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WHITEFISH POINT, MI – A shipwreck dating back to the 1890’s has been discovered in Michigan’s Lake Superior.

The Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society (GLSHS) announced Thursday that the 172-foot schooner-barge Atlanta was found 35 miles off Deer Park, Michigan in about 650 feet of water.

The vessel sank on May 4, 1891 when it was in tow of the steamer Wilhelm with a load of coal. Both vessels got caught in a northwest gale, which snapped the tow line. With no sails, the Atlanta soon sank.

Michigan Lake Superior shipwreck the Atlanta

The crew escaped onto a lifeboat. They pulled at the oars for several hours and eventually came within site of the Crisp Point Life-Saving Station. While attempting to land their small boat near the station, it overturned and only two of the crew made it safely to the beach, according to the GLSHS.

The Atlanta is a “wonderfully preserved shipwreck,” according to the GLSHS because of its time spent in the frigid depths of Lake Superior.

“It is rare that we find a shipwreck that so clearly announces what it is and the name-board of the Atlanta really stands out,” said Bruce Lynn, Executive Director of the GLSHS. “It is truly ornate, and still beautiful after 130 years on the bottom of Lake Superior.”

Michigan Lake Superior shipwreck the Atlanta

This is the latest shipwreck discovered by the group. Three 1800s-era shipwrecks, The Dot, The Frank W. Wheeler and The Michigan, were discovered in Lake Superior near Grand Marais in October 2021.

The Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society uses a combination of historical research, technology, and teamwork to map where ships were reported lost.

More than 2,500 miles of Lake Superior have been mapped by Marine Sonic Technology in partnership with the GLSHS using Side Scan Sonar-Marine Sonic Technology.

Michigan Lake Superior shipwreck the Atlanta

“No one has to ask where the Atlanta is anymore,” said Director of Marine Operations, Darryl Ertel. “The survivors said all three masts broke off during the storm, and video from an ROV (Remote Operated Vehicle) proves, all three masts broke off flush with the deck and are nowhere to be found.”

Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society
400 West Portage Avenue
Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan 49783

Original article

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