Shipwrecks

Jim Kennard / Great Lakes Today

Three western New York-based shipwreck hunters, who have discovered some of the most significant historic wrecks in the Great Lakes, have written a book about their explorations.

Recalling the doomed 'Christmas Tree Ship'

Dec 12, 2017

The Christmas spirit is popping up along the waters of the Great Lakes region.

In Port Huron, Mich., Santa Claus rode to shore on the Huron Spirit, a boat operated by the Lakes Pilots Association. In Toledo, Ohio, the tug Josephine brought him to the National Museum of the Great Lakes.

But the most poignant event of the holiday season was in Chicago, where the sinking of  "The Christmas Tree Ship" was remembered recently.

There’s more than just fish and sand in the Great Lakes.   According to the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum in Michigan, there are over 6,000 shipwrecks in the lakes – and an estimated 30,000 lives lost.


Poet gives new life to Great Lakes shipwrecks

Mar 2, 2017

A new book by Michigan poet Cindy Hunter Morgan breathes life into shipwrecks that dot the floor of the Great Lakes.

"Harborless" is her re-imagining of tragic moments when the Philadelphia, Chicora and other ships were lost. 

U.S. marine sanctuary planned on Lake Michigan

Jan 6, 2017

The U.S. government is seeking public comment on plans to protect historic shipwrecks by creating a new national marine sanctuary in Lake Michigan.

On Monday, Jan. 9, NOAA began taking comments on its plan to protect 1,075 square miles of the lake. 

Diver's view of Great Lakes: shipwrecks and evil mussels

Jan 4, 2017

Helen Domske is the senior coastal education specialist for New York Sea Grant and associate director of the University at Buffalo's Great Lakes Program. She's also an avid scuba diver, so we asked her about diving in the Great Lakes.

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The 144-year-old shipwreck of a rare sailing vessel that typically wasn't used for long voyages on the Great Lakes has been found in deep water off Lake Ontario's New York shore, according to two underwater explorers.

Western New York-based explorers Jim Kennard and Roger Pawlowski announced Friday that they identified the wreck as the Black Duck in September, three years after initially coming across it while using side-scan sonar in 350 feet of water off Oswego, New York.

Deadly day on Lake Erie

Oct 20, 2016

This week marks the 100th anniversary of the "Black Friday Storm," a swirl of rain, wind and waves that left about 50 people dead on Lake Erie.

Video of Great Lakes shipwreck, the Antelope

Sep 21, 2016
Ken Merryman

An eerie video takes you deep into Lake Superior, where a century-old shipwreck lies, with masts and rigging nearly intact. Explorers Ken Merryman, Jerry Eliason and Kraig Smith recently used a remote camera to photograph their find: the 187-foot Antelope. The coal-hauling freighter sank in rough waters in October, 1897.

Jim Kennard

Rochester-based explorers say they have located the Washington, a sloop that sank more than 200 years ago off the coast of Oswego, N.Y.


Jim Kennard

A schooner that sank off the shores of New York in Lake Ontario almost a century and a half ago has been discovered.

Underwater explorer Jim Kennard says he and his colleagues Roger Pawlowski and Roland Stevens were canvassing miles of lake bottom with a remote control video camera when it happened.

"All of a sudden you see something and the adrenaline kicks in."

Courtesy of YouTube/NOAA New York Sea Grant

Ships that have gone down in waters across New York spanning a 200 year period are detailed in The Great Shipwrecks Exhibit on display now at The Lake Erie Seaway Trail Center.