last month about 460 feet beneath the surface and planned to announce the discovery Monday, said Tom Farnquist, the group's executive director.

The Great Lakes are littered with thousands of shipwrecks. But the Cyprus is among the more puzzling – especially because it foundered on just its second voyage, while hauling iron ore from Superior, Wis., to Buffalo, N.Y.
Full story at http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gZL4PI5_oL8It6nHod5rT52zfkcQ
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From BYM:

US Coast Guard responds to oil spill from towing vessel Dale White
quote:

The U.S. Coast Guard is conducting an investigation into the grounding and subsequent oil spill from the towing vessel Dale White in the Cal-Sag Channel.
The 78-foot vessel briefly grounded and continued its voyage to a slip on the Calumet River.
Brief story at http://www.bymnews.com/news/newsDetails.php?id=24325
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From Canada.com (Leader-Post):

Ship's discovery prompts court battle
quote:

An American relic hunter who believes he's found one of Canada's most important shipwrecks at the bottom of Lake Michigan is appealing for Canadian heritage officials to get involved in the U.S. legal battle over the site.

The Griffon, which was built near Niagara Falls in 1679 and became the first sailing ship on the Great Lakes, was lost in a storm on its maiden voyage and now ranks among North America's most sought-after wrecks.
More at http://www.canada.com/reginaleaderpost/news/story.html?id=1c971478-9a9c-45ea-8074-827a866b5236
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From MSNBC:

Missing Ship Found Near Sheboygan
quote:

SHEBOYGAN - Steve Radovan always knew somewhere beyond the driftwood and the Sheboygan lighthouse, deep beneath the cool monochromatic Lake Michigan water, the Robert Pringle was waiting. The 101 foot wooden excursion steamer-turned-tugboat sank on the night of July 19, 1922 after plowing into something about eight miles offshore from Sheboygan.
For the rest, see http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24717935/
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Globe and Mail:

'Holy grail' of lost ships discovered
quote:

TORONTO – The last time anyone laid eyes on her, the Ontario was the most-feared ship on the Great Lakes.

It was 1780. Yankee militias were threatening to storm across Lake Ontario and seize Montreal from the British. And if it weren't for the intimidating profile of the 226-ton Ontario — 22 cannons, two 80-foot masts, a beamy hull with cargo space for 1000 barrels — they just may have.

But six months after she launched, the pride of the Great Lakes fleet sailed into a Halloween squall with around 120 passengers on board and was never seen again. It remains the worst-ever disaster recorded on Lake Ontario, according to Kingston historian Arthur Britton Smith.
For the rest of the story, and the details of the discovery, see http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080613.wship0613/BNStory/International/home
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From Canada.com (The Province):

Ship's ownership in doubt
quote:

TORONTO -- It's one of the most important shipwreck discoveries ever on the Great Lakes: the Ontario, a 24-metre British brig from the American War of Independence that went down during a violent Halloween gale in 1780, carrying her mostly Canadian-born crew to the frigid depths of Lake Ontario.

But 228 years after the ship's brief and ill-fated career in the war against Britain and its Canadian colonies, a three-way jurisdictional clash may be looming over the ownership of this stunningly intact relic.
For the rest, see http://www.canada.com/theprovince/news/story.html?id=a03d2038-644b-4cb2-ac9a-49ece807bdf1
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Charlotte Examiner:

The ghost ship of Lake Erie
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On December 7th 1941 the Japanese struck the American Naval fleet in Pearl Harbor, an attack that sent both nations headlong into a bloody and culturally changing conflict.


However there was another maritime tragedy that took place on the same date some 32 years earlier.


On December 7th 1909 the at 11 a.m., the Marquette & Bessemer No. 2, a 350-foot-long steel-hulled car ferry, left the port of Conneaut, Ohio with a cargo of rail cars filled to the brim with coal.
More at http://www.examiner.com/x-4872-Pittsburgh-Paranormal-Examiner~y2009m6d13-The-ghost-ship-of-Lake-Erie

Comment: Boo!​
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Buffalo News:

Sunken ship at center of legal tug of war
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The shipwreck hunters who want to raise an old schooner from the bottom of Lake Erie and put it on display in the Buffalo harbor have been entangled in a five-year federal court battle with the state over rights to the vessel.

State historic preservation and museum officials believe federal law gives the state control of the ship, and they feel it is best preserved where it is, off the Dunkirk shoreline. They also allege the company behind the schooner-raising plan has damaged the ship and accuses its divers of improperly handling human remains found onboard.
More at http://www.buffalonews.com/home/story/765795.html?imw=Y
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From Canada.com:

'A scene from hell'
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Sixty years ago today, a sudden ship fire killed 118 in Toronto

Sixty years ago, in the predawn hours of Sept. 17, 1949, violent screams erupted from Toronto harbour, drowning out sirens from fire trucks that arrived too late to rescue the SS Noronic. Then the largest cruise ship on the Great Lakes, the Noronic was reduced to kindling, trapping the howling passengers within minutes.

In his 1976 book, The Noronic is Burning!, author John Craig described it as a "scene from hell."
More at http://www.canada.com/news/story.html?id=2001913
 

Jason D. Tiller

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Dec 3, 2000
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From The Plain Dealer:

1949 Toronto ship fire: A night to remember for Cleveland-area survivors

quote:

Clevelanders know the worst local tragedies of the 20th century by heart -- the Collinwood school fire, the Cleveland Clinic fire and the East Ohio Gas Co. explosion.

But this year marks the 60th anniversary of a deadly event you likely have never heard of, a ship fire that killed dozens of people from Northeast Ohio.
For the rest, including a slide show of photos:

http://www.cleveland.com/living/index.ssf/2009/09/1949_toronto_ship_fire_a_night.html

Comment: My thanks to Mary Ann Whitley for the link.​
 

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